Saturday, January 11, 2014

Stormy Saturday

Man, the weather has been insane lately, hasn't it? Earlier in the week the temperature was in the single digits, which is crazy for the south. Nuts when school is canceled for a "cold day" rather than a snow day, because there was no snow. Today, it's not cold at all, probably in the upper 40s, but it's been storming like crazy all night and morning. I had to go out in it, because Small had dance class, and the man is out of town, but now we're back home and hunkered down, with DVR'ed movies and a pot roast to sustain us. Tough life, out here in the 'burbs.

I'm absolutely uninspired today. No desire to do anything creative at all. (This is in strong contrast to my Small One, who is currently singing to herself as she works on collages.) I thought I'd check and see what the Nablopomo prompt was for the day, and wouldn't you know it, they don't list prompts on weekends. What's up with that?

So then, I'm thinking about pressure, because of course that's the month's theme. I have a little work pressure right now, with a bunch of things to write between now and Thursday, but I'm not sweating that too hard. It's pleasant to have that kind of pressure, a steady stream of income-producing activity.

I've gone back to pressuring myself in another way, though, by jumping back on the Weight Watcher's wagon. I'd been chugging along until the holidays hit, and then I sort of let it all go, so now it's time to get back to it.

Well, that's sort of a lie. I lost almost 40 pounds last year, but at the end of the summer, I was feeling pressured from all sorts of directions, and a little sad, and stopped paying attention to my own dietary intake for about a month. I gained a pound or two, which I felt was actually perfectly acceptable, and then I got back on track, but then... I don't know. I threw three major parties in the fall, prior to the holiday season, and money was tight, and I was hustling, trying to get all the work I possibly could, and it just all seemed so much to handle. I went back and forth all fall, and finally threw in the towel just before Thanksgiving. I'm ok with that decision, but I don't really want to step back on the scale just yet, either.

I have a strange relationship with my own weight. I'm overweight, and probably need to lose another 40 pounds, but I'm pretty relaxed about it. I'm healthy, I've got a husband who finds me attractive, and I'm not in a business that requires me to present an "image" or, indeed, interact with people on a regular basis. Mostly, I'm at home, in comfy clothes (sometimes pj's, I'm not going to lie) writing, playing with Small, snuggling dogs, tending to my family. It's only when I have to shop for clothes or see my mother-in-law that I feel the pressure of how much I weigh. I spent a large portion of my life feeling the societal pressure to be thin, and in truth, I'm not meant to be thin. I'm a curvy girl, and I like that, so the weight that I lose is not to reach a socially approved size or weight, I'm in it to make myself happy and healthy.

I think I'm doing alright. This is me last Thanksgiving:

And this is me in May:

And this is me on Christmas.

So obviously, it's a process, but at least I'm getting somewhere. The funny thing is, I lose weight best when I'm not stressed out about it. When I'm just being myself, being happy, confidently feeding my body what it wants, the pounds seem to melt. On the other hand, when I'm overworked and under pressure, I can't concentrate on even noticing anything that doesn't seem essential to survival. I guess if I had high blood pressure, or diabetes, or some other weight related health issue, I'd see the whole thing as more crucial, but as it is, I don't. So when there's a time that I have to relieve pressure from my life in some way, that's the first thing to go.

I guess that seems counter-intuitive, doesn't it? I mean, it seems like when I feel pressured, I'd focus on taking care of myself, and that would mean having a better diet, exercising, getting plenty of rest, and so on, but that's not where I go with it. Self care translates to comfort, and comfort translates to yoga pants and not giving a thought to tracking my food intake.

Of course, I also absolutely refuse to "diet", in the traditional sense. I think it has to do with my age, and the place I've reached in my personal development. I have no interest in feeling deprived, I want to only do things that make me feel better, and for me that means happy and relaxed. So when I say I'm back on the wagon, what I mean is that I'm committing to purposeful eating, and working in more activity- I don't mean that I'm giving up butter. I'll never give up butter.

So how about you? What's the first thing to fall by the wayside when you're under too much pressure? And what are your thoughts on weight? Do you feel the pressure to be a different size, or are you comfortable where you are?


Lynda Lippin said...

Amy, you look great. And as you know, I am a firm believer that stress is one of the biggest factors in weight gain and inability to lose. So stay less stressed and enjoy!

Olivia said...

Hello from a fellow Georgian!

I absolutely feel you on losing weight best when I'm not pressuring myself to do it. If I set a goal of exercising x amount of times in a week and not obsess about food, I find that I'm able to shed a pound here and there without being completely miserable.

I love your attitude and that you recognize the love and support surrounding you. :) As a big girl (who is currently 35 weeks pregnant and has put on about 50 lbs. this pregnancy), I know how important it is to be surrounded by love. I've spent way too many years beating myself up over my weight when it's just not worth it.

amy said...

I wish I knew how to reply to individual comments!

Thanks for the kind words. =)

Lynda- I'm taking inspiration from your blog.

Olivia- Congratulations on the pregnancy, and don't sweat the baby weight. Babies are SO worth it.