Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Bread Basket Universal Law

"Let's eat at Emilia's" I said to my husband who was talking on his cellphone. He passed by streetside parking places and pulled into a spot that belonged to "36 Club." So we ate there, instead.
It was a tad more elegant than Taco Bell: The waiter brought us a basket of bread wrapped in a cloth napkin, and although it was white French bread, we both dove in. After my first piece, though, I peeled off the crust of the second, and ate just that -- the crust.
Jeremy looked askance. "Do you know who you remind me of?"
I did. "Your mother," I said, knowing that she preferred the crust to the inside. "But, you like the crust better, too," I pointed out, because he always insists on eating the end pieces of artisan breads and challahs.
"Yeah," he said, "but I eat the inside, too. There's a universal law that says you have to eat the whole thing."
"Wow! I didn't know that," I said, masking my sarcasm as wide-eyed wonder. "Maybe we should post that law on our blog to publicize it better."
So we did.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Unbearable Lightness Of Being

I had an "aha" recently. It has to do with my weight.
I've gained a lot of weight in the last nine years, the last nine years being spent sitting at a desk for eight or more hours a day.
Now I've "rewired."
(Rewired because retired sounds like something you do to a car.)
With my rewirement, I thought the pounds would start dropping off, because I am on the move often during the day. I even have a newborn in my life and carrying her about the house burns calories, doesn't it? The pounds should be dropping like flies.
But, the flies seem to like me.
Four weeks later, I'm still the same weight, even though I'm eating less. At the newspaper where I worked, my colleagues brought cookies and candy and potato chips every night, and I rewarded myself frequently with a mini-Snickers or mesquite-flavored chips or biscotti.
Now my worst temptation is the leftover apple crisp and ice cream I made for guests last Friday night.
It's almost gone.
But, back to the aha ...
First, you have to know, or rather I need to remember, that the extra 30 pounds were added gradually over nine years. That's only 3.3 pounds a year. So if they come off as gradually as they were put on, it will take me nine years to let go of them.
That feels like forever!
So at the beginning of this year, knowing I was rewiring, I started Weight Watchers and took off and kept off eight pounds. But no more. I sabotaged myself, and even knowing this, didn't change my behavior.
Rewiring changed my behavior, though.
There are no colleagues who bring treats into my home.
And caring for my granddaughter changed my behavior.
Still, the pounds have not started to melt.
I realized two weeks ago one reason why: I had reached a point where I didn't believe I would ever be slender again.
My head could not envision me like I was a decade ago.
No wonder nothing was changing.
About this time, the digital scale broke, and I took it as a sign. Stay off the scale until I can see myself light.
I am not losing weight, I am becoming lighter. It is no longer an unbearable thought.
I took a photograph of myself, front and side views, and used a marker pen to black out the excess stomach and back and thigh flesh. Now I have the picture of what I will look like -- I have to squint my eyes, though -- taped to my bathroom mirror.
Finally, I can see myself as the light being that I am.

P.S. About 10 days ago, my husband Jeremy couldn't bear not weighing himself daily. So he plopped a whopping $5.97 down on the old-fashioned kind of scale that has numbers in the window. When I got on it I couldn't see the small lines, but I could tell that I was halfway between two of the large numbers. I was sick, because it meant I had gained three of the pounds back that I'd lost since January. This morning, I wondered if I was any lighter, having had this aha. But this time I went and found my driving eyeglasses before stepping on. It turns out that the large numbers are 20 pounds apart, not 10, and actually, I've lost two pounds in the past month. I am so light now, I am floating.