Sunday, March 17, 2013

Best attempts at handling compliments

Another weekend has come and gone, in the blink of an eye it seems like.  As I sit here in front of my laptop, I'm fresh from a post-workout shower.  How incredibly awesome does it feel to step into a shower after giving it your all at the gym or wherever you work out?  It feels awesome and generally makes me sleep like a baby (at least I really hope so). 

I realized earlier today that I have exactly two months until I go through my graduation ceremony at Cal State.  I started getting the less-than-wise train of thought going in my head, wondering just how many pounds I can lose between now and then since I'll be walking in it.  Is 80 pounds doable?  I know, completely and utterly ridiculous.  I rationalized that if I was still on Optifast, I could probably do it since I lost 45 pounds in the first month alone in that program.  Never mind that I was secretly sick all the time while I was on the program and had all these medical issues going on.  Is this the thinking of a sane person?  Hardly!  Yet, when it comes to weight loss, obesity or anything related to the subject, I swear I lose all common sense.  Of course I won't lose 80 pounds in two months, but there's another part of my brain that says, "Okay, maybe not 80 pounds but how about 70??"  And where is this all stemming from?  Fear.  Fear tells me I'll be too big to fit in a cap and gown.  Fear tells me that I won't be able to sit in one of those white chairs without it collapsing beneath me.  When I started thinking about all of this, I decided that I really needed to get out of my head so I called my mom.

My relationship with my mom has been difficult over the years.  I know that she's done the absolute best she could do, but she was abusive towards me when I was a kid.  Actually, for many years.  Then, as an adult, long after the physical part of the abuse was over, we had a disagreement when I confronted her on it and we stopped talking.  That lasted for twelve years.  Can you imagine not speaking with your living parent for that long?  I basically told her that until she could own up to it, not to speak to me.  So she didn't.  In those twelve years, we both grew tremendously, not only as people but as mother and daughter.  Despite her flaws, and mine, our relationship is really lovely now.  She is going to be in the audience watching me graduate from college.  It's been a long road for me, so I know this will a very emotional event and I'll probably cry.  Okay, okay, I will cry.  I know it will be the same for my parents.  My dad will also be there (they are divorced) and probably my step-mom as well.  I will be the first one with a college degree.  As we were talking about it, my mom said, "Kathy, I want you to know I am very, very proud of you."  I think this is the second time in my life that she's said that to me.  The only other time was about two months ago when I was buying furniture for my house and she could see that I was able to afford it.  I'm 41 so I've never heard that before now.  And you know what?  It meant a great deal to me.  I thanked her without having to lessen the compliments, like I tend to do.  My dad has also told me he is proud of the person I have become.  I tell you what ... winning the lottery will never make me feel anywhere near as joyful as my parents have made me feel in hearing how they feel about me.

Addressing those other issues:  Yes, I will fit into a cap and gown.  And, no, the seat will not break underneath me.  How do I know this?  That's an easy one.  As a staff member, I participate in the graduation ceremony our high school puts on and for several years I was part of the processional greeting the graduates on the field.  I was adorned in a cap and gown and I sat in those white chairs each time.  More than that, I weighed well over a hundred pounds more than I do now.  So, Kathy, it will be just fine.  Scratch that ... it will be more than just fine.  It will be a wonderful experience that I know I'll remember forever.  I am planning on going to grad school next winter, but this step is a huge one for me, accomplishing something I've always wanted for myself, uncertain as to whether or not I was smart enough to do it.  Of course I'm smart enough, but the self-doubt can really convince you of some really big lies if you let it rule. 

So, even if I don't lose those 70 or 80 pounds in the next two months, I can be proud of myself for being the person I am, pursuing dreams and goals because they are important to me and staying true to myself.  The scale has had way too much power in my life and I refuse, absolutely refuse, to let it stand in my way of participating in that ceremony.  This is not about what I look like but, instead, something major in my life that I have accomplished because I did the work and committed myself to it.  That feels good. 


Kim said...

I understand where you are coming from, when it comes to weight loss, I also seem to lose my rational mind, especially until I have talked it over to someone or wrote it out and seen it on paper/screen. Congratulations on your upcoming graduation. You are right - this is not about your weight - it is about breaking the mold, being the first to graduate college in your family, and being proud that it is YOUR accomplishment! I hope you savour every minute. You can worry about those 80 pounds for your grad school graduation:)
~ Kim

Kathy said...

Thanks for the reminder that sanity is always important ;-) That's something I have to keep working on when it comes to weight-loss issues.

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