I know what you’re thinking. (Actually I’m not a psychic. I can guess what you’re thinking.)
Way to go, Cathy! Fist bumps all around! Woot!
Or something like that.
And in a way, it feels really good to type that out, but there’s a caveat: I started out about 43 pounds over what scientists say is the upper most end of a healthy BMI for a 5-foot 6-inch woman.
Now let’s agree for argument’s sake that those BMI charts are just a tad hardcore and we’ll choose a slightly more sane number.
How does 30 pounds overweight sound? Good? Yes? Okay, let’s go with that.
So that 1.3 pounds, while initially impressive is actually just a hair over homeostasis. In other words, I maintained my girth in 2015 and I’m being honest with you about how I have moved
more less and eaten well like shit in 2015, that 1.3 pounds is a mother effing MIRACLE.
So I have a few thoughts and the first one is this: menopause is a bitch, ladies.
Okay it’s not all that bad. If you can deal with daily hot flashes, then you’ll be just dandy. That’s really been the main issue I’ve had for the past two years. In fact, there are some real benefits to The Change but they might fall under the WTMI (WAY too much information) category. One not-so-great side effect is that my body requires far fewer calories to operate. Unfortunately my daily choice maker doesn’t seem to be getting the memo on this.
Which leads me to Number Two: my purpose has determined my present outcome. My purpose this year has been to eat whatever I want, whenever I want. To that end, it’s still officially hard to bend over without my stomach putting up a fight. And you can’t really blame that on menopause, people.
And all this would be fine if I was okay with it. But I’m not okay with it. I don’t feel great in my skin.
I can move more and I can eat well. So that’s what I need to do.
Here’s the thing: I am an abstainer.
I was recently listening to a Nutritional Weight and Wellness podcast featuring Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, who was talking about her new book, Better Than Before. The conversation was about habits and the abstainer/moderator idea came up.
You know this, right? Abstainers are all or nothing people. When it comes to food, we can’t keep a piece of dark chocolate on our desks to last us the entire work week. We don’t just eat one Reeses Peanut Butter Cup Pumpkin. We don’t drink just one glass of wine.
One thing that Gretchen talked about was the belief that moderators are who we should strive to be but the reality is, some of us are and some of us, she would argue, a majority of us, probably are not.
I see this so clearly in looking at my entire life. As a smoker, I never could fathom those people who would have a smoke on the weekend with a beer and be done with it. Nicotine addiction drove my daily life on pretty much every level. But it’s not just in the bad habits category where I see my tendencies. It’s in everything. If I need to learn how to use a new piece of software, I will dive in and absorb every last bit of information I can find to meet that goal. If I decide that it’s time to clean my house, then it’s game on for hours until it’s done.
Abstainers can be very productive people. But the key for me is to realize it’s neither negative nor positive. There are pros and cons to everything, but this isn’t a case of right and wrong.
It’s just the way it works for me. I’m not good at moderating or dabbling.
As I downed an entire bag of those aforementioned Reeses pumpkins last week during one episode of Project Runway, I think I realized that maybe something’s gotta give. Again.
So here I am, just talking about it in my very public forum. I tend to worry that this all comes across as whiny but it would be disingenuous of me to not write about it, because it’s in my head most days. And the way it’s been in my head has been in a very whiny, childish, woe is me kind of way. So I’m trying to get clear with myself and make some changes.
So that’s what I’m doing.