This year, I celebrated my not-so-welcomed 35th birthday. My life hadn't turned out exactly like I had planned. Divorced, over-weight, still in school, and a smoker wasn't exactly the me I had aspired to be. I decided it was a good time to make a few resolutions.
I was already losing weight, I couldn't make school go any faster, and I couldn't undo my divorce even if I wanted to, which I most definitely did not. So, I settled on quitting smoking. It's a nasty little habit that makes your teeth yellow, your breath and your clothes stink, and really isn't very attractive. But I had lost family members to lung cancer and that meant that I was at a higher risk of developing it myself. I had to stop.
It isn't an easy thing to do. The truth is that it is an addiction - and not just to the nicotine. Nothing beats a warm cup of coffee and a cigarette on a chilly morning. The physical and emotional connection is just as bad as the chemical one.
I don't know how, but I managed to break the habit. The process of quitting left me plenty of time for a little soul searching and a lot of moments where I desperately wanted a smoke. So for all those people out there who are trying to stop and finding it difficult, I just want you to know you are not alone.
and breathe in the toxic intoxication of grey whispers
floating out the end of my burning world.
Loved ones tell me to stop
because the white javelin is a murderous lot who plays with death
and ticks my lungs into feeling full.
But I don't want to stop
when my head spins and heart calms at every intake,
a rush which nothing else can match.
They didn't stop,
mom's mom and dad's dad, foremothers and fathers
now dead from this addiction.
So I know I must
Saturday, December 17, 2011
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
When 2011 began, I weighed a staggering 240 lbs. Yes, horrible, I know. But over the last year, I've lost about 43 lbs. This is nothing new for me. Don't get me wrong, everytime I gain weight my highest number gets even higher and it takes longer to get it back off. If you looked at a chart of my weight over the past 20 years, it would look like one of those paper scrolls that shoots out of the machine which moniters someone's heart rate - lots of peaks and valleys.
I'm hoping this last time will stick for good. Thanks to an invaluable program (which I will be glad to give you the name of if you email me) I'm learning new habits, not just dieting. And it helps that I'm exercising fairly regularly, too. I'm not blind to the fact that I was not making the healthiest of choices.
Of course, I also know that I'll never be a juniors size 5 like my sister. My body doesn't work that way. About ten years ago, I lost from 230 down to about 150, which was REALLY good for me. But maintaining it took way more effort than I was willing to give. I was eating only three very small meals everyday that consisted mostly of lettuce and working out three hours a day. I finally asked myself if I was happy. The answer was a resounding no.
How was I supposed to enjoy my new body if all I did was eat lettuce and exercise? Any time I had outside of work I spent working out. I was absolutely miserable. I wanted real food, like chicken. It didn't even have to be fried, I'd settle for grilled. The problem was anytime I ate what, for most people, was an average meal I would gain weight. I gained weight eating 3 oz of grilled chicken. HUH?
Several years later, I had a friend politely tell me that fat people were fat because they didn't put any effort into it. I wanted to slap him. He weighed like 95 lbs and ate like a horse. "It's simple," he said. "Just don't over-eat." Right. Cause every body is the same. Not.
I've learned that my body doesn't work like everyone else's. My goal now has very little to do with weight. The numbers I care about are on my medical charts. As long as I can maintain those numbers and live a normal life, then I'm happy. Anything more is just a perk.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Sunday, December 11, 2011
"After all, life is but a ride. And we can take a chance and choose to get on, or stand aside and watch others enjoy life while we wonder what it must be like to truly live in this world."
-from "The Ferris Wheel"
Throughout my life, I've always imagined my own world and tried to share it with others. However, the act of putting it on paper (or, in this case, on screen) has been a difficult task for me. For starters, I harbor an insane fear that the world I put on paper could never be as vivid as the one in my head. I suppose this is true for most writers. My stories would sometimes get told, but seldom made it into any semblance of a final piece of work. But here I am, taking a leap, and attempting to transform my imagined realities into the written word.
When writing, whether its a novel or poem or blog, my ultimate goal is to take my reader on a ride. I want them to experience the world I live in, real or imaginary, and take away a valuable lesson. I want my reader to connect with the characters and the realities that I've created. I want them to wrap their arms around the characters and become their friends. As you read this blog, I hope you are taken on a ride. And I hope that you enjoy being in the middle of this journey as much as I do.