So, I've been logging onto SparkPeople, which is a really comprehensive and helpful resource.
I lost 4 pounds last week. Amazing. I don't really trust it, but WAY TO GO ME!
I'm also working on the "head" piece of all of this. And, yesterday, I gave myself a pep talk. I was partly inspired by something I'd heard on the radio in the morning, part of an ongoing series on National Public Radio's Morning Edition. Called "Why Saying Is Believing", it was really interesting, and you should go the the link and listen to it. But what really struck me was two notions. The first was that positive self-talk is more than just being nice to yourself. It's actually kind of "internal remodeling," according to the story. The second thing that stood out to me was that it is important to achieve some kind of distance from oneself when doing this -- for example, instead of saying "I can't or can do x", you would say "Colleen, you can do x". This provides some psychological distance that is very effective in getting people to be less emotional, more rational, and even kinder to the people they are naming -- even when those people are actually themselves. It's really fascinating.
So, I tried it. Right that morning. I went up to my bedroom, undressed, and actually looked at myself in the mirror. Before I started, I was emphatic that I couldn't be mean to myself -- no name-calling, no hatred. But I was also adamant that I would spend only 5 minutes and that I would be truthful and positive.
I would be lying if I said it was easy. It was one of the longest five minutes of my life -- I really can't believe what I see in the mirror (I avoid them at all costs) and it's so difficult not to be hateful towards myself. But I promised myself, and I followed through. I thought about what a gift my body is -- to me and to others, and of all the wonderful things I've been able to do with this body. And how there is no other -- it's like the little life raft for the seed of my soul, and it has to carry me forward until the next phase of my life. It's going to be with me through eternity. God made this body for me, so there has to be a reason. It's assuredly not perfect, but it's mine and I have to love it.
At the end, I felt really good about that exercise and I'm glad that I did it. So, WAY TO GO ME! (again).
The mirror I was using was a full-length mirror on the inside of my closet (where I put it so that I don't come across it unexpectedly). It's the only full-length mirror in the house. Because the mirror is inside my closet, the door was open, naturally, which led me to look at the clothes inside my closet (the ones I don't usually wear -- my daily outfits are mostly the folding kind). I pulled these two dresses out of the closet:
They don't look like much on the hanger, but boy did they look good on me. And what I love about them is not only are they several sizes smaller than I am now, but that they are associated with such great memories.
The blue dress is the one I wore on my first date with my husband. I was so excited that day -- floating on air. I walked into the Humphrey Building with such as spring in my step that the security guard stopped me to ask if I had a hot date that night. I was very happy to be able to say "Why yes, I do" and even happier at the smile of appreciation he had for me as I left the building 8 hours later, all dolled up.
The green dress is the one that I wore to a family wedding 4 weeks after Chickadee #1 was born. It was the first time I'd been away from her, and I remember feeling like a million bucks in that dress. My husband's aunt, the mother of the groom, kept introducing me to people by saying, "can you believe she just had a baby a few weeks ago?" It doesn't hurt that that is my favorite color of green. Can I just say, though, that wearing a dress that zips up the back to a wedding where you are going to have to use a breast pump regularly is NOT the world's most splendid idea.
So, I loved those dresses, but most of all, I loved how happy I was at the time I was wearing them. I could have been dressed in a paper sack and I would have been beautiful, because I was so so happy.
It's a good thing to remember.
WAY TO GO ME!!