Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Meanwhile, at the gym

Guy next to me on the leg press who looks like he probably really enjoys things like arguing with the television, saying abusive things to women, and pretending he's really fit when actually he probably played JV Football in high school and is still holding on to his "Glory Days". Also, looks like his name might be Bill, so let's just call him Bill (with no offense intended to any of the nice men I know named Bill): *struggles to press 135lbs*

Me: *ignores him and focuses on what I'm doing*

Bill: *gets up from the leg press, wipes the machine off, and stares at himself adoringly in the mirrors*

Me: *gets on the leg press machine*

Bill: WELL! Hey there little lady! You need some help with that machine? I can show you how work it.

Me: *staring directly at Bill, taking my eyes away only for a second to reset the pin to 210lb and then pressing*: Nope.






Get out of here with that noise Bill.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

14

"Sing me a song, babe."

He says that to me, nearly every night of our lives. He lays his head on my lap so I can scratch his back. I sing quietly so no one else can hear. Only him. I don't sing for anyone but him.

Depending on what I sing, sometimes he chimes in. Sometimes when I think he's fallen asleep and I quietly finish my song, he'll start singing his.

I wanna live with a cinnamon girl

I could be happy the rest of my life

With a cinnamon girl.

A dreamer of pictures I run in the night

You see us together, chasing the moonlight,

My cinnamon girl.



"You love cinnamon!" he reminds me. "It's your favorite."


It's true. It is my favorite. He knows. It makes me laugh that he reminds me.


(Note: I don't think I was what the song writers had in mind. Just saying)

Sometimes we talk late into the night about what our retirement will look like. What the kids will end up being when they grow up. If the kids will ever move out (okay, he is mostly the one that asks that, not me). We talk about the cabin in the woods we want to build one day, about the hikes we'll take together. We talk about how quiet it will be. How peaceful. We talk about Ginger and what a good girl she is. How we will feel when she isn't part of our lives anymore. We talk about our careers and what we'll do next. Where we want to live, where we want to travel.  Sometimes our whole world feels very big.

A lot of times, though, our whole world is so very small. It's full of "How was your day?" and "What do you want for dinner?" and "Do you have Zumba tonight?" and "Who is working?". The other night we were bantering back and forth as a family, as we do, and Jason smiled in a very satisfied way and said, "I love how we tolerate each other."

I was almost a little insulted, but the more I thought about it the funnier it was.




I wanna tolerate you forever, babe.





















I'm glad you picked me and I picked you, fourteen years ago today. I love every adventure we've had, even the crap ones.

I'm glad I get to have this life with you.


It's so delightfully tolerable.




Sunday, July 9, 2017

Powerful

People ask me sometimes why I work out every day. How I stay motivated. How I get so many steps in. What drives me to do the things I do.

It's funny.

I don't feel like working out every day. I don't feel like getting my steps in every day. I don't feel like avoiding ice cream and cake every day. I freaking love ice cream and I miss it and as good as Halo Top is, it's not Ben and Jerry's and shut up with that nonsense. I don't feel like being "good" all the time (and please, for the love of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior, I am in no freaking mood for emails from the food police or the body positivity police or anyone else who wants to skewer me for that statement, okay?). Sometimes, frankly, it really pisses me off that other people eat s'mores and blizzards and ice cream cake and still stay in ketosis and I merely look at a brownie and am up a pound on the scale the next day. It's stupid and unfair and frustrating.

So why, right. Why? I've been thinking about this a lot lately.

I was walking out of Zumba the other night, sweaty and exhausted. I made my way down the staircase and out in the hall and...marched right past some of the other people who were making their way out of the building. Why? Because I walk fast.

I do. I'm fast now. I move fast and I move a lot.

I noticed, too, when I was walking through the parking lot to my car (which was parked in the absolute furthest point away possible because, duh, steps) that I walk like...like I'm somebody.

Like I know what I'm doing. That's how I walk.

I walk with purpose. I walk with my head held high. I walk like you might see me and think, "Oh, look at that powerful lady". Or something, I don't know. You wouldn't be afraid of me or anything, but you might think I have it all together. That I am strong. That I could show you things and you might listen. You might respect me and that I'm 41 and by God do what I want.

I realized at the same time that I walk this way and I get those steps and I go to my classes and I clock my miles and I painstakingly journal every bite of food that passes my lips because this is literally the only area of my life that I can feel any strength in.

My job is an exercise in chaos and has only gotten more stressful lately. The specifics aren't important but I can tell you that among other things there is no way I could feel more ignored and more worthless and more powerless than to see my name literally left off the advertisements for a webinar that I co-hosted, or treat me like my position isn't important even though I do three times the work of someone in a similar position. To be asked to "prove my value". Like the proverbial good child, I raise my hand and volunteer every single time I'm called on and still. I'm not seen as capable. I'm not seen at all.

It's that way with so many things in my life. I always help out. I always pitch in. People take advantage of me all the freaking time and I'm still nice. I listen when I want to scream. I help when I don't ever get a thank you. People cheat me with a smile on their faces. I take it. I cry alone.

At the gym though, if a man gets up next to me and tries to talk to me and asks me baby how are YOU doing? I whip my ring finger up into his face and reply, "Married" and adjust the treadmill up to 6MPH without even looking over at him.

There, I am powerful.

At the gym if a lady smirks at me while she's taking selfies in the mirror, I adjust the weight bar to 210lbs and push my legs out on that weighted plate like Xena the Freaking Warrior Princess. Smirk again, I could crush you with my thighs. I am strong there, in that place. Very strong and very brave. A man stared at me just a little too long the other day and I turned to my son and loudly said, "I wish that creepy old guy would stop staring at me". I shamed him and he deserved it and I would never, ever do that outside of the gym. He was embarrassed, as he should have been, and I, frankly, loved it.

Because in there? I'm powerful. I'm strong. No one messes with me.

In real life? People do things like tell my brand new boss I didn't do something when I totally did and have proof I did. People pile work on me without caring what it's doing to my life, my health, or my work-life balance (hint: it doesn't exist anymore).

The people I live with are lovely, for the most part, but complacent. I'm just wifey or mom. No one ever asks mom how her day was, but everyone wants to share in great detail every struggle of their day. If it weren't for me there would be no dinner and I'm fairly certain my husband and daughter, at least, would survive completely on tortilla chips and Deer Park water.

I love them all so much, they are wonderful, but Jesus Christ they sometimes all make me feel like I don't even matter at all.

I feel helpless, often hopeless, and completely powerless in so many areas of my life.

This is why I work out every day, why I stay in ketosis, why I manage so many steps even when I'm way too tired. Why I keep going when I feel like quitting.

It's sometimes the only way I feel alive. Like I have power. Like I matter.



Friday, July 7, 2017

Things I like lately

1) Wonder Woman. Have you seen this movie? If you have not please stop reading this nonsense and make your way immediately to the local movie theater. Not only is this movie amazingly well-written and well-acted, HOLY CRAP have you seen the woman who plays Diana?

Not only is she completely flawless she can do these amazing moves like jumping in the air and wielding swords and whatnot. She is ridiculous in the absolute best possible way ever.

2) Obsessed with this Trader Joe's Everything but the Bagel seasoning blend.
Side note: The closest Trader Joe's is far away from me. I am on my last bottle of this seasoning. We need to work on this.

3) LuLaRoe Cassie skirts. I mean, for real. A pencil skirt? Please. BUT OH.


I feel so darn cute in these! 

4) Ed Sheeran. How cute and dorky and wonderful is he?

5) Torani Brown Sugar Cinnamon Syrup. Tastes like happy. (Yes I know it has Splenda in it. Please ask me if I care)



7) Recipe reviews which read like this:

This recipe was awful! I followed directions exactly except instead of white flour I substituted two pounds of shredded tires and instead of melted chocolate I used the blood of six goats and instead of sugar I used pink sea salt, because DUH, HEALTHY and it ended up tasting gross! DO NOT RECOMMEND.

8) My marriage. Fourteen years next week!


What are you liking these days?

Monday, June 26, 2017

Open Letters: It's-Monday-All-Day-Edition

Dear "Helpful" person who messaged me about my weight loss even though I don't know you nor value your opinion,

Yes, I'm fully aware that "Statistics say" that everyone who loses weight gains it back within five years. Also, I'm pretty sure those same statistics say that women who have PCOS and who are over forty can't lose weight at all so basically I'm a Unicorn and you should probably mind your own business and leave me alone.

Thanks much,
Stephanie




Dear Dooney and Bourke,

Thanks for letting me know how many of your lovely purses are on sale right now. I'm trying to save all my money to do things like pay off my house early and break up with that whore Sallie Mae so I won't be partaking, but it's fun to dream I guess.

Sigh.

Love,
Stephanie

PS: Thanks for not putting any of the purple ones in the sale. I don't think I could have controlled myself.





Dear Co-worker,

For the love of Jesus, could you PLEASE just say something when you get on the phone with our mutual customer? You wanted to have a meeting. You scheduled the meeting. You sent out the meeting invite. Please don't sit there like a wart on a frog the entire time.

Meetings are worthless if you don't have, you know, a reason to meet. Don't make up things to do just to make yourself feel important or whatever. Some of us have actual work to do and don't relish wasting time listening to you breathe on the phone.

Stop it.

Kisses!
Stephanie

PS: If all you have to say during a meeting is "Uhhh" and "I'll leave that to Stephanie to answer" then stop wasting everyone's time. KTHXBYE.





Dear Instagram "Fitspo",

Girlfriend, you get out of breath simply speaking into the camera, we all know you aren't doing that Shaun T workout you have playing in the background.

Also, please invest in a good sports bra. I am seriously concerned for 1) your back 2) your viewing audience and 3) your kid who comes perilously close to getting knocked out by your swinging hooters. It's not cute honey. It's really not.

There is nothing wrong with being the weight you are or the fitness level you are. Seriously. Everyone starts somewhere and that's completely 100% okay. The only problem is you have somehow deluded yourself into believing you are an "after" when you are a "not even really started".

Just go for a nice walk every day and you'll be okay. Really. You don't have to be Unicorn Beastmode in order to make a difference in your health and if you just take a walk daily you probably won't hurt yourself or put your eye out.

Good luck. Seriously, I mean that.
-Stephanie




Dear Children,

I love you even  though you are severely testing the limits of my medication these days.

Love,
Mom



Dear Husband,

Next time we run away together let's try to get further than Starbucks.

Love you a million,
Your wifey