Stand Up 8

There is a Japanese proverb, “Fall down seven times, Stand up eight.”

I once dated a guy, he told me, “It usually takes 4 times for an addict to get sober.”

I think of this proverb and this maybe true maybe not bit of information and I can’t help but wonder, “What is it about human nature that is so apt to fall?” Is it that we are weak in spirit? Are we just natural addicts to something in life and it’s just finding the positive to be addicted to? Are we afraid to succeed? Are we scared of the work it takes to succeed? Or is it just that we give up?

I gave up. I thought, “I haven’t been there in ages…It’s just the high school me.” I remember crying in my college apartment because my size 8 jeans didn’t fit. My boyfriend just kept telling me I was beautiful. I wouldn’t have any of that. I never embraced the size 10 that followed. I moved quickly out of those. Instead of going back to my beloved size 8 gap stretch boot leg jeans, I moved to size 12. I didn’t feel at home at size 12. So I moved to size 14, then to size 16. I kept moving till I found a more permanent residence in Size 18. I stayed there for years until I didn’t. I fought. I stood up for what I thought was the eighth time. I moved back to 16, then 14.

I fell. I didn’t cry when the 14 didn’t fit. I didn’t when the 16 didn’t fit. I just got married. I said, “After the wedding. After the wedding I will find my way down.” After the wedding it didn’t matter. I found the beauty in tunic tops and maternity pants. Almost to the day twelve months after my wedding, I welcomed my Birdie into this world. She was all that mattered. I found home in her.

I found home in the way she does a catfish grin. I found my home in the way she grabs my bottom lip at bedtime. I found my home in her adult laugh. I found my home in the way she bites her tongue. I found home in that little girl. Insulin Resistance and Obesity found home in me.

When you find home in your child, you will do anything to stay there as long as possible. So I stood up again a week and a half ago. I took a long hard look in the mirror and stood up. I stood up because Birdie and my step-daughter are examining my every move. I stood up because my husband deserves more than a quitter. I stood up because I deserve more than a daily pill to control something I could have. I stood up because I don’t like crying in my closet over clothes. I stood up. Again.

So you will look at the previous post and see, it’s been a while. It’s been a while because I fell down, but I saw me, and I stood up.

 

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Maya

maya

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That’s me.

-Maya Angelou

One can only hope that my daughters will know that their beauty is in their love, they confidence, the sweet words that leave their lips. Their beauty lies in them, being them.

I said this

I was sitting there at a gymnastics show off day. I was in awe of how this little girl was throwing her self over the bar with such veracity that she couldn’t stop herself from flipping twice around the bar. Her daddy commented on how tiny she was and how we need to fatten her up this summer, and then it came out of my mouth. “There’s a wedding in August. Not too much, we have already bought the dress.”

I heard myself. I instantly couldn’t believe what I said. I knew my intentions were good. By no means did I think that she would not be as attractive. I was just trying to save a buck. You see the dress size was the only one we could get in time, not the size up. I didn’t mean that this precious girl wouldn’t be precious no matter what size. My only saving thought was that she didn’t hear me, but it came out. It was a humbling reminder that I am much more obsessed with the size on the tag than I would like to admit. What is a buck saved when I just commented on the size of a child’s dress? I was ashamed. I am ashamed.

Here I am, getting married and now all the sudden I am focused on how the dress looks on me. How a dress looks on a child. How my make up is done. I scrutinized my engagements because my arms looked like “squished boudin.” When did this happen? Furthermore, when does it stop?

Here are things I know:
1. I look gorgeous in my engagements. Seriously, my hair is falling perfect in all of them. My eyes are great. I am glowing. Furthermore, I look at those pictures and realize that I am marrying the most handsome and kind ma. Even though he whispered in my ear about this picture:

JOP_2604That I looked like I was wearing a maternity top. I laughed, I then pushed him off the light that we were standing on. It was just like a maternity top. He was right, but I loved it and laughed at this man, because in it all, I knew he thought I was beautiful. Why don’t I look at me the same way, all the time?! I looked at those pictures and the same girl who we bought a perfectly fitting dress for looks beautiful. Her eyes, her skin, her smile is radiant.

2. I know that I not only apologize to the girl cutting my hair, the girl working the make-up counter, but also the girl in the mirror. I apologize that I can’t give them something a bit better to work with. What is wrong with me? This question alone make the following Ted talk both heartbreaking and right on point.

I see me…W

 

 

true + kind = awesome

This will be the last I speak about things. It is time to put the superman underoos to bed. I believe they are the only underoos to ever be retired.

I was overwhelmed by the amount of kind words I received last week. So with that, I want to share with you a few lessons and letters this week has given me.

The messages of support I received were unbelievable. Seriously touched my heart. I learned that no matter what you level of self confidence, good friends are amazing,  words of encouragement will always be appreciated, and none of us are bulletproof. My favorite words in particular were these:

You are Amaze Balls! From the first time I ever had a chance to workout with you, I knew we would be great friends. You bring a vigorous attitude to the gym and the wods. You lighten up the room with your smile and your cheer. You may express dislike or disgust with certain workouts but you never back down-that inspires me! You are brilliant. You art is beautiful, your words are meaningful and worthy. You ARE BEAUTIFUL!!!!!!!!!!!
I know people are cruel. I know it hurt you. I couldn’t help but cry a bit too after hearing about the silly comments made at your expense. Sorry, I’m just super sappy and sensitive. But, one thing I am sure of is that you will not let this bring you down. This minor obstacle will be an opportunity and you will use it to your advantage, not only for yourself but for all those that you help and inspire. Although you are not geographically close to us anymore, I think you are right where you need to be. Ask yourself this, how many clients in your gym have experienced some form of criticism in their life? They may have buried it deep or they may be using it as fuel. You now have the opportunity to be one step closer to making their lives a lot better.
I want you to know, in my eyes, you wear the gorilla suit. The way you attack your shortcomings-whether they be in the gym or in life. You were always trying to have better times than Forrest but I was shooting for having better times than you. You are AWESOME!!!!!!!!”
Do with this what you want. Take from it what you want. I am pretty confident that I am not the only one that feels this way about you.
I share this, because it applies to all of us in one way or another. We all have the opportunity to inspire someone. My mom is a teacher. She always says if she can inspire one person she has done her job. Anyone that knows her knows it is far more than one. This is the thing, don’t let your opportunity pass to inspire someone. Be constructive and kind with your words, only good things will happen then.
When words are both true and kind they can change the world.  -Buddha
Secondly, I found this. I think it is the most important thing in the world to remember!
self esteem
The most important in my eyes is to know yourself and take care of that person. With that, YOU can change the world.
In the words of my favorite movie character, Bobby Long, “Be kind to one another, your youth is fleeting.”
Happy Quarter Bouncing … W

I saw me and laughed

It’s taken me a couple of days to write this. It seemed trivial. It seemed as if I was over reacting. Maybe I was/am, but I saw a picture and laughed at how much fun I had that day. In a matter of 30 minutes the same picture makes me cringe, because of others comments.

This is the picture that made me laugh:

superman

This is one of the comments that made me cry:

wwAmong other comments where, “Who is that dude in the background?”  I am not a dude, so that hurt. “Who is that large woman with superman underpants on?” Large woman? Thanks peeps. There were a handful more, some posting pictures of my husband, which was pretty bad as well. (disclaimer: I am not married, it was cartoon drawings of men in super hero outfits, 10 sizes too small.)

Now, I realize this could have been worse. I do. I also realize that I can’t let the words of people hiding behind anonymity and a computer screen get to me, but this is the thing.

I am 31 years old. I have known I needed to lose weight for about a decade now. For two reasons I needed to:
1. To look better.
2. Most importantly, because my health is held in the hands of how much extra weight I carry around.

I don’t now, and didn’t then need anyone to tell me this. I saw it. I saw myself in the mirror. I saw the number on the scale. I knew the panting that happened when I walked up stairs. I was carrying extra pounds. I was not an idiot.

Does one for one second think that I felt good about it? If you think I did, let me enlighten you. I hated it, HATED it.

One might think that deciding to lose weight is the easiest part. It wasn’t. It was difficult and emotional. I was deciding that me losing weight was not admitting that everyone who told me to “hold my stomach in” or told me I was getting fat was right. I had to decide that I wasn’t somehow giving them some sort of sweet satisfaction to be able to say, “I told you so,” later on. I had to get to a point that the challenges of getting healthy and SUBSEQUENTLY, skinnier were far easier than the risks of getting larger. It took me a decade, probably more to get there. So to finally get there and suddenly have comments made that stab at your juggernaut. Well, it sucks.

Now, I realize, these comments may seem funny, I suppose if they are not about you, they are. If they are not about a person that has been struggling to get healthier and smaller for herself for more than a decade… They could be. In a nutshell, if they are about a robot with no emotions, then yes they are.

My first thought in all this: No wonder our kids are killing themselves over comments on social media. This was mild and made me, a 31 year old woman, who despite her distorted view of her own physical appearance, has a pretty decent confidence level. No wonder kids and adults don’t come and talk to us about depression, bi-polar, or any other issue below the surface. Look at we do to those who’s “issues” are on the surface. We are mean and highly critical.

We have to start empowering each other to see each other as our best self, not point out “faults” to a point that those are the things that define us.

Happy Quarter Bouncing…W