Friday, 01 April 2011
Today I am starting my April Challenge. Basically, exercise EVERY day and try to eat moderately. No buying sweets (which I've been pretty good at), stay away from buying soda (not so good at), and no extras (ie french fries with meals, chips between meals - the latter of which I've been good at).
First weigh in: 132.4 (not bad considering my complete recent disregard). Dr. visits lately (2 within 4 days of each other, centered around my day trip to Death Valley) have been 136-137, but then again I ate before going in to the Dr.s and didnt get a lot of sleep (4-5 hours in the space of 3 days).
Goal weight: at least get to 128 before April 20... Its do-able, which is why anything beyond that is a bonus.
PLUS: cleaning off all surfaces in my room, catching up/getting ahead of homework. I have Mon-Wed nights off next week from work, so I'll be cranking out the work. One night might have to be sacrificed to a partner project with boyfriend's sister's sister-in-law (which feels silly to say since the girl is only 14), but hey, its still hw. I still have more hours of observation to do for school because I've been lazy and unmotivated. Which means I have a week off from worrying about trying to go in for that, and then I need to plan/find time for those obs. hours.
Why April 20? Boyfriend's best-friend (other best friend?) will finally be in Cali for awhile after having been away in Afghanistan for a year and being his wife's bitch since he came back. Most likely swimsuits, parties, outings, etc.
Let's banish some of that there pudge!
Thursday, 17 March 2011
Monday, 14 March 2011
I'm at the most pivotal moment in my life. It is finally time to get the body of my dreams, successfully. And keep it. So many things have been fueling this project; this, which has been long overdo. My life is "on track" and I am being very successful. Which means its time to allow myself the pleasures of self admiration and vanity.
It's time to lose the flab that has plagued me endlessly.
Frosh year of high school: I ate properly, rarely ate junk food or sweets, drank tons of water, did workout videos several days a week, danced 6-7 days a week. I was in heaven. I went from 126 lbs to 113 and was immensely satisfied with my body. But then school went back into session, I became depressed again, blah blah blah. Now nearly 8 (holy cow) EIGHT YEARS LATER I am once again in the ideal position to take charge of my body.
I no longer crave sweets on a daily (not even a weekly) basis. I have had my fill of junk food (ie chips, crackers, misc.). Fast food mildly arouses my interest but if given the choice I choose healthier options nearly EVERY TIME. I know how to manage my portions much better. I no longer need/crave caffeine and/or sugary sodas.
So after maintaining a much lower and happier weight for over six months, my activity level decreased to nearly nil and I allowed myself these things (ie all of the above mentioned foods, overblown portions). I gained those sanity pounds back, bringing me to 134.8. Ouch.
In the last week I've been working on eating better, lowering me to 133.4. Next week I'll be adding higher activity levels while maintaining "clean" eating, minus my iced tea (caffeine and sugar) stash for school/work.
Here's to my life's resolution of higher self-esteem!
I love and adore my nephew. He IS my nephew, even though we aren't yet bonded through blood (his Uncle and I plan to get married within the next year). He already calls me Aunty.
I spend a ton of time with the kid, mostly watching him. I also feed him, get him drinks, give him treats, rough house with him, play with him, talk to him frequently, give him rewards for behaving well at school (his Kindergarten has a color system for how well they paid attention/behaved for each day). I spend more time with him than his mother. His father is out of the picture (with his male role model being his uncle).
His mother, admittedly, has her own issues to worry about. She had her kid when she was 18-19; previously she had been a huge partier and when she found out she was pregnant she was also living in a tent in someone's backyard. Yikes. Since then she's had to worry about having a roof over her head, supplies for her and her child, and having a steady job. Now that she has it a bit easier with two adults frequently at home to take care of her kid, she spends a lot of time with her boyfriend. Her boyfriend, who is recently divorced and has a set of twin daughters and another daughter, all under the age of 4. A boyfriend who treats my nephew like crap, calling him names and punishing him for little reason - ie his daughters constantly jump on the bed in his sight, and the one time the boy jumps on the bed the boy gets into ALL KINDS of trouble. She thinks its easier to leave the boy with us since the adults over there cant handle the boy and give him the appropriate affection/discipline as needed.
My own issue is: how much am I allowed to give this child? How much attention, affection, and activities/personal time should I be devoting to this child I adore but isn't mine? I don't want to replace Mommy. Mommy works hard for her child. But I would like to do more activities with my nephew in the summer, as I'll have more free time and he won't be in school all day as he is now. Ie take him to the beach, to the park, bike riding, swimming/learning to swim, etc. I want to be a role model but not the parent. I don't want him to remember that Aunty did actitivites with him that his Mommy never did, that Mommy wasn't as good as she could have been. I want to help preserve his adoration/hero status of his Mommy while still being an awesome Aunt.
His mother has no problem with me doing any of these activities. His uncle doesn't mind and would probably be with me for at least half of the play dates.
Is there such a thing as being too good of an Aunt/relative?
Monday, 07 March 2011
I'm feeling the pressure to get pregnant and have my own little koala bear.
Before I tell you my reasons, I'll start with my background: I grew up as the middle child of a total of three children. My younger brother, three years younger than me, was born when my mom was older, about 39 years old. At the age of 3 he was diagnosed with severe autism. Now he is a nineteen year old adult with the mental age of a three to four year old... and he's six foot. His vocabulary is limited to maybe 50-100 words, but he is really smart and understands everything we tell him, responding appropriately. He experiences emotions like every other male his age, and he is super friendly... almost puppy dog friendly.
I don't want to give birth and care for another version of my little brother. I love him very much, but I don't need one of my own; especially if I can try to avoid some of the factors that have been linked to autism. As it is when my parents pass I'll probably be helping to take care of my little brother because I do not want to put him in a group home; his playful energy and spirit would suffer there.
My boyfriend (and future husband) also has an interesting past. He, too, was the middle child. However, he and his siblings were taken away from their parents when they were about 8-12 years old due to neglect and horrible home conditions (his parents are hoarders, his dad an alcoholic and his mother working 2-3 jobs). They went to live with their grandparents, who were heavily religious and sexist. His sisters got rooms to themselves and everything they wanted while my boyfriend had to sleep on the pull out couch in the living room and kept all of his belongings in a single plastic box. The child support the grandparents were given went to the church every month; yet the grandparents always told them that they didn't have enough money to buy new clothes for the kids (they were only allowed to buy clothes from consignment shops). The grandpa would drive the girls to school every day, but always made my boyfriend ride his skateboard or bike (or even walk) to school, work, etc. even when my boyfriend blew out the cartilage in his right knee. Internet and computer time was strictly forbidden; the kids weren't even allowed to use the computers at school, which caused my boyfriend especially to do horribly on assignments requiring the computer.
He wants to be able to give our future children the things he didn't have, the positive experiences that would have pushed his life in positive directions (such as being motivated to do well in school).
Almost six years ago my boyfriend's sister got knocked up and gave birth to our adorable nephew (I'm not married into the family yet but T. calls several close family friends Aunty/Uncle). The dad has always been out the picture and denies T. is his son. My boyfriend was there from the day he was born, helping to feed and nurture the baby at night so his sister could sleep and go to work the next day. Boyfriend and I are usually the ones who take care of him as his mother works most of the day during the week and often doesn't pick him up after work or will take him out for an hour or two and then drop him back off at home. We adore him and want for the sister to put us on her will as caretakers of T. per emergency rather than the current caretakers: boyfriend's parents, and his aunt and uncle (who tried to adopt boyfriend, permanently). In fact, we both would love for our nephew to live with us (part time or full time basis) in order for him to grow up in a nurturing environment rather than the one we forsee him living in with his mother (who plans to marry a man who favors his own children, unnecessarily punishes T., and basically already treats innocent nearly 6 year old T. as my boyfriend's grandparents treated him, but worse).
We have instilled in us a nurturing instinct that we already use. We often talk to the sister as T's advocates, protesting certain things she does such as not standing up for her son over her boyfriend.
Almost a year ago, a similar family incident occurred. My boyfriend's younger sister got knocked up (I'm pretty sure on purpose as they "only didn't use a condom once" when we made it clear they were available for use). We now have a one year old niece who I've been able to acquaint myself with from early on (she was in the hospital for the first month and 1/2 after birth). From our interactions with her, it is more than apparent that boyfriend will be an amazing dad and I'm sure that I will be a good mom until the kids start getting older, at which point I will be an EXCELLENT mom.
More events: boyfriend's best friend got married, another friend is already married, another friend is having a baby. His best friend also has a house, a dog, and his wife is talking about children in the near future.
Boyfriend and I both want that, a lot: marriage, our own place/house, to be able to cook in our own kitchen, to have guests, to have days off (I currently have work and school full time), to get dogs, to have more permanent jobs in order to get health insurance and a better income, and... children.
A slightly more selfish reason on my part to have children earlier is to have a better chance of getting my body back post-preggo. The younger you are, the quicker you bounce back. My mother, at the age of 58, still has a belly that looks preggo (from fat deposits that never shifted back) and saggy breasts (from breastfeeding my younger brother for 3 years). Credit to her, she's lighter than me in weight, is almost 60, and had three kids plus 3-4 long-term miscarriages. But still... not me please!
His parents and grandparents did the best they could but were not great parents. My own parents were upper middle class; my dad was emotionally distant as he worked long hours and overtime as a high level manager/executive while my mom was stay at home with my little brother. She tried to give me things to make me a well-rounded individual, which was successful. She also parented at the top of her lungs, which wasnt. It was emotionally abusive and ineffective, as I could do no right no matter what I did.
Somehow my boyfriend and I have evolved into strong, hard-working, responsible, loving, and playful people. Most likely it was part of being forced into other circumstances (when we were breaking off from our guardians' influence) that created the adults we are now.
We both have rather conservative views regarding child-raising (ie spanking a child when he/she does something dangerous to scare him/her to not do it again like running into the street), but believe in spoiling the child until a "teachable" moment comes along (plenty of love, attention, play until the child does something inappropriate like throwing a tantrum over a toy at the store, and then after time out the child gets all his/her privaleges back). Of course all treatment is gauged according to the child's age and level of understanding. We know and believe that we will be great parents who raise responsible, well-adjusted children to adulthood.
We're not stupid; we're waiting until after I finish school to get married and for us to have stable jobs (though home environment not entirely necessary just yet, just our own place) in order to get health insurance and starting making our family. We don't want to get knocked up before getting married (like both of his sisters did) and don't want to have money worries be a huge burden on our life (we live comfortably off little better than minimum wage jobs with great used cars that are reliable and look and feel new --- his elder sister struggles to make ends meet due to car payments and credit card bills).
It just seems like a long time to wait while also battling a ticking clock and strong desires.
Do/Did you also have delayed desires about getting your life "on track" to the "American Dream"?