Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Starting over…

Picking up the pieces from where I left off. It’s been a year, and so much has changed in a year. Once again, I am truly hoping that this blog is the one and that I can truly commit to regularly writing, as it’s totally cathartic to me, and frankly, I could use it right now.

The title to this, starting over, isn’t just an ode to what I returning to finish with this blog. It totally encompasses everything in my life. These past few months, year, 2 years even, have been tumultuous beyond anything that I could ever imagine happening. I need to take the time to write, make this my journal of sorts. Getting things out on paper that should have been said, have been bottled up, and honestly coming to terms with myself as I transition from college life to the life of a young professional. This blog will be uncensored, the thoughts and words here are my own, and through the eyes of someone who doesn’t really see the world as everyone else seems to. From dating, to work, to friends, drama and everything in between, this is the real me, raw and uncut, finally letting the old wounds heal and growing up.

Friday, October 8, 2010

It's Finally That Time....

... To finish getting over you and to begin defining me :)

This weekend would be it. My wedding day -- 10.10.10. The day I was trying so hard to lose 100lbs for to look gorgeous in this beautiful dress:

Although I am not getting married , and I only made it to 751bs (unfortunately I've gained 10lbs back during the breakup,) I learned to make the following vows to myself which are worth more than any number on the scale.
1.) Do what you do for YOU and not anyone else.

When I first began the journey to losing weight, it was for K, not for me. Before he proposed, he would often say, "We need to lose weight because we don't want to be fat in our wedding photos."

Eager to marry the man I loved, I didn't see the many faults in this statement, nor it being a demonstration of an attempt to postpone committing to me because he knew how I wasn't really motivated to lose weight. Had I been following the advice I recently discovered at that moment, there would have been a good chance I would have seen the reality of our relationship issues two years sooner. I will say, though, that even though the original reasoning for losing weight was for him, in the end, the only person who has been truly satisfied is me.

2.) Life is a balance beam, and for every give, you have the right to take a little.

This is one life lesson that is extremely hard for me to put into action in any relationship. I am a nurturer, giver and pacifist by nature, but I love being spoiled and the center of attention as well. So it is definitely a source of inner conflict because it's hard to find the balance. This inner conflict can only be heightened when you find someone who doesn't understand the value of give or take and unfortunately that is the way it was with K and I.

One of the reasons that I hadn't been as successful as I would have liked at weight loss, was because he didn't understand the value of give and take all the time. We both wanted it all for me, seemingly. For me to work full-time, go to school full-time, come home and cook/clean, fulfill my volunteer commitments, to spend lots of time with each other and to lose weight. Obviously that all takes a little bit of time, and many times I would get calls/texts wondering when I was going to be home and why it would take so long to go to the gym and why I was spending time there. So, when I didn't have great results weight loss wise, I would get told to spend more time at the gym -- but yet he didn't want to give up his time, or my cooking time for me to do it. So it was this source of inner conflict back and forth for months until finally it ate me alive.

As I have been out of the relationship, I found his reasoning for this. As I was losing weight, I was slowly but surely gaining my confidence back in myself and was no longer as reliant on him for reassurance as when I began the weight loss journey. With this, he became threatened when I began questioning the small town settle down mentality and wanting to see the world, live elsewhere, and just to follow my dreams and not just his because I was comfortable and I needed him for reassurance. Which leads me to my next point of...

3.) Don't EVER let someones (negative) opinion of you become your opinion of yourself.

This has been pretty hard for me to accept because I wear my heart on my sleeve. My confidence throughout life has always been shaky, at it's best, which is the same for pretty much anyone who has had issues with fluctuating weight throughout their life. Often times, I've found myself finding myself conforming to what or who someone wants and not what is truly "me." All in the attempt to not be or "feel" like I am all alone.

The world changes a lot though, when you surround yourself with positive people. That is when I really began losing weight. I had people telling me how great I was for being ME (men and women) and not needing to hear what K (or any random guy I was attracted to) felt about me. It was also a huge turning point in realizing what K was really doing to my self esteem. I have always been outspoken and at least put up the front of being "confident" (though I seldom was!) Throughout the relationship, I became more and more quiet, not saying how I felt about situations, people, things. Letting myself be stepped on and really becoming a voice in the corner instead of in the limelight. There were other times he was critical of my looks, whether it be a hairstyle/color never being good enough, a shirt being too tight, loose, the wrong color, etc., not wearing heels, or being too dressy (or underdressed), and basically a lot of actions he didn't like or things I said that weren't ok. It was always something that wasn't good enough, but he loved me so I continued to conform and I would strive to be the perfect girl that he wanted. What I didn't notice though, is that throughout all of this I lost sight of "me." That is until I began to lose weight and realized, you don't need someone else to make your decisions for you.

There are a ton more things I could add, and probably will add after this weekend is over. No matter how hard this weekend is, I've already seen doors open, and my life begin to change. What I am vowing to myself is that on 10.10.10 I might not be walking down the aisle to marry K, but I am marrying someone many times more important. Myself. The vows above are for me to remember, and that there is no one that can take away my confidence or change the most important relationship I have. The one with myself.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Short and sweet.

Right now there’s a 1/3 of a carat, round cut, diamond solitaire engagement ring hidden in a box, on a dark shelf, that no one can see. The ring started as a sparkly symbol of the love between a man and a woman whose intentions to build a future together were the only thing shinier. A year later, as the ring began to slide off her long finger, it became a trophy of the weight lost to look fabulous in the wedding dress that still hangs in its plastic tomb, never to be worn by the intended party. Time began to fade the sparkle of the ring and to dim the visions of the future. Now, the sparkling symbol of love between a man and a woman is buried alongside a few shining memories. A reminder of a love that once existed between a man, and a woman who didn’t know what love was until she began to love herself. All because of that sparkling symbol of love and the future.

--- Follow up to this within the next couple days, I promise ---

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Sometimes Seeing is Believing...

I’ve heard the quote (or some variety of), “When someone shows you their true colors, believe them,” a million times, but it’s so hard to comprehend until you really experience it. This week, I finally had the opportunity to get hit over the head with the truth.

As I’ve mentioned before, I semi-recently got out of an engagement, what I didn’t mention is that until last week, we were still living together. He traveled a lot, so was gone the majority of June and July, and due to renting standards, it was pretty hard to find a place/roommate in the middle of summer that didn’t have a lease that ended immediately. So I was waiting to find that place, with the perfect lease terms that would allow me the ability to leave in December and head to KC to begin anew. Last week, I found it. Which proved to be a very good thing.
Over the past couple of weeks, since he returned from his last voyage, he had been spending a lot of time with his “son” at his baby-mama’s house (whom I had never met in our 4.5 years of dating,) including a couple of nights until 10 o’clock and almost a full weekend (coming in only late at night.) I know, you are probably thinking you are over, so what’s the big deal. Well over the 4.5 years there had been a huge gut feeling in the pit of my stomach that through his denial, was something more for this woman. I mean, she mothered a child of his. He denied adamantly any feelings or any involvement.

Well fast forward, Saturday evening, he was pretty much pushing me to get out of town to hang out with @annaundercover, which I was fine with, but through a series of events I came home early, to an empty house. That’s cool, no biggie, he’s out with his friends he’s supposed to be here in the morning to help me move anyway. So I go to sleep, and wake up around 11am, physically and emotionally drained from moving and separating 4.5 years worth of crap. Still not home, no phone call, not answering his phone. I start to worry, as I do about anyone I care about. No matter if we are broken up or together, I will always care for him, as I do any friend I may or may not talk about. If I let you into my life, I will always care about you. So finally around 2:30 after moving a load of stuff by myself, I finally get a call. I asked him casually if he had fun with his buddies, he said he wasn’t out with him. I ask about the baby-mama and he says, “I don’t want to talk about it.” My heart sank. My suspicions were confirmed. I wasn’t even out of the house and he was already with the other woman. This was the biggest kick in the babymaker anyone could have given me, I had to pull over and be sick. If there’s one thing I couldn’t do, it’s start a relationship before the last was over, especially with someone (well the only person) that my ex-fiance would be devastated by finding out about. So to get to the real point of this…

This isn’t about him, it’s about me. This was a reality check. His mistake was my chance for me to finally see what others ::coughannacough:: have been trying to tell me for years. I am strong. I am the only one I can rely on. I don’t need anyone else.

**SIDENOTE** As I write this post about not needing anyone else, I find out via a FACEBOOK UPDATE from my little sister that my grandpa (the person I am closest with in my family, has a brain tumor...**

I always have known I was strong, I’ve been the over achiever, the only college graduate in my family. I’ve worked full-time and part-time while in school, given my beautiful baby girl up for adoption, etc. Oh and I’ve lost 75lbs already and want to lose about 75 more (I raised my goal!) I feel like this week has been my cosmic intervention to see my true self. The self that I lost through layers of fat, a broken relationship and a broken home. It’s an awakening that even though I have more baggage than one of the Kardashian sisters on a two vacation to Turks and Caicos, that I am a strong person. I’m a fighter, and I’m determined to shine and make those that love me proud.

I know its corny, but I believe in signs. This is a sign for me on many levels, that if I can handle things now and still work and do everything else I have on my plate, that I can make it at any level. I’ve been plateauing on my weight loss, mainly because I was pretty bummed about the breakup. If anything, this past week has shown me that the breakup, although huge, really is nothing but a drop in the bucket to me. 4.5 years may seem like a long time now, but when I am 85, what is going to be more important is me and my health. So the breakup, along with the information about my grandpa, has made me realize that couch to 5k I have started and stopped 7 times, will be finished this time. For me, for my children, and to add one more notch to my true colors and true strength. Plus, it would be nice to start my new life in KC about 30lbs lighter and little hotter too 

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Life, Love and Lard (Part 2): The First Year

The First Year:

When you are between the ages of about 21-ohhh well it never really ends, especially when you are a female, it seems like everyone around you is searching for their “soul mate” or a reasonable facsimile, to grow old with. So, within about 5 minutes (or 2.5 weeksish in real time) of hanging out with my friends, most of which were couples, I lost my “Screw dating, I’m going to just have fun attitude,” and replaced it with, “…BUT I WANT ONE TOO!” So here I was, newly 21, extremely confident, with my life ahead of me, and a pretty decent body for someone who had just given birth, back out on the prowl. By prowl, I mean, who is marriage material prowl. Not who is a good one night stand prowl. I was looking at every male that passed like they could be my future husband and baby daddy. Well, the response was definitely more than I planned.

I found a lot of guys, but one was pretty awesome. We had a great time together. I will always remember our “firsts.” The first time he walked me home and I found a giant pink bouncy ball to play with (which I believe he still has,) our first kiss (which was in the rain in an alley,) and a whole lot of other firsts, including how he was first supposed to be a one night stand.

You may be asking, if you were out searching for a husband and you found this awesome guy, why would you want a one night stand? Well, I didn’t really “want” a one night stand, but knowing my track record I figured it was pretty much a given. Well, I was wrong and he called and we were pretty much inseparable for the next year. We literally spent one night apart in our first, alcohol induced haze, year.
For the first year, we were partying usually a good 4-5 nights a week. By partying I don’t mean a few drinks with friends, I mean hard core drinking until the wee morning hours, getting up and doing it all again. It leaves a lot of time for great conversation doesn’t it?

I’ll keep this short, and leave out a lot of gory details, but since I had been used to being treated poorly by guys, I found his treatment of me to be amazing. Which, I mean, wasn’t completely untrue by any means, but we definitely had issues I was willing to ignore because I was in love and so was he. What I didn’t realize until late last year, is that the person that he was in love with wasn’t me, it was the role I was playing to make him love me.

I think intrinsically we all have the capability to have a number of ways of relating to people and situations as a coping mechanism. We really have such varied personalities that we can be just about anyone, but what was different in this situation is that I was afraid that he wouldn’t want the real me. I was playing a role for this part, and I think in a way, I was acting for myself just as much as him. Convincing myself I was ok being a small town girl, just getting through school, living on a farm, staying at home a lot, yada yada yada. Yeah right. Anyone who knows me now (or the “real” me knows that’s completely untrue.) Another thing I never realized was that hiding the real me mentally and emotionally was causing me to hide the real me physically.

During this first year, I stopped playing sports and exercising (which were a huge part of my life,) I started cooking all the time (since my mom taught me that the way to a guys heart is through his stomach) and I started a new form of birth control (which any woman reading this knows this is the death of their figure) and throughout this year, I gained 35ish lbs.

So by the end of year one, I was living in denial. Denial of the real me, denial that I had gained weight and was getting pudgy, denial that I had no real clue what my future held. All I knew is that I had a man who loved me, and that’s all that mattered.
Or so I thought…. (Part 3 tomorrow)

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Life, Love and Lard (part 1)

… I must leave this harbor for the sea, I’m too young to settle down and make a home, but I don’t know where I’m wanting to be, I just know I have to be there alone… “Gathering Dust” – David Gray
I love music. It’s something that’s been a part of me since I was barely able to talk and my dad would begin planting bands/singers/songwriters into my head (which proved useful years later for trivia!) What’s more important to me than the music itself, are the lyrics. I will listen to any type of music, as long as the lyrics have some sort of depth and the singer/band is passionate about them. So when I rediscovered the lyrics above, they made me reflect on them. When I first heard this song, many years ago, I hadn’t thought anything of it. That is until I was living it. A lot of time we can’t relate to ourselves, or reflect until we are out of a situation. So I started reflecting on the situation that led me to make these lyrics so personal. How it changed me, how it brought me to “wearing lard colored glasses.”
The next few days of blog entries are a series. My main focus of the blog has been to discover how different it is to “live life through lard colored glasses,” and has kind of evolved into my own little random world. Each of these entries will, briefly and personally, cover a year in the life of getting fat, mainly just in the terms of my long term relationship which led to a gain of about 90lbs. So here it goes:

A Little Background to Begin With:
Three or four months ago, things were rough, but I thought I had it all figured out. LSAT in June, entering my super-senior year at KSU in August, getting married on 10.10.10, graduate in May and commute to law school in the fall of 2011 all while building a home and a family in the country with my long time fiancé.
I had it all, or so it seemed; a plan, a future, someone who loved me. What I didn’t realize is that I wasn’t truly happy. I gained the bulk of my weight (a little over 90lbs) during the course of my long-term relationship. The slow gain started after relocating back to Kansas after living in L.A. (and the city life) for six months during for the birth of my daughter, which is another story all together.
After leaving L.A., I returned to Kansas with a renewed sense of myself. Full of confidence, ideas and a spring in my step I hadn’t experienced in years. A situation like the one I had just left gave me the opportunity to find myself. I was a “new” me, or more accurately, I found the “real” me. The one I had hid in a bleak effort to fit into the small town Kansas way of life, and to adapt to everyone else’s expectations of me. It was nice to be me.

For about five minutes… (Part 2 tomorrow)

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Dedicated to what was meant to be

Heads up, this one was a tear jerker for me.

Relationships. Something many of us strive to understand, think we understand or have given up understanding. That is until something comes along and hits us over the head and makes us realize… oh crap. Why didn’t I see that when I was in it? This weekend that hammer over the head came along in the form of the movie, 500 Days of Summer. If you haven’t seen it, I won’t spoil the ending and get out there and see it. Male or female! In the movie there were a lot of parallels to my relationship of 4.5 years that has ended semi-recently and it was really weird seeing many of the nuances and relationship issues he and I encountered. More than anything though, there was one quote in particular that really got me thinking more about relationships than anything else (Ok, I lied… SPOILER ALERT!!!)
“Well, you know, I guess it's 'cause I was sitting in a deli and reading Dorian Gray and a guy comes up to me and asks me about it and… now he’s my husband… So, what if I'd gone to the movies? What if I had gone somewhere else for lunch? What if I'd gotten there 10 minutes later? It was - it was meant to be. And... I just kept thinking... Tom was right… It just wasn't me that you were right about.”
So, are our relationships just some great cosmic lineup that brings two of us together at just the right time and the right place for just the right amount of time that we bring something into each other’s lives that is missing? Or is it all something that we dissect to the point of attributing any relationship we are in into some cosmic reasoning as to why it happened?
This quote hit me… and hit me hard when I read it as I’ve probably been dissecting my semi-recently ended engagement pretty closely, and not really coming up as to any answers other than we grew apart. When I wonder, how we could grow apart when essentially we were the same people we were 4.5 years ago when we started dating? I continue to look back and question at times, for reasons that may or may not be revealed in another post, why I stayed with him to begin with? Then it starts to come together.
Using the quote as a reference point, I think back to what I gained from this. The best and most apparent, are some of the best girlfriends I could ever have in my life. In particular, two of my very best friends Anna and Katie (Renee is the third… but we knew each other previously.) Without my ex, K, and I being together I never would have met them. Before I met these two, I had lots of friends, girls and guys alike, but I had never really known the value of true friends. I mean, we would be there for each other when it was convenient for the other, but it was never like this.
We’ll start off with Katie for example. Katie had grown up with K, they went to high school, ran in the same group of friends, etc. So she was “his” friend going into things. After the first time she and I met though, we knew it was magic. It was a chance thing that she happened to be at K’s best friend’s house, where I was often the only female. She and I sat and talked by default, but by the end of the night, I knew that Katie was someone who would be there forever and ever. What if I hadn’t gone over there that night? What if? Just like the Dorian Gray book, us being the only females brought us together as one. She was there beside me holding my sister and my hands as they carried my mom off after one of her suicide attempts. After a huge fight between K and I where I was left broken hearted, she was there to pick the pieces off the ground and help me to begin gluing them back together. When she moved away, I was devastated, when she came back, I jumped for joy. I just keep thinking, if it wasn’t for me being with K, at that exact moment in time, would our bond ever be as strong as this? So thank you Katie.
Then there is Anna, who I haven’t known quite as long as Katie, but will forever be a part of my life and my heart as well. Again, we met by chance, at a place I wouldn’t be without K. It was a birthday party for one of K’s friends that a bunch of our mutual friends were attending. This dark haired girl walked in with a friend I had known for years, we’ll call him Jared, and I exclaimed in my state, “So this is the flavor of the week (or something equally derogatory.)” As he paraded her around, I tried to talk for a bit, but kept my distance as I knew she would be leaving soon, and honestly… I had no idea who this girl was. She was some random girl and I never really thought of her again… That is until that June when I was spending a lot of time with her ex-roommates at her former house. See, K was gone for almost a full year off and on last year, and I was alone in Manhattan. I had known two of her former roommates for a very long time, and longed for the escape from Manhattan for the chill environment of Lawrence. Now, I knew that she lived there again, but I still didn’t know much about her. That was until the night that I just happened to be in the basement until 3am, mainly because I was too tired to drive home, and she pranced into the room and sat on the arm of the chair next to me and whispered, “Shhh.. don’t tell anyone, but I’m a stripper.” It was from that point on we bonded. It was almost instant trust that she shared with me, and I shared with her all of our secrets. There was something, where all the stars aligned and it just worked, because honestly, in almost any other universe, I probably wouldn’t have given her a chance (not for being a stripper…!) This almost instant bond has continued for over a year now, and she’s probably the closest to me of all my friends. We’ve shared each other’s ups and downs and I know that she has completely motivated me to where I am today. She’s the friend who has been there pushing me in all my endeavors, from school, to losing weight, to being financially responsible and culminating in the latest which is getting me out of the relationship that had grown emotionally dangerous for me and being my rock to cry to. Even at 5am after a fight, she would answer her phone and say get over here and cry. She took me out to celebrate the culmination of my LSAT and to celebrate me receiving a mediocre score despite everything I’ve been through. Somehow, this pint-size ray of sunshine just happened to be there at the right place/right time for us to build this relationship. (Ok… seriously… in tears right now.) So thank you Anna.
So as I sit here, and try to over analyze what went wrong with K and I, I am lucky enough to look at what went right. If it wasn’t for that moment in time that everything lined up just perfectly with K, that we thought we had a shot at the rest of our lives together. Maybe we missed it by a millisecond, maybe it’s not the way the universe works. No matter what the case, the stars lined up perfectly that even though what I thought was supposed to be the most fulfilling relationship in my life, my marriage to a man I loved dearly, and will always have a place in my heart for, has ended. I somehow out of this, gained two of the three brightest stars in my life. Without these amazing ladies, I don’t know where I’d be.
Was it meant to be? Who knows. Think about it, in ten minutes, ten hours, ten days or years from now, someone may waltz into your life and you have no reason or idea why. Just remember, life works in funny ways. Some relationships have to end, to have another one begin. Also, give a few chances... if that person hasn’t done anything blatantly wrong, maybe the stars are getting ready to align to provide you with something amazing you wouldn’t have known without it, or after a few chances... maybe it is just a dud :) What I do know, is that if I’m asked, do I believe sometimes things are just meant to be... I'll say absolutely.