Reality check

There are few things I truly detest in life: kids’ birthday parties at Chuck E. Cheese, using butter substitutes when recipes call for real butter, going to the Borders and seeing that another dumbass reality star celebrity has published a book…

But what I really truly hate is seeing my doctor after gaining weight. Or in my case, twenty pounds in the past year.

I could lie and blame my husband’s accident last April. Blame his cooking when he came home to recover in October. Blame my knees for taking turns giving out after high impact Zumba classes. Blame my fourth toe on my right leg that BROKE after taking a pole dancing, ahem… fitness class.

But really I have no one to blame but myself.

I know what I should be eating and how much of it I should eat. I know to exercise and lift weights regularly.

And I did. Until last April when my husband’s car rolled over while deployed in Iraq.

Self-prescribed mocha breaks and the pastries to go with them. McDonalds for the kids so they can go to the playland. Portion sizes appropriate for my husband, six feet tall. Having dinners with friends. No sleep. Too much sleep.

That, my friends, is a recipe for weight gain.

I saw my doctor this afternoon and I told her that making an appointment her was my reality check. Twenty pounds ago, I was very active and eating healthy. I told her last year that I only needed ten more to be my college weight and we all know we were BANGIN’ in college.

But twenty pounds and one year ago, I was sitting in National Naval Medical Center, wondering if my husband would ever walk again, if they could put the seven pieces of his pelvis back together, and how I would explain to our eight year old son that he wouldn’t be going back to school for a few weeks. For a brief period I saw a number in the tens digit of my weight that I hadn’t seen since high school because I spent so much time in the hospital sitting next to my husband’s bed that I actually forgot to eat and trust me, I am so not that person.

I can’t hide anymore. Deeper depression will find me with a vengeance if I keep this up.

I was watching Eat Pray Love last night and when I wasn’t drooling over Javier Bardem, I thought about the scene where Julia Roberts’ character was having dinner with her friends and discussing THEIR WORD. Roberts said “ambition” which led me to wonder: Who am I? What’s MY word?

All I could come up with were job words and who I was RELATIVE TO OTHERS. Teacher. Writer. Wife. Mother.

If I remove the following [navy wife, mother, teacher, writer, –insert your labels here–], what are we left with? Or have our labels made us who we are?

I tell you one thing: I’ve got a doctor’s appointment in three months for a weight check. Hopefully I can add LIGHTER to my list of words.


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