Wednesday, September 19, 2012

And, oh yeah, I'm hot now

Back in June (or was it late May?), I wrote a post about how I could cross my legs. I was thrilled and excited and thought I looked so cute in my plaid madras Old Navy dress.

I'd like to take a moment to talk to that Jessica: Oh honey, it's about to get so much better.

I am done almost 50 pounds from April (48 to be exact; wanted to hit 50 this week, but then PMS happened, and all of the things that go along with it), and I am feeling like I can rule world.

I mean, more than usual.

And I'm feeling poorer, too, as I keep having to shop for clothes that fit me.

(I believe they call that a first world problem.)

I feel a little bad writing all of this, vain even, because it's consider impolite to talk about yourself so much. This has been an on-going adventure since early April, but this past weekend, the compliments started coming in. We had a big festival in our town, and like any good parent, I had to shell out the cash for the carnival rides and accompany my kids to carnie convention. We saw just about everyone from our town, and by the time I left, my head had swelled up to the size of the ferris wheel. "You look great!" and "How much have you lost?!" ringing in my ears. It was so nice of the town to throw my coming out party, but next year, can we have a few less carbs at the reception?

And people were saying things to Disgruntled Husband, too, which he happily reported back to me. (The one time I heard someone say something to him about how I looked, it was a well-respected older lady in town. DH responded, "You should see her without any clothes on," and then I wanted to DIE!)  And husbands were telling their wives, who were reporting back to me.

Please, no autographs.

Like I said, I feel bad and vain and slightly uncomfortable with the attention. But I get over it pretty quickly. I am now under the weight I was at when I weighed in at my first OB appointment almost 11 years ago. And for me, that puts it all in perspective: the last time I was at this weight was before I had kids, and I've had kids FOREVER (or so it seems). I've been through hell (and Lane Bryant) and back, so pardon me if I do a little verbal jig about it.

This is me (with short hair) in January of 2011. Sadly, I gained another 10 pounds on top of this.

I was always on the heavier side of life, but just barely. It wasn't until I got married that things got from almost-plus-size to not-far-away-from-having-to-special-order. I am going out on a limb here by admitting this: when I started in April, I was in a size 24. A tight 24. Like, I probably should have gone up the 26. Lane Bryant (who, in all honesty, has been good to me all these years) was starting to not be an option anymore. And what made it worse was that I thought I looked good. It was when I'd get pictures back of myself that I would stop and gasp. That wasn't what I looked like in the mirror! I swear, it was like I had reverse anorexia...I thought I was thin.

Now, I am solidly in a size 18 pants, L or XL top. Like, it starts with a 1. I can shop in Old Navy again, and for more than just the XXL stretch tops I seemed to sausage my way into.  The other day, I stopped in a Talbots. And, I'm right in-between their plus-size and normal size selections. Pardon my French, but Holy Fucking Shit!

A few years ago, I ran into an old friend at Target the day after Christmas. He didn't recognize me, until I started to talk. That gave me pause, as I had hung out with this kid nearly every day of the summer for all the years of college. And he, who hadn't changed one bit, didn't recognize me. I thought it was my was short back then. A year later, I met up with him for dinner and I brought up our chance meeting, with my hair grown back out. "Do I look like me again?" I asked, confident he'd say yes. He chose his words carefully. "You look...more....yourself." And that's when I realized, it wasn't the hair (though it didn't help), it was the weight.

This is me. Today. God, I hope you can all see a difference.

Last summer, DH took us all on a hike at a county park nearby. It's not a long hike--maybe a mile--but it's steep. I huffed and puffed my way through that hike, stopping to rest several times and being the caboose of the family. It was awful. Labor Day this year, we went on the same hike, where I was the first one to the top and made it there easily. DH came up to me and whispered, "I'm so proud of you." He told me later that essentially, I had lost the weight equivalent of Hoover.

I still have a ways to go, and I hesitated even posting this for fear of jinxing myself. But I know I'll get there. And as good as places like Lane Bryant, Torrid, and the plus-size section of Lands End have been to me, I won't miss them at all. My money (and store credit cards) will go to places like Banana Republic, Ann Taylor, and White House Black Market (or, let's be honest, any place that I want.)

To my friends who haven't seen me in a while, the title of this post is for you. Because that's how I'm going to start every conversation from now on.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Mommy's Little Psycho

Mini Me entered kindergarten last week with grand triumph. This is not a story about her first day or week of school. This post is not about my baby, my last child, entering school and me having flash-forwards of her going off to college (though I could write such a thing, for sure). This little ditty isn't about my foray into bon-bons and soap operas, because I am childless between the hours of 8 and 3.

Oh no. I tell you about MM entering kindergarten last week to remind all of you that she is only 5. Five. The number of fingers on one hand. One more year than is between Olympic Games and presidential elections.

I know that it's biologically impossible, but I swear my daughter has PMS.

For the past few months, drama seems to happen wherever MM is. Either her brothers are committing some act of fraternal oppression against her, or they're not paying enough attention to her. Her socks are either too tight or not tight enough. The other day, she complained there were not enough bubbles in her bath; when I poured more in, suddenly, there were too many.

I just can't win. We. We just can't win.

She also seems to be having all the food issues that go along with PMS. She's 43 inches and 38 pounds...a tall, slender girl, but she alone can eat me out of house and home. I bought Hershey bars and marshmallows the other day for a recipe (BTW the chocolate chip smore cookies going around Pinterest...totes yummy), and I swear her head spun around and fangs came out when I refused her request for both.

Do they make Midol, Jr.?

That better be STRAWBERRY, Mother. G'ah!

Monday, she pitched a mega-fit because Larry Potter dared to turn on the television before she did. There were alligator tears and pounding fists, all with the battle cry of "I haven't watch TV all DAY!" She then demanded her brother turn off his show and turn on hers instead, to which he essentially told her to suck it. I suggested she go downstairs to watch TV, and you would have though I'd offered her generic peanut butter. She was indignant. Five minutes later, still with tears streaming down her face, she asked me to buy her soccer shoes for her first practice. And then happily marched downstairs to watch Spongebob.

I have new appreciation for my husband (and JDub's husband Vitamin P) during those few days of emotional instability I may experience from time-to-time (months at a time for JDub).

I don't know what to do but ride this out for the next seven years or so. And buy her copius amounts of chocolate and marshmallows, because DH and the boys and I are all a little scared of her.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

And you are...?

Hello? (hello.....hello....)

(It's an echo...get it?)

I'm back from my summer vacation. Oh, you didn't know I took a summer vacation?  Because I didn't tell you? And you just thought I got too big (or lazy) for my britches and abandoned you, my dozens of fans?

Yeah, okay. My bad.

In my defense, however, I will point out that RantsFromMommyland also took a summer break, and if they (Mom Blogging Awesomeness in Human Form) can do it, so can I. After all, I had to actually be a parent this summer and, well, in the meantime, have experiences to generate more blog posts for all of you.

And here it is, September 5. My kids went back to school yesterday. All of them. All day long. Which finally makes my dream come true of being a full-time writer. (We're just going to gloss over the fact that I've yet to be paid for said writing, because I don't need my dreams dashed this early in the school year.)

What can you expect from me this year? I'm so glad you asked.

(This is where I'd have a bullet-pointed list of all my blogging shortcomings and how I would fix them, but, as discussed earlier, I am an unpaid blogger.)

My only commitment to all of you is that I am going to post once a week, on Wednesdays, and we'll take it from there.

But to fill you in on what we've been up to, I bring you...

What I did on my summer vacation
by The Snarky Mom

1.) Ran around the month of June like a marathon Meth addict. All of the kids had swimming lessons and tennis, which you think would finally be justification to buy them all Ralph Lauren outfits and Nike visors. Disgruntled Husband put the kabbosh on that. We all did get killer tans though. As tan as a family of freckled people can get, that is.

2.) Hung out with JDub and Crunchy Granola (our friend that is awesome and funny, but also eco-friendly and generally has a kid or two hanging off of her) while our (my) child ran around CG's store, possibly breaking manikins.

3.) Took Hoover and Larry Potter on an epic road trip to Hunstville, Alabama so LP could live out my childhood dream of going to Space Camp. Mini Me stayed with my mom and DH had to stay up in Wisconsin to fund it all. Hoover and I got to spend some quality time together, and went to Atlanta to see his godfather, where we got to go to the infamous Coke Museum and try all the pop from around the world. Sidenote: Hoover is still on a sugar high from Africa.

4.) Watched my mild-mannered daughter go from almost-drowning to Little Mermaid in about 6 weeks, complete with flips off the diving board. She is quite the sight doing a backflip with no fear...and orange water wings.

5.) Decided that the kid's school would be better off without our motley crew and enrolled the kids in the local private school. I'm sure I will expound more on this later. Also, that means I have to go to adult confirmation classes. As my friend said, "Just don't talk and they may let you be confirmed." What I will do for my kid's education.

6.) Heard about the Kidz Bop singing contest pretty much all summer long, because LP wouldn't shut up about it. He kept telling me where he was going to live after he won and which parent would go with him to LA for his recording contract and concert series. He entered the contest last week, singing "Firework" and constantly checks his email for his admission to stardom.

7.) Speaking of LP, he and MM have been at each other's throats since school ended. With five years between them, I keep wondering what on earth they'd have to fight about. Turns out, anything can be subject for a fight. At anytime. One day in August, they both were grounded because they were fighting while I was drinking my coffee. At 7:30 a.m. That's when the countdown to school began.

8.) Because of the fighting and the general boredom around here, I decided to take the kids to see the Whatcha-Talking-About-Willis Tower in Chicago. We rode the train for an hour-and-a-half (from my mom's house) down to the city, walked four blocks, paid $50.50 to go to the top (actual price), where we stayed for all of a half hour. Then walked four blocks back the train station, had lunch, and caught the train back to my mom's house. I'm efficient like that.

9.) Started looking for a job that would require me to use my college degree and possibly, my brain. I'm afforded the luxury of taking my time on this, which is good, because all the jobs in my field are an hour away and are few and far-between. (Live in South Central Wisconsin and need a writer and/or editor? Hire me. You know you want to.)

10.) Lost 47 pounds (okay, since April 4) and have found that, yes, I do happen to enjoy shopping, especially when I can fit into things that don't start with a 2. I'm still going, and hope to be down to my birth weight of 8lbs, 12 oz. by next summer.

And now, to the couch. I have bon-bons to eat and soaps to watch.