Monday, August 03, 2009

1 week down, 7 to go, and some very bad news

I finished week 1 of the Crack the Fat Loss Code diet on Saturday. And I rocked it.

Sunday morning I weighed 153.2 -- 6 pounds lost.

I stuck to plan 95% of the time. I ran 3 times, walked once. Saturday's run was a solid 6 miles.

Can I tell you how great it feels to have the extra, extra layer of fat/water weight gone? My clothes are comfortable. Everything fits again, not loosely but my summer clothes aren't tight anymore. My running skirt doesn't pull across the front; it hangs straight again. Saturday night Mark & I went out to dinner & a movie for his birthday and I wore the blue dress I bought on St John, and it was a little big on me! (I ate well at dinner, no bread, no alcohol, no popcorn or treats at the movie.)

Yesterday was a difficult day (more on that in a minute) and I came face to face with why it's so easy to get off track. Because when life comes at you fast, if you take ONE BITE of the forbidden, it can unleash an avalanche of brain chemicals and emotions that snows you under until, before you even realize it, you've eaten more than one bite. And if you don't MAKE YOURSELF STOP after those first few bites or, in my case, after one piece of homemade mocha cake that your gourmet cook cousin-in-law only makes a few times a year for birthdays--you can get into trouble real fast.

I stopped. At a family pool party yesterday afternoon, I had a fried chicken breast (didn't eat skin but ate the cracklins), green beans, broccoli salad, and yes, a piece of amazing mocha cake. That was not on plan. I stopped at one piece, but after that ONE indiscretion, I wanted more. I wanted some cheesecake and rice crispy treats and chocolate kisses and coconut pie (and I don't even like coconut). This was a big family party--there were lots of desserts.

The avalanche started, but because I love how I feel being thinner--and because the memory of how yucky it feels to NOT be thinner is so close to me right now--I was able to stop this time. It's a scary line to walk. And maybe I have no business even getting my little toe next to that line. But I did, and I do. It's part of the beauty of this plan, actually. That you can "cheat" and still lose weight, IF you stick to the plan as it's written & don't make up new rules as you go along.

DH took two pieces of cake home--one for him, one for Luke--and I had one more bite before I stopped myself. Sure, I stopped partly because I didn't want Luke or Mark asking "where's my cake?" the next day, but I realized if I didn't make myself stop then, it might be too late.

And I'd be in the pit of carb despair again. I really don't want to go back there.

I was up 1 pound this morning, but it's OK. I expected a small gain.

Today is a carb down day. I'm having healthy Ezekial toast with turkey for lunch. Tomorrow is a baseline day & I get two carbs before 3 p.m., woot!

I can't say the hard part is over, just because week one's carb deplete is done (really, it's not that bad).

The hard part is anytime there's temptation around. The hard part is saying YES and allowing myself to live in the moment--which is OK TO DO ONCE IN A WHILE--and then going back to being true to what I want most, which is to not be a slave to food.
The very bad news and why Sunday was so difficult:
My dad has been diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease). The day we left for St John, he saw a neurologist because his speech was slurred. After a lot of tests and a misdiagnosis of another neuromuscular disorder (which didn't respond to drug treatment so they know it's not that disease), the doctors have told him it's ALS.

I knew this over a week ago, but it wasn't real yet. He needs a 2nd opinion, we all told ourselves. It's not really ALS until a second doctor tells us it is. I lived in a little imaginary world for a while, and filed the problem away behind all the other crud I've been dealing with in life lately.

Then my sister called me Sunday morning, saying she'd waited two days so we could enjoy Mark's birthday. She'd been crying for two days straight because dad couldn't eat on Friday and he could barely talk. He was having trouble breathing. He said he didn't want any extraordinary measures, including a feeding tube. From the way my sister described what she saw on Friday, I thought he may only have a few weeks left to live.

She & I went to see dad yesterday. It was a good day for him. Friday was a very, very bad day. I could understand him yesterday, even though his speech is unbelievably slurred. He was eating soup when I got there, and was drinking coffee. He's surprisingly not bitter or angry about the situation. He said he's thankful it's not a disease that's taking his mind from him and that he has time to say his goodbye's.

My dad & I haven't had much of a relationship for years, mostly because of his 2nd wife but for other reasons too that I won't go into today. But something like this tears down walls and opens up hardened hearts, and dad and I had The Talk we needed to have. He struggles to breathe when he cries, so it was very difficult for both of us. We needed it though.

The other advisor in our office has worked with the ALS Foundation for years. He gave me a name & number of someone to call to get them some help. The neuro. basically said "you've got ALS and I've got no tricks for you in my bag." Nice. Tricks we don't need. Advice and compassion and next steps would be helpful though. The ALS Foundation is hopefully where we'll find all that and more.

I have no idea how advanced it is. My sister and his wife said they can look back on the past few years and see that some signs were there before. Things like muttered speech and a weak leg, that they contributed to his stroke from 4 years ago and his knee surgery. It's possible it was ALS though.

He wants to stay home, doesn't want a hospital. That may change when he can't walk or feed himself. His wife is very obese and has diabetes and couldn't lift him at all. He's deteriorated quickly in the past 6 weeks, from mere slurred speech to struggling to swallow. I just pray we find the help we need to keep him as comfortable as possible at the Foundation.


moni said...

Blessings and Strength to you and your family!!!!

Jill said...

Oh my gosh Laura - I am so sorry to hear about your dad! It's good that you were able to have The Talk with him though. I'm sure it meant a lot to him too.


Helen said...

I was laughing at "pit of carb despair" (I so relate) until I got to the rest of your post. I am SO SORRY to hear about your dad. I don't know much about ALS, but I do hope there are things they can do to help him be comfortable.

I went looking at assisted living places with my mom on Saturday. She's pretty healthy for almost-80, but she's getting tired of making her own meals and driving. We saw some REALLY nice places and a couple of pretty yucky ones. They all cost about the same. So...if you have to look into care for your dad, remember to shop around. :-)

Thinking of you all...

Vickie said...

I am so sorry to hear about your dad.

My mind immediately went to all the positives.

You have a plan and are on plan - so you do not have to worry/think - you can just lean on it.

You run - so you have a built in emotional release - you know HOW to release. And can turn to this when things get tough.

You have your psychiatrist - who can help you as needed.

You are used to being a sort of single parent - used to having a husband that is always busy. So you are used to standing on your own two feet and know how. This is sort of a backwards gift I realize - but it will make things simpler for you.

You have your mom there to help with your kids when YOU need help.

Your sister lives close by - so you are not on your own.

Even though your dad's wife isn't your favorite and can't help physically - she is still THERE so he is not living alone.

If he has it for a while - he got to be blissfully unaware - and there is a lot to be said for that.

That he knows now - that he wants no intervention - I think that knowing/clarity makes things easier.

Annimal said...

My heart goes out to you. You are doing the right things with open communication and forgiveness.
God Bless you and your family.

Cindy...154 said...

I am really sorry to hear about your Dad. I know how hard it is. Really. I am glad you are doing good and getting results on your plan. Great you did so good stopping yesterday, otherwise then you would just feel double bad. Hang in there. I wish there was something I could do or say to make it better. I am glad you are not in the pit of carb despair..

Doc Manette said...

Very, very sorry to read about your father's diagnosis of ALS. Prayers to you and your family.

Years ago, there was an actor on Guiding Light (he played the character Roger Thorpe)who was fired because of his slurred speech - turns out he had ALS. I wished I knew his name right off - but I know his wife started a foundation.

Heather said...

Im very sorry about your dad. My grandpa had that so I know alot about the disease but the important thing is that you are there for him.

glad that you are feeling good and back in the swing of things. I definitely am longing to have that feeling again. it feels so much better to be on track, feeling thinner, and in control.

Mama said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your dad! Sending prayers your way.

MCM Mama

debby said...

Laura, I am so very very sorry to hear about your dad. This will be a difficult time for you no matter which way things go. I will be keeping you and your sister in my prayers, and if there is anything I can do or anything I might be able to talk to you about, please let me know. It's not the same situation as my dad's wife, but there are some similarities. I really hope the foundation will be helpful to you. My dad's wife's neurologist poo poo'd the Muscular Dystrophy foundation/clinic, so she would never seek help there. I am convinced it could have made her quality of life much better...

Vickie said...

the name that Alicia was trying to remember is Michael Zaslow and that was the first thing I thought of also.

KK @ Running Through Life said...

I am soo sorry to hear this. Hugs to you.

sharla*** said...

I, too am sorry to hear about your father. It is nice that the two of you were able to talk.

Hoping the foundation can guide you to resources that will help make the journey more comfortable.

LG said...

Laura, I'm so very very sorry to hear about your dad. Everyone is right; you've been able to have The Talk with him and you've gotten in touch with some support groups. Your dad has a good attitude and I will keep you all in my thoughts and prayers.

fengfk2008 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
G.G. said...

Oh Laura--sorry to hear about your Dad. You're in my thoughts and prayers.

fengfk2008 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
fengfk2008 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Vickie said...

you do not have to write a lot. but if you would please be so kind as to post a few words every few days - it would be good. we are all worried about you.