Friday, December 27, 2013

End of the year (155.4)

This morning as I weighed myself, and I realized I pretty much ended up the year where I started.  Jan. 1, 2013, I weighed 157.2. Today I weighed 155.4.  My low for the year was 148.4 on April 4.  I hit the upper 140's in March, bounced around 149-151 through mid June, then slowly gained a few pounds and have been bouncing around 155 since October.

I am so much more comfortable in my skin and clothes in the 148 range.  It's crazy how much difference 7 pounds makes.  In the old TOPS days, we'd say 1 pound is 4 sticks of butter. So I guess if you think of 7 pounds as 28 sticks of butter, then yeah, 7 pounds can make a big difference.  At around 148, size 8s are comfy.  At 155, size 8s are iffy and I'm really more a size 10 (new Levi's I bought are 10s, they fit well, not tight, but not loose).  Medium tops fit at either weight, but definitely more comfy at a lower weight.

And while the scale is the same, I'm afraid my body mass is not.  I haven't run or exercised significantly since the half marathon in February.  I have no muscle tone.  My legs used to look pretty good, and now they don't.  I have old woman knees.  I hate it.

So what to do about it? 

My new workplace (which I still love) is having a fitness challenge starting in January.  Normally I hate these types of things, but I'm not going to NOT participate, being the new kid.  So I will and I will make it worthwhile.  We will be judged on weight, body fat %, and activity points.  We get a point for exercising for 20 or more minutes (we can earn one point per day, basically--we don't get more points if we exercise over 20 minutes).  I really don't care if I win.  I'm not competitive against anyone but myself.

I am toying with the idea of doing what Vickie did when she first started losing weight--if she was watching TV, she was on the treadmill.  TV isn't my issue--it's books.  I got a new Kindle Paperwhite for Christmas (LOVE!) but I am a book junkie and books are my TV.  I lay around way too much at night, and end up snacking when I shouldn't be, and vegging out and escaping.  Basically, my body is slowly turning to mush every night. 

It will be simple to read on the TM--the Paperwhite has a built in light and a touch screen, so I don't have to find a button to turn the page, just touch the screen anywhere. But will it be easy to get home, put on yoga pants and a sports bra instead of PJs, take care of kids and housework for two hours and then get on the TM?  Easy just ain't getting it done. I'm going to have to work.

I can feel my age creeping up on me, the less active I am.  And seeing my aunts and mom and grandmother all together on Christmas Eve just emphasized what I'm going to look like in 5, 20, 40 years, if I don't start and continue to work my muscles and keep my weight in line.
2013 was a crazy year.  When have I (or any of us) NOT had a crazy year?  The last half of the year especially has been intense.  I'm praying 2014 is somewhat calmer, but I'm sure it will have it's share of worries, stresses, and pain.  And I want to be ready for it, mentally and physically.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Before and after X-rays

Here's the pic of X-rays from yesterday.

The upper curve went from 56 to 20 degrees, which is a success. Spines
never get completely straight in this surgery. Even though there are
no rods in the lumbar spine, it straightened out some too.

She can go back to school Jan 2, after break. She's still on lortab,
about 2 pills a day (1/2 5mg tablet, with 1 reg strength Tylenol, 4
times a day). She's bored at home and misses her friends. There are
only so many craft projects a girl can do. But she's almost half way
through and Christmas will be fun so she'll make it.

Even though we have issues with insurance, we wouldn't have gone
anywhere else. Dr Bridwell is one of the top surgeons in this field.
Everything I read about this surgery said the number one factor for
success is the skill of the surgeon. There was immense comfort in
being 100% confident in her surgeon and the hospital.

These are amazing, aren't they?

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Week 2 (155.8)

First week was great. Love the people here. It's a slow time of year
so not a lot going on. Thursday is new student orientation and it
will be busy. I'm in charge of the online bookstore so I will have
some real work soon.

I worked at the Office (I'll refer to my part time job as Mark's
assistant as the Office) last Friday (off work at school at 2:30) and
last night. Not too crazy yet. I really think it's going to be fine.

Mark is struggling with the adjustment some but it's mostly the idea
of me not being there, not the work so much, that's the issue.
Although he is working more hours, but he needed to be there more

He and Sophie are in St Louis now for her follow up appointment with the nurse.

I have to file an appeal with the freaking insurance company because,
despite the website saying the hospital is in-network, providers
outside Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio are out-of-network. Nowhere can I
find this listed in the member info. It's a big fat mess and makes me
mad. I did everything I was supposed to--that the insurance company
instructs you to do to see if a provider is in-network--and now I have
to jump through hoops to file the appeal and pray that if it doesn't
get approved, the hospital will not charge us the tens of thousands of
dollars that insurance calls "above the customary allowance."

One more thing to deal with. Perfect time of year for it too. Not.

Ok so rant over. Lots of presents still to buy. Planning to do it all
online, except for stocking stuffers. Cannot believe we have only a
week left.

Sunday, December 08, 2013

New Normal (154.8)

Tomorrow I start my new job.  I was looking at my schedule for next week and realized (again) it's been 8 years since I've worked a 40 hour week.  I'm more than a little intimidated by the idea.

And it's not just the time at work.  It's all the things I did during the day when I was self employed that I now have to do after work hours, like opening our mail, paying bills, making appointments for haircuts or the doctor, calling the insurance company when there have been issues (I still have to deal with our insurance claiming the Children's Hospital is out of network), talking to my mom or friends, talking with my husband, sitting in front of my SAD light (this one worries me--I have to get up 30-45 min early, and early mornings & me don't go together, yet).  The smart thing to do would be to go to bed early, get up early, do the household bills & computer stuff while using my SAD light (like I am now).

It's going to be an intense new normal for a while.

But then I remind myself that millions of women work 40 hours a week and manage to someone get everything else done.  They may be frazzled, crazy, out of control women some days, and I know I will be too, but they manage. 

I've spent the last few days getting my house ready for the New Normal. I cleaned out our kitchen closet, which housed the kids craft projects and school supplies--4 shelves of stuff that has accumulated over the past several years since the last time I cleaned it out.  I filled 4 big garbage bags and put everything in bins (as opposed to cardboard boxes or shopping bags); now we can get to what we need easily and all the junk is gone.

That allowed me space to move my scrapbook supplies--of which there is a ridiculous abundance--to the top shelf and off my desk in the front room.  I mourned the incomplete albums and photos I haven't done anything with while I relocated them.  I have no idea when I'll get pictures sorted and put in albums.  Someday.... (code for never).  And now I have a desk ready to take care of all the household stuff at home instead of at work.  It took me all day Friday and was totally worth it.

I keep telling myself, the busier and more active I am, the busier and more active I'll be.  An object in motion stays in motion. I have no idea when I'll fit in exercise.  I haven't fit it in for months.  Now when will I do it? 

Just like with Sophie's surgery, the anticipation is probably way worse than the reality will be.  So many unknowns, and I don't do well with unknowns.

Sophie is doing incredibly well.  Everyday is better.  She can get in & out of bed and in & out of the car without hurting herself.  She can do everything herself except pick things up off the floor (she uses her feet a lot and tries, though).  She met with her homebound teacher twice last week.  Since the first several rough days at home, it has been fairly smooth and easy.

Thursday's follow up visit to St Louis was cancelled.  We were 20 minutes out of town when the nurse called & said the sleet and ice had already started and we should probably turn around.  I wanted to just go ahead and risk it, but my wise husband told me to turn around.  Glad he did.  Getting there probably would have been fine, but coming home would have meant driving through a wintry mix the entire way. 

So Tuesday, Mark is taking Sophie to the appointment.  This does not sit well, but I have no choice.  Can't very well ask for a day off on my second day of a new job.  I will make a list of questions, prep him on how to get to the office, and let it go.  It will be fine.

It's all going to be fine.

Sunday, December 01, 2013

A week after surgery

Sophie is doing incredibly well. Beyond my hopes. It's remarkable.
Everyday has been a big leap forward.

She's basically completely self sufficient now, with the exception of
tasks that involve bending over, which aren't a lot, and carrying or
lifting anything over 10 pounds. She still has pain and is taking
Meds, but can go for longer periods without them. She even went to
the craft store yesterday with Mark to get supplies to keep her busy.

I've been ok food wise, but haven't left the house since we got home.
I've read three books and watched Christmas movies with the family.
It's been necessary to do a lot of nothing, to recoup from the

Out friends have brought us dinner every other day. It's been a life
saver. Mark has been cleaning the kitchen and spending time with both
kids, totally engaged. Which is good since I've been mostly checked

I didn't gain any weight the week of the surgery. Weighed 154.4
yesterday. I ate a lot of starchy comfort food at the hospital but
never dessert and not between meals.

I'm teaching Sunday school in the morning and will get back to normal
chorea tomorrow. I'm not officially working this coming week, but will
need to go into the office a few hours. Mom will stay with Sophie
while I'm gone.

New job starts in a little over a week. I'm nervous. Not thinking
about it much yet. Trying not to worry and just deal with today.

I'm so incredibly thankful it has gone so well. We go to St. Louis
Thursday to see the surgeons nurse for a follow up and X-rays.