About Face

Nestled away, in a nice little differently colored bar, at the top of the dashboard pages of WordPress, users will routinely see messages of various types from WordPress to the user.  Usually, these messages announce new posts on WordPress.com’s blog, or releases of new template designs.  Once in a while the messages will announce impending outages, of the planned variety, naturally.

Ever since I migrated my blog here from Typepad a few months ago, I’ve been getting the repeated message at the top of my dashboard that read, “Update your About page so readers can learn more about you,” or some such nonsense.  Every time I see this, I think, “Yeah, yeah.  One of these days I’ll get around to that.  I just hate writing ‘About’ pages and trying to sum up who I am in a few simple paragraphs.”

I have noticed over the months though, that every so often, I get a hit on the “about” page, usually coinciding with a first comment I’ve left somewhere else, and since it wasn’t about me but rather a generic message from WordPress.com about the intent of the page, I don’t know what kind of impact it has had on readers coming back to see what’s new on my blog.

So today, I wrote an “About” page.  It’s pretty terrible, of course, but at least it’s something.

So in a shameless (more like shameful) effort at self-promotion, I announce Riggledo’s About page!  By all means click on the link at the top of this page and check it out!  Thanks.

This is NOT a Pitty Party

Saturday was my laundry day and after sleeping late but well, I headed over to Michelle’s house a little after noon.  We were both starving as neither of us had eaten anything so I tricked Michelle into offered to buying lunch at Applebee’s.   Afterward, we did a small amount of grocery shopping and picked up a take and bake pizza for dinner and headed back to her apartment.  Michelle’s sister had asked her to make some Macaroni and Cheese, so I hung out in the kitchen with her while she made it.

I’m not sure how we got there, but conversation turned to the subject of winning the lottery and I pointed out that Michelle had a scratcher sitting on the table that won two whole dollars.  She said she needed to cash it in and I pointed out that it expires 180 days after the game ends (I have no idea when that is/was.)  Then we discussed winning the multi-million dollar jackpot.

I told her, “Yeah, you need to hurry up and get on that so we can get married and I can quit my job.”

“Oh please,” she said, “You just want to ogle the pool boy.”

“Yeah, well, pretty much all I do is ogle anyway, so big deal.”

“For now,” she answered.  “Sooner or later, you’ll… join the work force.”

Now I have no idea what “join the work force” even means, but I don’t think I like it.  The truth of the matter is, I think I’ll be alone for the rest of my life.  I know right this second all one of you who still reads this blog is saying that it’s not true, that I’ll meet somebody, that I’m worthy, or that I deserve it or some other hoo haw like that.  And you may be right, you may not be.  I’m not writing this so that people can feel sorry for me, or try to bolster my confidence or whatever.  (Honestly, I’m having second thoughts about writing this even now, but whatever.)

She asked me, “Don’t you want to have a relationship?  Don’t you want to get married?”

I responded with “Do you?”  Michelle is six years older than I.  I’ve known her for 12 years and she hasn’t had a single date in that time, or long before that from my understanding.  I don’t know why.  I think she’s perfectly entitled to be loved and to have a relationship, but she doesn’t make herself available for it and for whatever reason people don’t ask her out.  Her answer was that she does want to have a relationship and to get married.  She said she believes she will.  I don’t see how.  I’m not being mean when I say that, I’m just stating fact.  If she’s not available, she’s not going to have a relationship and she’s not going to get married and at this point, she’s not available.  Not that I know what she needs to do to make herself available.

But see I can see this, because I’m the same.  The difference is, I don’t believe that by some miracle I’m going to meet the man of my dreams and fall in love by accident.  I know that I’m going to spend the rest of my life alone and while I may not be happy about it, there is some solace in knowing what to expect in that regard.

When I was in Tulsa last year, caring for my mother after her bypass surgery, we had a conversation one day in the car (sorry if this is something I’ve already written, but it’s topical.)  She said something about how she was disappointed that I was determined not to get married.  (Of course she couldn’t appreciate the irony of that.)  I corrected her, saying I never said I was determined not to get married.  I have said that I don’t plan on having children.  I also told her that marriage didn’t seem likely to happen, however.  And then I asked her, “What about you?  You’ve never dated since you divorced Dad.  Do you plan on getting married again?”  Her response was, “Who would have me?”  I can relate.

I turned 35 years old last week.  My life is officially half over, or at least I hope it is.  The truth is, three out of four of my grandparents lived well into their 80s and 90s.  The fourth one was killed in a plane crash when he was 39, but who knows how long he might have made it otherwise.  So while there’s reason to believe I’ll live to be older than 70, I’ve also seen lots of evidence of how unpleasant life gets when you’re that old.  I’d much rather live the best life I can manage in the remaining years of my “youth” and die young, than live to a “ripe old age” filled with pain and sickness and medical bills and struggles.

So yes, I hope my life is half over.  But that being said, there’s a lot I didn’t get to experience in that first half of my life.  There’s a lot I didn’t learn, and I’m too old to learn those things now.  I’m not talking about academics, though some days I feel that way about academics as well.  I’m talking about life lessons and experiences.  How to approach things in life and how to feel about them, how to view them.  Some of it is just too hard to do now.  Some of it is just too scary.  The deck is stacked against me.

Finally!!

By this time, it should be no surprise to you that I’ve been fat my entire life, unless of course, you’ve never read this blog before, in which case… I’ve been fat my entire life.  This, by the way, is not going to be a self-pitying, feel sorry for me post.  The fact that I’ve been fat my entire life is just that, a statement of fact.

Anyway, over the years, I have tried on more than one occasion to lose the weight and be skinny and sexy.  Over the years, I have failed repeatedly.  I can blame this on any number of factors, but the basic factors are as follows:

A)  I lacked will power and eventually got tired of depriving myself of anything and everything good and I broke and gorged; and

2)  I was trying to get skinny and sexy.  Two things I may never be able to achieve.

It is also not news by now, unless this is still your first time to this site, that I’m making an effort to change my life and be healthier.  This time around I’m focusing on eating healthfully, but mostly being cognizant of what I’m eating when I’m eating.  In other words, I may still have a piece of cheesecake (or four) around my birthday (Oh wait, that’s a post I never wrote – it was my birthday last Saturday and the end result of that day was four pieces of Cheesecake Factory cheesecake coming home with me (I can never decide) and being eaten over the course of three days) but at least I’m paying attention to what I’m doing, I’m allowing myself the indulgence and I’m moving on.  Most of the time, I eat healthfully and therefor, I do not feel guilty when indulging in something less healthful.  Anyway, this time around I’m focusing on eating healthfully and getting regular exercise.

In fact, I don’t even feel like it’s right to say, “this time around” because this isn’t a temporary situation.  I’ve made the decision to live my life in a more healthy manner and this is something I’ll be doing for the rest of my days.  I’m not worrying about what I look like (not that I don’t have a secret desire) or how much I weigh (although, as a fat person, losing weight has been and will continue to be a side effect of being more healthy) I’m just working to live a healthier lifestyle and let the chips fall where they may.

I’m getting a little off track.  Course correction now engaged…

I’ve been seeing the same doctor for at least five years now, probably longer.  My doctor is pretty cool for the most part.  I mean he’s a Doctor and I’m not looking to go out for drinks after our appointment or anything like that, but as far as Doctors go, he doesn’t scare me or make me feel anxious and that’s really saying something because I’ve always hated going to the doctor.  The biggest complaint I have about my Doctor is that every time I would go in to see him he’d ask me about my weight and why it was so high.  I’d give him some kind of answer to placate him and try to avoid really discussing it with him because I wasn’t really ready to do anything about it, let alone do the right thing about it.  Even though I didn’t dislike my Doctor like I have  disliked most Doctors over the years, I still always sort of dreaded going to see him because I knew this conversation was unavoidable.

About four years ago, I started The Abs Diet and lost 30-40 pounds.  I went out of town for nearly two weeks to visit my Aunt and Uncle and help plan and execute my Grandfather’s 90th birthday party.  During that time, I managed to eat fairly healthfully, but I didn’t exercise once the entire time.  I had an appointment with my Doctor right after I got back, though now I have no recollection of the reason why.  I sat on the table in the exam room waiting for him to come in, and feeling somewhat enthusiastic because I just knew my Doctor was going to come in and comment on the fact that I’ve lost weight and encourage me to keep it up.

When he finally did enter the exam room, he was all business (which he always is) and went straight to work addressing whatever my issue was at the time .  The good news is, he didn’t say anything about my weight.  The bad news is, he didn’t say anything about my weight.  Anything. I was so disappointed and while it would be inaccurate to say that “it’s his fault I gained it all back”, that’s how I felt for a long time.  I had done the diet, in part, to satisfy him and he didn’t even seem to notice.  (This, by the way, was an entirely wrong reason to do the diet.)  After that  I never got back to the gym and my dedication to the diet waned greatly to the point of hardly following it at all.  Eventually, I canceled my account because it was stupid to be paying for access to something I wasn’t even using.

Over the three or more years that followed, I gained back every pound I had lost and then some, culminating in the condition I was in when I started this blog, weighing 309 pounds, never exercising and being in a lot of denial about what I looked like and what my condition really was.

About a year ago, I decided that I wasn’t happy being so over weight.  I decided I needed to do something about it.  I wasn’t fully convinced yet, but I was working on it.  I started paying attention to what I was eating.  A lot of that time was spent paying attention to how bad the things I was eating were, while I continued to eat them, but I firmly believe that’s an important first step.  If you’re not being honest with yourself about your eating you won’t be able to change it.  OK, I’m getting off track again.

Anyway, a few months later, I began seriously considering a career change.  I’m still considering it and I don’t know if it’s going to be realistically feasible or not.  But I’m thinking of becoming an EMT.  (Clearly this part of this post is for you newbies who have never read this blog before – and my guess is there aren’t any of you reading this.  Oh well.)  I realized that I couldn’t physically do the job and that if I was serious about becoming an EMT I was going to have to make some serious changes in my life to be able to physically do the job.  What I realize now is, whether I change careers or not, whether I become an EMT or not, I don’t ever want to be held back by my physical ability again.

When I started, a year ago, just being cognizant of what I was eating, I lost 10-15 pounds.  When I went to take care of my mother, for two weeks, after her by-pass surgery and ate many of my meals (healthy ones) with her, (but still sometimes eating junk when not with her) I lost another 10 pounds, all from paying attention to what I was eating.  But by then I was beginning to be more thoughtful of my choices and deliberately choosing healthier fare.  Once I made up my mind that I wanted to be healthier physically, I joined a gym and I began really trying to plan my meals and eat better.

I am now, once again using The Abs Diet but not because I’m “on a diet”.  I’m using it because for a relatively nominal fee, I get a preplanned menu with good food (and the ability to swap out anything I don’t want), a prepared shopping list for that menu, a preplanned work-out routine for the gym and a mechanism for tracking my progress.  It takes all the guesswork out of it for me and I like that!  Using this program for guidance, but not adhering religiously to the letter of the law on it, I am, as of this morning, down to 255 pounds – which, by the way, is just one pound over what I weighed the day I sat in the Doctors office waiting for him to congratulate me only to have him not say a word.

What’s the point of all this?  Well, I’ll tell you.  I had a Doctors appointment this morning.  Nothing major.  I pulled something several weeks ago, while on the stationary bike at the gym.  I thought it would go away on it’s own, but it hasn’t and it’s preventing me from being able to stretch properly, which in turn is making it harder for me to follow through on my running endeavor.

I sat on the bed in the exam room for just a couple short minutes while I waited for the Doctor to come in and the minute he walked in the door, the very first words out of his mouth were, “Well, you’ve lost a significant amount of weight!”

Yes!  Yes, I have!  It’s about damn time you noticed!!!

Anti-Climactic

I’m sitting here, briefly catching up on Twitter before I finish up my final this-must-be-done-today-because-it’s-for-tomorrow-morning task of the day because clearly my priorities are firmly planted right where they should be… ahem.  Anyway, I’m giving it all a quick once over when I see this from my local ABC News Affiliate:

Sounds pretty exciting, right?  I like airplanes.  Love to fly.  Once upon a time I thought I might like to be a flight attendant except I was always too fat and for many years, until I learned the secret, I experienced severe pain in my ears during descent.

Still the story sounded pretty exciting and we all know I thrill for disaster and mayhem (thought it may come as a surprise that I like near misses even better!)  So I clicked the link and looked at the story and didn’t even get past the first sentence before I was disappointed with the anti-climactic story.  Well not so much the story as the billing for the story:

I mean, really.  It’s great that the flight landed safely and all that.  Really!  I wouldn’t want it any other way, but for crying out loud, it might as well have read, “Pilot subs for other Pilot.  Plane lands.  The end.”

~~~~~

This has been a day for Anti-climactic-ism.

Earlier today, Michelle popped up on my computer screen on Yahoo! Messenger saying:

Michelle: OMG guess what?
Me: You won the lottery and you’re taking me away from all this?
Michelle: Oh I wish.
Michelle: Nope.  I’m munching on pistachios and I like it. 🙂
me: Wow that was REALLY anti-climactic.
me: 🙂
me: also, “Hope your boyfriend don’t mind it…”
Michelle:  😦 really?  I didn’t think so.  LOL.  What boyfriend?
me: “I’m munching pistachios and I like it, hope my boyfriend don’t mind it.”
Michelle: aaaaaahhh.

She’s kind of slow sometimes with my humor.

~~~~~

And speaking of Anti-climactic?  yeah, that’s all I’ve got for you today.  Kind of Anti-climactic, huh?

2

This day has nearly slipped past me. It certainly snuck up on me. So as a result, there’s no preamble, no build up, we’re just here. Today is my two year blogiversary. Two years ago, today, I began documenting my not very interesting life on-line, for all the world to see.

I tried to think of some spectacular and moving way to commemorate this day and sadly, nothing has come to mind. It is, after all, just a second anniversary. It’s not as if it’s a true milestone or anything, but still, anniversaries exist for a reason, right?

According to a website I looked at this morning, the second anniversary is the “cotton” anniversary. This seems kismitly appropriate, (I like making up words, in case you haven’t noticed) as I’ve lost substantial enough weight now, that officially none of my clothes fit me right. Ironically, I do, of course, have the small supply of these-don’t-fit-right-now-but-someday-when-I-lose-weight-they-will clothes and I haven’t yet shrunk into those clothes, but in the meantime all of my oh-my-God-how-did-I-get-to-be-such-a-fat-ass clothes are too big and need to be replaced.

Actually, this website lists both “traditional” and “modern” anniversary gifts and the “modern” gift is china, but really, what am I going to do with china? I live alone, and have no storage for china. My porcelain plates are just fine and I certainly can’t wear china to work so we’re going to go with the cotton idea.

So, for my second blogiversary (see made up words) in lieu of donations, I’ll accept clothing items and gift cards for clothing items (I’m not sure I’m getting that concept right) which can be sent to me directly. PO Box 12345, Yeah Rightsville, CA 12345.

Thanks very much! And here’s to another 365 days!