Monday, July 11, 2011

Can't Understand What You're Saying With this Brownie in MY Mouth

Oh no. Do not let the angelic smile fool you. I have a rebellious streak that has potential to portray Cain as a misunderstood juvenile, rather than a homicidal sheep herder. I suspect it has a lot to do with being the youngest sibling and being bullied by my older sisters, who loved to tell me no all the time. Sure, my mom usually gave me what I wanted anyway (anything to get the 16 year old to stop throwing a tantrum in the dairy isle at Keyfood, right?). Yet something about those early years of being told, in more ways than one, that I can't do something, was enough to make me HAVE to do it. Whether I wanted it or not was completely irrelevant.

Therefore, you can imagine what my reaction is when loved ones question my diet, even now, even after losing 60 pounds, gaining 15 back, losing 5 (woo hoo), and implementing a 5x's a week work out regimen. In fact, a sure fire way to get me NOT to workout or eat properly is to question my eating habits, especially if half of said habit is experiencing the mastication process, while the other half is still in my hand, and even MORE especially if the Questioner's idea of cardio involves the double dipping method of George Costanza.

I can understand the concern from my peers, as they are trying to be actively involved in my happiness, by bringing to my attention the fact that there's more of me to love. And it would be appreciated, as somehow one doesn't notice such a gain without a scale. I mean, nobody plans to gain 60 pounds. It just happens. One day your jeans fit nicely, and then suddenly you are doing down-ward facing dog positions to get those suckers to just zip up (however, even at this point, you still blame the "new" detergent you bought or the extra heating in the dryer that needs to be addressed with your landlord/management company STAT! Somehow though, on your way to the landlord's office, you pick up a donut and iced latte, with skim milk, of course, and mumble to yourself just how inconsiderate your landlord is for shrinking your clothes that way).

Anyway, while the concern can seem warranted, somehow it always backfires. Case in point: I experienced this particular situation a few times within the last few months. Just as one flinches when someone's fist soars into their eyes, my instinct of rebelliousness kicks in when, while enjoying a mouthful of luscious chocolate delights, someone says, "Hey Claudia, isn't this your second brownie?" referring to the free desserts brought in by a co-worker or left over sweets from a big corporate meeting left so graciously in the department pantry. 

Instinctively, my eyes narrow and I start to salivate. It's as if I am preparing to pounce a wildebeest, all the while imagining just how great the naive animal's neck will feel between my teeth, and how my young cubs will enjoy the carcass as well. Only, instead of a wildebeest, it's s double fudge brownie. And instead of cubs, it's me, myself, and, yep, me again. And instead of being a lioness, the hunter is a 30 year old professional designer whose mother raised her with proper dining etiquette, yet somehow, is now standing in the corporate pantry, drooling quietly with a mouthful of brownie, as said friend is expecting a response from the query of concern (or judgement) at hand.

"I uu-ohh"-Mouth full of brownie Claudia 

Translation: "I don't know."

Passive Aggressive translation: "Piss off."

I will then walk back to my work station with a sneaky and calculated plan to go back to the kitchen in 7 minutes to retrieve another treat. Usually, though, I've ran into Yoda who just knows when I've inhaled an empty calorie concoction. Or, even better. I will forget that 7 minutes have passed, being distracted by work, and then hours will go by and I, all of a sudden, will remember the original task at hand. Usually, my memory is triggered when I go to the restroom and notice the chocolate brownie frosting that has so elegantly decorated my lower lip. And nobody has told me. And it's been at least 2 hours since said mastication.

It's a wonder I even leave the house some times.

I usually contemplate why people are so quick to mention these things, what must be going through their mind, and how can they not see the look of pain in my eyes (once the huntress look passes, of course). That's probably what saddens me the most. If I didn't have the support of my Weight Watcher family, if I didn't have the opportunity to burn off the negative thoughts with a kettle ball or a ballet barre, if I didn't have friends/family that are incredibly supportive, I can easily see how those 60 lbs. could come right back, completely uninvited. If I were only accepted, as is, flawed, but fearless, than maybe the challenge might be easier. Certainly not easy, by any means. Just easier.

Ahh, yes. Acceptance. A major part of the armor we must wear to live a healthier and happier life. However, if I want it, than I must offer it. It is not fair for me to expect my loved ones to accept who I am, when I keep wanting to change them (or hurt them, depending on what my mood is) into less critical people. And if I am to be accepted for my life style changes (including falling off the wagon here and there, and including trusting in me that I will dust myself up and try again), then I will have to accept those that so openly love to mention where I need to improve. And I will do so, with a smile. A non-brownie adorning smile.

Maybe the reflection from said smile will reveal that we all have the opportunity to embrace improvement. Here's hoping . . .

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