Sunday, February 28, 2010

The Spa Robe

I used to go to the spa all the time. It was sort of my thing. The one way I was able to shut my brain off and relax. I would spend the entire day there and enjoy a myriad of services. I am pretty sure that must be what Heaven is like. If you haven't done it - you should try it.

That was a long time ago. That was before my son was born, before we adopted my daughter. That was before I had to go back to work full time...really, that was before the luxury of "free time" and "disposable income" vanished.

Last night, one of my "favorites" Alyssa took me to Oasis Spa, in Woodinville. Beautiful place! We were each getting pedicures and a massage. I was so excited! My massage was first, so the hostess took me into the dressing room, where I was faced with something I had totally forgotten about.

The spa robe...

Now, I realize this shouldn't be scary - but all of sudden I realized that all of the other times I went to the spa, I had to request a larger robe. They would graciously bring me a large and an extra large, both of which would be too small. As a last resort they would apologize and bring me a mens robe.
So hear I am, staring at the spa robe and I check the tag, and sure enough it's a medium. So I stare at it a little longer. What do I do??? Should I get redressed and go ask for a bigger size?

I am fairly certain you can see where this story is going...the robe fit. I was amazed. As is customary at this point - I stood there an cried. I felt like running around and telling everyone in the spa that the robe fit - but I maintained my dignity and just sobbed quietly by myself. Then I went and enjoyed my victory massage.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The "One"

This picture...taken when I was 3 (not sure why I am wearing ballet clothes on Christmas Eve), is a rare one. It is rare for 2 reasons. It is rare because it has my mom in it, and it is rare because it was one of the few I found where I wasn't already overweight. My mom has never been a fan of having her picture taken - which I think most of us can relate to in some way. But while I was searching for a picture to go with this post, I was surprised to find that I have almost always been heavy.
My mom and I have always struggled. I am not entirely sure why - and since this hurt isn't only mine, I am not really free to talk about it. Those of you who know me well, know that the email below blew me away. I sat at my desk and cried as I read it. It's funny - because the song she quotes - was always special to me I just never really knew why... until now.

I was thinking about you and all you have accomplished...not just with your weight loss but everything and I wanted to remind you of the song that Dad and I always turned up and sang along with that always reminded us of you...

One singular sensation, every little step she takes.

One thrilling combination every move that she makes.

One smile and suddenly no body else will do.

You know you'll never be lonely with you-know-who!

One moment in her presence and you will forget the rest,

For the girl is second best to none, son!

Do I really have to mention, she's the One!

We love you very much even though we don't always see eye-to-eye. You are the "One" to us. Love you.


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Food Ideas

The most common request I have had is for some meal plans and food ideas. Sometimes it's hard to be creative. Here is an example of what I am eating this week:

6:00 am
Coffee with coffeemate (Italian sweet cream...yum!!!)
1 slice whole wheat toast with 1/2 tablespoon peanut butter

9:00 am
Oatmeal with 1/2 scoop protein powder

12:00 pm
Open face BTA (2 slices turkey bacon, tomato & avocado) sandwich
10 stalks of asparagus (steamed)
1 cup of chocolate pudding

3:00 pm
Slice of cheese OR 24 almonds
Veggies (carrots and celery- as much as I want) with hummus

6:00 pm
1 pork chop and 2 BIG handfulls of steamed green beans

9:00 pm
8 ounce protein shake (after workout)

This is approximately 1600 calories give or take. All of my meals (with the exception of the protein shake) have both carbs and a protein. I drink a minimum of 150 ounces of water per day and I ALWAYS allow myself a treat (the pudding.)

Sunday, February 21, 2010

A Special Moment

This weekend my husband I had the rare opportunity to go out on a "date." This doesn't happen very often, and it has definitely been WAY too long since the last time. Chad and I went to Red Robin (I had my usual, the lettuce wrapped turkey burger) and then we went shopping. I had some gift cards from my girl friends burning a whole in my wallet so we headed to The Gap.

When we walked in, Chad saw this shirt:

and loved it, so I grabbed a large to try on. I took my pile of stuff back into the dressing room, and tried to show him what I was trying on, but he was never really around to show. Finally, I just had him come into the dressing room with me. I tried the shirt on for him. It fit perfectly - but since it's a tank top, we decided I should try the medium since it would still be a few months before I would really be wearing a tank. Chad brought the medium back and I looked at just looked SO SMALL. There was no way....
But you know what??? IT FIT! A medium fit me! I have NEVER IN MY LIFE WORN A MEDIUM!!! I looked at Chad, and I burst into tears. Chad hugged me and told me he loved me.

This might seem silly but for me this was a turning point. You see, I have accomplished many things over the last 17 months, and the victories have all been significant. For some reason though, I have kept my husband at arms length. I have celebrated with everyone but him. This moment, as small as it may seem, is permanently engraved in my memory. It made my heart feel like exploding and it made me realize...

This man, even though he has definately had his not so great moments - has also stood by me through all of mine. Almost 2 decades of putting up with my crap. He deserved to celebrate with me this whole time.

I love that moment in the dressing room. I will never forget it. It will be the start of something new for me, and I am thankful that Chad has stuck around long enough to share that with me.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Phenomenal Friend

Through this entire weight loss journey, I have some how managed to gain one of life's most amazing gifts. My friend Debbie. I met Debbie through Dan - we both train with him. Let me just say, that from the beginning she has showed herself to be a truly selfless friend. We all experience people like Debbie, we might not always realize it. They give of themselves in ways that are sometime so subtle that we might not even notice, but when we look back on our time with them, we realize that they were always there.
Recently, Debbie and I started sharing our training sessions. Dan has commented on our competitiveness and the motivation that provides, but I am here to say that the reality is that Debbie is tougher than me ANY DAY OF THE WEEK.
At last nights training session Debbie brought me two gifts. A key chain that says "Every step of the journey IS the journey" and a bracelet that says "The biggest risk in life is the risk we don't take." The gifts were thoughtful (I have had a horrible week)but more than that, the gifts were powerful. They are powerful because the are exactly right and the truth of the matter is that I forget. I forget that being in the journey means that I haven't given up. I haven't quit and I haven't thrown in the towel. Being in the journey means that every morning I get either a continuation or a do-over, whichever I need that day.
I also forget, that being afraid is NEVER productive. It never will be. The victory comes when you take the risk. When you step out and try. That every breath I take, is a chance to succeed. The reality is, I forget that I am worth it.
Since I forget, God has given me Debbie. She seems to think I'm worth it and I have noticed.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Don't be discouraged

Good Morning~

I was reading through some of my favorite blogs last night, of people on a similar journey. My heart was aching as I read of their frustration. I understand completely, and I definitely have my days. I feel like I need to say...

Don't be discouraged!

You are stronger than any obstacle! The fact that I did this means that you can too! I am a normal person. I am not rich and famous. I don't have access to anything fancy. The only thing I found was my determination.

Don't be overwhelmed by your day. If the day feels too big to conquer - then only do this hour. And when you have been victorious over that hour, conquer the next hour.

Pray for strength. God wants us to take care of our bodies, and even more than that, He wants what we want. ASK FOR IT! CLAIM IT! This victory will be yours.

Here is a picture of Hope sticking her tongue out at our enemies. The cupcakes, candy bars, potato chips that taunt us. The tasks and obligations and laziness that tease us. Neener Neener Neener.... WE ARE STRONGER THAN THAT!

That's all...

Monday, February 15, 2010


I wasn't going to blog today...but I just have to tell you all... I DID IT! I bought a swim suit and I swam. For the first time in over 20 years I swam laps. Not only did I swim laps, but I lost track of time and swam for over an hour!!! I was SO scared to put my suit on, but once I had it on, and I was in the pool I was fine. I was more than fine, I was relaxed. I forgot how much I love the sound of water as it moves around me. I love the quiet of having the pool all to myself.

When I got home, I took a shower (not a fan of how chlorine makes my skin feel...but oh well!) and as I was putting on my make-up I realized how exhausted every muscle in my body was. I had to take a nap. My body hurts all over today - and it is a great feeling. To top it all off, both Chad and Dan told me they were proud of me. I don't think either of these men realize what an impact they have on my life. When they tell me they are proud, I feel like I can fly.

I truly can't believe I waited all these years to get in the water again. To finally find a place where I am relaxed enough to loose track of time...what a treasure. Yay!! I DID IT!!!

Friday, February 12, 2010

The Swimming Story

Once upon a time there was a little girl. This little girl swam. She was an amazing swimmer. The hardest stroke was her best stroke. The little girl swam in the morning, she swam after school. She swam in the summer and she swam all year long. This little girl had a long lean body that was built to swim. Strong arms that made her go fast and this little girl found joy in winning. She was so good at swimming, that eventually the coach decided she needed to race against the older girls to make it fair. Even then, every time this little girl swam, she brought home gold medals.

One morning, after this little girl was done with her warm up, her coach called her out of the water to talk to her. Coach told her about this amazing opportunity to train at the University of Washington and begin to prepare for the Junior Olympics.
The little girl listened to her coach, and as she listened she watched the water drip from her body into a puddle on the floor. She listened to him talk, and watched her moms face for clues. And when her coach was done talking, this little girl looked at him and simply said "no." Then she walked into the locker room and never ever swam again.

The years went by and the little girl grew up. She grew up and got married, had a baby, lost babies, adopted a baby, but she never swam. She grew up and went to work and gained weight and made friends, but she never swam. She grew up and lost weight and gained weight over and over again and still she never swam. She grew up and cried everytime she watched the Olympics. This little girl grew up and can't help but wonder....what if she had tried?

Once upon a time, there was a grown up girl...and she was considering buying a swim suit and getting in the pool.

Monday, February 8, 2010

What Faith Can Do

Music has always been such a significant part of my life. I really identify with lyrics to songs. In my life there is a song for almost every event, journey or memory. I love to sing. I sing anytime I can.
For where I am at right now - this song has such a huge impact on me. I guess it's sort of my theme own private pep talk.
For best results - when listening to the You Tube clip - scroll down first and pause my playlist.

What Faith Can Do
By Kutless

Everybody falls sometimes
Gotta find the strength to rise
From the ashes and make a new beginning
Anyone can feel the ache
You think it’s more than you can take
But you are stronger, stronger than you know
Don’t you give up now
The sun will soon be shining
You gotta face the clouds
To find the silver lining

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

It doesn’t matter what you’ve heard
Impossible is not a word
It’s just a reason for someone not to try

Everybody’s scared to death
When they decide to take that step
Out on the water
It’ll be alright
Life is so much more
Than what your eyes are seeing
You will find your way
If you keep believing

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do

Overcome the odds
You don't have a chance
(That’s what faith can do)
When the world says you can’t
It’ll tell you that you can!

I’ve seen dreams that move the mountains
Hope that doesn’t ever end
Even when the sky is falling
And I’ve seen miracles just happen
Silent prayers get answered
Broken hearts become brand new
That’s what faith can do
That's what faith can do!
Even if you fall sometimes
You will have the strength to rise

Minor Setback

It is important to me to be candid about my journey. It is even more important to me to be held accountable to what I said I would do. To where I said I wanted to go. That's why it is important to me to tell you that as of this morning, I have officially gained 6 pounds back. In the 2 weeks since the wedding, I have let my guard down, taken a break and allowed myself to self-soothe with food. I have allowed myself to fall back into the same habits and patterns that got me in this mess to begin with. Now, I could give you all of the excuses - there have been a couple big things - but I am going to skip that part. No matters what happens to me, the response was my decision.

I think the biggest difference this morning - as I sit and contemplate all of this - is that I know that I CAN start over. There is still time to finish this. I am grateful that everyday I wake up is one more chance to love, try and succeed. I love that I still have people who believe in me more than I do on the bad days. People who believe in me no matter what I eat. I have people who see a strong, determined (some would say stubborn) person who is achieving my goal. They tell me. They don't doubt I will finish. From that, I can take the little pieces I am missing, and fill in the blank spots in my resolve.

This is me being accountable. Today, I am starting over. The last two weeks, were not a failure....just a minor setback.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Something I Do Know

I have written about all of the things I don't know about myself. Without a doubt there is something I do know. I do know that I LOVE being the mom of these two kids. They are my ABSOLUTE joy. The entire reason I am doing any of this. The reason I do anything really.
I can't wait to tell you more about them. Their stories are so miraculous that they really require their own post. I faught for these kids. The coolest part of their
stories is that I can look back on my journey to the time and place that God chose to give them to me, and I can understand all of the obstacles that brought me there. God doesn't always reveal the specifics of the journey. But with these kids - He showed me every step and how it was the ultimate preparation.
Isaac and Hope are the reason it was time to get healthy. They are the perfect age to learn about good eating and exercise. They are watching me. Everything I do. They still care and I still have a chance to fix what they were seeing.
It has been fun to watch. Isaac became very interested in calories and what they are and how they work in our bodies. Hope LOVES to do sit-ups with me and always talks about how certain foods will make her strong. Both kids can't wait to watch me run the marathon in June.
As a mom, there are so many things we need to teach our kids. Different lessons come easier for each of us. This isn't our job, it is our privelage. We need to take it seriously and remember that every day counts; every lesson matters. It's easy to forgot sometimes, but important to grasp. Let this be your motivation for starting.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A Season of Rediscovery

I had a lot of time to think this weekend. Not sure why this weekend was different than any other - but there was quiet time and my mind was going non-stop. In this quiet time, I realized that I don't know much about myself. When I look back on my life, I noticed that I did a lot of things out of obligation. I got married young (19)- so I had grown up responsibilities. I had babies pretty young (26) and we all know how that goes.

I also noticed that I DIDN'T do alot of things because of my weight. Either out of laziness or embarrassment. For instance, I have never been dancing. Too self-conscious. I am kind of curious...would I like dancing? I have never been hiking - too lazy. Would I like hiking? I have always missed out on things because I was afraid. Not sure what I was afraid of - but I have lived with a great deal of fear. My best guess is the fear of rejection or failure. I love to sing - would I like Karaoke or would they boo me off the stage?
As I was processing all of this, I realized that it seems like everyone has a "thing." Chad loves to ski and bike and play video games. My friend Debbie dances everywhere she goes. Even at boot camp she dances between stations. My friend Alyssa LOVES to scrapbook. Lissa is all about decorating; Carrie bakes. But I am wondering, when everything is stripped away. When the obligation and fear are gone, what's my thing? What do I do?
I asked Chad this morning what I like to do. Sadly, he couldn't answer either. WHAT DOES THIS SAY ABOUT ME??? I started to panic. I mean, if I don't know and my husband doesn't know...
Fortunately - he also assured me that I would figure it out, which I think puts me right smack dab in the middle of a season of rediscovery. Kind of exciting...really. But also a little overwhelming. I feel like I am starting at the beginning.

I have a blank piece of paper and I get to pick whichever color I want. The picture can be of anything at all. The end result...a self portrait.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Just what I needed. (A letter from Carrie)

My dear friend,

I was reading one of your blogs about how you don't always feel strong and you used food to feel better. I know that food is an addiction for you and it will always be a struggle for you. I have to say after I read that blog I felt so sad.
I know when you look in the mirror you still see the "fat girl" and that you don't see the skinny Jetta and I truly understand what your saying. I wish you would see how amazingly beautiful you are in the inside too. I know that everyone wants to be pretty, but it's more than that for me, your friends, and of course Chad. We all know the beautiful, loving, funny Jetta. For me, I love the love you give to me unconditionally. You are such an inspiration to me. You are so strong and have so much determination.
I know that you are hard on yourself, and that have days where you struggle, but you have to fall and fail to become stronger and that's not a negative thing. I know it's hard to see that when your struggling, but putting yourself down is not acceptable anymore. At the end of the day you say to yourself, "Ok, I made some poor choices, but it's done and I can't change the past. I am going to dust myself off and start again." I feel like your spending too much time feeling sad than happy. You have done something alot of people can't do. You have lost 96 pounds and you just signed up for your first marathon. On those bad days you need to say to myself." I am not going to let this ruin my day, I am strong and I can do it!"I think that when you are having a bad day or struggling with yourself, you have to remember how much inner strength you really have. We all know you have it, YOU just need to remind yourself. When I am having a bad day or struggling I say to myself " Is this really worth my time and energy?" My answer is always the same. It took me a long time to learn to just let things go and walk away from it, but I am good at it now and I know you can do it.



My response:

I love you... and you are right. Yesterdays blog titled 'I love my friends..." is my committment to do just what you are saying - and is giving you guys persmission to tell me exactly what you just said.
I am tired of my own pity party - so I am putting an end to it. I do want to be happy. I want to enjoy life, my family, my kids and this body and health I have worked hard for.

You are right. I have lost 96 pounds - which is amazing and I will run a marathon which is amazing. So many people give up and I didn't. That is amazing.