How YOU Doin’?

Well.  So here we are again.  Me, at my computer.  You, well, wherever you are.  It’s destiny.  Either that or the internet – I’m not sure which.

So I actually wrote a blog post on my iPad while putting on my make-up and drying my hair today (I’m an excellent multi-tasker), then came over here to post and it and discovered that hey!  I wrote almost the EXACT SAME POST about a month ago!  So I was hit with a dilemma – do I use the old post or the new one?  Of course, being the recycling hero that I am, I knew I couldn’t just throw out the old post.  I had to use it.  So here it is – then I’ll tack the new post onto the end.  See?  Now you get to read the same boring stuff TWICE!!!  Bless your heart.

Well, here it is anyway – written January 21, 2013 and saved from the “drafts” folder:

Hi.  It’s me, Britany.  I mean, it’s really me.  Not a copy of a post I wrote back in September – I’m actually writing a REAL blog post!  In case you haven’t been paying attention, I’ve been re-posting my blog posts from September that I put on a different site, in order to sort of catch everyone up on this whole boot camp thing I’ve been doing.  So far, you’ve read all the way up to September 16th.  Which means what you are reading is pretty far removed from reality.  And since I have stopped writing posts on the other blog (my intention was to consolidate the two here), I think it’s time to be honest about how I’ve been doing now that we’re halfway through January.

The short answer is not great.  It’s been a really tough month and a half.  See, from the time I started working out until early December, I hardly missed a day.  That meant I was exercising 5 days a week and being held accountable for what I was eating every day of the week. (Despite not being at the gym Saturday or Sunday, on Monday the trainers randomly pick from Friday, Saturday or Sunday and you have to be ready to read off everything you ate that day).  But in early December, Brad got sick – really sick – with what our doctor labelled a “flu-like virus”.  He then told us that the flu wasn’t here yet (our pediatrician said he was wrong) so he didn’t actually test Brad.  I got a milder version of it from him, then one of the kids got sick so in the end, I was out two weeks prior to leaving on our cruise December 22nd.

After 2 weeks of dealing with sick people, all my resolve to eat well and exercise on the cruise went out the window.  (I did try to run on the track once, and actually accomplished 2 miles of darting around people taking pictures from the most scenic place on the ship.  I think it was something like 17 times around equaled 1 mile. And there was a mini-golf course in the center of the track, so it was like running the school track during a football game.  Not my cup of tea.)

I thought I would get right back into the swing of things upon our return, but in the car on the way home from Galveston, Samuel started having coughing fits that were so bad, he even threw up at one point.  So we got back on Saturday and were at the doctor bright and early Monday.  This time our doctor said Samuel had the flu – even though he said it was pointless to test him since his symptoms matched.  He was sick the entire week of New Year’s, but since Brad was home, I was able to get back to the gym three days that week.  However, I didn’t have my food because, if I’m completely honest, I didn’t want to admit that I was not back on track with my eating yet.  We didn’t even make a trip to the grocery store until the kids were back in school!

(Corey, our trainer, gave me grace the first day I told him I didn’t have my food.  The second day I did 50 push-ups and the third day I did 100.  By Monday, my food journal was up to date and ready to be checked!!!)

With the kids back in school, I was ready to really get serious about losing weight again.  Then Matthew got strep and was out for 3 days week before last.  Last week, the nurse sent him home from school with similar symptoms but the doctor said it was allergies.  Still, I missed a day for that.  And finally, last Thursday Brad came home from work sick – again – and this time tested positive for the flu.  Yesterday, Samuel started running a fever and that brings us up to today (we have an appointment for him this afternoon.  They want to see him because his fever was spiking at almost 105 in the night.)

Honestly, I think the last time we were all this sick was when Peter started Kindergarten.

Regardless of how sick we have been or are going to be, however, the bottom line is this: I’ve been using it as an excuse to eat whatever I want.

If you’re wondering why it ends so abruptly, see the part where I wrote Samuel had a 105 degree fever.  In case you’re wondering, he had the flu as well.  Then I got it. And then I slept and so I don’t remember much except that I haven’t been exactly stellar at working out and eating right.  Which brings me to the post I wrote this morning:

I have something to confess.  I have been avoiding you.  Not you literally – I’m actually not even able to tell who you are.  McGee on NCIS would know everything about you, down to when you took your first step and where you were when you got your first kiss.  All in the time it takes Gibbs to say “McGee!” and McGee to answer “I’m on it boss.”.

But I digress.

What I was trying to say is that I have been avoiding the blog because I don’t want to admit out loud that I’ve fallen off the UBS wagon.  UBS, for those who may not know, stands for Ultimate Body Studio – not Unlimited Boy Solutions, like I first thought.  No, I didn’t really think that.  I actually couldn’t remember the name at all for the first few months.  I have always just called it the gym, because my mind can usually find that when searching for it.  UBS is too hard for it to dredge up usually.

I’m clearly still avoiding. {Deep Sigh}

Here’s what happened.  I joined, with a real goal in sight – our Princess cruise over Christmas 2012.  And I lost 20 pounds plus a lot of inches and gained a tremendous amount of energy and confidence.  Then I came home.  And found myself without any kind of goal, and a whole lot of sickness in the house.  Then the sickness left the house, but I didn’t start back at the gym regularly.  And I didn’t start eating right at all.  I just couldn’t seem to make myself care.

I mean, the trainer/owner of the gym, Ron Lyons, keeps telling us to imagine swimsuit season, imagine being at the pool, etc. And I’m all like, really?  Because the only pool we will be visiting is the community pool, and I couldn’t care less who sees me in my swimsuit there.  It’s usually just some neighborhood kids swimming unchaperoned anyway, even though the sign CLEARLY STATES children are not to swim without a parent in the vicinity – and sitting at your kitchen table drinking sweet tea is not considered in the vicinity!!!  Just had to get that off my chest.

Also, I don’t mean to seem ungrateful but after I lost 20 pounds, I sort of stopped and thought about all that HARD WORK and began to wonder if it was really worth it.

I mean, yeah, sure I climbed that RIDICULOUSLY TALL pyramid in Belize, and conquered a major personal fear in the process (climbing a pyramid in front of a bunch of people watching.  What?  Did you think I was going to say heights?).  And yes, I wore my swimsuit in front of a LOT of people on the ship when I took Samuel swimming one day.  That was all nice, but was it worth it?  And what if we don’t go anywhere or do anything this summer – which is totally normal for us.

So it has taken some time and introspection, but I think I’ve found my true reason for going through all this pain everyday.

Simply put, it’s because I’m supposed to.  I can’t explain all the theology behind it – well, I could actually, but it’s not important – but for me, it’s about simple obedience.  One foot in front of the other.  Once choice about what I’m going to eat.  Then the next one.  One step, then another, never worrying about all the other possible things that could happen or question all the whys every day.  It’s just. about. doing. it.

So, with that, I’m going to commit to you that I will try – really try – to be honest and keep a better record of what’s happening with all that in real time here on the blog.  I will consider you my accountability partners.  Whoever you are, wherever you are and despite where you were when you got your first kiss. (Mine was standing before God and man at the altar on my wedding day.  Not really, but I can pretend.)

So.  There it is – the good, the bad, and a whole lot of ugly all laid out for you to read at your leisure.  And so I will end this with one final thought.  I had my cheat meal yesterday, so I can’t have another one all weekend long.  And now that I’ve put it here, I have to stick by it.



Warning: Rant Ahead

Notice how he has organized the dominoes so that the numbers are matched end to end.

There should be a law to prevent angry blogging, kind of like texting and driving. Of course, I’m so mad right now, I wouldn’t pay any attention to it.

Why am I so mad? I’ll give you a hint. It starts with an “M” and ends with an “atthew”.

For those of you who don’t know, Matthew, our 8 year old, has Aspergers Syndrome. Long story short, this is a very high-functioning form of Autism that appears most often in boys, and in our case, results in a child with an extremely high intellectual IQ and an extremely low social IQ. At the time of his testing last year, he was socially on the same level as a 2 year old.

One of the “symptoms”, if you will, of Aspergers is what’s called perseveration. Basically, it’s the inability to let go of something that’s in your mind. The way they explained it to me was that it’s like there’s a track that they go around and around on until the trench is so deep, they can’t get out by themselves.

So here’s what we went through last night and this morning.

I have a rule that everyone makes their lunches for school the night before. In order to eat supper, they must have a list of things completed, and this is one of them. And lest you feel sorry for them, they have HOURS to get about 3 things done, yet they manage to put it off until supper is on the table.

Yesterday, Matthew started making his lunch and discovered that Peter had taken “his” sandwich – actually half a sandwich – and put it in his lunch.

And so began the epic Tale of Two Sandwiches.

I’ll spare you the incredibly boring details, but in the end, because the sandwich in question had mayo instead of Ranch Dressing, it was ruled to be Peter’s (Matthew only eats Ranch on his).

At first, I stood firm on the “make your lunch rule” but finally, I just got sick of arguing with Matthew (if that wasn’t his sandwich, he wanted to figure out who took his and make sure they got consequences!) and told him to eat his supper and if he didn’t have a lunch in the morning, he would just have to buy. With his own money, since he only gets to buy once and he always saves it for pizza Friday.

This morning, after I had totally forgotten about the whole epic sandwich debate of 2012, I learned what happens when a child with Aspergers goes to sleep perseverating. He wakes up even more entrenched in his beliefs.

I tried everything. Offered over and over to help him make a new sandwich, help him make his lunch, told him he could buy today instead of Friday, reminded him he could buy out of his own money.  I tried distracting him (sometimes that helps him move out of his “trench”), I tried leaving him alone, ignoring him, debating with him.

I did everything short of solve his problem, which is what he was holding out for.

In the end, he was screaming, holding his ears, yelling that his head hurt and it was all my fault. On and on, until I was in the car, about to leave him at home. He threw the sandwich I made him and a cheese stick into his lunch box and caught us right before we pulled out of the garage.

Then he proceeded to get in the car and yell at us to be quiet and leave him alone.  Needless to say, he has lost all screen time for the foreseeable future.

We were late to school today, which means even though they were probably only 5 minutes after the bell, they will all 3 be counted absent for the purposes of the State. I’ve already gotten one truancy warning letter – this will probably mean a second warning.

And all because of a stupid sandwich.

When I got home, I called our FISD parent trainer who is assigned to our family and told her what happened. She has been coaching me through a lot of issues like this since the diagnosis last year. Her advice? Do whatever you have to do in the morning – in this case, it would have been to say “You didn’t get your lunch made so now you will have to buy today” – but follow it up with “we will discuss this further after school”. Then after school, tell him he owes me for the lunch. Write down what happened and what the consequences are, then just hand it to him after school. She also said to make sure next time I have a plan in place before the kids wake up. In other words, don’t just hope the issue goes away.

I saw one of Matthew’s Special Ed teachers outside the school this morning. I think he might have been trying to coax another child out of a car. I told him the situation (I usually text one of them so they have a head’s up of what they will be facing that day) and he just smiled and said “Sounds like we’re going to need a lot of Jolly Ranchers today”.

Jolly Ranchers are fine for Matthew. I’m personally hitting the hard stuff myself. Of course, you know I mean Starbucks, right?

Thank you for giving me 5 minutes of your life that you can never get back.

Rant over.