Update to Bombshell in Progress: Homecoming Numbers

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So everyone seems to be asking me, “how much weight did lose while he was gone?”

That’s something I usually own up to, but it can be hard.  Why?  Because when I think about the amount of weight I dropped during this deployment, I also have to acknowledge that I allowed myself to put it on in the first place.

In case you’re new just stumbled into my little blog, and you have NO CLUE what I’m talking about, here are a couple old references:

First, read THIS, from a year ago, when I realized things weren’t fitting any more.

Now read THIS, from six months ago, when I had dropped some weight by going paleo and running.

You with me?  Okay, back to the topic at hand.

So here we go.  Weight is this thing I’ve always struggled with.  I’d gain five pounds if I so much looked at a piece of cake, and my idea of willpower was stopping after one piece.  I was never the small girl, the skinny girl, or even the fit girl.  (I’m still not.) But I’m not here to rehash what made me change, what made me choose to go Paleo.  No, what’s on my mind is not the process, but the result.  Let’s get two things straight first here, peeps.  First: it’s hard for me to talk about where I was before, but I’m going to.  Two: it makes me feel really kind of awkward when I hear people tell me, “you’re inspirational,” because I’m not, I’m a hot freaking mess most of the time, so please, pretty-please don’t say it.  ANYONE can do what I did.  It’s not heroic, or anything of the sort.  I did it for my kids, so I can keep up with them.  I did it for my husband, because he deserves to be tortured by me for a very long life. 😉  But mostly, I did it for me: to lower my stroke risk (which was high as a complication of pregnancy), to chase my kids, to stop my feet from hurting the second I got out of bed, to love this body that houses my soul. I did what anyone in my situation would have.  I saved my own life.

Ok, now that’s out of the way.

It started with a photo that had been taken at Jason’s going away party.  When I saw it, all I could think… was….  I didn’t know myself any more.  The thing with weight, at least the way I put it on, was that it was sneaky.  It came on a pound at a time, a pizza night with ice cream, a halloween candy blitz.  It snuck up on me so quietly, and I only noticed as the sizes of my clothes started to go up, and up… and up.

I couldn’t understand how my husband could still be attracted to me, but he was.  My weight never changed anything about our sex life (yup, just used that 3 letter word).

When Jason left, I knew I had to change, and my goal was thirty pounds.  I could do it, right?  Lose 30 lbs over the course of the deployment.

So I went Paleo, as you all know, and still eat Paleo… and the weight disappeared one mile, one race, one bar method (workout peeps, not alcohol) session at a time.  I hit 30 lbs and burst into tears.  It was coming off.

I hit 40 lbs in shock, and kept going.

The morning Jason gets home, I step on the scale.  70 lbs.  Almost the weight of Aaron.

I’m ten pounds under where he married me at, eight pounds under where he met me at, and three pounds under where I graduated high school.  It’s surreal, and hard for me to even grasp until I see these pics side by side.

Ginger Lashley, don’t kill me for cropping the pics, I totally had to. MUUUUWAH.

Even then, I didn’t really, “get” it.  I mean, sure, I understood when I stood on the scale, or when I could finally run 4 1/2 miles without stopping (I started at like 1/4 mile), but seeing it was different.

So I had this shirt, one I’d worn to the going away party we threw at our house just before deployment, and I put it back on the day after he got home and had Jason take a picture, because I needed to see for myself.

You can’t see me shaking my head right now, but I am, because I can’t believe I’m going to post the picture.  The one in the center?  That was the one that broke my heart, that woke me up and made me ask what I was doing to myself and my health.  Okay.

Deep breath.

1… 2… 3…

Okay.  Maybe that wasn’t so bad.

Yes, yet it was.

The number one thing I get asked?  “What does Jason think?  I bet he can’t keep his hands off you?!”

Let’s get one thing straight: That’s never been a problem in our world.  😉

The day after Jason got home, he put his hands around my waist and said, “You’re fucking tiny.”  (Sorry, he’s got a potty mouth).  That, ladies and gentlemen, has really been about it.  He picks me up a lot now, I think just because he can, but there’s nothing different about the way he treats me.  Does this bother me?  No.  Why?  Because it says a lot about this amazing man I’m married to. He didn’t say a thing or utter a complaint when I put the weight on, why would he react any differently when I took the weight off?  He’s in love with me, not just my shell.

What’s different for me?

A ton.

My closet is a disaster, not because I’m not a fan of putting my clothes away, well, that too… but because I have all these clothes.  Gulp.  Big breath.  Okay, I can say this.  When Jason left, I was in a size 16.

I’m sitting here in size 6 jeans as I type.

So if I’m in a size 6 now, why the hell are there still size 16’s in my closet?  Because I’m terrified I’ll slip, fall, roll down hill back through those 70 lbs and need them again.  Opinions come in from friends like Running Woman and the Best Friend, saying “ditch the clothes,” and then I get the less supportive answers of, “you’d better save those for when you gain that weight back.” So I sit in this stagnant state of terror and awe, staring at these clothes.

But the hard part?  When I stretch out my legs in front of me… and I don’t recognize them.  It’s not that they’re pretty, no, my left leg looks like a road map of Texas from all the valves and veins that broke during my latest pregnancies (there’s a reason I’m not medically allowed to carry another child).  There’s even a wee bit of “cushion” on my inner thighs that I’ll probably never be able to get rid of.  But it catches me off guard when I don’t see a part of my body as mine, like a stranger swapped out my parts.  To speak completely honestly?  I still see myself as overweight for the most part, and it takes a mirror, or a pair of pants to remind me that I’m actually not overweight anymore, my BMI is finally healthy.  It took me over fourteen years to put this weight on, and it came off a heck of a lot faster than that, and I know I’ll adjust the longer it stays off.

It will stay off.

I’m not done with myself, because the minute I start thinking like that is when it will creep back on, pound by pound.  I’m also not trying to lose any more weight.  I’m happy where I am, not because the scale says so, but because my health says so.  So no, I’m not dropping Paleo, because it’s more of a lifestyle, and less of a “diet.”  It’s the way I eat now, which works for my body.  No, I don’t miss chocolate cake.  No, I don’t miss soda.  Yes, I miss Pizza, and had my first gluten-free pizza since Jason left just this weekend.  A cheat is good for my soul every once and again.  😉

  Want to hear something crazy?  Jason’s joining the Paleo train, so I’m sure you’ll have tons of funny blogs headed your way, because getting him to eat healthy is kind of like:

Thank you to all the amazing love and support that’s flown at me over this insane little weight-loss I’ve undergone.  For every friend like Miss Stepford who pushed me into smaller clothes when I clung to my bigger ones, Miss Greenbay who actually did toss me into a dressing room with smaller jeans, Running Woman who literally flew in to NY to run with me, Dirty Girl for racing the Dirty Girl with me, and Miss Backbone (who earned her nickname by standing up for me when it wasn’t the cool thing to do) supporting me all the way… well, you guys are the butter on my bread.  Oh wait… I don’t eat bread any more.  Well, you get the point.  Jason was gone during this, I really needed you guys to lean on, and you totally delivered.

So there you go.  9 months and 70 lbs.

What’s on the agenda for this summer?  1/2 marathon.

No, seriously.

Because this bombshell is still in progress, and eternally will be.  It’s not about the number on the scale, it’s about how far I can push myself, how healthy my body can be, how well I can educate myself on the food I fuel myself and my family with.

Guess I’ll run along now…  ha!  See what I did there?  Yeah, lame joke I know…


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