I never did like roller coasters

In 27 days I will walk across the stage as a first time NPC bikini competitor. At times, the days seem to drag and other times I can’t believe that I’m almost there. And, at times, I am beyond excited about the entire experience and at other times I am 100% miserable.

Quite honestly I can’t wait for it to be over. It has become something that has consumed my entire being. I am no longer who I was back in January. Am I better off? Of that I’m not sure. At 18 pounds lost to date, I am a shell of the person I was, not only physically but mentally as well.

If I could relate it to anything, I would imagine that it’s kind of like being brain washed at my own free will. I’ve become obsessed with food, on a totally different level. I’ve become obsessed with my body, on a totally different level. I’ve become obsessed with perfection, on a totally different level. And in the past week I’ve noticed that my hands shake. I’m pretty sure it’s due to nerves and being overly anxious.

My dad, who is my very best friend and tells me like it is, has handed me my ass on a plate when I discussed this with him. He reminded me that I started this journey to have fun and that if I’m no longer having fun, I either shouldn’t do it or change my prospective. He reminded me that no one is perfect and that this is not my job, so taking it too seriously is unnecessary. To quote him, “If eating a hamburger is going to stop you from being emotional, then go eat a hamburger!”

I’m an emotional eater and because I can’t eat my emotions right now, I am forced to feel them. It is causing me to burn bridges with people. It is causing me to have frequent break downs and mood swings. It’s as though I am no longer in control of myself.

I can stand in front of my mirror at home and think “Holy cow! I’m lean!” and then 30 minutes later, I can be at the gym with my peers and think I’m the fattest girl in the room. I can put on a pair of pants when getting ready for work and stand there shocked that they are literally falling off of me, and then at the same time feel bloated.

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What good has this done? What good is being “skinny” or “fit” or “pretty” when your mind is so screwed up that no one wants to be around you? Sure, I’ll look good in a bikini, but I’ll be standing alone.

As far as I can tell, the things that I’ve lost are not worth the things I’ve gained. I may have a different thought on April 25th, but today I feel like I am none the better for doing this.

My dad told me that, as a little girl, I was pretty level-headed. So why, as an adult, can I not get it together? I’m pretty embarrassed and ashamed. At 39 years old, I should have myself figured out…shouldn’t I?

At the same time, I have numerous people telling me that I’m too hard on myself. That I don’t give myself credit for my accomplishments. This is true. Oh, so very true.

Where is the middle ground?

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Something stinks

“Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” ~John Lennon

One of my favorite quotes…and oh so true. On January 2nd, my sister was admitted to the hospital to be induced with her first child. The first child in the family…so of course there was a dire need for all immediate family members to stay put in the waiting room until this child was born. All other responsibilities went out the window as we all awaited his arrival. And of course, what does one do when one waits…or is bored…or is anxious? One eats. Crap.

As I munched on cookies, pretzels, and various other unfortunate things, I thought to myself that I was never going to escape the dreadful thing called ‘life’. That in which makes us unable to accomplish our goals. That in which makes us choose one thing over another thing. But, when will I ever get the chance again to welcome the first baby into our family? Never. And so, let them eat cake…and popcorn, and chips, and whatever else the vending machine has to offer.

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During the moments that I first held my nephew, I didn’t once think about stronger quads or defined biceps, or how many bad carbs I had consumed in the past 24 hours. I instead thought of all the possibilities that lay ahead for this little one. How, at that moment, life was perfect for him. If we’re lucky, we come into the world this way…and then ‘life’ happens. So it got me thinking more…

When did I start thinking that I needed to be better?

When did I decide that I had to be perfect?

When did it become ok for me to settle for less?

When did I put aside my priorities to appease others?

It’s so confusing…on one end I want to build a stronger body and prove to myself that I can do this, but on the other hand who really cares? I guess the reason lays in why I’m doing this? And that is what I need to figure out. If the driving force behind this is to be perfect, then I shouldn’t be doing it. Perfection only comes in those first days of existence when we’re all bundled up with a knitted hat on. At this point in my life, I am far from perfect…just like everyone else.

And so today I struggle with spending the precious few hours after work, before the dust hits my eyes and I’m down for the count, at the hospital visiting the only person I know who is perfect at the moment or do I go to the gym, as I planned, and work out for two and a half hours? How do you make a choice like that? Is it selfish if I don’t go? Am I being lazy if I do go? Could I force myself to do both and cut my gym time in half?

Right now I’d just prefer to go home and get in my comfy pjs and sleep until tomorrow morning…but it’s only 2:30 in the afternoon. I can smell avoidance in the air…and it stinks.