~~October 2016~~Sew, it was the greatest Stitch Experience ever!~~Final Update 3/19/2017!

Discussion in 'Disney Trip Reports' started by DMGeurts, Oct 26, 2016.

  1. DMGeurts

    DMGeurts Never open texts with the "Hand Sewn Button" attac

    Joined:
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    Welcome! For those of you that don’t know me – I am Dorine - but I go by "D~" on The Dis... I subsidize all of our trips to Disney with my sewing skills, I love what I do, and I love that I am able to add magic to many trips to WDW - including our own.

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    Most of my days are spent here - in my sewing room... Everything I make and do is done by vintage machine - the newest sewing machine I own is from 1963, I am very adamant about keeping all of my items One Of A Kind (OOAK) and unique.

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    My girls and I are well known for our “girls trips” to Disney. Both of them have "grown up Disney" - I have chronicled most of our trips over the last several years, here on The Dis - links to those trip reports can be found in my siggy below - if you are interested. I enjoy spending my time with them, and I believe it shows in every post I write and every photo we take. They are my entire world, their smiles and laughter brighten every single day, I am so very lucky!

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    Follow along on this incredible journey with my youngest daughter - Victoria, who I mostly refer to as V in my TRs. This trip has been in the planning for several years - almost 7 years, to be exact... It came about when my girls were in middle school - I promised each of them, sometime during their Senior year of High School, I would take them - individually - on their own Disney trips. Just some special time between my girls and I, as one last "hoorah" - so to speak. So, please join Victoria and I, as we share this amazing and bittersweet trip with you all - the big finale to our girls trips... Or is it? :scratchin

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    Other members of my family - who I talk about often, but won't be featured much in this TR is my DH - Josh… He normally doesn’t play a role in our trips, other than me finding ways to get his blessing for another girls trip… He does not like the crowds or the lines – he would much rather stay home. He works full time at our local VA hospital - a passion that is close to his heart, as he is an Iraq War Veteran himself. He is also very active in his Pheasants Forever chapter, he enjoys hunting with our dogs (introduced below), fishing and going to local college hockey games. Some day – I hope to take him back to Disney with me – and hopefully he will see the Pixie Dust that makes all of us love it so much.

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    Our oldest daughter - Allison - who will not play a major role in this TR, she just graduated high school in June, finished her own Senior Disney trip last January (her TR is in my siggy) and also recently returned from her summer trip to Europe... She will be starting Beauty school (is that what it's called?) in just a few weeks... This was a very difficult decision for her - as even though it's a passion and talent close to her heart, she always thought she would pursue her other great love, photography. In the end, I believe - as I've always believed - as long as my girls do what they love and that they are happy, I support them 110%... All I've ever wished for them is happiness. :lovestruc It's so fun to see her fulfilling her dreams!

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    Then there is Max, our pure-bred red-head Golden Retriever… Often referred to in my TRs/PTRs as “MM” which stands for many things… Maxy-Moo-Moo, Maxy-Moose, or Maxy-Moosie… He comes to all of those names – which is sad and sometimes funny. He is a “crazy man” – he is often told, and has definitely earned that title… He does some of the craziest things! But we all love him, and our family wouldn’t be nearly as interesting without him in it.

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    And the newest addition to our family - Cooper... Or Sooper Cooper, if you prefer. SC is an almost 2 year old half Yellow Lab and half Golden Retriever... We brought him home when he was an 8 week old puppy, and our lives have been nothing short of an adventure since then... He is somewhat of a bully to poor sweet MM... But they seem to tolerate each other and get along nicely most of the time.

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    I am very excited to share this trip with you all!!! This was such a bittersweet trip... The end of an era, so to speak... And while it was a little sad - I am very happy to share that I didn't let that shadow this trip at all. Victoria stayed at a new-to-her resort (Shades of Green), and she was able to try out a park she's never done before (Universal Studios), and as an extra fun event - Victoria saved up to buy tickets for both of us to attend MNSSHP - which we haven't been to since 2008.

    So, please join us on this most epic and cherished adventure, as I spend time with my baby girl and create memories to last a lifetime. :lovestruc

    D~
     
    Last edited: Oct 28, 2016
  2. DMGeurts

    DMGeurts Never open texts with the "Hand Sewn Button" attac

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  4. DMGeurts

    DMGeurts Never open texts with the "Hand Sewn Button" attac

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    Saved for my Healthy living updates...

    It's been while since I've done a healthy living update... First off... If you want to read more about my journey - I have a blog, which is in my siggy - I haven't updated it in so long, but you are welcome to read. :) I also have 2 posts here on the Dis, which span the last 2-3 years - where I have done monthly updates about my journey. You can find those here: Healthy Living 2013-2014 And here: Healthy living 2014-2015

    March 2015

    It's been a rough several weeks for me... I finished my Whole30 at the end of January, and even though I finished strong, it's been hard trying to reintigrate my "new normal" foods back into my life... Let me explain. Previous to doing my Whole30, I ate at approx 80-90% compliancy to the Primal lifestyle... This left me room for error, and let me live a comfortable eating life - with treats every now and then. But the Whole30 - while awesome - it is super strict... 100% compliancy for 30 days - NO errors, no slips, no treats - you mess up - you start over. I didn't want to start over, so I was very diligent. Once my 30 days were over, I started to allow a few items back into my life - the first being coffee with agave and real 1/2 n 1/2... Well, other things came into my house - all natural peanut butter (have I told you the pb is a weakness for me?)... I kept telling myself - that at least it was "all natural" with no weird stuff in it - true, but... Well - according to the Primal lifestyle, peanuts are a no go. Then, we went out of town for a weekend - I had to eat what was offered to me... Then Gus had his birthday and I made home-made orange rolls... The follownig day, I had to make monkey bread to use up the dough... And I couldn't resist any of it. It was bad. After all these years - I still have the cravings, I still can't resist. It was a really hard realization. I had to take a real hard look at myself, and refocus - which isn't easy. I am only 3 days back "into it"... but already I am feeling better - my belly bloat is totally gone, which is a huge boost to my morale. During this time - I must add - I continued to excercise and do my heavy lifting - so all was not lost. I did not gain any size... but I just felt awful.

    It was a hard realization to come to... To know that I've been doing this and making changes for years - and to stumble into my old ways so easily... It brings me back to when I first read Primal Blueprint, and realizing that grains and sugar do have addicting chemicals in them... I get down on myself, but in the end, I remembered that it isn't all ME... The food manufacturers do add chemicals to our food, which trigger pleasure sensors in our brains - that's how they make their $$, and that's how we can't stop.

    So, it's back to work for me... Continuing on this journey. I am so close... Really - one more size until my Ultimate Goal Size... I really want to concentrate on that over the next several weeks. I know I can do it - and I know I can do it before summer. :lovestruc

    One progress photo for you all from this month... Gus and Allison tease me because I don't know how to take selfies... Sheesh!

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    May 2015

    Soooo... It's reality check time... I really need to get serious about this again... It seems, I get serious, then I get not so serious, then I am serious again. I just need a swift kick - that's what I really need. So, yesterday, I decided that it was time to weigh myself again... Yah - *reality check*... I haven't weighed since the end of January and the end of my Whole30... The verdict is that I am up 8 lbs. I am really not happy with myself. I know exactly what caused it... Starbucks and too much snacking on things I shouldn't be snacking on. It's time to be serious, really it is.

    For the first time in eons, I logged into MFP yesterday... I've vowed to journal religiously for the remainder of May... I know - it's only 2+ weeks, but for me, this is a big deal. I DETEST journaling, almost more than anything else. But journaling keeps me honest - so I must do it. I journaled my first full day yesterday, and I must say - yesterday was an average day for me (minus the snacking) and I really don't eat badly at meals... It's the darn snacking and Starbucks. Starbucks is evil - just in case you were wondering... ::yes:: If you don't go there, don't start. Trust me on this. Slippery slope folks.

    I am still working out though - and as usual, I think this helps me 2 fold. One, excercise is good for you - good for your muscles/bones/brain... Pretty much everything. Not only is excercise good for you - but doing it each morning (for me) helps me refocus on ME before I do anything else for the day. It really is part of my daily routine... Sometimes I really have to force myself to do it (Ok - most of the time), but when I am done, I know I've done something good for myself. And you really can't go wrong there. :thumbsup2 Last week was doubly hard on me (excuses, excuses), but DH was working from home all week, so I didn't have access to our computer - which is where I have all of my workouts stored... Not only that, but he had to be in the office by 7am every morning - so I just couldn't do my normal routine... I am VERY routine driven - if my routine is off, my whole life balance is off. Not sure if anyone else is like this out there, but it's hard for me to function... So, long story short - last week sucked. ::yes:: And I am very happy to be back to my work out routine this week, my life is so much better aligned.

    So, this week - I am uber concentrating on my intake... NO junk - NONE... Seriously! NO, NO, NO Starbucks... Must be strong here. And I will journal everything I eat in my journal on MFP - even on the weekend. ::yes:: Hopefully my body will cooperate - and my brain too... And I'll be back to losing and finishing the last leg of this portion of my journey... For the record... I've been working on this for 3+ years! If you would have told me when I first started that this would take me 3+ years - I probably wouldn't have started. I am being honest. So, I really need to buckle down and get to work on the rest of my life. ::yes::

    A few photos from the month of April/May (and my new glasses - which I love)... Wow... No real full-body shots of me this month... That was not purprosely done, I promise.

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    August 2015

    Wow - again, it's been several months since I've updated. Shame on me!

    I am still here and still plugging along on my health and well being journey.

    Not much has changed... I am still the same size... I am wearing all of the same clothes I wore on my August 2014 trip, and they fit me exactly the same. It's a little frustrating, because I do work hard daily... but at the same time, I am sort of at peace with it. I feel good, and I don't hate how I look. But at the same time - I tend to get down on myself because I DO work hard, and I feel like there should be progress. Oh well... It doesn't deter me from treating my body with respect and feeding it with good foods.

    Oh - I did add one thing to my life... A BIG thing! Back story: When I was in high school, I always wanted to be a runner. There was this girl in my class, and she would run the school track every single day... She was always fit, and I just really admired her. So, one day, I decided to join her, but there was NO way I could keep up with her. Something she made look incredibly easy, and I couldn't even make it once around the track. I never tried again - not then. Fast forward a few years... Another trial... Another failure. Back in 2007, I tried again, in earnest... again - I did not have the lung capacity (hello... X-smoker here) or the endurance... Aside from the fact that I have bad knees... Chalk up another failure and the final assumption that I am not a runner, I never will be a runner and I won't even try to be.

    So... While at the lake, over the 4th of July, I walked every single day. While I was walking - I noticed that walking really wasn't much of a work out for me... It was enjoyable, yes, but it was really easy for me. When I came home, I decided I enjoyed my lake walks so much - that I would continue to walk here at home - just a few times per week. One day, while I was out walking - I thought, hey - why not? So, I picked up my pace and started to run... Slowly - but faster than I probably should have been. To my complete and utter surprise... I did it! It was (guessing) about a half mile. More than I have ever in my life done successfully. I was in shock! And I loved it! A few days later, I went for another "walk" - adding more running... To my surprise - I was able to run about half of my normal 2 mile walk - not consecutively, but still - I was very proud. Well, as per my normal routine, now I started researching running and beginner running... I learned that I was probably still going too fast, and belly breathing is very important. So, my next walk/run - I slowed WAAAAY down and really concentrated on my breathing. This time - I only walked twice - for a very short time. Me... Really? I am still in shock. Then, I decided - my feet were killing me - even though I had just purchased new shoes, I needed to go get fitted... Yup - I was wearing one full size too small... Lesson learned. Trust me - my feet are still in slight pain a week + later. But now I am running the full 2 miles - would you believe that???

    I firmly believe, the stars aligned perfectly for this to be possible for me... I've been smoke-free for 7.5 years... I lift heavy weights - so my muscles are strong and can take the endurance of running... I just never thought I would ever be in this place in my life - really. I am taking it super slow (quite possibly the slowest runner ever here), and being super careful. But I am very excited to be at this chapter! :woohoo: I don't have dreams of anything, at the moment - other than running a 5k... Not walking, but running... Then maybe I'll move on to bigger things. Some day - I would LOVE to particpate in a Disney race - that would be my ultimate dream goal. :lovestruc

    A few pictures from the last month...

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    September 2015

    So... While going through some old photos last night, I stumbled upon this photo of me taken in November of 2012.... To refresh your memory a little bit... My journey started in March of 2012 with strict Weight Watchers and excessive cardio... By August of 2012, I was completely burned out, and as dedicated as I was before, I became the opposite and completely gave up - yet again. So, this photo was taken in the midst of my size climbing back up... I didn't get my head back into the game ~fully~ until March of 2013... So, this photo isn't even the "worst of the worst".

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    Upon scrolling past this photo last night, I had to stop and back up, then zoom in. I was shocked! It looked like someone I once knew, and old friend, the old me. I sat there and stared at this photo for quite some time, and as I sat there and stared at it, I remembered how I felt all of the time... How I was almost scared to live every day. I was reminded of how difficult it was for me to move, how I could barely roll over in bed, or walk up my stairs to go to work, how difficult it was to stand, or walk, or get in and out of the shower. At the age of 37, my life was that of someone twice my age, someone I'd come to accept as society's description of "normal aging"... There were so many things I couldn't do, so many things I didn't even try to do. I couldn't even look at myself in the mirror, and every time I put on my clothes - I stared at myself in disbelief, because the person staring back at me was lonely, sad and defeated.

    It was sometime during the time this photo was taken, the person you see there, she began to really analyze her life... tried to put the pieces back together... Started researching on how to do right by herself, and her family. It was that person right there who had the courage to take a different path, the courage to find her own way, and the determination to start on a journey with no map and no compass. Just the sheer will for a better life, a life with purpose and a life that was truly enjoyable.

    I remember laying in bed one night... Really on the brink of despair... not knowing where to turn or where to start. Truly, the hardest part of this journey was to find the starting line. I always talk about going slow... but if you were to ask the person above, how slow is slow? She wouldn't have been able to give you an answer, because even though she wanted to go slow and make the changes last, she wanted the loss and recognition to be instantaneous. There is nothing that person could have done to prepare her for the journey that was unfolding right in front of her eyes.

    Never once, did that person realize what her life was about to become. A life of a weak person that barely had the strength to move about her day and accomplish the simplest of things... Was about to evolve into a strong person - a person stronger than she ever thought possible, a person with very few health problems, a person with confidence, and true joy for life and the people in it, a person - in her wildest dreams - she never thought she even desired to be.

    I've said it many times before... It's taken a lot of courage to find a path that was unique only to me... A path that I could forge on my own - whether others have been there or not - the key for me, was finding things I enjoyed doing... And never, no matter what, push myself and force myself to eat things that I didn't like (because they were "healthy") or to force myself to exercise in a way that wasn't enjoyable. It led me on a path I didn't expect to find - ever. It led me on a journey of self discovery. It led me to find my own way.

    I've faced many criticisms over the years. People, friends & family who thought I was crazy for taking the path less traveled, because it was right for me. Each person who didn't believe, drove me even further into believing in myself... And believing that my chosen path was the correct path. Those people forced me to learn to trust in myself - they gave me the power I needed to push forward and continue on. And they forced me to analyze every single detail, insuring that I truly was doing the absolute best thing for me. It wasn't easy, and many times I had to prove myself and my intentions to the people who are closest to me, making them see that I was doing what was right - even if it wasn't right for them. But in the end, I truly believe they are proud of me, and for the most part, don't question my ways anymore. They see the person I've become, and I do think they are proud of me.

    I look at my life now, and how it's changed, it's very difficult to imagine how I once was. Yet, in the very same breath - I see and feel that person every time I look in the mirror. I struggle with this a lot, because no matter how much I improve my life, I am not sure I can ever truly run from who I was or where I started. I still struggle with how I see myself, and how others see me. Some days, I do look in the mirror, and the person I see looking back at me, is the same person you see above. It might sound convoluted, but I think many people who have been in my shoes struggle with this very same thing. It's totally a mental thing, and I think the only way to overcome it is time... Lots and lots of time.

    This journey is an endless one. I say this a lot. Sure, I have a goal size... and if you've read all of my healthy living updates, you'll know that I've been stuck at this size for well over a year. Even though I have truly "plateaued" - that doesn't keep me from trying new things and trying every single day to start over and make it the best day I can make it. I think that is a huge key.... I could very easily shout "failure" from the roof-tops just because I am stalled... but rather than convince myself I am a failure for not reaching my goal with in a given time... I've convinced myself that I am never a failure, unless I quit trying. So, I try... Every day... Every meal... Every snack... I try. Some days, I try harder than others... but I always try.

    There is no end here... It is always me against myself... Finding ways to make this work for me... Finding what truly makes life enjoyable and working that into my day, any way I can. Finding purpose and drive where I never thought I could find it. THAT is the goal - that is the true goal. Losing size and looking better is all a side effect of conquering my health and being absolutely the best person I can be, day after day, week after week, year after year.

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    October 2015

    Can you believe that October is well under way already? I am having a hard time believing that myself. But fall weather is definitely here - and if my girls had their way, the furnace would have been on last week already.

    I wish I had something interesting to tell you all - but there is really no progress on the size loss front... However - I do have a trip to Disney coming QUICKLY - so I am in full-on size loss mode right now. I am hoping to be a little smaller for this trip. No drastic dieting or anything - just being a little more strict with snacks.

    I am still heavy lifting - that is going well. I am getting to a spot where I don't feel safe lifting any heavier at home alone. So, either I am going to have to join a gym - with a squat rack - or I am just going to stay where I am at and be happy with it. Likely - I will do the latter, because I am not really a gym person.

    And of course - the best for last - my running... Eeeeep!!! I still just love it!!! No one dares to bring up the subject in front of me - they quickly regret it - because I will talk their ear off about running for hours. LOL Currently - I am training for a Thanksgiving 8k (approx. 5 miles), up until this last weekend, the most I'd really run at one time is 3.5 miles - and this is steady running - no walking. But my cousin and I went out for a run - and she flat out told me we were doing 5 miles... and I did. With out a problem. So - now I am very confident that I will be able to do that TG day 8k with out an issue at all. I even have a fun running outfit to wear, and I won't disappoint - I'll have fun headgear too!

    We won't even start talking about my running clothes/running shoes obsession... I love it all!

    A few pictures from the last month - see - no change... But - I am mostly OK with that.

    In the background of this first photo - you can't see the running track above my right shoulder - but it's there. This photo was taken in my High School parking lot - with that "famous" running track that first spurred my desire to learn to run, but I could never even make it once around that track. I contemplated doing a "victory lap" - but I didn't. It's amazing to me, because in this photo - I had just completed 5 miles!

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    And in the last month - I've successfully completed my 2 very first 5k races, 6 days apart.

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    February 2016

    Wow - It's been 4 months since I have updated this! A lot has happened in 4 months! First of all - I've given up running - in the winter months anyways - once the temps started to drop, I began to notice that my lungs couldn't handle the cold temps - It's a pretty common thing. I decided after a few attempts, and having symptoms very similar to pneumonia - it just wasn't worth it. So, I gave up my dream of running through the winter. I do plan to begin running again this spring - as soon as roads clear and temps warm a bit more. I am looking forward to it. Hopefully - I can make more progress this season, as I do miss it, and running was something I was super proud of myself for.

    Also - in the last 4 months - I've done 2 trips to WDW... Two trips where I did not watch my eating hardly at all... And 2 trips (plus Christmas) where I've had to recover. It's been rough, very very rough. For each of these trips and during the holidays - I've managed to gain a size... Thankfully - I was very dedicated to losing (for the most part) in between... But this led to a gain/loss/gain/loss/gain pattern for me, which has completely managed to wreck my confidence and my overall outlook on my health. In the last weeks - on the 1st of February actually, I decided to embark on a 2nd Whole30, as a reset. It was going great - and then I became sick, just as Josh's brother and family arrived from Holland. It was just too much to try to prepare meals ahead of time, on top of a lot of eating out while they are here... For the first time in many years - I gave up. And I am really struggling with that.

    In a few short weeks, I will reach my 4 year healthy living anniversary. Can you believe that? Had you told me, 4 years ago, that I would still be on this same journey - I would not have believed you. To keep momentum for such a long period ~ for me ~ is just unheard of. Yes, my goals and perspective has changed and evolved considerably during that time, but for the most part - I have held on to a very firm belief in treating my body right and doing the very best I can by my own standards... Not giving in to the typical "weight loss stereotypes and methods" that most people are using for a quick fix that can't be maintained. I've chosen to take the long route - in the hopes that it will bring me overall wellness and health... I've realized - even more in the last few weeks and months, it will be an endless battle... I know I've said that all along, but I am coming to notice that the remainder of my life will be an endless battle of gaining and losing in an effort to maintain. It's kind of a sad realization - don't you think? There will never be a time in my life, when I look in the mirror and like what I see, and this just saddens me. It makes me want to give up. At the same time - it makes me want to try harder. And in that little space, in between, I have to find the spot in my mind where I am at peace with what I see. I am starting to doubt that there is such a place?

    At this very moment in time, I am up one full size from my smallest - maybe even 2 sizes? And I am not OK with this... I struggle every single day with the food in my house, the food my family eats, the food I want to eat and lately - I've been giving in more than I should. I need to figure this out - I really do... And I just don't know how to anymore? I feel like I've done everything, tried every method, worked every angle, and there is nothing else that I can do to reach my goal. How do I come to terms with that? How do I make that right in my brain? I do not know. I sometimes feel like the harder I fight - the harder my body fights back. But even giving in and relaxing a bit - my body continues to fight me.

    Sometimes - I tell myself - I should just give in and join some sort of weight loss program... But I just cannot bring myself to eat their cheap crappy non-food items... This absolutely goes against every single thing I've learned and come to believe in wholeheartedly.

    So what does this tell you? What does it say to me? I have a few options. I give up - flat out, say no more, gain it all back and live life miserable and scared. Or I continue to spin my wheels endlessly, for the rest of my life, never reaching my goals... I feel so lost right now, in this place of "purgatory" - and I just don't know which way to turn or what path to take... What is right, what is wrong, or what will work?

    It's never easy.

    When it comes right down to it... This is what I DO know.... I know that I post here every single day. I know that many people read my posts. I know that my posts inspire people. I know that if I let myself down - I am letting all of you down. And some days, knowing this, it's the only thing that keeps me pressing forward. Nothing else. Yet - I feel like such a failure, because I can't reach my goals. And because I can't reach my goals - I feel like, not only am I letting myself down, I am also a disappointment to all of you.

    So, as usual, brushing myself off... Today is a weekend... I don't work out on weekends - or I try not to. But I am just coming off of a week of way less than stellar food choices, a week of being sick, and a week of eating out... On top of 2 WDW trips and the holidays. Even though - I am not feeling 100% yet, and my lungs are revolting on my decision to work out - I worked out anyways. Nothing strenuous... Nothing extreme... but something is better than nothing, right?

    I just have to swim my way through mud - or so is seems... Find my way again, somehow... Even if I do nothing other than what is habit to me, even if I never lose what I have gained. I have to keep trying. I have to keep pushing forward. I need to be determined not to let a few months of roller coasters derail 4 years worth of hard work and dedication.

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    October 2016

    This has been a difficult year for me, and it's been almost an entire year since I've updated.

    I've continued to work hard, as best as I can, this year - however - while we were remodeling our living room and kitchen - I truly let my eating slide terribly, and on top of that - I lost my work out space, as I had to put the contents of my living room and kitchen somewhere... It was a rough several months.

    During that time - I continued to work out as best as I could, however, without a functioning kitchen, meal prep was nearly impossible - so the convenience and processed foods really came back into my life full-force.

    Emotionally - initially I was dealing with Allison graduating from High School, her graduation party a week after that, and 6 days later, she left for Europe for 10 weeks... For some - this may not seem like much... For me, it was my world. And I was shaken... I am an emotional eater - I know this - I try hard to live with it and not let it rule my life - however - this time, I was very weak. My size kept creeping up and at my most recent highest - I was very ashamed.

    June 2016
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    When I saw these pictures - it really hit me hard - until this point, I really thought I was still doing OK...

    It took a while - several weeks after Allison left - for my brain to finally kick in to reality and realize the time was NOW to reverse any damage I had done over the last several months... Not to wait until I had gained it all back for the bazillionth time.

    Over 4th of July week at the lake, I took the bull by the horns and I really started to watch what I was eating - as best as I could - as we were living out of someone else's kitchen.

    Once we returned home - I turned the focus on to myself again... I began journaling daily in MFP (something I detest and always use as a last resort), eating well and working out as best as I could... Which meant - I had to move the remainder of my office back into my kitchen, so I could work out in earnest. When I did that - things started to turn around physically for me again.

    As always progress is slow for me... I am determined not to starve myself and I am determined to do this in a healthy way... No shakes, no pills, no joining a plan, no weird stuff. This is so difficult for me - as I see soooo many of my friends having success with these items - many of them have dramatic success - and as bad as I want their success to be mine - it just goes against everything I believe in. It is hard though. I've always had the belief that each person must find success in their own way - and I respect each person's way of doing things totally... It's just hard for ME to see so much success out there, and not have it be my own.

    Emotionally - this is when my feeling of "failure" really started to set in... And to be honest - this is something I still struggle with every single day - even now. There are benefits and drawbacks to making my journey public... It's wonderful when I am doing well, however at times like this - not only do I feel like I've let myself down - I've compounded it, and I feel as if I've let all of you down, as well. It's a terribly hard position to be in - and it's not one that anyone is to blame for, only myself. Believe me - I have been working through this, and trying hard to focus on me - and not all of you... :lovestruc

    On top of that - this is really affecting how I see myself... I look in the mirror and I look at pictures of myself - and what I see is the person who looked back at me 5 years ago... I see this:
    [​IMG]
    All I can see are the flaws, and I find it very difficult to see the progress. More and more, every day - I see how this battle is more of a mental battle, than a physical... All of it ties together, and it's terribly difficult.

    Sharing my pictures here from this trip is going to be very hard for me... There are very few I can look at and be confident in how I look... There is no way for me to explain it... What you see and what I see are two totally different things - I know this, I am aware of it, and I try very hard to see what you see... However, we are most critical of ourselves - and with my perfectionist tendencies - I tend to be more critical of myself than most people.

    All of the above being said... Believe me when I say - I am working hard to find my confidence again. The simplicity of eating right and working out consistently really helps my frame of mind - and I can honestly say, since I've been home from our trip this week, my outlook has gotten so much better. I know what I have to do, I continue to press on and do my best to make every day better than the last... I still have an ultimate goal to reach and I have every intention of reaching it.

    Please know - all of your friendship, support and encouragement day after day really helps me and pushes me forward - I couldn't do this without all of you!

    All of the above is me being honest about this journey... It is terribly hard to write about how I feel about myself... It is incredibly personal, emotional and difficult to be vulnerable about this part of myself... Yet - it is what it is - and if it helps even one person out there, then I will continue to write about it. :lovestruc This is an endless journey... There is no end... And this is all part of it. I could choose to let it defeat me, or I could choose to put it out there and get through it... I've worked too hard for too long to let it defeat me - so I press on.

    As usual - thanks for letting me share here. :lovestruc

    D~
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2016
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  5. Chicago Mo

    Chicago Mo DIS Veteran

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    ME ME ME
     
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  6. Pluto0809

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    Darn, Mo beat me! I'm here!
     
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  7. Born 2B a Princess

    Born 2B a Princess Where's my tiara?!?!

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  8. vrajewski10513

    vrajewski10513 DIS Veteran

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    I'm hereee!! Can't wait to read all about your and V's trip!
     
  9. smiley519

    smiley519 Mouseketeer

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    I'm here!! :wave: So excited to be here at the beginning of one of your TRs!
     
  10. jandlinz

    jandlinz DIS Veteran

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    Joining in! I can't believe you're back already!
     
  11. tinkbell13

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    Joining in. Can't wait to hear all about your adventures with V!
     
  12. ljcrochet

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    I'm her!
    Can't wait to hear all about your trip.
     
  13. OregonMomToWDW

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    I'm here too!
    Can't wait to read all about the trip.
     
  14. Clio

    Clio DIS Veteran

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    I'm here. It's hard to believe your trip in over. It seems like you were just planning it.
    Liz
     
  15. mymainmouse

    mymainmouse DIS Veteran

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    Joining in. Can't wait to read all about your adventure!
     
  16. Texan

    Texan <font color=red>No extra charge for the Tag Fairy

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    I'm here! I'm here! I'm here! Wouldn't want to be anywhere else!!!!!!! This is going to be so much fun.
     
  17. Tinkercc

    Tinkercc Mouseketeer

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    Looking forward to another great trip report!
     
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  19. Terkina

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    Looking forward to hear all about your trip
     
  20. kittylady1972

    kittylady1972 Disneyholic

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    Yeah I'm here...can't wait to read more!
     
  21. ABCastillo

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    Looking forward to your latest trip report!
     

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