June 19, 2020

Disgusted With Myself (a downer post, sorry)


Today was a big slap in the face with reality, and it couldn't have come at at worse time.

My long time best friend, Sarah (who lives in Arizona) is in town right now because her grandpa died a couple of days ago. He was 91 years old, but it was still unexpected. When I was growing up, I was fairly close with Sarah's grandparents. I called them "Grandpa Frank" and "Grandma Sally".

I will never forget the last time I saw them together. At my wedding, instead of doing a "garter dance" and bouquet toss, I decided to do something a little classier to give away my bouquet. The DJ called all married couples to the dance floor, and then began to excuse couples based on how long they'd been married... "If you've been married less than a year, please step off..." "...less than five years, please step off..." etc.

At the end, it was just Jerry and I dancing next to Sally and Frank. They'd been married the longest of any other couple there!

I gave Grandma Sally my bouquet, and she felt terrible taking it (I didn't mind--as you know, I'm not into flowers--so I insisted). I later learned that she had decided to get it preserved for me! However, that didn't happen...

Two days after my wedding, Grandma Sally died unexpectedly.

I only saw Grandpa Frank a few times after that. I wasn't living on the same street anymore and Sarah had moved to Arizona.

Grandpa Frank and Grandma Sally were fantastic! I didn't have a grandpa growing up, so it was fun to see the dynamic between them and Sarah. I loved going over to their house.

I've always eaten "tomato juice and noodles" since I was a kid (literally the only two ingredients) but I remember that Grandma Sally used to take it to another level by adding (probably way too much) butter. It was delicious! To this day, I still add a pat of butter to my tomato juice and noodles, and I think of Grandma Sally every time.

Anyway, Grandpa Frank's funeral is tomorrow. There was a visitation at the funeral home today and then tomorrow there is a one-hour visitation before the funeral itself.

It didn't occur to me until last night that I need something nice to wear. Since this quarantine, I've only worn yoga pants and occasionally my size 10 jeans. I tried on my largest pair of dress pants (size 8) last night, and they weren't even close to buttoning. Not that I was expecting them to. My jeans have been fitting, but getting tighter by the day. (Also, they are "stretchy" jeans, so...)

Today, I worked in the garage all morning, taping and mudding drywall. Then I had to drive Noah to the beach to hang out with his friends. While I was out, I went to Salvation Army to get some decent clothes for a funeral.

Judging by the way my clothes were fitting, I figured I'd need a size 12. I went through all of the black dress pants and pulled out several. The stores aren't allowing people to use the fitting rooms right now due to COVID, so I chose a few favorites. I also picked out a few shirts that were size large, hoping they would fit. I honestly have no clue what size I am right now!

I bought the clothes and went home. I tried them on as soon as I got home.

Nothing fit.

Literally NOTHING. I was able to button and zip one pair of size 12 black pants, but they were super uncomfortable and unflattering. I wasn't even sure if I'd be able to sit down in them.

I was just so... disgusted. Three years ago, I was wearing a size 4 (and the year before that, a size 2). Somehow, in two years' time, I went from size 4 to size 12/14. I know I wrote a post about how I gained 45 pounds in two years, but until trying on clothes, I didn't realize just what a huge difference that would make in my size. The weight really creeps up on you and then scares the bejeezus out of you when you try on clothes.

I know that so many of you tell me not to be so hard on myself, but today was just a day where I couldn't be anything BUT hard on myself. Gaining this much weight isn't "normal". Quitting drinking for 2019 was a big game-changer for me, but now I just don't know how to go back to being "normal" again. (Quitting drinking made me want to eat more in its place.)

This is, by far, the heaviest I've been in 10 years. And I'm very unhappy with myself. I know what I need to do to change, but I haven't done it. I just can't figure out what's "missing" in my life that I fill with food. And why I can't get exercising to be a habit again.

Right now, I'm going through a depressive phase of bipolar. I've been crying over the stupidest things and I just can't get motivated to do much of anything. Working on the garage today was the first real progress I'd made since I'd finished hanging the drywall.

Trying on all those clothes was a low point for me. I can't believe how much bigger I've gotten, but also how much my body shape has changed. For the first time, I have saddle bags. And love handles. After my skin removal surgery, I don't gain weight underneath my scar. So my body looks very misshapen. And it's hard to focus on anything else when I see myself in the mirror. I actually avoid the mirror as much as I avoid the scale.

I know it's vain. Really, I do. Out of all the problems in the world, this is minuscule in comparison.

But this feels deeper than that to me. I want to know what is going on inside of me that makes me so self-destructive. I may need to find a new therapist (I haven't been seeing my previous therapist for a long time, because we butted heads about a particular subject). I don't know. I see my psychiatrist next week, so I'll ask if he has suggestions.

As of right now, though, I feel full of self-hatred. And I know that tomorrow I'm going to regret posting this. I just don't know what else to write--it's the truth. I have been out of control lately and I need to find that control again.

Tomorrow starts the beginning of my annual Cookies Summer Challenge, and I feel determined to run from spring into summer tomorrow evening. I hope that doing this challenge will make me feel better about myself--regardless of weight.

If I can lose weight, awesome--but I've been saying that for SO LONG now that I just don't believe in myself anymore.

As I write this, I know I need to go back to the store to buy some more clothes--hopefully something that fits--so I can go to the funeral. I honestly don't care about the numbers on the scale or the size on the tag in my clothes... I just want to feel better about my appearance AND about how I feel physically. Right now, I'm feeling how I did when I was 253 pounds.

Sorry for such a downer of a post. This is probably the most vulnerable post I've ever written. But I just feel like I'm in "fuck it" mode, where I don't care about who thinks what about me. I hope that I'll have more positive things to write soon, but I obviously can't make any promises.

Tomorrow, I'll write about how my run goes. I do plan on running during the actual solstice, and I can't imagine it's going to feel good. But it's a start. And running always makes me feel better about myself.

I'm also going to try to work on the garage some more. Even though that has nothing to do with my weight, I like feeling like I'm making progress on SOMETHING. I'm about 1/4 of the way done with taping and mudding.

For those of you who are starting the challenge tomorrow, good luck! I hope to see your posts on Facebook--it will be sure to motivate me. I always found the Summer Challenge posts to be inspiring :)

28 comments:

  1. I am sorry you are feeling like this Katie. Remember it can take several different attepmts to find the right therapist. It could be helpful to get touch with someone to discuss what is going on. It is hard to process when in such a space. You are also not alone even if it feels like it at times. The world is going through a lot, but it does not make what you are feeling any less important. Your honesty is always appreciated. Keep working on you, you are worth it!

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  2. I'm so sorry you're struggling and I can completely relate to how you're feeling. I've been feeling out of control and unable to get back on track myself. I think it's extra hard to do all this AGAIN.
    It's much harder to get that determination back to do it a second time when you've already achieved the goal and you find yourself far away from it again. I don't have any kind of answer for you, but I just want you to know that it's very understandable to feel this way. It's going to be okay, somehow.

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  3. I'm so sorry you're going through this and feeling so sad and angry at yourself :(

    I'm sorry it's hard to find pants that fit right now. Have you considered a dress? No matter what size I am, I find a flowy dress much more comfortable and forgiving of whatever I think my flaws might be.

    I hope you are able to find something that works for you.

    XOXO

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  4. Don't give up. Believe in yourself. One day you will lose weight. You sound like your doing the right things, small goals, sort your head out, get outside, do exercise.
    I am happy if I don't put weight on. I try to lose it but end up just managing to stay the same weight. It seemed like you gave up on your weight and thinking about what you were eating before and so put weight on. Keep it simple, for me the snacks had to stop particularly in the evening.
    Good luck with sleep too, being tried is clinical proven to be bad for your weight. Virtual hugs. Read some of your own advice, it's quite good!

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  5. So very sorry you're struggling. You are brave to share.

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  6. Oh Katie, I hope you can feel my virtual big hug. Your suthenticity is so special. Look for a dress--they are easier to fit, and more forgiving. And be kind to yourself--dumping on oneself never works. Also, look into the weight loss medication saxenda--it is fabulous, and with your weight history, you need some help and some support to keep the weight off. Be well, you are a gem.

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  7. Katie, I'm so sorry about the loss of Grandpa Frank and about the horrible clothes experience. Things like that do take such an emotional and mental toll. Which sucks when you're already not in a great place. I can identify so much with your struggles about body image, lack of motivation, etc. I hope your appointments goes well and can maybe point you to a good therapist. Thank you as always for your vulnerability.

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  8. Oh Katie, I feel your pain. In December I was in the same space: clothes didn't fit, even the stretchy pants. Couldn't look at myself naked. Inches of dust on the bathroom scale. I LOATHED myself. I re-read some of your blog posts. The motivation versus determination one resonates strongly with me. That became my mantra, determination. I started running on the treadmill. I tried to eat healthier. This summer I even signed up for a farm CSA, so I have fresh local veggies every week, already paid for that I can't let go to waste. I still don't have the answers for why I want to overeat, but I am making progress. Katie, you have helped me so much! Your blog posts are so real. Sometimes it seems you are in my brain. Please know you have so much support out here. I wish I could give you a tenth of the inspiration you've given me. A virtual hug to you from Montana! Please keep posting. And don't apologize for downer posts. Keep it real.
    ps hope this doesn't post twice, having some problems with the google

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  9. I know it isn't any consolation, but I know how you feel. I am up a good 15 pounds from my low and I've just kind of been coasting along. I know what I need to do, but I also like eating. As a matter of fact, this post has inspired me. For the first time in a long time, I pulled up Lose It on my phone and created a new plan from my current weight. I know I can do it, I did it once already and I can do it again. And so can you. I think what it comes down to, for me at least, is that you can eat more when you are maintaining then when you are trying to lose, and I've gotten used to that, and I like it. But if I really want to put those clothes back on, I have to make that sacrifice for a few months and do what needs to be done.

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  10. We are ALL in this WITH you, dear friend!
    I have a pair of VERY stretchy Betabrand pants that fit at any size, and they still look professional.
    After you find something nice to wear for this sad event, look on eBay for some. They wash beautifully and they’ll last no matter what your (OUR!) size.

    Also, have you ever considered joining a group of friends to support your efforts.?
    I’ve been with Bright Line Eating for 18 months and I love having a group 10 amazing women who are in the same boat. We chat on Marco Polo nearly every day. We give each other all the support in the world, and it helps enormously.

    LOVE YOU !!

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    Replies
    1. Yes! I have a pair of Betabrand pants, and I agree! They have worked for me through many different weights. They look like dress pants, but are comfortable like yoga pants :)

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  11. As always, you manage to share something so personal that also rings true for so many of the rest of us. Thank you for helping other people that way. And please, do not apologize for being real. Life is absolutely crazy right now and it's difficult for any of us to feel normal. Keep going, keep trying, and keep working towards getting any help you need. You're going to get through all of this, I promise.

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  12. Your feelings are completely valid. I’m not going to tell you to stop being hard on yourself because I’ve been there (I am there right now!) and it’s a hell of a lot easier said than done. I just want you to know that your honesty and openness helps so many people feel like they’re not alone when going through the same struggles.

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  13. Katie, I can relate to this 100%
    I was never really overweight as an adult but I struggled to keep my weight where I wanted it. I am your height and I ranged between 120 and 140 and I didn't like the higher end. Since my Dad died in 2018 though, my weight has climbed higher and higher. I am 160 now and I see photos of myself last month and cried my eyes out. I am working on it but this is not easy. I have a long way to go and I don't even know if I can do it. I have almost nothing that fits either and I don't even look like myself. I avoid mirrors because I don't like to see what I've let myself become. I know I'm the only one who can climb out of this but I don't know how. I'm sure this helps you in no way but I want to let you know that I understand.

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  14. Hi Katie, I just wanted to say that you got this!! I've been following your blog since 2012 or so, and I've always admired how even if you take a step back, you are determined to reclaim that ground and go even farther. Never give up and keep fighting :) all your readers are rooting for you to accomplish your goals!

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  15. It's so hard. I completely relate. Regain is a new and extremely difficult mental thing to work through. I was down to 140ish after weight loss surgery 5 years ago. Today I'm at 172. I clearly didn't learn all the lessons I needed to when I lost weight so I'm digging through all that and feel like I've made some progress lately. We are also close to the same age so I think it's important to think about hormonal changes and just dealing with the changes that come with our kids getting older. I also have two teen boys and one reason I've gained some weight back is that in the last two years I've spent so much time in the car! Sometimes three hours a day plus additional driving for my full time job. The days have been long yet it's hard to get time to focus in on health. Also, when I lost weight I started drinking and those extra calories were another reason I gained. I needed to stop and once I did things were definitely clearer. I know you've had a different experience with stopping alcohol. I'm taking a really slow approach to figuring this out and only doing things I can live with. I prioritize sleep and walk first thing in the morning. I'm figuring out how to maintain my weight (you introduced me to Half Size Me and I like the approach) and add or limit things slowly and with thought and purpose. I'll be honest..it's hard to see such slow results on the scale but I'm trying to focus on habits and how I feel. We are all on a journey...but I see you and I hear you.

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  16. Don't worry about what others my think about your post and it being a "downer". I think it's super helpful for others to know that in the struggle for weight loss there are days/months that are a huge struggle and you are only human. It's not all like most of the upbeat You-tube videos or Nike commercials. I don't have any pearls of wisdom or advise on how to move past it as it's what I struggle with as well. Why can't I just stick with it? What gets in my way? Why do I keep repeating the same patterns?

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  17. You are totally brave to be so honest about your struggles! Don’t ever apologize for not being able to be positive all the time — your candor and authenticity really come through. Like the other commenters, I’m truly sorry you’re struggling and had such a harsh experience. I agree with one of the other commenters that dresses are much more forgiving. I’ve stopped wearing anything with a waist since the beginning of the pandemic and it feels great! Have you tried Target or TJ Maxx for inexpensive options, in addition to Salvation Army? Regardless, sending good thoughts. We all struggle constantly and it’s huge that you are out there being honest about how tough it is. You can do this!!

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  18. I will probably delete this comment in a couple of hours but I just have to make a response to this. Even if nobody reads it.

    I cannot relate more to this post. I literally just came back home from clothing shopping for new work clothes for a job I start this Monday. Unlike your case, the fitting rooms at my store were open. I tried on about 4 pairs of work pants and none of them fit, they were all a size 10 or 12. I couldn't believe it. Last fall I was a size 6 but then I quit my stressful job and was unemployed until this Monday, so like 9 months. I am still in disbelief about the amount of weight that I have gained and I am repulsed!! I can relate to much to the self-hatred that you feel.

    So now that I am home, I decided to pour myself a glass of wine. I had quit drinking during the past 9 months and all I did was gain weight. When I was at my lowest (133) I would drink all of the time. So 'f' it!!! I have also gone back to counting calories. I absolutely hate it. I am not using an app to do it though, I find that it triggers my BED too much so I am just adding as I eat throughout the day on my phone calculator. I feel good about it (so far). I also just finished your week 3 of your 'Walk to Run' plan! (Baby steps, lol)

    This is so incredibly hard, mentally. If only I could go back in time and appreciate the body I did have and just continue to maintain! But, life has gotten the best of me. Sh*t happens. Funny, even when I was 130ish pounds, I was still unhappy in my skin. I am not sure how to fix these self sabotaging behaviors and thoughts. I have not found any therapist to be the solution... But hey, this wine is great! :)


    Haha, this post sounds so messed up. Oh well.

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    1. Congratulations on the new job and 3 weeks walking. That's 3 weeks more than me. It's a new day tomorrow. No one can change the past only the present. Accept the past or it will just screw you up worse.

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  19. Sending hugs. It's hard to be so vulnerable and yet here you are just being you which is why we love you so much. I hope you find a new therapist, one that can help you turn on the self-love. I do hope you are able to bring exercise back into your life and find a way with food that works for you. But most of all, I want to see you make strides in that self-approval department. I wish you could see yourself the way we see you. FABULOUS!!!!

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  20. Katie, I've always had a weight problem. Due to elevated liver enzymes, I had to change my eating habits. I changed my (f*ck-it-all) I mean my anxiety meds, if and when I drink I have hard seltzers. I know you said you won't make changes that you can't live forever with, but cutting out simple carbs has been a total game changer for me. No pasta, potato, rice, bread, flour, sugar. On rare occasions I might have a small amount of naughty carbs, but I have found alternatives that I can live with. Low carb and loving it. Best wishes to you. You're a smart 'cookie', you'll figure it out. :)

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  21. Of all the posts you've ever written, and I've read them all for years now, this is the one I most relate to. I literally cannot count the number of times I have been as disgusted with myself as you felt when you wrote this (I hope you are feeling better now). I did finally conclude, after years of doing this try hard/fail/shame myself cycle that it is self-destructive behavior, and I really could use a good therapist. I did go for counseling for 4+ years, and that helped me understand that events in my childhood contributed to a low hum of depression in my adult life, and no doubt contributed to my unhealthy obsession with food. The counseling shined a light on some things that I finally learned were not "normal," and I learned to forgive myself and eventually, to feel sad for others involved rather than angry. Ii still struggle with weight gain (I am a post-menopausal woman) but I no longer allow myself to shame myself or spend any time beating myself up. Instead, I have developed a mantra of encouragement and I try to remember to repeat it daily: AGAPE (self-love). A=Affirmations, G= Gratitude, A=Active each day, P=Plan, E=Enjoy life. I am slowly trying to lose 20 lbs., and I now realize it will be ounce by ounce, not pound by pound. Planning and preparing is critically important (If I don't have carrots at the ready when I get the munchies I will devour crackers!) I have resumed walking 2-3x/week (the most my old feet will allow without breaking down) and that feels really good. I always--always!!--don't want to go do it. But my walking partner relies on me showing up, so I go. And I always--always!!!--am SO GLAD I did. I can feel the ounces very slowly vanishing. I still struggle with the same demons (night-eating disorder is my biggest obstacle to success) but I forgive myself, tell myself I am doing the best I can (which is true) and to focus on Health and Fitness.
    A line I read from "Healing Your Hungry Heart" stays with me: when you overeat, you are doing what you believe works to take care of yourself. You are doing the best you can. Once we realize that overeating is not the self-care and self-love we need, we must forgive ourselves and find other self-care options.
    I hope something in this rambling post helps. I believe all of us know just how you feel. We share your pain and frustration, and we understand the shame you feel. Please forgive yourself--you are doing the best you can--and focus on all that is good in yourself and in your life. You are a wonderful, wonderful human being.

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    1. Thank you, I needed to hear those words tonight.

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  22. Nothing helpful to add other than wishing you well and thanks for sharing your journey so honestly.

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  23. Once again, this blog really hit home with me. My sweet daughter-in-law's dad, Steve died suddenly last week at the young age of 61. He was in poor health, but nobody expected him to die, so it was quite a shock. We knew we needed to go to the funeral, because even though we didn't know Steve well, we wanted to be there for our daughter-in-law. Like you, I've gained weight, at least 30 pounds. My gain has mostly been in the last three months. I'd like to blame the Pandemic, but I think I might have gained weight anyway, it's how I seem to be. Lose/Gain/Lose/Gain/Lose/Gain, forever and ever. I've been wearing yoga pants/leggings for months, exclusively, but knew my blouses were getting tighter. I didn't feel right wearing yoga pants to the funeral so I looked in my HUGE closet (I have clothes in every size--due to all the weight fluctuations), and found a pair of size 12 slacks (I had been wearing 10's), and managed to squeeze into them, but it was a tight squeeze and they were not comfortable. I'm just grateful they didn't rip out. Hopefully this is the eye-opener it takes to get me back on track. I sure can't keep going on like this.....

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  24. Oh Katie, I'm sending you the biggest virtual hug! These are your real feelings and you shouldn't be ashamed to speak about them! All feelings deserve to be validated. Just know that I truly believe you are one of the most beautiful, kind, generous and warm hearted people I have ever "met" <3

    I really found my turn around point as soon as I yanked the batteries out of my scale and disposed of it. Honestly, it was like immediately my head space cleared. As long as you feel good and happy, that number doesn't mean anything! I may have gained 90 pounds back from my lowest weight but it doesn't even bother me any more! I work out, try to eat a somewhat balanced diet and my numbers still come back great from the doc every year.

    The last thing you probably want is advice right now (sorry in advance!) but have you considered adding more strength training to your routine? Not even necessarily heavy weights but even just 10 pound dumbbells could be a great start! I truly believe that the older we get, the more our bodies need that strength training! Its really done wonders for how I feel about my body!

    Sending you much love Katie! I know whatever you set you your mind out to that you can achieve it!

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  25. I am so sorry about Grandpa Frank, and sorry that you're feeling so badly. You don't deserve to be disgusted with yourself, you didn't kill anybody. I am thinking it over and over and I cannot find anything shameful in wearing a size 12, 14, 20, or any other size for that matter. Nobody should have to earn their dignity and other people's respect by being or becoming thin. There's nothing inherently more worthy about wearing a size 2 versus a size 14, it's only the size of your body.

    I am not going to tell you that the world has bigger problems than your weight, or that caring about your weight is vain. How could it be, in a world where thinness has been elevated to such a coveted status, and where being anything other than thin causes so much social distress? It's not vanity, it's the most sensible response to a reality that makes no sense. It doesn't make sense that people should feel such horrible shame about their bodies.

    I hope it's alright for me to say: What if instead of asking why you're gaining weight, you asked why you have to feel so horrible about gaining weight? What if instead of trying to force your eating into a plan that ultimately feels like deprivation, you focused on how food makes you feel and what foods feel most nutritious to you?

    You always say and I think that's 100% right that everyone is different, so I don't know if these questions will be useful for you. They've been life changing for me.

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