cx: the attention. oh, the attention.

well, i think i’m becoming that person.

you know the one i’m talking about. the one who thinks she knows it all, feels the pompousness of experience rise up to meet her as anyone starts talking about dieting or exercise or how to lose a few pounds.

i HATE those people.

i swear it’s not intentional. i promise. but it’s the same reaction that i get when someone starts talking about jane austen like she’s some pioneer of strictly chick lit or call Romantic writers Victorian or act like english majors make no contribution to society in general (all of these things have happened to me). when you immerse yourself in something for so long, and try to educate yourself, and have found success, an instinct kicks in that can deceive you into thinking that you know more.

i hate that feeling.

it’s not ego, i promise. more like the allure of wisdom, even if that wisdom only came last week in the form of a revelation that eating back your exercise calories is essential to your progress and that working out more, even if the scale doesn’t show it, really changes your body.  the little birdie of humility tells me often that, yes, this works for you and that, yes, it has worked for lots of people too. but that doesn’t make your way the best way or the only way or the golden path to peace and contentment.

but it is a way.

a hard way. a way full of not eating chinese food EVER and abandoning ice cream COMPLETELY and getting chocolate only in the form of pudding packs and semisweet chocolate chips.  a way full of 15% treadmill inclines and stadium stairclimbing and high elbow rows and lateral raises that you still can’t do well but you keep trying because darn it if a five pound weight is going to get the best of you.

but it’s a way.

i write all this because today i was told that i was doing really good with exercise by someone who, honestly, i had no idea knew anything about what i was doing. i’ll get back to that in a minute, but after she mentioned a mutual friend who was dieting, i found myself pontificating about how a particular “diet” is really just severe calorie restriction and probably won’t work in the long run because nobody really eats like that. and then i backtracked to the “different things work for different people” party line, which is true but which i’m not sure that i totally believe. i really don’t believe that a grapefruit and spinach soup diet (not the one to which i was referring earlier, but it might as well be) is going to get you where you want to go.

unless where you want to go is to lose a bunch of water and muscle in time to fit into that fabulous dress, and then more power to you, but don’t be surprised when you eat a piece of fruit that your body says HALLELUJAH AND AMEN! and plants that banana right back on your body in the form of five pounds.

i’m just saying.

but i’ve been there, and i understand. i really do.  quick fixes are the glitzy bling of our psychological needs.  we know we have to fix something, so we want to just fix it, not work hard for it, so we find the thing that seems to be the quickest, best, easiest route and we run to it.

i would like to introduce you to twenty eight years of my past. i know what it’s like.

but it doesn’t work. i mean it MIGHT work…for a while.  shoot. that’s happened to me too, in lots of things.  you can jump up on a bandwagon and stay on it for a good long time.  but bandwagons were made to break down, to collapse when you hit the first speed bump of life.   what then?

see? i’m doing it again. but here it’s my dime, my forum, my place to vent. and i don’t like that i am, now that i am immersed in what i’m doing and have basically changed my approach to everything, losing touch with how it feels to be on the other side.  i remember, but i don’t remember enough.

i need to remember more.

back to this person who told me that i was doing so well with exercise.

cue the attention whore portion of our program.

it’s that time again.  the time where everybody starts to notice, make comments, tell me i’m tiny (far from) and shrinking (legitimately true), even people who are basically just acquaintances feel free to ask me if i’m losing weight.  which introduces the perpetual dilemma of awkward versus deep and abiding need to be NOTICED! RIGHT NOW! WORSHIP ME!

hey. i never said i was anything other than a big bundle of contradictions walking around in purple flipflops.

i’ve written about this before. it’s so awkward for me, but i love it at the same time.  inevitably, this period of time comes AFTER i have started noticing it myself.  because i always go through this I CAN’T SEE IT! phase, where i really can’t see it.

(your brain has a little trouble keeping up with your body, if you didn’t know. it sees what it wants to see and it tells you what it wants to tell you.)

that’s been me lately.  can’t see the change. people keep telling me, and i can’t see it.

and then, on sunday, i saw it.  so did a bunch of other people.  and it was fun. and i was like “dang, i’m CUTE.”  but still, it’s weird. it’s especially weird when people who don’t really have any reason to notice/care/comment/invest time and resources in caring/noticing/commenting are.  because sometimes i think that i live in a world where actually very few people pay attention to what i’m doing.  i understand that world because i am living in drbolteland, populated by only me, the associated people who supply me with what i need, the people who text/call/facebook/email me, and my neuroses.

i expect that other people would be the same.

it’s odd.  because this time, i don’t really want to talk about it. it is what it is.  yes, i am shrinking. yes, i have lost weight. no, i have not gotten gastric bypass, ingested a tapeworm, found the miracle cure in the waters of some spring in Timbuktu, embraced a carrot and oatmeal diet, or otherwise found some kind of alien DNA that has changed me into half of my former self.

nope.  hasn’t happened. i guess i should say that i wish it had.  but i don’t.

the better, but infinitely less interesting answer, is that i just work incredibly hard at it.  i bust my butt most every day.

less interesting, yeah.  but i feel a whole lot more comfortable reaping the rewards.

so, yeah, you can worship me.  maybe i deserve it. a little.


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