Little Miss S Eats All the Things

I have never had a healthy relationship with food. When I was a kid I was always super-thin, which was perfect to my mother. She would point out heavier women to me in grocery stores and say things like “if I ever get that fat, shoot me.” Or “don’t ever let yourself get disgusting like that.” A lot of times the women weren’t even particularly fat, but to my not quite 5 foot tall and under 100 pound mother they were monsters.

When I was a teenager, she measured out my food. I constantly heard “no, it’ll make you fat,” so when my dad gave me lunch money I went off campus and ate burgers in secret. I was a debutante (shut up, I’m Southern) and when I weighed 117 pounds in at my ball I was informed that I looked like a cow in my dress.

In college, away from my mom for the first time, I made it my mission to eat delicious things all the time. Unfortunately, she never taught me to exercise, just not to eat. Every time I came home for a holiday she would take me clothes shopping so she could tell me “that won’t look good on you, your butt is too big now.” Right before she died, she told me that she hated to eat because “eating makes you poop.”

Now that I’m an adult and have gone through two cycles of fairly healthy weight loss and subsequent re-gain, I have decided that I’m not going to let myself be sucked into her madness. Instead of depriving myself because I need to be thin or because it’s “bad,” I’m looking at it differently.

Not the enemy.

For starters, intuitive eating. It’s no longer a crime for me to have a delicious piece of cheesecake, or to eat two sandwiches the week of my period because my body is telling me what it needs. Instead of eating when I “should” be eating, I eat when I’m hungry. Thanks to my low-sodium diet, we eat lots of fresh foods that are pretty filling so I actually end up eating less food more often.

The Enemy.

Again, because of my low-sodium diet I found that fat free and “diet” food is unhealthy. Most of it is stuffed with sugar, artificial sweeteners and salt to make it taste better. Dieting doesn’t work because it shames or guilts you into depriving yourself so you can have the perfect body. When you don’t, you feel worthless, and for an emotional eater that’s a perfect trigger. Even if you achieve your goal weight/body, you have a lingering feeling of anxiety that you’ll go back to being disgusting and worthless. Some people deal with this by gaining weight back, others develop eating disorders. It’s a terrifying cycle perpetuated by the media and our peers every day.

As for me, my goal is to eat healthy food 95% of the time (hey, a girl’s gotta have a burger or cheesecake every now and again!). Fruit juices and nuts were off limits on diets because they were high in fat and calories but I have them when I’m hungry now and feel satisfied. Food isn’t as terrifying now, and even though I still look in the mirror and think that I’d like to look like I did when I was a teenager, I have a different goal now: Eat all the things. In moderation.

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Little Miss S Will Show ALL of You

So yesterday I was pretty angry. I’m pretty sure you surmised this from the fact that I was threatening my birds. While I often threaten my cats with selling them to gypsies, my birds are the ones that make me less snarly. I decided that if I’m not going to be allowed to work or be in roller derby until people are convinced I’m not going to have a stroke, I’m not going to sit on my ass and let them to decide what I can and cannot do.

I am not a person who sits around and feels sorry for myself. When I had my breakdown, I was scared to leave the house until I started training for a triathlon with a group from the YMCA. While I didn’t make it to the tri, I did discover that I loved running. I started off barely able to run half a mile and in under 3 months I was running a 5K uphill at the tail end of a Wisconsin winter. When I was running I felt amazing, like I could conquer anything. Then I got kneecapped by life and my newfound passion fell by the wayside. My shoes grew sad and accusatory in the closet, and I became jealous of friends who were running.

Not. Any. More.

Haters to the left.

Yesterday I did Week One, Day One of the C25K Plan and guess what? Nothing bad happened. In fact, I felt like I could do more. Instead of doing 4.5 mph on the jogging, I pushed myself to 5 mph. I used to be able to do a 9 minute mile, and I think I can do it again. I know it’s not the fastest or the best as far as some people are concerned, but it was both to me.

Highly recommended.

This is the app I downloaded to use; C25K Free by Zen Labs. It has a really slick interface and some excellent features, including countdown timers in different colors that I can see out of the corner of my eye and the ability to listen to my playlists. It’s free for Droid and iPhone, and definitely worth trying.

Unfortunately, Mister E became alarmed because I was so intent on not screaming and throwing things that I just abandoned the apartment. When he woke up, the TV was playing Law and Order and our car, keys and both computers were still at home. He called while I was on the treadmill cooling down and I ran back to the apartment and felt like dirt, especially when he helped me stretch out my legs.

The best part is that the same feeling of power and joy that I used get when I ran 5 miles returned, and when I was finished I felt amazing. All I could think was that I’m going to get back where I was, and I’m going to show everyone that I don’t need to be treated like some fragile thing or a bomb that could go off at any moment. You just watch me do it.

Little Miss S and the Idiocracy

I hate everything right now, with the exceptions of Mister E, Creme Eggs, and Calhoun. Even the jaunty tune my budgie is singing is irking me shitless.

You see, right now I should be chilling on the couch in preparation for going to work in the morning. As much as I want to use my coworkers for target practice, as much as I want to hide in the bathroom and do crossword puzzles, I believe in the work we do and we need money to eat. Unfortunately, our executive director is a lawyer.

While it doesn’t seem to bother her that we don’t have enough supplies to safely do our job, it does bother her that I have high blood pressure. According to her, I am a danger to the patients. Never mind that there are doctors and nurses with epilepsy and diabetes who go to work every day and have no problems, just like I haven’t had any problems other than the one time two weeks ago when I passed out. I went home, then visited the doctor who gave me a note saying I have no restrictions, changed my meds and sent me on my way.

This is not good enough. Work wants a letter from the doctor saying that I have high blood pressure, lists my medication and states that I’m not a danger to myself or others. A danger to myself or others because I have high blood pressure. Two other people at work have high blood pressure. One does not take medication. The other does take medication but also loads up on caffeine and junk food all day. I take my meds, eat properly, monitor my pressure and act accordingly. Apparently acknowledging and managing a disease makes you more of a liability than ignoring it and pretending everything is a-okay.

I worked for a large corporation known for being, well, corporation-like in their warmth and understanding. If I got a scratch, I had to go to Urgent Care and get a tetanus shot. Once, I passed out. They didn’t require anything other than my coming to work the next day. My doctor’s office says they’ll be happy to provide me with a release, but my doctor isn’t in until Wednesday, another doctor can’t do it, and I’m not allowed to come to work until I have it. I’m stuck sitting here on my tattooed ass because our society has gotten so fucking lawsuit-happy that I can’t go to work because I might have a blood pressure spike.

So instead of being at work tomorrow making the best of things I’m going to be sitting at home angry that my paycheck is going to be short two days and worried that they’re going to use this as an excuse to fire me. You can just imagine how wonderful all this is for my blood pressure.

Little Miss S Gets Some Shuteye

It seems like just yesterday that I was checking out The Ouija Interviews by Sarah Becan on a tip from a friend. I was so enamored of the preview I read that I not only bought it, I also bought every issue of Shuteye, her then-five issue minicomic series. After I’d read all of them I was confident in stating that Sarah is one of the best storytellers in the world, not just in comics, and I wanted to read everything that she wrote. Last year, the sixth issue ofShuteye came out and it was as wonderful as all the others. Then she announced that she was going to put together a Kickstarter to get the collected edition printed. I’m sure I don’t have to tell you that my card was in hand before she finished the tweet. Today I got my backer goodies!

The best reason to wake up on a Monday.

This print is a super-special one for Kickstarter backers, and I absolutely adore it. I have a couple of her other ones and the quality is amazing. They’re printed on heavy watercolor paper, which makes each one look like a freshly-painted original and the colors are bright and vibrant. I already have a Lynn Lau Wall in my apartment and it seems I’m on my way to a Sarah Becan Wall to match. Also included was a shwanky bookmark that I am very fond of. As an added bonus, my cats were intrigued by the aroma of Sarah’s cats on the envelope and book, so I’m going with that as them giving it their seal of approval as well.

Love the detail on this one. Gorgeous.

Here is a wee taste of one of the stories, taken with my camera phone because I didn’t want to break the spine to scan it. All the original stories are included with minimal retouching, printed in gorgeous sepia tones and with an epilogue of sorts that ties everything together. It’s really wonderful; the stories are multi-layered, sometimes unsettling and always worth multiple reads.

(Copyright Sarah Becan, 2012)

That’s all you get because you should really go preorder it now. It’ll be the best $15 you spend on comics this year, provided you aren’t one of those people who like boob-windows and brokeback poses. If you are, then you’re on your own.

Little Miss S Has Likely Been Disowned

After a group of our friends’ wives cornered us in the kitchen at a party the other night, Mister E was forced to say out loud in words that I am his fiancee and we are engaged. I only heard part of this exchange because I darted into the living room as soon as I saw it about to happen. I tried my best to take him but in the end I could only save myself. I think I’m going to be a terrible wife. Again.

I hope you're proud of yourself, missy.

I have this major issue, apparently, where I want people to be happy for me but not too happy. I would love to pass this off on being bipolar but it’s not in the DSM-IV (a huge fail, as far as I’m concerned) so I’ll just have to pass it off on being a horrible person.

I posted on Facebook the other night and was immediately inundated with all manner of congratulations from “about time!” to “I INTRODUCED YOU TWO!” My update thanking everyone for their congrats only netted me more congrats, thus perpetuating a cycle that could go on for years.

I’m still not sure why I bothered telling anyone at work because they are some of the most selfish, lazy assholes to ever live. I was rewarded accordingly, especially by the clinic bully who said “Whenever I do something crazy, I don’t go telling everyone. And you shouldn’t wear that ring to work, it’s just going to get lost.” The one exception was our receptionist, who is a wonderful lady who is getting slowly beaten down by our work. Yesterday she told me “I’m telling the next person who thinks we should give them something for free to fuck right off.”

Later that evening, we went to the aforementioned party. I didn’t really want to go because I knew it would turn into a thing and I didn’t want to be that person who takes all the attention at someone else’s party. But we went because the birthday girl is engaged to a super-awesome guy and I adore them both, and now I’m just hoping she doesn’t think I’m a huge bitch because the hen party cornered me in the kitchen and wanted to hug me and see my ring.

The one person I really wanted to hear congratulations from is silent. My dad hasn’t answered his phone, returned my texts or responded to the photo of the ring I sent him. RJ (my ex-husband) assures me that I haven’t been disowned and reminds me of how I thought he was going to shoot us both when we got married, but I remain unconvinced. Mister E, on the other hand, assures me that you have to actually say something like “you’re no longer my daughter!” before that sort of thing is official. I think we might need to start watching newer movies.