How much can I change before I don't know myself anymore?

*Warning:  There are sad bits in this post; I talk about my two kitties who died a while back and I don't want that to be a tear-jerker to anyone who innocently reads it (like it was to me as I was writing it).  Okay, carry on...

August 3, 2007 is an important date to me right now.  I don't know if it will stay significant to me for a long time, but right now it's pretty big.

Because that's the last time I ate meat.

Months and months ago, Punkin (my youngest and now only cat) caught a bird one day when she was outside in our fenced-in backyard.  I wasn't sure she was the one who caught it at the time; she was certainly in the vicinity of the body but I didn't see her bring it up onto the porch and drop it by the back door.  It was so soft, the bird, and it occurred to me that Punkin wanted us to eat the bird.  Then I thought that my daily diet was pretty much like that; I expected others to kill animals for me to eat and I never really thought much about it.  This was a small seed that planted itself in my brain then.  I didn't stop eating meat at that time nor did I really consider the dead bird anymore.

As time passed, I started being concerned about my health.  Then I had the skin cancer thing.  I think that procedure truly made me understand more about being a living creature.  I was so terrified, while they were cutting into my scalp and removing the skin cancer, that I thought I was going to pass out.  I have never experienced fear to such an extent before; I mean, I knew that I was safe in a doctor's office and I have every confidence that they were doing things correctly and as gently as they could, but I seriously thought that I was going to lose it.  I should have said something, I guess, but what could they have done?  They couldn't very well stop the procedure.  I certainly didn't want to keep the cancer on my head.  So I lay there, eyes closed and teeth clenched, and endured the procedure.  I felt like a zombie for two days afterwards.  And I knew what it was like to be under the complete control of someone else, someone who had a knife and was cutting me with it.

A week after this procedure, I came home to find Rory (my older female cat) dead.  Seeing her body made me think of the bird.  Sadly, hers was not soft and peaceful.  I do not think she had a calm death and that will haunt me forever.  I wish I could have been there for her, I wish she hadn't died alone like that.  As I was helping dig her grave, I accidentally hit my hand against the tree we buried her close to and skinned my knuckles.  I think I was in shock and the blood on my hand brought me back to earth a little.  That blood was a reminder to me, a reminder that I was still alive.  When I had to have Macavity (my older male cat) put to sleep about three weeks later, I held him as they put him down.  He was soft, like the bird.  His grave was easier to dig, inasmuch as graves are never easy to dig.  I thought often of both of my kitties and of their bodies there in those graves.

Meanwhile, Punkin the Killer continued to drop the very occasional bird on the back doorstep.  I couldn't bring myself to be stern with her; she was always so proud of her quarry.  I did have to draw the line at her bringing them into the house like she wanted to but other than that I praised her as sincerely as I could while I was horrified at the corpse waiting outside the door.

And somewhere between then and now, I started thinking about earthworms.

When I am walking down the sidewalk, if I see an earthworm who is struggling to cross the concrete, I will pick him up and place him back into the dewy grass or earth on the other side of the sidewalk.  I don't want the earthworm to struggle like that only to end up all dried out and possibly eaten by ants.  And I finally started to put everything together.  I finally wondered how the life of that earthworm was any more valuable than the life of the cow who died to make my hamburger or the chicken who died to make my supper more protein-filled so that my evening workout could be better.  I remembered things that happened when I was growing up on a farm.  I remembered being on that table having my scalp cut open.  I remembered Rory and Macavity and those birds and then, it happened:

Thinking about eating meat made me sick.

And that's pretty much where I am.

And I am totally not starving right now.

I am figuring out the vegetarian thing little by little and, if anything, I have gained weight over the last ten days.  I am still eating dairy, I don't know about eggs, though.  (Yeah, I'm thinking the eggs are probably a "NO" from the feeling I got in my tummy as I typed about them.)  I don't know how long this will last.  I hope it lasts for a while, though, because I feel better about myself now that I'm not eating meat.  This doesn't mean I am judging anyone who eats meat.  I don't care if other people eat meat (right now, anyway).  I just can't do it anymore.

I am not uneasy with my new diet but I am just overwhelmed at this most recent fundamental change I am going through.  I am changing so much lately that I am starting to wonder if I am at all the same person I used to be thirty years ago, or ten years ago, or ten days ago.  But, there's this one quiet part of me that suspects I am just finally becoming the person I wanted to be during all those times.  And that's a really nice thought...


Wait, how long has it been since I mentioned boobs?

Because I am sure you all want an update on mine.

Some of you know about the odd thing that happens to me when I lose weight:  My boobs generally increase a cup size during the weight loss.  I don't know what kind of secret deal I have with the devil.  I don't understand why it happens.  But it generally does.

Until this time.

Now, I am not complaining.  I mean, if my boobs go up another cup size, I am going to have to start buying bras from specialty stores.  Which is the last thing I want, now that I am finally about to say good-bye to the specialty stores for fat people.

But I am losing inches in my bust area.  I have lost four inches there, and it makes all the difference.  (For example, if I had been (and this is not what I was) a 38B, I would now be a 34B.)  It's a pretty big change, really.  And it also means that I can shop for bras in the regular section, somewhat.

And there is a reason that I now own four of the same type of bra, in three different colors.  It's called a t-shirt bra, which is a nice way of saying that you can wear this bra under a t-shirt and even if your nipples decide they want to pop out and say "HOWDY!" nobody will be able to tell.  I have had a problem with this lately which is why I went bra shopping in the first place.

I always shunned any bras that looked like they had extra padding in the past.  I thought, "Why does someone who is shopping at the very end of the "normal" cup-size spectrum need extra padding?!?"  So I never bought them.  But I finally saw the light and these bras are, quite possibly, my favorite bras of all time.

Because in addition to keeping the nips at bay, they make my boobs look fantastic.

When I am wearing one of these bras, I find it difficult to finish getting dressed.  I don't know what they do (defy gravity) or how they do it (reeeeeally strong underwire), but these bras are worthy of the absolute highest praise.

In other weight-loss news, I got really cold today so I had to put on some sweatpants and a sweatshirt.  We have the air set on 74 degrees right now and that's about as warm as we can have it without discomfort.  But today I was freezing.  And I think that my recent attempts to wear clothing that actually fits me are starting to pay off a little, because when I put on the sweats that fit me last winter, I was immediately aware of how huge they were on me.  The arms of the sweatshirt were too long, I guess because I have less...arm fat?  Shoulder fat?  Anyway something that used to keep the sleeves the right length is no longer working and I feel like a toddler who has ransacked her mother's closet.

I woke up in the wee hours of Saturday morning so tangled up in my pajama pants that I had to get out of bed to straighten everything out.  When it happened a second time, I decided it was time to put those pants in the trash.  It's getting a little easier for me to move on from clothing once it gets too big.  I am sure I still whine about it frequently to those people who are closest to me, but I am really trying to just quietly retire those things which fall off or try to bind my legs together in the night.

Well, this is about all of the damage I can do right now.  I was going to do a Harry Potter entry but I can't figure out how to do a cut on LJ.  I figured it out once, after much frustration, but now it has been so long that I can't figure it out again.  Alas.  Maybe in another few weeks I'll do something on HP.  Once I have finished re-reading the whole thing again...


Today I said a prayer of thanks.

It went like this:

Mary, mother of God, thank you thank you thank you for the total smokin' hottness that is Gary Olman as Sirius Black in the new Harry Potter movie.  I don't remember anything else about this movie right now but if you could just get him to wink at Harry a couple more times I think I'll be good to go, if you know what I mean.

In related news, there had better be a picture of him in that long velvet coat somewhere on the internet...

To compound my pervertedness, I also find Harry to be hot.  (Not smokin' hott, mind you; he's still underage.)

And to achieve the pervert trifecta, I have to tell you all about an incident that happened to me on Friday.  I went out to lunch with The Unicorns and immediately noticed that our server (I may call her a waitress at some point; it's meant with the highest respect, I swear.) was reallllllly cute.  Her face and hair were just beautiful and she had on these cut off jeans and this button-down shirt that was a little too big for her and, well, she had it unbuttoned to the point where I should have been able to see her bra.  And y'all?  There was no bra there.  I don't know if she had one on or not, but The Girls was perky, okay?  Then I noticed that she had on boots with this whole getup.  I formed an immediate and intense crush on her, right there over my small house salad.

And I don't understand this, but the next thing that happened was that I tried to figure out how I could get her to lean over so that I could look down her shirt.  Fortunately, The Unicorns were there to help me with this problem, although in the end I didn't have to ask her for more sweet tea while holding my glass far, far away from her.  When she was clearing our dishes off the table, she leaned over to get my plate.  And I totally looked down her shirt.

Of course, I was immediately scandalized.  (I didn't really see anything but curves; I don't think there was a bra involved, though.)  I am glad she left the table fast because I was blushing so violently that I covered my face with my hands.  But she was so cute I couldn't help it!  And then, I left her, like, a 50 percent tip or something!  What is wrong with me?  I don't understand what happened there.  Maybe my weight is inversely proportional to how much of a pervert I am?  Like maybe the smaller I get in pounds, the bigger I get in perv?

Anyway, I decided I should probably eat at that restaurant again pretty soon.  The pizza is really good there.  And stuff.

Hello, July.

The other day I was driving to work and something felt odd.  I looked down and saw my lap.  Then I realized there was a hell of a lot of space between me and the steering wheel.  No, the seat hadn't been adjusted.  There used to be lots of stuff in that empty space.  And that stuff was me.

I went down another pants size this weekend.  I am at the end of the plus-size section as far as sizes go.  And here's the thing:  I bought two pairs of motherfucking capri pants.

And here's the other thing:  four sizes makes a big difference.  Because those motherfucking capri pants?  Make me look pretty motherfucking hot.

I have now entered the "Attractive to Construction Workers" phase of my weight loss.  The other day I was walking across campus to meet The Unicorns for lunch and there were four construction workers sitting on this low wall eating lunch.  They were looking at me as I walked toward them and then they turned around to see me as I passed them.  Now, I have no idea what to do when this happens.  First of all, I am totally flattered and really want to go french kiss each one of them for noticing that I've been working really hard on my body.  But I feel that this might possibly send the wrong message to them.  I don't know; it's just a hunch.  So generally I just smile and continue on my way.

I haven't ever had a lot of positive attention from people about how I look.  I mean, I've had the boobs since I was, like, ten or something, but they have often been a liability rather than an asset.  I guess, deep down, I crave that Construction Worker kind of attention even though it makes me slightly uncomfortable.  There's something about being thought of as "pretty" that is very important to me.  I think I have always been afraid that nobody would think I was pretty so I tried really hard to be the funny one in the crowd.  Over the years I have gotten used to making people laugh every now and then.  But I have never gotten used to turning heads.  It just doesn't happen that often.

But who knows.  Maybe now it will.  Maybe the power lies in those motherfucking capri pants...

Well, I should have seen this coming.

So, today I had to have my other 18-year-old cat put to sleep.

We are down to one cat.  When we got back from having Macavity put down I informed her that if she died anytime soon I would never forgive her.

Being sad all the time really sucks monkey balls and I can't wait to be able to be happy again.  Also, how can I still have any tears left?!?  Seriously, I think I injured my eye today just from crying so much.

Now, I am going to bed.  Wake me when it's July?  Kthxbye.

They say it comes in threes.

Well, that was an adventure.

I have had a hellish couple of weeks, y'all.

First, getting the skin cancer removed was really terrifying.  I have never had any kind of surgery before and they just used local anesthetic so I was awake for the whole procedure and holy fuck, I thought I was going to die.  I haven't really been able to talk about everything that happened that day; if I do ever get the courage to do so I will make sure and put it behind a cut (oh how fucking ironic) so that those of you who do not care to read about gore and carnage will not have to.  But things didn't stop there.

The day after my surgery was my supervisor's last day at work.  I wasn't able to go in; I couldn't move without the feeling that my stitches were going to pull out.  This was probably for the best since I was still kind of crying sporadically when I remembered what happened during the surgery.  I was also really sad that my supervisor was leaving because he and I had an almost instantaneous rapport from the first time we met.  Fortunately he's not leaving town or anything so I can still see him and his awesome wife from time to time.  But still, it was the second traumatic thing.

However, seven days after they removed the Basal cell, and six days after my supervisor left, the third and most horrible thing happened:  My cat Rory died.

Now, I knew she was going to go soon.  She was 18 years old this year.  She had been losing weight over the past month or so and she had stopped grooming herself over the past couple of weeks.  But still, I'd had her since she was eight weeks old and I was absolutely overcome with grief when she went.  There's nothing, really, to prepare a person for that kind of loss.  I am very lucky in that this is the first time someone really close to me has died.  Still, when I found her and realized she was dead, I then found myself sitting on the floor all of a sudden.  I did not decide to sit down; the shock just knocked me to my ass.  That's one of the memories I will always have because there's never been anything that made me just go down like that before.  I didn't fall; I just sat down.  Maybe somehow I knew that if I didn't sit down that I would have fallen over.

Lots of things happened that weekend, some good and some bad.  I had lots of realizations about love and loss.  (That was good.)  I had a cigarette or two.  (That was REALLY good.)  (Er...I mean BAD.  That was BAAAAAAD.)  I am glad it was Memorial Day weekend so that I had an extra day to cry.  I am still dealing with lingering pain when I realize she's not around but I am mainly back to normal.  It will take a long time for me to get over her death; the other cats are still kind of freaked out too.  It hit Jesse later on; he stayed strong when I found her because he was scared that I was really going to lose my shit.  All in all, I didn't lose it as much as I thought I would.  I always thought I would have to be institutionalized for a week or so when one of the cats died but that didn't happen.

So anyway, that was May.

In related news: FUCK YOU, MAY.

Maybe June will be better.


(no subject)

Well, that's what I get for writing about how I'm exercising and losing weight and all that.  I have eaten much like I would expect an elephant eats this week, and not at all because I was hungry.

I'll just give you a rundown of the next seven days and let you guess why I'm never far from the fridge these days:

Monday--Go to work.  Go home & eat dinner.  Go shopping for an outfit to wear to church on Sunday.  Bonus if this outfit is also acceptable attire for a possible future job interview.

Tuesday--Go to work until lunchtime.  Go to get allergy testing done as well as a follow-up appointment about the ear infection I had for all of March.  Go home, watch American Idol.  (Sadly, this will probably be the high point of my week.)

Wednesday--Go to follow-up appointment with regular doctor about high blood pressure.  Explain to doctor that this week might be contributing if reading is higher than usual.  Finish with doctor, go to work for rest of the day.  Go home, watch American Idol.  (Bye, Blake.)

Thursday--Go to dermatology clinic to have Basal cell carcinoma removed from my scalp.  I have named it Ralph so that I can refer to the "surgery" as the Ralph Removal.  I don't know how much hair they will have to shave; they said, "not much."  Okay.  Apparently I am lucky, though, because this type of thing is just an external type of skin cancer and after it is removed it should be gone forever.  But I am going to have stitches in my head for two weeks and I keep flashing back to that early season of Melrose Place where Kimberly goes into her bathroom and pulls off her wig to reveal a shorn head and (approximately) seventeen-inch scar running across her skull.  I wonder if the doctor would know what I was talking about if I said, "Don't Kimberly me, man.  Seriously."  Do not go to work, most likely, due to possible zombie factor.

Friday--Recouperate at home or, if I feel well enough, go in to work.  I am going to try to go to work because my supervisor's last day is Friday although I keep flashing back to all the other times people I like have had last days at work and I end up crying uncontrollably because I have separation anxiety issues.  So maybe staying home would be best.  You know, because of the ailments.  (Physical and mental.)

Saturday--Actually purchase outfit to wear to church on Sunday that will be a desperation buy and will not at all be appropriate for possible future job interview.  Fear being struck by lightning upon entering the church.

Sunday--Go to church to listen to Jesse deliver sermon.  Inform anyone who asks that the lightning rod I'm holding is actually an accessory to my outfit.

Okay, so do you all understand why I'm going to go eat the house down now?  I hope so because I'm late to second supper already.  



So when I work out I don't really have a plan.  Well, that's a lie.  When I first started my workout, I based it on the following steps:

1. Watch any Shakira video.  (I chose "Hips Don't Lie.")
2. Go into your designated workout area and try to move your hips like she does.

That's it.  And I guarantee, if you are not sweating in about 30 seconds, you are already in shape.

Now that I have been doing my Dorkrobics for a while, I am starting to incorporate other movements into the workout.  I am very kind to myself; I figure even if I just walk in place for 30 minutes it's better than sitting on my ass in front of American Idol all the time.  So I moved up from pelvic rotations to walking in place to marching in place.  Then I started doing high mark time (like from band--it's just lifting your leg up so that your thigh is parallel with the ground and then doing the same with the other leg).  (It sounds simple but actually hurts like hell.)  So then one day I decided to try to jog in place.  At first I thought it was a crazy idea and I would never be able to do it, but I did and I was able to keep it up for 30 seconds.  Yeah, I know, not great.  But I was really happy about it and I figured, hey, I'm making some progress here.

So all of this is just a way for me to say that tonight I was able to jog in place for 2 minutes in a row.  And I did it three different times.  So basically, I jogged for 6 minutes of a 30 minute workout and walked/hip rotated for the other 24.  I usually exercise for an hour at a time because I do such low-impact stuff.  But tonight I was happy with what I had done and cut it short.  (I also had an hour workout last night and wanted to have time to write tonight.)

I am so glad that I'm not so sick with allergies anymore and am able to work out again!  OH, and I also tried the Bisquick/soy milk biscuits and they were totally delicious.

So hooray for jogging in place and for not being sick and for soy milk biscuits!

And my work here is done.


(no subject)

Man.  I was going to do so much tonight but I totally got sidetracked by the dorkiest thing ever and now it's late and stuff.

I have this little mp3 player, right?  It's just a gig, not much.  But the thing is it has this microphone feature so that I can record myself speaking.  Or singing.  Ahem.

So I have spent the last hour and a half singing songs onto this thing and then transferring them onto my computer and listening to them.  If I were any more self involved I think I would collapse into myself and create black hole or something.

That's all for now.  I have to go drink some hot tea with lemon...