Monday, October 19, 2009
My weight loss journey has been something that I have reference and talked a little bit about. Here, I want to tell you my actual story from the start, it's pretty long because gaining the weight was not something that happened over night OR simply from eating. There were a lot of twists and turns of the emotions that contributed to it as well. Below is the story!!
Growing up and even in college I didn't really have a problem with weight. I was always pretty sturdy, but athletic too, I was a runner and was active riding bike, playing softball with church and swimming in the local pool.
I didn't see the freshman 15 in college, instead I saw the sophomore 5 and that was understandable as my body was changing as well and becoming shaped more like a woman that a girl--you know filling out your clothes different, and getting hips. I still will never get over getting hips. But my sophomore year was the only year also that I ran college track, so I was still active and at a healthy weight. After college I roomed with a bunch of girls in a two bedroom apt near the school and I spent a few "quiet" years maintaining my same weight and running here and there. I was more interested in creative writing and boys than I was in fitness. Somethings never change!!
Then, after an emotional break up, I moved from the apartment of girls to a studio apartment of my own--in the city! It was right in the heart of Minneapolis, it was 450 sq feet and it was all mine! I couldn't have asked for a better first apartment. Soon, I discovered the city nightlife: the clubs, the bars, the restaurants and loved going out with my friends eating and drinking and well... being Mary!
Blonde Mary with coffee and cigs. WOW...long time ago.
I moved to a bigger apartment became the queen of throwing my own parties. Huge parties with tons of hand made appetizers, friends DJing music, people dancing & spilling out of apartment to the porch & into the alley behind the building. New friends, old friends, sometimes passers by coming in to have a drink and meet new people. I was happy to be the party girl, happy to be the hostest with the mostest but what I didn't see was that all the eating drinking and being Mary was making me literally larger than life.
Fondue party hostess dress=the uglier the better!
Little things here and there like having to buy a few bigger skirts, not being able to squeeze into some of my favorite vintage dresses anymore, warning signs popped up that maybe I was putting on some pounds. I adapted with almost no thought to the reason behind the change, got some new great threads and moved on.
I had been working at a publishing house as a Marketing Assistant writing copy and PR materials but was laid off in 2001. Since then, I had been moving from one temp job to another. An opportunity came up in 2003-2004 that I could not pass up. I went into business with a partner and opened a used bookstore! I was an English Literature major, avid reader and book lover so this seemed like a chance I couldn't pass up.
It was called Dust Jacket Books and it was a dream. I painted it bright colors, stenciled 8 inch authors names all around the walls, created window displays, held poetry readings and Saturday story times for kids. I had regular customers who loved me, a yarn store next door, a coffee shop 2 doors down and a basement filled with used books to clean up and put out. Someday the basement was going to be a workshop space for me to hold writing workshops and life coaching sessions.
My first day open! What a cute vintage dress that was!
My beautiful logo designed by Karsten Lundquist-
note the bookspine on the D and the fun J!
Spent HOURS, detailing author names around the walls.
It was wonderful!
What I didn't anticipate was the stress of the business and quite frankly the partnership I had was not set to weather what we would come across. There were disagreements, frustrations and all around communication issues. Where did I take out my hurts and disappointments? At the coffee shop 2 doors down! Peppermint mochas, turkey and wild rice soup, danishes, ice cream, you name it. It was like the Cheers of coffee shops--I had a tab and was able to go over anytime I wanted and drown my frustration in a full fat caramel lattee twice a day if I needed to.
Needless to say, I put on 10 pounds in less than one year and was up to my heaviest weight!! I was eating out of emotion, I was still drinking and being the party girl I was when I moved to the city, but now, it was mostly later at night after I was home from work and by myself and I was smoking heavily. Everything should have been great, but everything was tainted. Why would I have my dreams in front of me and the version I get be so tarnished??
In the midst of all of that, I was reacquainted with an old boss/friend and former 1st date who was showing a lot of interest in me! No, not interest, he was full on pursuing me--bringing me Frank Sinatra LP's to play in the store, fancy coffees and even reading poetry at my first open mic night! Talk about motivation! I had NEVER had a boy be so sweet & come on so strong. So, were things really as bad as they seemed? They must be about to turn around for me! So I thought....