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Saturday, June 30, 2012

More Ups and Downs

The past few days have been busy, disappointing and amazing!  First...the busy.

On Thursday, I took Julia all over Raleigh, including to the Crabtree Valley Mall where we found some great deals at Macy's.  I bought an adorable top--in a size MEDIUM!--that was marked down from $39 to $6.82!  It's really cute; I love the colors, and more than that, the price was right as was the SIZE!!  I also bought a lightweight sweater/jacket that was marked down from $49 to $8.57.  It's a size Small/Medium!  SO surreal!

The disappointing?  I didn't get the job in Raleigh.  I thought the interview had gone so well...and I didn't get the job!  I guess it means that it wasn't the right place for me, but still...I've got resumes out to six different schools in Wake County, and to one in Nash County, so I'm hoping that the right place will find me!  I had dinner that evening with Kevin, which was great--the food wasn't awesome but the company was.  

Then yesterday, I drove down to Wilmington to see my former fiance's granddaughter, Shannon.  Her grandmother, Nina, was kind enough to invite me to spend the day with them.  We spent time in the pool, then went out to dinner and then to see the movie "Brave".  

We had dinner at "On the Border" Mexican restaurant.  Nina also had gastric bypass surgery, so we shared an entree.  The waitress was kind enough to get us the lunch portion of the beef brisket tacos--two rather than three on the dinner menu--with refried beans and rice.  Neither Nina nor I ate the rice--it's too filling; and after one bite, I removed the beef filling from the tortilla and put the bread aside.  Bread is also too filling!

If you haven't seen "Brave", I highly recommend it.  It's beautiful--truly amazing animation.  Additionally, the hero, Merida, is just gorgeous, as is the scenery AND the storyline.  We laughed, we jumped, we cried a bit.  Beautifully done!

We're currently going through some very hot weather--yesterday's high was about 101; today's forecast is for 102 degrees.  As a result, other than going to the Y for some pool time, I plan on spending the day in the house!  Stay cool and have a super Saturday! 


Thursday, June 28, 2012

Where the Day Takes You...

Yesterday turned out to be a great day.  After paying my water bill (and next month's too, since I don't know when unemployment will be coming), I went to the Y.  It's been months since I've been in the pool, but more importantly POUNDS since I've been in the pool, and I don't float like I used to!  As a result, I had to use a lot more muscle power to keep myself above water.  I hurt a little today, but not too terribly.  I'm going to go back today!  The water felt great, but more than that, it just felt good to be doing something for myself.  I ran into a friend in the lobby of the Y--and as predicted, she didn't even recognize me!  Once she did, she couldn't stop complimenting me.  Really good for my ego!

Then last evening, I went to meet a former student--now a friend--Elena for dinner.  We met at an expensive restaurant, Brio, where she treated to thank me for all the times I treated her when she was younger.  She's doing really well--has completed grad school and is a CPA.  Dinner was good, but it was even better to see her!  I had a strawberry balsamic chicken salad: assorted baby greens with grapes, candied pecans, strawberries and shaved grilled chicken.  Delicious.

And then last night, it was team trivia!  Kevin and I took second place, which was great!  Furthermore, we met a lovely woman, Julia, who had just come into Raleigh yesterday from Portland, Oregon.  She's thinking about relocating to Raleigh.  Kevin said something to her about her playing on her own, and I invited her to join us.  She came and sat with us, and we struck up a friendship!  Today, I'm taking her around Raleigh!

Have a thoughtful Thursday--and if you're the praying type, please pray that a job opens up for me.  I'm sending out a lot of resumes, but getting nervous! Thanks, as always, for your continued support.  It means so much!!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

FOURTEEN!!

I'm awake early this morning!  I have a few things to do, including paying my water bill that I tend to forget EVERY month.  Not sure how I do that, but I do!  

Yesterday was supposed to be my first trip to an amusement park in at least a decade.  Instead, Martha and I went to The Mellow Mushroom (a pizza place) in Raleigh and then to a cute little boutique where she wanted to buy some things for her upcoming trip to Mexico.

Sugar Magnolia is a small store that carries imported clothing, purses and kitschy decorations.  Most of the clothing comes from India, and I tend to love the rayons and gauzes used in Indian clothing.  I bought the most adorable pair of pants--they are rayon, black and white floral print, short and flowing.  Great for a hot summer day or evening!  (And they were only $15.  The store is near NC State University, and everything in the place is $15 or less!) Clothing at boutiques like this one was never within my size range, but it is now!  I also bought an adorable bag--which can be used as an unstructured purse or as a beach bag.  Really cute and only $7.50!

I'm having fun discovering my inner stylist.  I helped Martha pick out an adorable orange dress which looked great with her figure and skin tone.  After she and I parted, I went to Ross, where I found a cute turquoise top for $7.99!  I'm trying not to buy too much, because I'm still losing!  About three weeks ago, I bought a pair of denim capris which were a little snug when I bought them.  I put them on yesterday, and now they're a little loose in the waist!  Size?  14!  From a 22/24 to a 14 in 11 months?!  I did a half-naked happy dance when I pulled them on!

I'm returning to the Y today as well.  I need to build some muscle!  I work out with dumbbells at home, so my arms aren't too bad, but my thighs and butt definitely need some toning!  I'll spend most of my time in the pool--I love the water, and the low-impact resistance is great for my knees. 

I finally got in touch with my friend Whitney who used to work at Prep.  She and her husband both are thriving after being "let go", and talking to her yesterday was just what I needed.  There IS life after Prep, and I believe in my heart that I'm not going to just survive but thrive at a new school!  (I'd just like to know where so I can relax a little!)

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Confidence Game

I had a job interview yesterday.  It went pretty well, but truthfully, it was in an outlying area where I'm not sure I'd like to teach.  But...I need a job, so if they offer, I may take it.

I went to the interview feeling fully confident.  I had on my "power panties" and everything!  My "power panties" are a pair of hot pink panties that, no matter how staid the rest of my outfit, remind me that I "pop" with color! You know how politicians and businessmen wear "power ties"?  Same idea!

Other than the first two days after finding out I'd been laid off, I've been pretty confident about finding another job.  After all, I applied to five schools and immediately had two phone calls and interviews.  I haven't heard anything from either of those schools--and I know, it hasn't been a week, but it's still disheartening.  And yesterday afternoon, I hit a wall of despair.  I felt lost.  My confidence was gone.  I suddenly felt unemployed and worthless! So much of my self-image is identified by my role as a teacher.  I've always known that, but to be unemployed...wow.  It didn't help that I signed up for unemployment benefits.  I have NEVER in my life collected unemployment, and I've been working since I was 17 years old.

But I'm blessed with great friends who are super supportive.  Kevin could sense I was down through my text messages, so he called and gave me the support I needed.  I stopped feeling sorry for myself, and I applied to FIVE more schools.  Five more, including one that's looking for an English/Yearbook teacher.  (I've done yearbook for the last eight years.)  Sounds almost tailor-made for me.  And once again, my confidence was restored.

As much as Kevin's words soothed (and they did), and as much support as I've received from others, my confidence didn't come from them.  It came from within.  It came when I took action.  I took control and DID something about the situation.  I've always been fiercely independent--and taking action was the first step in taking back some control.

Martha had to cancel our trip to King's Dominion, so I'm hanging around the house this morning and may be seeing her for lunch this afternoon.  I was really disappointed that we had to cancel, but who knows?  Maybe I'm supposed to be home to field a call or email for another interview?!  Have a terrific Tuesday!

Monday, June 25, 2012

That's Just Beachy!

I had a great time at the beach with Daisy yesterday.  It was a beautiful day--about 84, mostly sunny with a great breeze.  Of course, I used a sunblock--50 SPF--and I still got sunburned!

It was great going out on the beach in my swimsuit.  I wore a little dress over it to the beach, and took the dress off without hesitation.  What a switch for me!  Before yesterday, I wore some type of cover which I hated to take off--and only took off when I had to!  Here's a picture...
Yes, that's me in all my whiteness.  And the suit is a little big--I bought it back in April when I saw it at Sam's...it was super tight when I first tried it on.  Now it's a loose, but I still love it.  And I am sharing the pic with the world.  How crazy is that?  I would never have allowed a photo, let alone put it on the web!

And I read on my Kindle at the beach.  I could not believe how easy it was to read in the brightest sunlight!  I highly recommend!

Today, I have another job interview.  I'm supposed to hear from the school where I interviewed last week by Thursday.  And tomorrow, Martha and I are going to King's Dominion! It should be a GREAT week.  Have a marvelous Monday!!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Good Bye, Ruby Tuesday...

Where does Ruby Tuesday get off charging a $2 upcharge for adults who order kids' meals? Grrr.  As I'm sure you can tell, it pisses me off.  It's not the $2--I wasn't even paying--but the principle of the thing!  I wasn't ordering from the kids' menu to save money but because I can't eat more than that.  I didn't get the "included" kids' drink; I showed them my "surgical card", so why did they charge us an additional $2?? I didn't want their stupid "garden bar".  (And their cheddar herb biscuits do not even compare to Red Lobster's--ugh.)  So what's the deal?  The grilled chicken was okay--not the best I've ever had.  And the mashed potatoes were gluey.  The company was good--and some things seem to be worth taking second look...but I won't be making a second visit to Ruby Tuesday!

Anyway, heading out to the beach today.  And planning on going to King's Dominion on Tuesday.  I've been reluctant to "enjoy" my "summer break" because without a job, it's not really summer break--it's unemployment!  Still, I'm due for some fun--and I haven't been able to enjoy the beach or amusement park rides in a very long time!  As a result, I'm really looking forward to both!!

Have a sensational Sunday, everyone!!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

F.E.A.R.

That word...F.E.A.R.  I've written it with periods because I think we need to be reminded that those letters stand for "False Expectations Appearing Real".  Often the things we fear appear so real to us, but they never come to pass.

But fear is real.  And paralyzing.  How many times have we walked away from a great opportunity because we were afraid?  Maybe it was a job offer that was out of our comfort zone.  Or a relationship that was different than what we'd had before--and therefore scary.  Or maybe it was facing major surgery, knowing that your life, while being improved after the surgery, was never going to be the same.

Yesterday, I spent a little time looking at my early blog entries.  So much was unknown to me then, and while I may not have admitted it then, I was scared!  I was afraid.  Afraid of getting sick, because so many people who were posting on the message boards at Obesityhelp.com had written about getting sick.  I didn't.  At all.  Ever.  I worried about the surgery not working--and that I wouldn't lose the weight after such an ordeal.  I've lost 120 pounds in less than 11 months.  I was afraid of being all saggy and horrible looking.  I've never looked better.  I was afraid of the worst happening.  It didn't, and I'm happier than I've ever been!

Think of all the energy that I wasted worrying about things that never happened!  Think of the jobs you might've been great at...the people you've pushed away...the  opportunities you've missed because you were afraid of something that was NEVER going to happen.  And resolve to fight that fear.  It's worth it! And YOU are worth it.  And damn it, so am I!

PS:  After I wrote this, I found this quote: "Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow, but only empties today of its strength." Charles Spurgeon


Cliches...

I hate cliches.  I do.  There's a reason we're not supposed to use them in writing.  They have been used to death, and therefore they don't carry as much meaning as they might have once.  When was the last time someone said to you, "Have a nice day!" and you knew in your heart that they truly meant it?  That their own day would be made better if you had a nice day?  Yeah, that's what I thought.

One of my least favorite cliches is "When God closes one door, He opens another."  Ugh.  Could anything be more trite and meaningless?  No fewer than ten people said that to me when I found out that I had been laid off.  Ten!

And yet, I have to admit they were right.  (Just because a cliche has been used to death doesn't mean that it's NOT true!)  I have had two good interviews and have a third one scheduled for Monday.  I'm going to find a job--one that I love.  And it may mean moving to the Raleigh area, which ultimately will save me some money as I have been driving there almost every weekend.

And it was proved to be true yesterday, too.  Kevin decided he doesn't want to date but to be friends.  I was really disappointed because I thought we were having fun, but Kevin thinks we were moving too fast.  I hardly had time to think about it, though, when Jason called.  I haven't heard from him in a while, but I did have fun with him the few times we went out.  He's been swamped starting a new business, and while I wasn't sure if we had anything "romantic" in our future, it's certainly worth checking out!  So we're going to have dinner.  It'll be fun to see him, especially since I'm about 30 pounds lighter than I was the last time I saw him!

So...if one door in your life closes, don't despair.  Open a window and breathe!  Have a super Saturday, everyone!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Seeing Isn't Necessarily Believing...

Yesterday, I had a job interview at a school in Raleigh.  It's a school at which I'd love to work, and the interview went well, so we'll see.  I arrived on time, went in the wrong door but found a very helpful cleaning woman who took me the right way.  When I got to the main office, I informed the secretaries who I was and with whom I was meeting.  They told me to have a seat, and when I looked at the "small" armed chairs, I panicked a little.  I've always hated those armed chairs and forcing my fat butt and hips into them.

But my hips and butt aren't as fat as they used to be, and I can fit into ANY chair comfortably.  On one level, I know that, but on another, I look at seats like those--theatre seats, doctors' waiting room chairs and others--and feel dread. 

Today a former student posted on Facebook about "massively obese patients" in the waiting room where she's an office assistant who were so large that they had to "hold up their fat rolls to fit in the chairs."  She goes on to write, "I just don't understand HOW someone could let themselves get that way?!"  Sigh.  I wrote, "__________ (her name), don't judge...you have NO idea what makes people do what they do, but in my experience, they need compassion, not judgment. Signed, your formerly massively obese teacher."

I guess that I haven't been very successful as a teacher in teaching kids NOT to judge.  Sheesh.  Hopefully, my reply to her rude, judgmental statement will teach her a little something!!

Anyway, I still have no real self-concept about my size.  I thought it was getting better--I mean, I stopped buying extra-large tops, but apparently, I need to work on my chairs!  It's a process, I guess.

I've lost 120 pounds.  That's a grown woman.  Amazing to me.  My mother and I are wearing the same size tops--even though she's five inches shorter than I.  Freaks me out a little...and in another way, it's pretty awesome.  Except that she keeps trying to give me her clothes--and we have pretty different taste in clothes!

Have a fabulous Friday, everyone!!  I'm meeting Kevin for lunch and then going to the IMAX to see "Rock of Ages".  I saw it in NY with Sue and her daughter Heather...I'm sure it's even better in IMAX!
  

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

What a Great Trip!

Greetings from New York!  I have had a great time up here, but I'm leaving tomorrow.  This has been a short, but sensational trip filled with family, old friends (like Thao, Sue R. & Sue I.) and new friends (like Tina).  I've loved being here, but I've missed Kevin as well!  I had planned on returning tomorrow because there's a big teachers' job fair in Durham on Thursday, but then I also received an email yesterday from one of the schools to which I sent resumes last week!  And I have an interview there on Thursday as well.

I have to confess--I know that I'm a really good teacher, but interviewing as an average-sized person is a LOT less intimidating than interviewing as a fat woman was!  Rather than worrying about how I look, I can be myself!  I'm excited about this new adventure, to tell the truth!  I have heard from one of my colleagues in the elementary school who was also laid off, and she, too, has an interview on Thursday!  I told her last week that the next time we had lunch, it would be to celebrate, and that certainly seems to be coming true!

Have a great day, and say a little prayer (or wish me luck, however you ask for intervention!) that I have a safe trip home and a great interview on Thursday!  And thanks, as always, for sticking with me.  It means so very much!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Fabulous Friday...

By the time you read this, I'll probably be driving up Route 95...or 288 or 64 or 81...It's time for my pilgrimage to upstate NY to visit my mom and other family and friends.  My Uncle Chuck's 80th birthday is on Saturday, and they're having a big party, so I'm really looking forward to it!  (Although I hate the nearly 10-hour drive!)

I had a mini "pre-interview" yesterday at a local school.  I had heard from a friend that they were anticipating an opening, so I jumped on it and sent my resume and cover letter to the principal.  He talked to my friend about me almost immediately after receiving it, and shortly thereafter, I got a text from my friend saying that the principal wanted to talk to me!  I hadn't even showered yet, but I quickly jumped into the shower, threw on a cute little dress and jacket and flew out of the house!  I was there within 30 minutes.  (And the school is more than 20 minutes away!)

The principal was really nice, and I was very comfortable.  Because the position hasn't been advertised yet, he couldn't actually "interview" me, but he said that he would definitely call me back once the position is officially open.  Additionally, a second friend who works at that school spoke to the assistant principal today and found out that the principal had already spoken to her and told her that he was "really impressed" with me!

I'm going to be in NY until next Wednesday, at which time I'll head back to NC.  I want to be back for a job fair in Durham on Thursday, although I'm not sure if going to the Raleigh-Durham area is the best idea for me.  I guess I'll have to see where things go. In the meantime, if you've been reading this for a while, you know I don't have easy access to WiFi in NY, so I may not get a chance to write.

It's Friday!! Fabulous Friday! And while I'm on vacation, you probably are not, so have a GREAT weekend!  Those of you in NC, go see "Letters from Laura" at the Nash Arts Center in Nashville.  A former colleague, Jim Lee, has written and directed a lovely play that I wish I wasn't missing!  I hope he's recording it, though, so I can see it when I get back!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Feeling Stronger Every Day!

It truly is amazing the difference a day makes.  I was so crushed, but today I am grateful and hopeful.  My Facebook page has just exploded with loving comments from my former students!  I told Kevin last night that most people don't have an opportunity to hear what people think of them until their funerals--and by then, it's too late.  I'm blessed to be hearing it NOW!  And the comments have been just fabulous.  My kids...yes, they are MY KIDS...are the best kids in the world!

Last night, I went to trivia with Kevin, and we WON!  I've always had a head for trivia, and I just love playing.  I don't think Kevin was too impressed with my knowledge base last week, but I made up for it last night! Did you know that China is credited with inventing the wheelbarrow?  I DID!  Did you know that it takes 12 bees to make a spoonful of honey?  I did!

This morning started with a text from my friend Susan about a possible job lead.  I've also heard from other people about possible leads.  Like I said, I am blessed!  Additionally, I had lunch yesterday with some of the women who were laid off in the elementary school--the total laid off now is at about 22.  We had fun commiserating...and we will do lunch again before the end of the summer, but I'm convinced that it'll be to CELEBRATE new jobs!

It can't rain forever, folks...even Noah found that out.  And as Dolly Parton said, "The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain!"  And I'm ready for that rainbow!

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

So Hard to Say Goodbye...

Well, after two weeks of wondering, I don't have to wonder any more.  My contract will not be renewed due to "restructuring".  Their word--not mine.  I was among eight high school teachers to be cut.  Additionally, there were eleven cut from the elementary school, and the middle school teachers will receive their bad news today.  What they are going to do is called "blended learning", which when done correctly, gives students access to great software online.  The software is used to SUPPLEMENT the teachers' instruction.  However, instead of using IT to supplement teachers' work, they are using teachers to supplement the computer work.  Kids will be online 60 percent of their day.  I love technology, but this is just wrong on so many levels...

Most of the teachers cut had been there longer than I.  But most of them also have (or are) second incomes in the household.  I'm on my own, which is pretty scary.  Still, I have to believe that there's some place that needs me...

Last night, after I received the news, I drove out to see Kevin.  I just needed a hug, you know?  He was really comforting, and I had a half of a glass of wine, which helped, too.  I came home and slept pretty well--that is until about 4:45am.  I've been awake ever since, and it's nearly 6:00am.

I keep thinking about how this could have been worse.  It could have happened last summer, and then I wouldn't have had the surgery.  At least now, I'll be job searching thinner and healthier.  And let's face it: fat discrimination is the last "acceptable" discrimination in this country.  A thinner, more attractive me will probably have an easier time finding work.  Another way this could have been worse?  I could be overeating.  Instead, I'm feeling every ounce of pain.  I feel especially bad for my kids--I know that a few of them will really miss me, and I'll miss them.

Keep me in your prayers, would you please?  And please...no more "inspirational" quotes like "When God closes one door, He opens a window"...I know you're trying to help, but it really DOESN'T help.  Have a good Tuesday.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

"Face" the Music, Part 2

This is the photo I tried uploading earlier today--you can see what I mean about no sagging neck.  After all, guys, I'm 54 years old!  Start drinking that water today!!



"Face" the Music!

Last night was graduation.  It's always with mixed feelings that I attend the ceremony.  On one hand, the kids have accomplished so much, and I'm so proud of them.  On the other hand, life as we've known it will never be the same!  I, and several kids, fought back tears many times during the night.

It was a really nice ceremony last night.  The salutatory and valedictory speeches were well written and truly reflected the kids who were in the honored roles.  The crowd was more than a little unruly, but I understand their excitement.  Best of all?  A lot of last year's graduating class came to offer support to "their little brothers and sisters."  Our high school is truly a family, and having last year's kids come support this year's students just emphasizes that point!

And of course, many of the kids hadn't seen me in a few months, and they were all really complimentary.  Beth said I look good.  John corrected her with, "No, she looks great!"  I have to be honest--the compliments are so great.  I don't know if in my LIFE I've received the number of compliments that I've received in the last six months!  And a lot of the compliments include remarks about my face.  I don't have the typical sagging skin of someone who has lost almost 120 pounds!  And I attribute it to the fact that I've ALWAYS been a big water drinker.  Before the surgery, I would drink 4-8 bottles of water a day!  Now, I no longer have the capacity, so I probably drink 2 or 2.5 bottles per day, but water is ALWAYS my beverage of choice!

I tried to upload a current picture, but I'm having computer issues.  This photo is about 3 weeks old, but here's a picture to show you the "lack of sag":  


Have a super Saturday!  Enjoy the weather, the weekend and someone you love!!

Friday, June 8, 2012

The Top 10 Reasons to Have Gastric Bypass Surgery

10.  It improves your sex life.Exponentially.  In part, I'm sure it has to do with more self-confidence, but it's also different body strength, more flexibility and less flab in the way!
 9.  You feel better physically. This surgery has been proven to cure diabetes and hypertension. By losing the weight, your joints will feel much better.  You'll sleep better, too--AND require less sleep!
 8.  You add years to your life by losing the weight. With less weight comes less risk of heart disease, which is the number one killer of women (and a lot of men, too!)  Walking around 100 pounds lighter can not only improve your length of life, but the quality as well!
 7.  Clothes are suddenly fun to buy.I've already written about this.  I no longer shop looking for things that FIT but instead for things that FLATTER!
 6.  You don't need to worry about fitting into tight seats. Before the surgery, airplane and theatre seats were especially scary.  I always wondered if I was going to fit.  No more anxiety about that!
 5.  You can have a tight seat. Yeah...this doesn't need explaining!
 4.  Your confidence and self-esteem will soar. When you feel better, it shines through! And compliments! They are worth their WEIGHT in gold!
 3.  You'll have a lot of energy now that you're not carrying around an additional person. Imagine how much exertion it takes to carry around a 20 or 25 pound bag of pet food.  And then multiply that by...4?  5?  6 or more?
2.   You'll save money on groceries and at restaurants! In the surgeons' patient guide, they tell patients that since they're limited to quantity, they should buy the very best.  It's easy to do that when you eat so little!  Additionally, I very often order kids' meals or share with a friend, so I'm definitely saving money there as well.
And the NUMBER 1 reason to have gastric bypass:
1.  It improves your sex life. (I know I already mentioned that, but it's a good one! A REALLY good one!)

Have a FABULOUS Friday, everyone!!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

It Isn't Trivial!

I apologize for not writing yesterday, but there wasn't much to write about except the "doom & gloom" going on at school, and I didn't feel like writing about it!  

Last night, Kevin and I went to DJ Trivia at Tyler's Taproom in Raleigh.  We didn't win--we ended up "tied for 4th place" which is a nice way of saying we wagered all our points on the last question and lost!  Ha ha! But we had a great time!  He and I have so much in common, and every time we talk, we seem to discover more.  It's the "easiest" relationship I've ever had.  Relationship?  When do we use that word?  After 3 dates?  After 12? After 30? Sigh.  Dating never is easy--no matter your age!  But Kevin?  He's great.  He's smart and funny and handsome, and he has this great deep voice...I don't know if he can sing, but think Barry White!

Anyway, we had pizza for dinner.  I had a slice (it was very thin, and thin pizza is the only kind I can manage these days), but even at that, one small slice filled me up.  We arrived at the restaurant really early so that we could spend time together chatting, so I did have a second slice later in the evening. Trust me, I didn't push it.  I haven't vomited once since the surgery, and I want that to continue!  One thing I learned pretty early on is that ONE bite extra can make me feel horrible. 

Yesterday, we had a faculty luncheon where we said goodbye to our headmaster, who is leaving at the end of the month for a position at the college across the street.  While I was there, one of my colleagues from the elementary school complimented me and then asked me whether I had the surgery local or out of town.  I told her I had it in Raleigh at Rex Hospital by Dr. Paul Enochs.  She asked if I had confidence in my surgeon, which of course I did and do!  She said she'd like to talk more about it, and I'm excited for her.  I would love EVERY obese person in the world to do this for himself/herself!  It has brought me so much happiness--I'd love everyone to feel this good!

Speaking of colleagues, another elementary teacher and I exchanged hellos in the administration building yesterday morning.  I didn't think anything of it, until she came back a few minutes later to tell me that she hadn't recognized me at all when I said hello!  Talk about a compliment!  I've had more than a few people tell me that, which is just wonderful in my eyes!

And it's strange--even with all the compliments, much of my OWN body image is still distorted.  I still think I'm as big as I used to be.  It doesn't happen all the time--I can look in the mirror and actually see my collarbones, but the truth is, I still THINK of myself as obese.  The other night, I went into my closet and found an old t-shirt from Field Day at school in 2008.  I thought it might make a good nightshirt, albeit a bit short.  Well, I put it on, expecting it to be short and it fell to my knees.  My knees!  I can remember it fitting snugly back in 2008 and how I had to stretch it so that it would fit comfortably.  Incredible!

Have a thoughtful, thank-filled Thursday, and I thank you for your support!  This blog has had more than 15K page views.  Simply incredible!

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

It Wasn't Me!

Okay...grammatically, it's "it wasn't I", but you didn't know that, did you?  And I hate sounding arrogant and pretentious when it comes to grammar, and "it wasn't I" just sounds soooo snooty!

But I digress.  The title refers to a little "problem" I thought I had.  This surgery has changed me dramatically--in a multitude of ways.  For example, I don't crave sweets like I used to--instead, I love spicy food.  I crave sauces and spices and savory foods.  Things are different.  (By the way, it's ten months TODAY, and I've lost 118 pounds!)  118 pounds!  Of course things are different.  So when Whit and I were having um...well, um--gee, how do I say this...um..performance issues, I thought that maybe that part of my life was over.  I just didn't respond to him in a familiar way--even when he kissed me.  How do you talk to your doctor...or ANYONE else, for that matter...about such a subject?  So I didn't talk to anyone about it; instead, I merely accepted the fact that that ship had sailed.  OMG!  Was I wrong! 

Last night, I went to see the new Adam Sandler movie with Kevin and one of his friends.  It was not a great movie--I've never been a big fan of sophomoric humor, but I loved spending time with him.  Afterward, we went and shared an order of chicken wings--yes, I eat such things, but only 3 or so.  Actually, I usually stop at 2, but these were delicious!  Anyway, we had a great time with each other again.  It's the easiest time I've ever spent with anyone.  Truly.  

When Kevin kissed me good night at my car, I almost fell over.  Literally.  My knees were jelly!  And no, I wasn't drinking--ice water is my drink of choice these days, especially when we were in Raleigh and I had to drive an hour!  I am thrilled to report that there is NOTHING wrong with me or my response system when the RIGHT stimulation is applied! Sighhhh.  (And yes, that was closer to a purr than a sigh, but you get my point...)

Things at school are really tough right now; no one has contracts and we have a feeling that a LOT of people are going to lose their jobs...myself included.  The "not knowing" is killing me, and the entire faculty is trying to be optimistic but there WILL be blood...and I'm terrified it's going to be mine.  But if it is, it is.  I have a Master's degree; I should be able to find another teaching job someplace!  And I'm going to look in Raleigh.  I've been spending a lot of time there lately anyway, and since that's where Kevin is, I'll probably be spending a LOT more.  Still, I wish I had another job lined up just in case...

It's Tuesday--hope yours is terrific!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Something Special!

Good Monday morning!  I had a terrific weekend!  As predicted, I really had a great time with Kevin on Saturday!  He's everything I've been looking for--smart, funny, socially aware, politically interested, tall, good looking...We are definitely going out again!

Chemistry is just so funny.  When I went out with Whit, he was "eh"...I liked him, but it didn't feel magical or anything; we spent a lot of time together, and I had fun, but something was always missing.  "Guy" was nice enough, but as I said, he was way more into me than I was into him.  We were supposed to go out again Sunday, but after meeting Kevin on Saturday, I really didn't want to see him again!  Kevin, on the other hand...he and I had instant chemistry.  Instant.  We laughed and talked and talked and talked...I don't know if we'll ever run out of things to say! We ended our lunch with a hug and a few kisses (he had to go to work), and the chemistry was amazing.   We talked on the phone Saturday night, texted back and forth and did more of the same on Sunday.  He's really special, and I'm really excited about this!

Today is the first day of the last week of school with kids.  We still don't have contracts for next year, so it may be the last week of school for me period.  We're supposed to sit down with the new school leader some time next Monday or Tuesday, so I guess I'll know more then.

Have a marvelous Monday!  Keep smiling...and do something nice for yourself!  You deserve it!


Saturday, June 2, 2012

Shopping and Dating--it's Saturday!

Sorry I haven't written much this week.  It's been crazy busy!  I've had a pretty good week--just busy!

Most of my students did really well on the end-of-course exam.  Three of my students have to retake it.  Students are scored on a 1-4 scale, and students who receive a 3 or 4 pass; those who receive a 2 must retake it, and students who score a 1 don't have to retake it at all.  I have three special education students who scored 1s; the good news is that they don't need to retake it but whether or not they pass the year is dependent on their year's averages.  What's terribly unfair is that even kids who are entitled to "read aloud" modifications aren't allowed to have things read aloud on the state English exam.  Math? Yes.  Science? Yes.  Any other state exam? Yes.  Sigh.

I had another date with "Guy" last night; he's really nice and is really into me, but "the jury is still out" as far as I'm concerned. Before I left him, he made plans with me for Sunday afternoon, too.  Like I said, he's really into me! In the meantime, I have another date for lunch today!  His name is Kevin--and I really like this one! We've exchanged a few emails, texted and have talked on the phone in just a matter of a few days.  We seem to have a great deal in common, and I have a feeling we'll never run out of things to talk about!

After leaving Guy last night, I went to Cato to buy a new top for my lunch with Kevin.  I've been buying dresses and "work" clothing, but I really need casual clothes.  (My mom tried to tell me that I "wanted", not "needed" clothing, but truth is, I've given away almost everything in my closet, and things I bought three months ago are too big now!) I walked into Cato and immediately fell in love with a BUNCH of things.  I picked up seven tops and went...drumroll, please...into the dressing room!  (I haven't tried clothing on in a dressing room for at least 5 years!) And for the first time in a very long time--possibly EVER--I rejected clothing not because it didn't fit, but because I didn't like it!  This is really significant--I'm wearing clothing to enhance me rather than cover me!  I ended up with three tops...now I have to decide which one to wear today!  And one of the tops was too BIG in a size "large"...I had to try on (and bought) a "medium"!!

Have a SUPER Saturday, everyone!  I know I will!