Being the Woman I want to be … Progress Report

Although, by now most of you have known that I am going through this journey and sharing my experiences with you. I will hold myself accountable here, because I haven’t been consistent. I am working on being better on all the areas that need changing. That is one of them.

So a lot of life has happened for me, which has created an affect to change myself. I was an empty cup and I was pouring into things and people that I had no business doing. So I made the choice to focus on me and my future. I gave myself the permission to do so. I can’t tell you all the times that I would say to myself that I would be selfish if I focused on myself. I believed that for so long, I will tell you that is one of the biggest lies I did believed and it legitimately held me back. So what I have done since October…

First thing I did, was start making boundaries with the people closest to me. That meant family and friends alike. If time is your only real asset on this round ball before going to your forever place, then maybe we need to manage it wisely. I know that I want to accomplish some awesome things in my life and I know I can’t do that if I do everything for everyone else. Whatever “everything” looks like to you. To me that looks like this …” Kristal you’re at home and nothing better to do, lets just do something else with your time.” I wish that I could honestly tell you how busy stay at home moms are. The expectation is that You are home, so therefore you have the time to clean the house, take care of the food, laundry, make all sorts of calls (IDK), take care of the errands, take care of the dogs, and somewhere in there; in my case find time to write my book, blog, and my makeup business. Not to mention to do this with a stable mind and heart. In an other words that people assume since I am home that I have all this free time when I don’t. because that is just during the day when no one is home, then we everyone comes home, then its dinner, clean the kitchen again, and whatever else needs to be done. At the end of the day, I just want to be alone doing something that I want to do that is enjoyable, but there is no time. How many times working or at home do you feel this way? Seriously, ask yourself that. I know that for me my schedule is so packed that I rarely have time for myself. So that is the next thing I tackled… Time management.

Time management is one of those things that is a never ending balance of work and fun. Things you have to do and things you want to do. Then allowing enough room for the things that come up unexpectedly.

This is a current, all ever so changing schedule for me. As you can see here, I am making the time to do better and setting myself up for success. I have a bad habit of not eating consistently hence the alarms to remind me to stop what I am doing to eat. Because I am taking the time to take care of myself and be the woman I want to be. My alarms go all the way to 8pm. After 8pm its my time to do what I want to do. For those of you who don’t know, I have ritualistic OCD this is hard thing to break. For me to start this, I had to go through a series of levels of thinking and action to get me to this point. To break OCD you have to go against everything you’ve done in the past and do the opposite. That a blog for a different day, haha. Nevertheless, I still wrote down all my goals for the next three, six, nine, and year goals. then with the three month goals I had to write out my weekly goals. I am sticking to one week at a time, Revisting that goal planning every Sunday when I prep my food for the week. Which in itself is a lot of time to consume. It is totally worth it. I am still working out the kinks to my time management because this is a change for others around me, they have a hard time with my changes too. It affects them too. A more assertive Kristal within her interpersonal circle is a shock to some, along with making time for herself and the things that are import to her are hard too. So then this brings me to my journey to weight loss.

So many years I have been wanting to lose the weight. I know I am among millions of woman who struggle with body image. There is a moment in every weight loss journey that starts with this moment of being scared which turns into change. I had mine recently. It is kind of a funny story to me, but the point of it all is I was scared. Over the last few years I have made choices to stop eating certain foods because of how it affects me physically. But with the combo job of not eating consistently, or eating the right portions or adding new healthy foods, along with stress that has been recent over the last 6 months, you do pack on the pounds not even meaning too. I was already obese but with my job at the time I was active, but the other things weren’t aligned. And plainly speaking… I wasn’t committed really deep down. Well, I have since stopped working at my most favorite job ever. (A career I am great at I might add) I have gained another 30 pounds. I have really been able to feel the weight for the first time. I am embarrassed to go out in public, finding clothes is a nightmare, I am really self loathing for the first time, but I refuse to allow myself to continue that trend anymore. I don’t want to accept whether I need to make choices based off of whether it is ” Fat people friendly,’ anymore. I haven’t got my hair cut in like nine months because I feel I am going to break her chair, so I save myself from that embarrassment. For instance, before my girlfriends and I went to New Orleans we all went out for a nail day, and low and behold I am sitting in the pedi chair, towards the end I adjusted myself and the chair made a loud crack noise in a quiet room ( of course the one moment where all the women stop talking) and everyone looked at me. I was mortified inside. I apologized to my tech, as she looked at me then looked around, and then back at me and said ” Don’t be sorry for anything. You’re fine, who cares.” And she looked around assuring me that I don’t need to care what others think. Then I broke one of my nails right before my manicure, because my tech was having a hard time pulling the cuff of my pants back down for me. So I helped her and broke my nail. It was a fiasco, but she took care of me.

But back to the doctor, I knew I had a UTI before we went to New Orleans but I thought I could manage it and get rid of it from home. Okay okay I didn’t want to go to the doctor because I didn’t have it in the budget. So I go to the doctor because I had flank pain, which only tells me that the infection is now in my kidneys. I am no doctor, but i know my body. I also know that I am a walking anomaly when it comes to health stuff. So in this case, the last time I had a UTI was when I pregnant with my oldest son, who is now fifteen years old. I don’t have pain when I go tinkle, or the other symptoms. I just knew that I had one. Anyway, I was at the doctor for nearly two hours, because my sample came back as “Normal,” and then the doctor wanted to insure that there wasn’t something sinister happening in my lady parts, which there wasn’t!! The doctors wasn’t listening to me because the science was telling her something else. It didn’t matter how many times I told her that its a UTI, we did slightly argue about it, but there I am in my paper dress, which isn’t big girl friendly, the whole thing isn’t fun to begin with. I would go into further details on how mortified I was at this point. There is always that moment of awkward conversation they try to do while preforming such procedures, sorry there isn’t more awkward then that moment. I would rather pose nude for an hour than do that once a year. Just saying. Moving on. I was glad I showered before I went. #AwkardDotCom

So then the doctor informs that she is going to get my sample cultured or something, but that I was perfectly fine. Two days later my results come back with having a UTI. But that isn’t what scared me, what scared me was my vitals. My blood pressure was not normal for me, and the nurse walked out fast so I couldn’t ask. I did get the information that I was looking for. I drew the line in the sand when it comes to my heart. I am too young to be this size in the first place but I need to take care of my heart and the body it supports. Right then and there I knew what I needed to commit to. Since then I have been eating clean, prepping my food, and exercising. I have experienced a lot of new things… like really feeling cruddy with detoxing from my old ways. Eating at the same time everyday really makes a difference. I am working through it, and not giving up on myself. Not to mention that the self talk has changed as well.

I am becoming more disciplined in doing it for me, not anyone else. I see the end game and there is tunnel vision, and once that happens there is no stopping it. So that is my moment of health change. And I am grateful for going to the Docs that day.

Next was going back to church. There is nothing like having a church family and friends. Bar none. I was scared to death to go back to church. The enemy is a clever thing, not that the enemy gets credit for that. #NotTodaySatan but for a year I haven’t gone because I didn’t understand a certain situation that happened with my Pastor and I. So i took it personally, and held onto the misunderstanding. Although, I knew that I needed to talk to my Pastor before I decided to go back or to another church. But the thing is that I love my church. Like really love my church, and didn’t really want to go anywhere else, but I wasn’t in a place to confront what was bothering me. God always has a plan, doesn’t he?! His plans and timing are ALWAYS PERFECT! That meeting finally happened, and it felt so good to have that conversation and get past it. Slowly, we move forward. With all things on the table and aired out. Then it was time to come to church. I opted not to go to the that first Sunday, to kind of let things settle for me personally, but that next Sunday, I was going regardless of what the enemy was throwing at me that morning. Telling me lies and it felt good to walk in through the doors, even though I was scared out of my mind. Everyone was welcoming and a lot of new faces. I sat in the back, like when I first started going so many years ago, and one lady to whom I adore, like so many others, she invited me to sit next to her. It was awesome to have such a welcoming back. I wanted to cry but man to have my cup filled for the week was amazing. I even had my daughter go to church with me the next time round. She was hesitant but even she received some nuggets of bread that day. #PraiseYouLord

Despite the many oppositions that are all around me and you, God is so much bigger than what those moments are. Those oppressors, those things that are major challenges that we all have in our life, when we trust in Him, the victory is already won, you just have to get out of His way and do the hard work. because that is what it is… hard work. and nothing worth having comes easy. This task that I am given isnt an easy one and I am more than happy to do the work to do what is asked of me when it comes to Him. He can turn any bad situation into a blessing if you are willing to see and listen. #GetIntoTheRhythm #GettingInSync #ActivePracticing #NBFLAPastorShawnisms

So to end this message and blog I hope you find the time for you. When you pour into yourself first then you can pour into others. When you take the time to listen to Him and fall back into His grace things become a little more manageable and easier to see the joy in all situations that you are going through. Take care of yourselves to be the better versions of you. Whatever that looks like to you!!

Love yourself!! And own who you are!! If you are starting or thinking of starting something that youve been wanting to do, I encourage you to take the steps to set yourself up for success. Lean on Him to help you through. Make boundaries, take the five seconds to build the courage for the first step, manage your time, and don’t settle. Love yourself and take care until next time.

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Pink Panties

Last night, I was texting one of my longest friends of many many moons. Our friendship had a start like no other. I guess that is how a lot of new friendships start. Roxanne is her name. You’re singing the song aren’t you. Don’t lie we all know you are. I just did. We met working at McDonald’s. I didn’t think she liked me, I was right to assume that too. She was super helpful to me while we did work there. A lot of the cooks there would say a lot of inappropriate things to me in spanish and I had no idea, but she didn’t like me. I would find out soon enough.

We both worked with a young man who was her age and a year older than me, named Ivan. She really liked him and he liked me, and I liked another young man. Typical teenage stuff. Well, Ivan asked me out and I didn’t know how to say no, so I started dating him, and I also said yes to the boy I liked. Well, she confronted me, the same day that both of them confronted me. I told her everything and then she told me that she thought I only wanted to get to know her was because I wanted to date her brother. Hmmm no!! Not even in the same field. Then she told me about Ivan and I told her the whole drama that I put myself in. Nevertheless, I lost two boyfriends and gained a friend. All things were smoothed over and we were all able to move along and laugh about it.

So that is how we started being friends. So we were talking last night about all the things that have happened to us over the years. We have been through things that only her and I would find entertaining. Like the one time her and I went to the movies, just to come out and find that her car had been broken into. Her wallet was missing and she knew exactly who took it. I was pretty naive in thinking they wouldn’t do anything like that. But SHE KNEW and by golly she wasn’t going to allow that sort of thing happen to her. We got in the car, and I tried calming her but it wasn’t happening. She yelled in a moment of ” Oh HELL NO,” she said…. ” I am going to kick their ass with a bat and sword!!”  She meant that. I tried to hold back my giggles because she was furious. We pull up to her house and she goes into their garage thing, comes out with aluminum bat and a F-ing sword!!! Now granted she told me what she was going to do exactly but I didn’t think she actually had a sword…. She threw both items in the truck and off we went on a mission to kick these boys butts!! I couldn’t help but laugh… I mean this was really happening. She confronted them and to see the fear they had in their eyes was great. She got her wallet back, they kept the money but she got her important things back. I know for a fact that they wouldn’t ever do that to her again. I know I wouldn’t. I mean a sword y’all!! She went viking on them!

As we laughed about that, we were talking about her brothers wedding in Chicago in 2001. That was a fiasco but one we will never forget. We pulled an all nighter the night before at an under 21 club before we got on the plane. No doze were a part of the diet that night. We danced and had a blast once we were on the plane it was really hard not to fall asleep. When we got to our cross over in St. Louis we found a place to smoke cigarettes. Let me just say this.. They had a special place inside for smokers. I had never seen anything like that in my life, and I have flown all my life to various places, but never have I seen this. We walked in, more like crammed in with all the other smokers, nic fitters in this tiny glass box, as we light up we are on display for all to see, like we were animals at zoo… The looks people give to smokers is pretty crappy, but what did I care I was 18 and carefree of what people thought of me. We make our connecting flight, now, mind you Roxy has never really flown so the sense of urgency was real with her, the worry that flowed through her on that last leg was intense. We finally make it to O’Hare…. I will say this… I will avoid O’Hare at all costs! I really don’t like that airport… it is not user-friendly.

We are both tired, hungry and slightly slap happy. We get our luggage and I call for a cab to come get us. I have been on many transports from airports to hotels and this was the scariest ride I have ever been. I learned very quickly that drivers are ALWAYS in a rush to nowhere. Everyone uses their horns for pleasure as well as for function. I was grateful to make it in one piece. We check in without any issue and we ordered food, that was a complicated phone with two tired teens who just want food and sleep. Then her brother comes in and starts telling us how he doesn’t really want to get married but his wife is crazy and pregnant. That’s the short version. I even remember asking him …” Why are you doing it then?” he just simply stated that she would be shunned for being pregnant and not married. I guess they were already married, but they needed to make it official with her family and his and that no one else knew what was really happening. Her family had no idea she was pregnant. In their culture its was frowned upon in a big way, and he was also white. They were to have a Sikh wedding and all things needed to go smoothly and we were told to keep our mouths shut. Neither one of us liked his wife, she was rude and unkind, unlike her family they were very nice.

Now, with a their wedding we were customer fitted for our outfits. We had the whole nine y’all. I mean the head covering, down to the cool pants and tunics. Lots of gold and bright colors. I didn’t get to see my outfit until the day of. We kind of winged that whole situation, but I will get to that. The food we were served was all vegan, it was hard for us to not eat meat and to be polite. I was grateful to try something new but it wasn’t my thing. It smells so good but doesn’t taste like how it smells. Very deceiving and unfair. But whatever… we made it through. Her family kept us very busy so it was difficult to really get to sight see, but we managed to go to a Bahai temple, it was beautiful. Then it started raining and the walls started filling up with water, that was a new thing for me.

So let’s get to the day of… Her parents and us are hungry for the meats, and we are tired, hot and sticky, but we are ready for this wedding. We get to the brides house and ready to get dressed and that was something …. Her moms dressings were huge!! Her mom is like 4’9 and she was swimming on her. Roxy’s I think were okay, then mine were see through aqua….. See through …. my favorite color in transparent sheer aqua …. I am wearing neon pink underwear… we all just laugh… what else can we do… Nothing. I have to show off my chubby body in my favorite color sheer goodness with neon pink under-roos for all to see. Hundreds of people were at this gathering and I was all to eager to use my head dressings to just disappear. I didn’t have time to be embarrassed, I had no other choice but to own that whole situation. Their wedding was beautiful and went without a hitch. We ate and were all merry but we didn’t stay for the other activities. We wanted meat and to fill our faces with savory foods… okay okay we just wanted a really good burger. That is exactly what we did. I can’t tell you if we changed or not, I just remember eating and being on a meat High!! It was no joke… that burger was the best thing that was in my mouth that day!!

There are so many things that can bring a smile to my face and that is one of those memories for me. I have experienced many things in my life and there are times when I don’t think I live enough and to be honest there are so many other things that I want to experience. I know that I will one day, but I jump at the chance to travel. I love seeing, and experiencing new things, and cultures and places on this earth. I am so happy that I got to be a part of their wedding even though I didn’t approve but I wasn’t the one getting married. The wedding is something that I won’t ever forget, it was truly beautiful and something that I may never experience ever again. The vibrant colors, the closeness of all the families and friends bringing many blessings to the couple. I mean it was absolutely amazing. If you ever get the opportunity to go to a Sikh wedding.. DO IT!!

Now, I will never know if I was ever talked about with my neon panties on that day, but that goes to show you that they respected each other and me in that situation, at least they could talk in the privacy of their homes instead of saying anything to me about it. But damn I am glad I wore good underwear that day… Neon pink panties …. At least I matched and have this shared memory with Roxy.

 

What Is That Smell …

This is going to be one of those stories that will either make you or break you … So here we go … I was thinking of the post that I was going to do today… and there is just so much shit that is going on that it triggered a memory… A very embarrassing story but nonetheless a story that is true and needs to be aired out…

The story starts out like this… It’s a cold October night. I am having dinner with my parents with my infant son. I am there to visit but also to receive a car that they have generously given to me. Aren’t I a lucky duck! It was a great blessing because I really needed a car at that time in my life. Anyway, there are certain foods that I ate that night that I knew that I would later regret. Although worth it normally, on this night not so much….

After a great meal and said our goodbye along with safe travel wishes, my son and I were on our way back home… 60 minutes away. Normally this isn’t something that would shock me.. I actually like to drive, I was looking forward to it… Well, It was until I reached the point of no return. That is when things started… it was the beginning of the end for me.

So I am driving through the Jemez mountains and my son starts crying 15 minutes into our trip. Nothing that a little breast-feeding won’t cure, right?! NOOOOPPPE. I pull over and get in the back and nurse him, burp him and love on him. I put him back in the car seat and hop in the driver’s seat, I buckle in and BOOM!! The gut wrenching pain of ” I GOTTA GO POOOO NOW” hits me. I am not quite panicked just yet. I think that I can make it home before it’s all hits the fan .. If you know what I mean….

So I’m driving along doing all that I can to distract myself from the impending doom in my gut. I am singing and just enjoying the distraction, until the pain comes back… you all know that pain I am talking about… Then my son starts crying again… I pull over again.. to see if he needed a diaper change. Now mind you I am just 10 minutes into driving from the last stop. I check his diaper and he is all good, but he won’t stop crying! I check to see if there is something poking him in the car seat, make sure that he seated correctly. I mean I checked everything. Then I started to think maybe he is going through a growth spurt. He was close to the next growth spurt so I nursed him again, and it seemed to accelerate the feelings of having to go even worse!!

Now I have the poo pains and sweats. I feel that I am dying… yup this is how it ends for me… I finish nursing him and get him back into the car seat and off we go again… The wrenching that I feel is down right cruel and to the point where I was just going to pull over in the cold and go in the woods. But I can’t ever bring myself to GO in the woods to go. Not number 2 anyway…  Then I was even considering just going in my pants! I just want the pain to go away! I am desperate! At this point, I am at the half way point home… He starts crying again, and I am self talking my gut down off the ledge… if you catch my drift… I was at the point where you can’t trust a fart. I even turned down the radio so that I hear my own agony.

I pull over once more to see what could possibly wrong again… I am doing all that I can so I don’t mess myself, wreck and ensure that my child is safe. Finally, I figure it out. He wanted his pacifier, and there was a piece of his blanket stuck between his car seat and its base so he was uncomfortable. Success … For the win is me and my son… My son is content and now I can get moving… I have been on the road now for an hour, I should have been home by now. But now I just needed to get to a bathroom … Like 30 minutes ago!! You know those moments where you are so into what you are doing that you drive slower to concentrate… yea that was me that night.

With my son happy I was able to drive and talk to myself to encourage my nether regions to corporate… ” Just wait… you can do this!” or ” Just get to this mile marker…” and ” yay you made it through the last 15 minutes, good job!” I mean it was embarrassing and it was just me in the car. So I finally take the turn to get to my house. I was literally minutes away from a toilet!! My toilet!! And that is when my gut was ” You BETTER HURRY LADY, IMMA BLOW SOON!! LIKE NOOOOWWWW!!” Taking deep breaths and just talking a little louder to myself to distract myself… I am so close… I pull into my driveway… and That was it…. I get out there is hope for me… my body choose otherwise… Right there as soon as I get out my car, it happened, so involuntary.. I was humiliated… I scream for my then husband to get the baby… as I ran into the house, past my oldest son and into the bathroom… My oldest son yells from the other room… ” MOM DID YOU POOP YOURSELF?!” Then came into the bathroom to investigate the happenings, and while I sit on the pot in pure agony and humiliation, he tells me ” Momma you know how to go potty, why did you poop in your shorts?” I couldn’t do anything but laugh in that moment.

Then my husband, at the time, walks in and sees me there, and just laughs, then starts a shower for me. He then asked if I had the sopapillas. I said yes, followed by ” I thought I had enough time.” I got into the shower and he gathered my messed clothes and started the washer. After everything was all said and done… I was able to enjoy the experience of it all. Which brings me here to why this is reverent to the right now…

Shit happens… I went through many stages.. denial, bargaining, wishful thinking, thinking I could out smart the situation, frustration, humiliation, acceptance and finally humor in it all. Once I accepted that this was happening there was no more embarrassment from it really. I was able to tell this story to a few close friends and all my family. It was too good not to share, and now I am sharing this with you.

In the season that I am going through now, there is a lot of things that remind me of this moment. I have to remind myself that I am not in control and there are things that I have to surrender even though I don’t want to. I am able to see through the crap and just allow it to happen, because there is a blessing in it all.  I have a great story to tell, maybe not one that everyone wants to hear but equally entertaining. I find myself smiling because I know that I’m almost “home,” in the sense that I know that this is just a season in my life and that I am growing from all of this.

Once, my focused changed to joy in a crappy situation I was able to see the “Shower,” and enjoy the little moments of fun and laughter with my family. I know that the season will change soon and things are going to be different and a little more mindful of what not to “eat.” and what NOT to eat. Well I hope this story gave you a little giggle, and maybe some insight… I still eat sopapillas  but only if I know I am close to the bathroom…