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week 3 November 18, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in divorce, food.
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Accountability demands I be honest even when progress takes a week off, so…this week I was UP 3.2 lbs.  It was an emotional week, and my food choices reflected it.  We’re mostly girls here, so I can say that ovulation and water retention probably didn’t help either!

We completed the divorce negotiations this week, and the papers should be ready to file by the middle of next week.

This brings the total to  7.6 lbs. lost after 3 weeks.  Back to it, I suppose.

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eating like a caveman, week 1 November 4, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in food.
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down 6.8 lbs.

October 27, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in food.
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A paleo kitchen for a single, working mom who relies heavily on Wal Mart and doesn’t have the time or inclination to go in search of free range chicken or organic ANYTHING!

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Salmon, chicken, lean ground beef, almonds, walnuts, raisins, eggs, berries, sunflower seeds, greens, tomatoes, zucchini, mushrooms, carrots, grapefruit, bananas, onions, natural applesauce, natural peanut butter with flaxseed, and beef jerky. Throw in some canola oil, olive oil, vinegar, and some spices, and this is what I have to work with, people. Wish me luck!

October 26, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in food, health, life, movies, work, worship.
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Tomorrow, after Boy-o’s dad comes to pick him up, I will be cleaning out my cupboards and refrigerator, giving the food in them away, and making a shopping list. I’m starting over from scratch. After a decade and a half of laughing in the face of Mother Nature and willfully refusing to take care of myself, type 2 diabetes has finally come a-knocking at my door.

I’ve always had a genetic predisposition to developing it, courtesy of my maternal grandmother, who controlled hers through diet alone until she was in her 80’s, but my love of all things sugary has definitely aggravated the onset. Before I began the lifestyle changes that helped me lose 60 pounds in 2006, my lab work placed me in the pre-diabetic category, but after 9 months of intense discipline in my diet and exercise, my blood glucose dropped to acceptable levels. I had stopped smoking and my asthma had improved dramatically. And then a year ago, I started a job as a child welfare caseworker, a job that made me desperately unhappy. I was fired 8 months later, and the following month saw the demise of my marriage. Since then, depression and a lack of energy and financial resources (for weight-loss meetings and depression and asthma medications) have meant that healthy habits went on the back burner. And now, the chickens have come home to roost.

I’m a little afraid, but strangely, I’m also filled with a sense of “I always KNEW this was going to happen – and finally it HAS, so let’s get on with it now!” Inevitability. Yeah, that’s it.

geico-cavemen-restaurant.jpg I’m going to try a version of the Paleolithic diet, sometimes called the Neanderthal diet or the Caveman diet. I’m not going to go slaughtering my own food, but I’m going to try to stick to lean meat, seafood, eggs, and stuff that I could pick off a tree or dig out of the ground. And I’m going to have to make friends with herbs and spices and give up on sauces. Lots and lots of water, though that’s not really a problem, as I love water. It just takes discipline to be a water drinker, and lack of discipline is what landed me in this boat to begin with. I’ll keep juice and milk in the house for Boy-o, but snacking on fruit and seeds instead of cheese and crackers will be better for him, too. Fortunately, he loves broccoli “trees” and all manner of other raw veggies – it has just been pure laziness on my part buying packaged snacks.

So, that’s that. Change of subject…since I’m too lazy to do another complete post!

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Well, I’m really hating my job…as in I have complete and utter loathing for it. No, really, I’m not kidding. I work in a call center as a customer service rep for a wireless phone service provider. I’ve done this kind of work before, in college, and for a little while right after I figured out a career in the field I majored in wasn’t in the cards for me. And it sucks. I was telling someone today that the more I work in customer service, the more I realize how much I really, really hate people. I also said that the thing about the call center industry that doesn’t make sense to me is that the entire job consists of being on the phone and being nice, yet all rewards and promotions and incentives in the company are geared toward getting to spend time OFF the phone. The people actually on the phones are the ones who keep the call center engine grinding away, who are told how important it is to sit in your chair, keep taking calls, to document all conversations quickly and thoroughly, and to move on to the next call. Doesn’t it seem kind of strange that, for doing your job well, you are rewarded with OPT (off the phone time), which means…NOT having to do your job? Or am I overthinking this?

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Lastly, I watched this little piece of cinematic fluff today. It made me cry. Whether that’s because I’m overly fragile or because it’s a really good story with lots of great stuff about a compassionate and loving God, I don’t know. But I do love Ben Stiller. And seeing Anne Bancroft made me smile, because she was one of my very favorite actors of all time.

It really made me want to go back to church.

July 28, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in addiction, birthdays, family, food, marriage, separation.
6 comments

7-28-07.jpg This morning I made myself a birthday cake, complete with candles which I plan to blow out after singing “happy birthday” to myself. I also plan to cook a nice meal for myself: tomato-basil chicken and a salad, and maybe some pasta with olive oil and lemon. What do you think? I mean, my so-called “birthday lunch” with husband was a complete bust, and I figure I deserve something better. 🙂

I called our car insurance company this morning to get a new quote on my own policy, and I will be visiting a wireless phone service store this afternoon to obtain my own phone and plan. Once those are done, I will sit down and ask for a divorce.

The decision has been a painful one, and I honestly didn’t expect to reach it feeling as definite as I do less than a month into our separation. I really, really thought that I would take the entire 6 month period of my lease and give my husband ample opportunity to show me that he valued me and our marriage. And yet…and yet…

I have changed everything about myself for him. Some of those changes have been positive ones. While I have had many, many reasons to be angry with him over the years, I haven’t always handled my anger in the right way. I’ve thrown things and slapped him and been a right proper bitch at times. And I have been sorry afterward. I have never once felt entitled to display violent behavior, and I have experienced genuine remorse, and I have changed my behavior. And some of the changes have been very, very negative ones. I sacrificed my self-respect in favor of peace. I believed that staying in this marriage and being supportive was holy, and right, and good. I covered up the parts of my personality that made me funky and fun around my in-laws…for example, the first weekend I went to go meet them, I changed my hair color from cherry bomb red to a mousy brown on husband’s request. And the greatest sin of all – I sacrificed relationships with people I love and need to have in my life because my non-traditional family configuration made them uncomfortable. They never said these things, mind you. That’s the problem – they never SAY anything. But it was obvious nonetheless in tiny grimaces, uncomfortable looks, and dead silence when I would say anything that they disagreed with. They might as well have had a big cartoon-type word bubble above their heads that said “SINNER!” Whereas in my family, everyone says, “Oh, THAT’S complete bullshit! Where’d you get that dumb idea? Now, what do you want for dinner?”

I think the straw that has broken the camel’s back is the current situation with my car. As I posted, my car broke down while husband was driving it home from work. We had switched cars because mine gets better gas mileage and he has to travel further. I made it crystal clear that if I agreed to do this, he was responsible for any repairs. The repairs are going to come to $2600 for a refurbished engine and labor (don’t ask me, the car drove FINE when I had it). He says he doesn’t have it. I told him to handle it and get me my car back, or to give me the truck to drive. He said he can’t give me the truck because he has to get to and from work. I said so do I. He said, “You’re going to be mad at me no matter what I do anyway.” He also said that I needed to quit being such a bitch or he would just have the car towed to my driveway and I could worry about it. I said this wasn’t acceptable, and that he had agreed to take care of anything that happened while he was behind the wheel. He said he will, but he won’t have the money until the end of September. I said I can’t be without my car for that long. He said he would give me rides, and I could find rides to and from work with friends. And that quick, the lightbulb came on over my head. Once again, he has placed me in a situation where he is attempting to isolate me and make me dependent upon him, all while making it look like that it’s just a case of shitty things keep happening to us. Every situation that has drawn me further and further away from my home, my family, and my friends has been somehow related to his addiction and his acting out. The fact that I have ZERO savings after almost 5 years of marriage to him, when I had a pretty considerable nest egg for emergencies and my future graduate education set aside prior to the marriage, is a big, big problem to me.

No remorse. No responsibility. Only blame, shame, excuses, and a total lack of respect for my feelings and my boundaries. And I simply can’t do it anymore…nor do I any longer think it is the right and holy thing to do or that God intends me to stay with and support this man for the rest of my life, while losing MYSELF in the process.

I got a neat, neat comment from someone on the other site:

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{Angel},

How very sad for you and for your son. My heart longs to find words which will heal and sooth your pain, which feels all too familiar to my soul. Sadly, there are no magic healing words, your heart and soul must come to their own peace in your life’s journey with our Lord.

I pray that you consider for the sake of your son, and especially for your own sake, filing for and following through with a divorce as soon as possible; and getting counseling for yourself alone. You will not be able to begin your journey toward health and wholeness until you begin to free yourself from your husband’s evil. I pray from my heart that you will do this soon. I pray for you from my own journey from sorrow and suffering, in a marriage to another pastor who had serial affairs with women in his congregations, to a sense of wholeness and hope for new life, fifteen years after my divorce.

The day I was able to confirm my then husband’s actual acts of clergy sexual misconduct is the day I kicked him out. The next day I changed the locks, and the following day I was filing for divorce before noon. Not because I didn’t love him, Lord knows I did, deeply and with all that I was, but because even more deeply I could feel my own soul dying. The unique and beautiful soul God created and knew in my mother’s womb was being destroyed by trying to make sense of a world where evil was good (a marriage which was killing me by dishonoring me and what I knew to be right) and where good (nurturing and honoring the gift of my own unique soul first with God) seemed evil. As important as love and marriage and family and children are, please remember the great commandment to love God with all your heart and mind and soul. You cannot do this if you are bound up in your husband’s evil. It clouds your vision of God, of your self and of your son.

It is not just addiction which drives men like these. They have what some call negative empathy, an ability to use their understanding of other’s emotions to manipulate for their own ends. This is a life long personality pattern. It can be a manifestation of any one of a number of personality disorders. It can not be fixed by love or couples counseling, indeed these types of interventions only gives him more ammunition to use against you. Even an AA type program cannot get to the core of the problem. Remember the success rate for AA is only about 20%, the watchword there is the AA-ism, “The program works if you work it.” Your husband, over many, many years has shown no willingness to “work it.” Angel, you on the other hand can work toward a new and fulfilling life for both you and your son. I pray that God’s hand leads you on a journey which brings you new life and hope and peace.

God’s very best for you, Dorothy

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Amen. And thank you Dorothy. I needed that. I tried to click on your link to see if you had a site, but the link was broken. So God bless you, dear, and thank you again and again.

July 26, 2007

Posted by introspectreangel in addiction, birthdays, blogging, family, food, marriage, separation.
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My car broke down yesterday while my husband was driving it, and now it is in the shop. So, husband drove me to and from work today. Beforehand, he spent the day pacing around my living room making phone calls to the mechanic, the car rental company, his employer, etc. And all I could think, over and over and over again was, “I wish he would go away.” I stayed in my bedroom for the many hours he was here, just because being in the same room as him makes me so desperately unhappy.

This disturbs me. So, my birthday, in spite of the many birthday greetings, e-cards, and well wishes from my family members and my friends inside the computer and out (though not a single peep out of my in-laws, who keep saying they still love me…strange, huh?) was not really a happy one.

When I went to see MB last weekend, I tried to explain to her (without sounding like a complete fruitcake) that the very act of making plans to move out, and then the act of actually doing so, took SO MUCH psychic energy, that right now I don’t have anything left to actually do any of the “work” on this marriage that I keep saying I want to do. I had to dig very, very deep down into myself to do this, and part of the reason it was so hard was that every time I have been betrayed by his lack of fidelity and another relapse, I had forgiven him WITHOUT requiring follow-up action (I supposedly required it, but I didn’t leave when he refused, so…draw your own conclusions)…and with that act I chipped away at my self-respect, little by little. The parts of me that knew I deserved better began to shrivel up and die, one by one.

I asked husband after he had made yet another lap around the living room (he can’t sit still when talking on the phone, he paces) if he could watch Boy-o while I ran to McDonald’s to treat myself to a Value Meal cheeseburger for my birthday. He said, “I was going to take you somewhere better.” I said, “Oh, that’s nice of you. Okay, thanks.” I went back to my room and waited. And waited. And waited. Finally, I looked at the clock and saw I had to be to work in an hour and a half, so I went back out and asked if he was going to take me somewhere, or if I needed to go get myself lunch, since I needed to be taken to work. He looked at me blankly and then said, “Okay, let’s go.” He took me to my favorite local Mexican restaurant (they don’t know how to do Mexican food up right in this state, but this place is an exception), but he didn’t speak to me the entire meal. I thanked him for lunch, tried to engage him in conversation about things, made fun of the Tejano music over the loudspeaker, and generally tried to be witty and entertaining. He was silent the whole meal, and most of the time he had his face buried in his hands. I have no clue why someone would offer to take someone out to lunch and then be uncommunicative the whole meal. I tried to figure out of it was the whole separation issue, or if he was upset about the car, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that he has always been this way. If it’s not one thing he’s worried about, it’s another, and I have never been, and will never be able to make it all better for him, no matter how smart or cool I am.

He absolutely will not respect my boundaries. I’ve asked him to please knock or ring the doorbell when he comes over to my house, but he continues to walk in if the door is unlocked. I’ve asked him not to call me “babe” or “baby”, but he won’t stop. I am so angry because it seems as if he just wants to pretend that none of this is happening. Which is exactly what he learned growing up, I suppose. “If I don’t acknowledge it, it’s not real” seems to be the MO over there.

My mom called me to see how I was doing, and I told her that husband had been pacing around and what I had been thinking while he did so, and that this was leading me to believe that I just need to go ahead and file for divorce and get it over with, because at this point, after this many years and this many betrayals, I don’t know if I will be willing to ever take the risk of trusting him again, even if he DOES decide he wants to recover from his addiction. And no marriage can exist without trust. She asked me if I still loved him…and I couldn’t answer. All I can think is that…for the past 6 years I have created this fake story in my mind about how wonderful our life together was, and I had mostly talked myself into believing it. My brain is screaming, “OF COURSE you love him! Don’t be an idiot!” And the part that knows better says, “Well, he did give you a beautiful son. And you have had some good times together. But maybe what you love is what he meant to you at one time, and not who he IS.”

More later, after I process some more.

nutritious! February 21, 2006

Posted by introspectreangel in food.
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2 handfuls of gummi bears
Sonic onion rings
2 bottles of water
1 spoonful of hot fudge, direct from container
1 slice of fat free swiss cheese
3 leftover california rolls from dinner out on saturday night. they were much better fresh.

yeah, i’ve had better days, nutritionally speaking anyway.

i’m annoyed… December 31, 2005

Posted by introspectreangel in blogging, family, food.
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…stupid blogger is freezing up every time i try to upload pictures. i took some really pretty ones last night of our christmas tree all lit up, and of the sunset, and i just wanted to share them, but nooooo…

growing up in my family, new year’s eve centered around dick clark and the times square ball drop and lots of foods we never got to eat the rest of the year. and i don’t mean black eyed peas and cabbage! i mean seafood and junk food. my mom sometimes made crab nachos or seafood enchiladas, and we ordered pizza and got take out desserts from the local tgi friday’s – they had a chocolate malt ball cake at one point that was just to die for. so, i’ve taken up the seafood tradition in my life as an adult. i have crockpot shrimp creole going, in honor of will’s louisiana heritage, and i’m about to start on the crab enchiladas. after all that’s done, i might think about getting out of my pajamas. 🙂

FYI / TMI November 28, 2005

Posted by introspectreangel in Boy-o, food, life.
3 comments

Don’t do it. Don’t even think about buying the Great Value brand of Three Cheese Chicken and Pasta with Vegetables. I’ve been horking my guts up all day because of it. FOR THE SECOND TIME. I thought that first bag 6 weeks ago or so was a fluke!

And on a completely unrelated topic, will this wind EVER QUIT? As amusing as it is to stand Boy-o on the front porch and watch him lean into the gale just to stay upright, I’m afraid it really might sweep him off his feet, so inside we stay.