Seriously…my life. 

The other day I actually deactivated my OKC profile down and deleted Tinder, in addition to deleting every guy out of my phone that is/was more than a friend. I also unfollowed a few former flames on twitter and facebook.

The purge felt good. I hope that by closing a bunch of doors that a new worthwhile door will finally open in my life. 

TC: I don’t know how to be a skinny girl

via thoughtcatalog

I was looking in the mirror a few days ago at my mom’s house, because being in a different house with different mirrors — full-length mirrors, at that — really helped me see where I’ve made huge strides in losing 23 pounds since February. I actually see a fitter girl now. I can physically see a skinny girl coming together. And you would think that would make me feel overjoyed, freaking amazing, ready to run a marathon because I’m so excited by the prospect of finally being where I’ve always wanted to be. And to a certain extent it does, but there’s another part that looms saying that prospect is scary. Terrifying, even, because of one thing.

I don’t know how to BE a skinny girl.

And that sounds weird to say. There shouldn’t and isn’t really a way of “being” a skinny girl or a fat girl. You just develop your personality the way you develop it, and for some that means different things than for others. But the thing is, I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t overweight. I started gaining a lot of weight when I was about 12, and went up and down throughout the next 10 years of my life. I got used to being the fat friend, the fat classmate, the fat family member.

And those weren’t all necessarily negative roles to me, I just adapted to them. I learned to accept the fact that I would never fit into clothes at Wet Seal, where my 4’11″, 95-pound friend could shop, or any of my other naturally skinny friends. I learned to accept that I wouldn’t get hit on at the water park or restaurants, or get asked to dances. That’s just how it was. I had pretty good friends who accepted me the way I was, a family that loved me the way I was, so why be that invested in changing it? Too much work.

But my personality developed around those roles. I learned to use sarcasm, self-deprecation and dry wit to gain people’s affection, making them laugh. I learned nuanced details about friends that others didn’t take the time to do, and I was always, ALWAYS there for them. I learned to seek out the misfits like I felt I was, and let irritation and jealousy take over when it came to the girls I secretly wanted to be more like. I learned to dislike them for their popularity with boys, for the way their clothes would always look better than mine, for the bikinis they wore all summer. I would never be those girls, so I might as well hate them (though hate is a strong word… I just strongly disliked them).

But now I’m faced with the prospect of being one of them, and I have no idea what that means. I find I don’t know how to shop for my body anymore, because it’s so different, but not yet where I want it to be. I don’t need to shop exclusively for shirts that don’t show my stomach. I don’t need to compensate with my boobs so much. I don’t have to shy away from tank tops and tube tops and shorts as much anymore. But that isn’t how I’ve ever dressed my body, so it’s all completely foreign. How much can I show off without being at goal weight? Will I ever feel okay wearing a bikini? How short of shorts are too short? Will people think I’m slutty, like I used to think of some of those girls? God, I was a judgmental little jerk. How can I not feel like a hypocrite if I turn to this lifestyle?

I know I’m overthinking it all. I know that it’s not about all of this — it’s about being healthier, happier, more confident. And all of those things are happening. But the tangential feelings still matter, and they’re still scary as hell. It’s like getting to know yourself all over again.

But at least, so far, I like the new me. That’s a positive step as well. 

My weekend – In case you missed it!

My sister was town this weekend for Race for Hope! Saturday was a luncheon for David Cook (of American Idol season fame)’s team. My sister volunteered at the lunch and I attended, but I helped volunteer too since one of my friends now works for the cancer society that puts on the race. 

The lunch had ~240 people attend and Dave made time to meet and greet everyone. When it was finally my turn I had him sign my bib (he signed my LA marathon one too). I told him I ran LA with him and he asked about my time, he was impressed. He talked about how he hit has wall at mile 17 and walked the last 9. We chatted a bit about running and somehow I wasn’t tongue tied. Dave didn’t rush anyone and he seemed genuinely interested in talking to everyone. We got an awesome picture together (see above). I also talked to his manager about the marathon since she ran too. 

A bit later they gave Dave a break from signing and my sister was able to go up to him (the signing was in a separate area from where the lunch was) and tell him she has been there to volunteer and that she liked his new song. He shook her hand and asked her name, so he could thank her by name. My sister who is not easily impressed seemed pretty taken aback by Dave’s humble awesomeness.

Soon after this happened the team gathered for a picture, they have all the people in the lunchroom gather first, I made a comment outloud to the 10 or so of us in the side room (including Dave) that getting these women to gather for a picture was like herding cats. Well that CRACKED Dave up. He was like “herding cats! I’ve never heard that, that’s perfect.” I ended up only one person away from Dave in the team pic and as the group went back to their tables Dave laughed and said herding cats agains to himself. HE THINKS IM FUNNY. 

Dave was super gracious and even though the event was from 11:30-2:30pm, he stayed until 5 to make sure everyone who wanted to meet him got too. 

I actually had to head out of the luncheon with my sister around 3pm because we rented bikes to go out on the Mount Vernon Trail. I haven’t been in public on a bike in a decade. It was TERRIFYING. I screamed or screeched for most of the first 5 miles. Thankfully the 5 miles back I was more confident. But damn for a path I know well from running it, you could REALLY feel the hills on the bike. I really did enjoy the ride and reeeeeaaallly want a real bike. My sister said they rentals were crummy and I would have a better experience on a real bike. 

Sunday was the Race for Hope. Despite not doing any speedwork since February I came in at 28:51 (official time). I was pleased, I had hoped for a sub 30, but my PR is 26:28. I actually saw and passed Dave on the course. I ran beside him for a few yards and told him to eat my dust with a laugh. Race for Hope is such a well organized race, it was my first race ever and will always have a special place in my heart. Our team (well Dave’s team) was the top fundraiser with $85,000 and growing. 

It was such a special weekend that is makes the horrid insanity at work these days much for bearable. I’m actually working from home today because I needed a mental health break. 

If you ever want to join me at the Race for Hope 5K in DC – next year’s will be May 4th. It’s such a great race, great course, great cause and I’ve met great people through it. 

15 Photos Of A Week Of Groceries From Different Countries Around The World

Whenever I go grocery shopping I always get just enough food to last for a couple days, mostly because I don’t know what I’m going to want to eat on Thursday if today is Sunday. But when I was growing up, my mother used to take us to the grocery once a week because that was the only time she could go. We stocked the car with bags and bags of treats and stuff, but mom always warned that if me and my sister ate all the fruit snacks or Pops or Pop Tarts or whatever, that was it until the next week.

Grocery shopping — what we buy and where we go — is a rich sociological activity that has a lot to say about our upbringing, our tastes and habits, and our social class. American photojournalist Peter Menzel recently launched a fascinating photo essay on what a week’s worth of groceries looks like around the world. The series is definitely eye-opening, not least because it shows the peculiar dietary habits of people in 20 countries around the world but because it shows how prevalent American food products are, how healthy people eat based on their country, and it really puts First World Privilege in check.

Guess which country is the most unhealthy of the bunch?

The pictures are very telling!