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I am not at work today because after stepping off the elliptical this morning, I felt…well the best way to describe it is not right. I didn’t feel right. I went over to the mat to stretch and decided the best thing to do was to lie on my back and compose myself. After a few minutes I felt a little better so I headed over to the weights. But that was short lived…because the not right feeling was not going away. Blah.

So I’m home today, hoping that I’m not getting sick, because honestly, who wants to be sick in May? My guess is that the fried ravioli appetizer I had last night (yes, thighs, I hear you. Stop yelling at me.) was not the best thing to eat. Either that or the chicken caesar salad was bad, but I refuse to believe that. It was just too yummy.

I will not be updating the shoes on the sidebar today because I am not wearing shoes. Just slippers. And there will be no pictures of bare feet on my blog ever. I did purchase two lovely pairs this weekend so you can expect them to make an appearance in the coming days.

Also, His Mother left a message yesterday saying that she tried to call me but the number said it was out of service. As it turned out, when giving her my number Michael substituted a 3 for a 4 by accident. (An honest mistake when he calls me by hitting speed dial 1 on his phone. Honestly, how many numbers do you know by heart anymore?) She made it quite clear in her message that she didn’t think the mix up was an accident. Great.

So now I know she’s really going to call. I was hoping it wasn’t going to happen but apparently I cannot avoide her forever. FUN.

Last night was my long overdue hair appointment. When my stylist spun me around and I faced the mirror, a lighter, bouncier, blonder reflection stared back at me. I loved it. The dreaded headband of dark roots was gone (note to self: never go seven weeks between highlights again. Ever.) and the layers had been cut back in.

As I was waiting at the desk to pay, I glanced down at my new RI license and realized that the person in the picture was not the brunette I always define myself as. In that picture, I am blonde. And have only gotten blonder since.

It got me thinking. I have always been proud to be a brunette. My mom taught me that brunettes are smart and sexy. I associate with brunettes. The majority of my close friends do not have flaxen locks and those who do are sassy and intelligent. Not to say that blondes are dumb, obviously, but I think there is an automatic assumption that darker hair equals smarter women.

So what does this say about me? For the past year I’ve been choosing to lighten my hair, to take steps away from the natural me. And as much as I am convinced I’m doing it only because I like the way it looks, is there maybe something more to it? Do I want to be a blonde because blonde equals sexy?

Are things as trivial as the size of my jeans, the number on the scale or the color of my hair defining who I am today?

This morning I looked in the mirror again. A woman in a sweater and jeans stared back at me. A woman who went to college, who holds a job, who is smart, funny and sexy regardless of her hair color. A woman who is not defined by the gold in her hair after all.

Only enhanced by it.

Michael and I never fight. Ever. We may jokingly banter about leaving dishes on the counter or shoes in the hallway, but never about anything serious. Which is why the argument we had this morning, while not serious at all, threw me off.

I had set the alarm for 5:45 because I thought maybe my back would be better today. (Side note: it’s not. Massage appointment tomorrow because OW.) I had woken up about 20 minutes earlier and realized I was still in pain, but didn’t give the alarm a second thought. Since it’s on Michael’s side, when it began to buzz and I ignored it, he got pissed. After hitting the snooze button three times he slammed the alarm off and grunted something that I didn’t catch. I could tell he was annoyed, though.

When I brought it up at the more respectable hour of 7 a.m. he yelled at me! Basically he was mad because even though I decided I wasn’t getting up, I didn’t turn off the alarm. And because of that he lost some sleep.

Fine, OK. I get it. But I was also annoyed and wasn’t letting it go without a retort.

“I think it’s funny that when the alarm goes off at 4:30 you hit the alarm three of four times and interrupt my sleep. I also think it’s pretty rude that I showered last night because I know you had to work this morning and I’m getting up now to make you lunch!”

“When the alarm goes off at 4:30 it’s for work!”

“Yeah, we all get it. (We? Apparently me and the dog equals “we”.) Mornings are tough. Deal with it!”

And I stomped downstairs flustered and upset. Fifteen minutes later he came downstairs and teased me and hugged me. All was fine again, of course. I guess neither one of us is a morning person.

On an unrelated, yet very cool note? My boss left a comment on this post that just made my whole day.

Now I have to get back to work so he keeps leaving me nice comments.

Has it really been three weeks already? Actually, this week has been kind of a wash. I fell asleep on the couch Sunday night and when I woke up I had the worst back pain ever. Right under my shoulder blade felt like a charlie horse and it was sending shooting pain up to my head. When I woke up Monday it was even worse so I skipped the gym to rest it.

Well, it really hurt yesterday and this morning too. Commuting and sitting at a desk don’t help. So yeah, that’s three mornings lost that I’m not proud of. I’m going to work out tonight, even though I really hate the gym in the evenings, because I’m mad at myself for slacking. I really could have gone this morning. 

So because of the set back, I’ve decided to wait till week five to weigh myself. But! Today I am wearing the adorable cropped black pants that I love so much, the very pants that Michael shrunk last summer. The same pants that I had to leave in my closet time after time because I could no longer button them without constricting my breathing and leaving button imprints in my stomach.

Today they fit.

Perfectly.

This is progress, I know. No matter what the scale says in two weeks, I know I’m improving. That I’m becoming healthier.

I’m actually pretty proud of myself.

I was tagged by Alissa. Fun!

A – Available or Single?  Isn’t that the same thing? Definitely taken by a tall, dark and handsome man.

B – Best Friend?
Michael. But I have to agree with Alissa that “when it comes to girlfriends, I have a committee.”

C – Cake or Pie?  Oh man, cake. Cake all the way.

D – Drink of Choice? Soy no-water chai lattes, Berry Bubbly martinis and Poland Springs water. What can I say, I’m a water snob.

E – Essential Item(s)?  Eyeliner, high heels, email, XM radio, cell phone

F – Favorite Color?  I’ve always loved blue, but I’m really into green and yellow right now. Not necessarily together…

G – Gummi Bears or Worms?  Gummi Bears are my favorite candy ever. Ever, ever.

H – Hometown?Pleasant Valley, NY originally, now Southern Rhode Island

I -  Indulgence?
  Shoes, soy chai lattes from Starbucks, new magazines, good chocolate.

J – January or February?  Eh, not a huge fan of either.

K – Kids?  Cannot wait!

L – Life is incomplete without… Love and friendship.

M – Marriage Date If things go my way I’m thinking late summer/early fall 2008. If things go Grandma’s way, next month in the backyard.

N – Number of Siblings One sister.

O – Oranges or Apples?  I like both. Apples are great at work, oranges are yummy when they’re cold from the fridge. Messy, though.

P – Phobias/Fears
losing a loved one, heights, things that smell bad, people with B.O.

Q – Favorite Quote “I’ve still got my feet on the ground, I just wear better shoes.” ~ Oprah

R -  Reasons to Smile?  Just finished one year at my job, the weather is warm, the sun is shining.

S – Season? Summer. Especially in RI.

T – Tag Three Sass, Clink, Ash

U – Unknown Fact About Me I can hyper-extend my arms and spin them almost all the way around. It’s gross. Michael hates it.

V – Vegetarian or Oppressor of Animals?
  I didn’t eat red meat for years until I met Michael. Now I suppose I am an oppressor.

W – Worst habits?
I leave clutter everywhere, don’t dust nearly enough

X – X-rays or Ultrasounds?
  Never had an ultrasound. X-rays on my teeth and ankle.

Y – Your Favorite Foods pizza, cucumbers, grilled cheese, raspberries

Z – Zodiac
Capricorn.

- Today is my one year anniversary at my job. I don’t know what I was expecting to feel, but not surprisingly it is much like any other day. I did get a free lunch out of it, though. Even though I don’t feel any different, I think the me of a year ago would be impressed with the me of today. Past me would never have guessed I’d be writing as much as I do, let alone be published, or that I would have become a blogger. Past me never knew all of you were out there. (Shout-out to my Internet Best Friends, I heart you.) Current me is pretty darn happy.

This is for the ladies, sorry guys.

- The first thing I want to do at the end of the day is rip off my bra. I know most of you will agree, because I know from a certain past post that I have a very busty readership! Bras? Suck. The problem is if you want a really comfy one, they’re ginormous. And ginromous is NOT SEXY. I’m all about comfort, but I’m still a young woman with a cute boyfriend and I will absolutely forgo 18-hour comfort if the bra looks like two paper plates.

Which is why you will be singing my praises after trying on this bra. I was shocked to discover this no-wire demi not only supports, but is still sexy. And it comes in so many pretty colors. Still don’t believe me? Michael very much approved. And boys can only judge on appearance. So trust me, the whole package is good.

Victoria, I’ll take five or six freebees for my promotional services. Thank you.

bra.jpg 

Ok, so it won’t make you look like Alessandra Abrosio, but see? It’s cute!

The warm weather has left me thinking about when I worked at the daycare. Believe it or not, it’s actually made me miss some things about it. Some things. Such as:

  • playing outside all day. All. Day.
  • back rubs from fellow staff. Actually, I could really use one today. Stacey, feel like driving to Connecticut?
  • the ever-present smell of sunscreen.
  • popsicles for snack almost daily.
  • playing in the sand.

Of course, there are also things I really don’t miss. Like,

  • playing outside all day. There’s only so much you can do on a playground for hours and hours.
  • the ever-present smell of dirty diapers.
  • popsicles for snack almost daily. Do you know how difficult it is to clean melted popsicles of the hands and mouths of 18 toddlers?
  • playing in the sand. Sand in shoes, sand in diapers, sand in eyes, sand in mouths, sand stuck to popsicle residue…

I really do miss those back rubs, though.

Boy is it sunny! What a perfect way to start the weekend. I have just spent my entire day standing in the ridiculously hot sun with press people. While I so thoroughly enjoyed finally feeling the heat of the sun on my face, I was not prepared for it. Which means…I am sunburned. Ow.

The warm air left me yearning to put away the wool pants and break out my spring skirts. Which reminds me, check out my post on The Winning Pitch about the fabulous skirts I found. So cute!

After tying up some loose ends I am off to spend the weekend with boy I love and the girl with fantastic boobs (Boobeski comes tonight!) I can’t wait.

 Have a nice weekend!

If there was one thing I could change about myself (other than my thighs) it would be the way I handle stress. Anxiety is something that plagues me regularly. I’m not saying that I stress out about all the little things, but when big stuff comes around, it hits me like a ton of bricks.

The first time I was really affected by it was in college. I was in my history final and was cruising through it. I knew the material because I had been studying for days. I happened to look up from my exam and noticed the professor was flipping through our final papers that we had turned in earlier, when all of the sudden my heart was racing. I don’t know why, but all of the sudden I thought I had forgotten to include something in the paper. And although I had no reason to, I panicked. I was freaking out so badly that I could hardly breathe. I managed to flag down a TA and she walked me outside to get some air. After a few minutes and lots of deep breaths, I was able to calm down enough to finish my exam.

What I didn’t know then was that I had a panic attack. And unfortunately, it wasn’t the last one. The small ones would result in just a racing heart, but the big ones included shaking, shortness of breath and dizziness. After about ten of them, I knew I had to take control of it.

After talking with my mom and doing a lot of reading on the topic, I was able to figure out ways to control the symptoms when I felt them coming on. While I’ll never know why they started, I was able to get a grasp on them.

After a few months the panic attacks became farther and farther apart until eventually they stopped all together. Every now and then I’ll get the familiar heart racing, but a few minutes of deep breathing, Michael rubbing my back, or even a good run in the gym can calm me down.

This whole fiasco with His Mother has resulted in a tightness in my stomach that won’t go away. She wants to talk with me on the phone (probably tonight) about what I’m feeling. She feels I have the wrong impression of her and wants to straighten things out. I’m taking the time today to compose my thoughts (maybe even jot down key points, I’m such a nerd) and try to settle the butterflies and knots that are a jumble in my stomach.

Deep breaths, deep breaths.

A funny thing has happened over the past week. I can wake up before 6 a.m. This is huge for me. Sure, I wouldn’t call it fun, but it’s no longer a struggle. I’m really proud of Ashley and myself for getting through our first week. I really went every day except Monday, when the combination of nasty weather and exhaustion from the weekend made it impossible to get out from under the covers. But other than Monday, I did it!

Day two was definitely the hardest, but after that it was all up hill. I have more energy during the day, I’ve cut a minute off my mile time and although I can’t notice a difference yet, I feel stronger, healthier.

And because now that I am Workout Woman I have gotten cocky and started bugging Michael to get up in the morning too. He gently reminded me that it’s only been a week and maybe I should keep my mouth shut until it’s been, I don’t know, a month. Yeah, yeah.

On an unrelated note, while driving to the gym this morning a bird flew into my car. It happened so quickly I couldn’t avoid it and was sickened by the sound of the thump. And then…I heard tweeting. I freaked out because, OH MY GOD, THE BIRD IS STUCK IN MY CAR! and pulled over to inspect. No bird. No tweeting. Ok…I kept driving and heard the tweeting again! At this point I’m almost in tears. I checked again at the gym and again found nothing, but heard lots of tweeting coming from the trees. The birds, they knew. They knew I was a bird killer and they were out to get me. I’m surprised I didn’t come back to a poop covered car.

When I got home there was a whole flock of them sitting in the tree outside our bedroom window plotting my demise. I just know it.

Anyway, progress:

Weight Lost: I don’t actually know the answer to this one. My original plan was to weigh myself once a week, but after talking with Ashley I decided to go with her plan to wait until a month has passed. Then we’ll have put in enough time to really see results. I know the anticipation is going to kill me, but at least I won’t be obsessing and getting on the scale every day.

Observations: Muscles are sore, especially my arms and upper back. But sore is good! Sore is progress! Am strong! I had a massage on Friday (because what a perfect way to reward myself for a week of hard work) and the massage therapist said that my upper butt muscles were tight. Michael got a kick out of that one.

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