Angst

Wow, is that man skinny!

When Pure Luck called to say he was ready to come home, it was after catching a glimpse of himself in a mirror. I marvelled that he claimed such a change on Wednesday morning, when he was complaining just Saturday that he had a long way to go in terms of the weight loss he hoped to accomplish on his hike.

But sure enough, the man is skinny. And the Y2K thru-hiker shorts fit. And to prove it, I think he’s going to wear them every day until I insist on washing them.

As I was struggling at level 5 on the elliptical this morning, I thought about how much harder it was to carry a 40+ pound back up-mountain and down. I watched the Today Show and its feature on some kind of new radio-wave procedure that eliminates tummy “pooch.” I did 50 crunches while listening to the woman getting the procedure talk about how spot-training had worked on everything except her “pooch.” I sighed and felt like giving up completely.

But I went downstairs and called Pure Luck and said, “Hey, I’ve got 50 crunches to go. Want to do some with me?”

We stretched out on the living room rug, where the embrace of a large dog stopped us for a moment, but then we did our 50 crunches together.

“What if it never really works?” I moaned.

“You have a gift for finding the dark cloud in the silver lining,” he sighed.

In this area of life, yes. I know too well how easily I give up when I deem myself imperfect. And I guess it’s hard to get clear about what qualifies as “good enough.” On the one hand, since we acquired the elliptical four months ago, I feel better and sleep better. Climbing the stairs no longer brings about shortness of breath. My clothes fit better, some even loosely. I bought a pair of jeans, and although they were the largest size in the Petite department, at least they were *in* the Petite department.

Part of my irritation when he called the other day (which, by the way, he noticed, PPB, and for which I have apologized) is that while I never want to say I’m on a diet, I had decided to be very disciplined about food as well as exercise for the ten days from this Monday until I was to see him next week, and see if I couldn’t make some quick progress myself. So that chance was blown. And my competitive side felt like a failure.

Okay, maybe saying “competitive side” is putting it too gently.

I had looked for a way to feel like a winner, and the opportunity was lost. I hate that.

So, the guy is skinny, and he is home, and I am not skinny, and he says he doesn’t like skinny women anyway, so I am struggling to figure out what exactly I am aiming for, while accepting that he is pretty happy with the way he is, and trying to convince myself I haven’t lost because of it, since it wasn’t a race in the first place.

Oy.

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