Posts Filed Under nothing to do with parenting.

Sometimes life is about becoming unstuck, and that’s it.

by renegademama

You may remember we were burglarized last September, twice. In one week. They stole my laptop and essentially every piece of jewelry Mac had ever given me during our 13 years together. They stole my grandmother’s ring, the single item I inherited from her.

It took months to “get over it,” but recently, the wound was reopened. Basically, through a rather coincidental chain of events I’d rather not elaborate on, we found out for sure who burglarized our home, and it was the person I suspected: Our former nanny’s son, a young man addicted to methamphetamines.

I knew it was him the moment I saw my jewelry box laid open, empty. I drove immediately to his home. He was in the street. I walked right up to him looked him dead in the eyes and said “Hey. I get it. I was a drug addict once too. Just give me back my things. Have them show up on my doorstep and I’ll give you $1000. No questions asked.”

Looking back, I realize he had probably already traded everything for a 20 sack, maybe two.

He went around and around about how it wasn’t him. But I knew it was. The sight of his face in my mind’s eye makes me feel sick. Lying motherfucker. I had no proof, but I knew. 100%.

And the worst part is I knew it was going to happen before it happened. I saw it in my mind. I literally saw in my mind that this person was going to burglarize our home.

I knew it the day my nanny sat in our living room and told me her son (who lived with her) was addicted to meth. A thought crossed my mind: One of these days, he’s going to find out through his mom that you’re gone for the weekend and he’s going to burglarize your home.

Three months later, that is precisely, EXACTLY what happened.

 

After my nanny left that day, I called my mom. I told her “I need to find a new nanny. I need to disconnect. Something bad is going to happen.”

But I did nothing.

I talked to Mac about it, told him my concerns. I am no stranger to drug addiction and what it causes. I am no stranger to the monsters people become.

But still I did nothing.

I did nothing against my better judgment.

I did nothing against every cell of my being screaming at me “Stop this. Get out. Bad things are going to happen.”

I did nothing because I ignored my intuition.

I did nothing until it was too late.

And that is the part I can’t get over.

That is the part that haunts me, late at night when I think about the family photos and videos that were lost in the stolen laptop and the pearl necklace gone, the one Mac gave me a couple months into our relationship, and the diamond ring I remember so clearly on my beloved grandmother’s thin, wrinkled gorgeous finger.

I did nothing because I was stuck. I was stuck in a motherfucking rut and I could not see out. I refused to see out. I would not see out.

Life gave me the signs. It gave me the chance to redirect, to move along, to do something new. The universe hinted, nudged, and at times downright pushed and shoved, but still, I did nothing.

Why? Because it was too hard. Because I preferred the comfort of my rut to the difficulty of a new course.

Our home was dark. The neighborhood was terrible. I hated it. We all hated it.  It was a dead, depressing place. We lived two houses down from a known drug house. They’d do deals in the street. They’d park in front of our house waiting for the delivery. Sometimes I’d walk up to them and knock on the car window, ask if I could help. Probably not the safest move, but it gets to the point when you don’t fucking care anymore. The neighbor on our left occasionally got drunk and poisoned animals in the neighborhood. We lived in near-constant fear of our animals getting out. One day our cat did. We found her on our driveway, poisoned the same way our two kitties died when we first moved in, two years prior, before we knew. Our street was a thoroughfare to the worst street in town, so a constant stream of addicts and drunks poured down our road like a sad parade. They left their trash on our lawn and their baggies on the sidewalk.

We needed to move a long time before, but we didn’t. We didn’t because we were stuck.  We didn’t because sometimes the misery you know is easier than the unknown, because it’s safer, or you think it is, simply because it is known.

It all starts to feel so heavy: The change. The fear surrounding it all: What will happen? What if it doesn’t work? Where will we go and do and how will it all work?

One day turns into the next and the next and the next and it’s just you and the aching intuition, the burning feeling that something needs to change. But nothing changes, because nothing changes. And fear.

The burglary ended it.

Shaken to our core, we were faced with the reality of what our life had become and how distant we had grown from that reality. Within 45 days our house was on the market and we had moved into my mom’s house. Within 90 days our house was sold and we were in escrow on another. Around 4 months from that burglary we moved into the house we live in now, a place I love so much I never want to leave (which is its own problem but one I love to have!). I had forgotten how much a miserable house can bring you down. I had forgotten what it feels like to love where you’re living, to feel “home” each day, in your home.

Action. Finally. Happened.

In a way, that burglary was the best thing to ever happen to us, but still I’m full of hatred sometimes, toward him, but mostly toward myself. Why didn’t I act? Why didn’t I do something? Why didn’t I trust my gut and heart?

I know. I already know: I was doing the best I could at the time. And really, it was just stuff gone. It’s just stuff. Means nothing.

But shit. It’s hard. You know?

Hard to face the elements of responsibility in our own lives, hard to square off with the truth about ourselves. It is not my fault that he burglarized our home. It is, however, my fault that I denied my intuition and chose comfort over change, even though that comfort was making me fucking miserable and I KNEW IT.

It is my fault that I didn’t leave a house and town and situation that was sucking the life out of me.

It is my fault I DID NOT ACT.

Life is strange, isn’t it? The way we stay in things that are killing us because at least we feel safe – hang out in the muck and dirt and mire because at least it’s the muck and dirt and mire we’re accustomed to. The way we justify the shit in our lives as if it’s other people’s faults when really it’s us – we’re the ones too chicken shit to move, paralyzed by our own indecision, cut off at the knees with terror. Of what, who knows. How could it be worse than this?

Until life slaughters us one day, to be reborn.

I’m beginning to think life is just a series of little deaths, of becoming unstuck, of seeing how fear pulses through my mind and spine and legs, moving my body for me, on nothing more than a glorified rat wheel. Around and around we call it “living.” I know the truth but I’m too scared to face it. That bullshit job, relationship, habit, whatever. The truth rests deep inside of me. I work every day to ignore it, until I cannot any longer.

I was stuck. I’m not stuck now.

I want to forgive myself, but some mental construction won’t work. “I forgive you Janelle.”

Ah, fuck off.

That shit never works. I need action. I will forgive myself by staying unstuck, by laughing at the voice that says “You can’t. It’s too hard. Stay here.”

I tried that, asshole. I went down that road and it didn’t work. I couldn’t get off  the track on my own so life did it for me, and it hurt. I was shattered into a new direction.

I’m responsible for that, too, I guess. New digs and freedom. My own failure to move – literally and figuratively – killed me. But to begin again. Unstuck, one more time.

Maybe I’ll trust better, sooner.

Myself, and life.

The real kind.

 

sometimes I feel like this.

15 signs you need to GTFU

by renegademama

I agree with this dude who said parents need to calm the fuck down.

I would like to add that people need to grow the fuck up. From this point forward, we shall use the acronym GTFU. Sometimes, that’s the simple answer. Calm the fuck down, GTFU.

Personally, I’m pretty tired of people walking around as if they’re grown up, only to commit some fatal juvenile act outta the damn blue, signaling a formerly unknown, totally unmanageable well of immaturity. It’s actually rather disturbing. You’re hanging out with somebody all chill and shit thinking “Yeah, look at us, two adults.” And then boom! It happens and you’re all “Oh, wow. I was wrong. You’re my tween.” Possibly my toddler.

I mean come ON, I’m immature. But even I have figured out a few things during my years, and my bar is low I assure you. Some things just aren’t right, and whether we want to or not, at some point, in some areas, we simply must GTFU.

So in the interest of helpfulness (not really, I actually have no interest in being helpful at all), I have compiled a list of behaviors that really signal a need to GTFU.

This list is not comprehensive.

15 SIGNS YOU NEED TO GTFU

1. Finding yourself disturbed for more than 12 seconds by something you read on The Twitter. Check this out: There’s real life and there’s social media.Twitter falls into the category of “social media.” Social media is known to be the gathering ground of all idiots of the world, because not only are they idiots, they are INVISIBLE IDIOTS, which empowers the shit outta them. So, since it surpasses standard dumb exponentially via the blessing of anonymity, social media weirdness needn’t compel serious introspection or offense, but rather one thought and one thought only: What the hell is wrong with these people? And then you get back into real life.

2. Getting unfriended on Facebook results in days of thought and emotional turmoil. If you’re pissing people off, you’re doing it right. Well, usually. Unless you’re Rush Limbaugh or a proponent of this website, which promotes the equal treatment of white people (because that’s obviously always been a problem). There’s no way anybody on that website is doing it right.

3. Involving yourself in every corner of your kids’ lives, telling yourself it’s “for their good.” Look, the rest of the world knows you need to GTFU, because really, it’s all about you. You have not realized your childhood is over. Ship fully sailed. Please stop controlling your kids to bolster the value and meaning of your own existence. We are now in grown-up mode, where we reflect on past mistakes with a mix of nostalgia and horror as opposed to attempt to FIX them through innocent children. Get with the program!

4. You are offended/disturbed/made to feel funny by women breastfeeding in public without a cover. Masturbate, watch porn, move to Denmark. DO WHAT IT TAKES TO FIX YOURSELF.

5. You are in your 30s and think it’s acceptable to smoke weed and play video games all day while your partner goes to work.

6. You are the partner of number 5 and defend him(her?) to your parents by saying things like “But we’re in love.”

7. U write all correspondence like ur texting.

8. You play Candy Crush. Dude I’m totally joking. Just got addicted to that shit last week. However, if you play Candy Crush and send repeated requests for it, you may need to GTFU, realizing that most people with brains do not play stupid candy games on their iPhones. And if they do, they deny the shit out of it. So deny your shit like the rest of us! (for real though, lately, my house is so messy I choose to sit on the couch and wait for more Candy Crush lives as a new form of denial.)

9. When you’re angry at a friend, you prefer The Passive-Aggressive Unfollow rather than an actual conversation. Look. Good old face-to-face conversations tend to be more effective than a silent click and seething disdain. While I can get behind the “unfriend” as joyfully as the next guy, if you are going to remain a fixture in my life for reasons beyond my control, can we just talk about our issues directly rather than dance around “follow” lists?

10. Wearing sweatpants with words on the rear.

No wait. Actually I’m not done with the Passive-Aggressive Unfollow thing. You see here’s what makes your move childish and infuriating: YOU KNOW THE UNFOLLOW WILL IGNITE A CONVERSATION so it isn’t that you don’t want to talk, it’s that you want to poke me and prod me until I say “Okay, FINE, what is it. Why are you mad? How can I make this better?”

Newsflash: That’s what kids do. GTFU.

11. Yelling at check-out people instead of managers. Everybody knows it’s not their fault. We’re all watching you yell at the pimply faced 18-year-old Target check-out-guy nursing a hangover and general malaise are thinking one thing: “What sort of asshat thinks it’s this kid’s fault the headphones were marked on clearance and now they’re not?” GTFU.

12. You have a beard like this guy.

IMG_3183

I’m kidding. If you have a beard like this guy, you have reached the pinnacle of manhood. You have no further to go. Stop now while you’re ahead. YOU WILL NEVER GET MORE GROWN UP.

13. Judging people’s maturity by their facial hair. OH FUCK YOU. It’s a reliable maturity indicator.

14. Making duck face in photographs, seriously. 

15. Dismissing entire pieces of writing on account of one typo. Grown-ups have been the asshole, probably on more than one occasion, who suddenly for absolutely no apparent reason emails “there” coworkers and gets a reply from them, reads it, notices the typo in shock and horror, requesting immediately that those same coworkers hold her head in a full toilet bowl until she stops squirming.

Life is no longer worth living.

Okay if you think grammatical errors or looking like a douchebag signals the end of the world, you should probably GTFU, because actual grown-ups have realized we’re all douchebags who do the wrong thing, piss people off, and people piss us off.

And rather than pout and freak out and unfollow each other, we can just talk about it, like big people.

Or we can write about it on our blogs, sure the offenders won’t see anyway, CAUSE THEY’VE ALL UNFOLLOWED YOU.

OMG

I need to GTFU.

Leave me alone. I’m need to go play Candy Crush in my sweatpants with words on them while I unfollow people who were mean to me on Twitter.

And then I’m going to try to follow my own advice, which would be way easier if I didn’t hate advice like a fucking 16-year old.

No but really. The passive-aggressive unfollow thing is super uncool. I stand by that one with every shred of my immature heart.

“This offends me!” Who cares? Nobody.

by renegademama

I “offend” people, a lot.

I don’t give a shit, a lot.

I’m not a cold-hearted person. I’m actually quite sensitive. But when people write “This offends me” or “I’m offended by this,” the only thing I think to myself is “It is impossible for me to convey how little I care.” Not because I’m evil (though that may be true), but rather because I just don’t understand what the hell that’s got to do with me.

Recently I wrote a post referring to “childless” people. I used that word because I wanted to refer to people without children, and “people without children” is three words whereas “childless” is one. And since I’m into the whole brevity thing, I decided on the latter. If you hop over and read the comment thread, you’ll see numerous comments clarifying that “childless” is an offensive, politically incorrect term. The word is “childFREE.” ChildLESS implies a void.

See now this is precisely the moment where they lose me. Yes, of course “childless” implies a void. In English, when you add the word “less” to the end of another word, it means “without” that thing. Hence, without children, which is precisely what I’m trying to say. Forgive me, but I’m not going to INVENT some new word because you find the actual word unpalatable.

I know there are people suffering from infertility, and this word must pierce them, and that makes me feel sad, but can you imagine if we kept changing up English every seven minutes to accommodate every individual experience ever known to humankind? I didn’t set out to hurt people’s feelings. I was just writing. And I’m not particularly invested in the word “childless.” But the fact is I’m not responsible for crafting ideas that are pleasant and palatable and gentle on every version of human on earth today.

I will always hurt people, somehow, and they will always hurt me.

The reason some words are replaced by others (“humankind” for “mankind” or “artificial” or “human-made” for “manmade”) is that they are inaccurate.  They erase women. Women are also humans. And unless you know without a doubt that not a single female played a part in the creation of whatever’s in question, then you are misspeaking to call it “manmade.”

But I wasn’t misspeaking. I was merely pissing people off and hurting feelings.

And really, in the end, as harsh as this sounds, who gives a fuck about feelings?

You, your spouse, the people close to you. Feelings are super useful in indicating to us that something’s wrong, that we need to take some action. Internal unrest is a great indicator that our feet or mouths need to do something: Leave, tell the truth, clean up a past action or wrong. Talk about something. Call somebody. Click off this bitch’s webpage.

But people (whiners) of the fucking internet, your feelings are not sufficient evidence that the world should do something different.

In other words, it’s not our problem you’re “offended.”

Let’s think about this for a moment. You’re offended. You’ve taken offense. You announce that on a website or comment thread (or to a live human being) as if it means something, as if it’s some grand proclamation with relevance and importance, but all you’re really saying is this: “I don’t know you and you don’t know me, and we’ve had two totally different lives, but your existence is not validating mine, and that makes me sad, and therefore you should stop doing what you’re doing.”

Do you see how insane that is?

“I’ve had a unique experience of life and my feelings reflect that experience but you don’t, and so YOU’RE WRONG! Stop it! I’m hurt! Wahhhh!”

The problem is not that you’re “offended.” The problem is that you think the rest of the world should care, do something about it, change its behavior to accommodate your inner self.

I hate to break it to you, but your feelings are your own. They’re not mine. They’re not his or hers or theirs or the douchebag writing that article. They are YOURS. Own it, dude. Deal with it.

Every time I hear somebody say “I used to be an alcoholic but now I drink moderately” I want to bash them in the face and my heart sinks into my toes, because that ignorance furthers the plight of actual alcoholics, who of course can’t safely touch alcohol in any form. And there are people dying in the fucking gutters from this disease, and it sure isn’t helping to have people calling themselves alcoholics announcing that they’ve seen the light and “learned to drink reasonably.”

But I know that because I am an alcoholic, because I was dying in a gutter (well actually it was a beige Ford Taurus but who’s counting?). My feelings are hurt because I know – no, I’ve experienced something –this person has not. But that’s not their problem, is it? It’s mine. If I really want to be helpful, perhaps I attempt to explain my perspective, if the opportunity arises. But simply proclaiming “You offend me!” is about the most useless, narcissistic, entitled and meaningless statement ever.

Am I so important that the world should bow and shift and change because my inner self is wounded?

Poor inner child.

Grow the fuck up.

It must be frustrating to troll around the internet endlessly announcing the offense you take to this and that only to find a bunch of unfeeling bags looking at you like “Yes, and?”

But check it out: People find gay people “offensive.” People once found integrated schools “offensive.” People find people of other races, ethnicities and sexes “offensive.” People find breastfeeding in public “offensive.” People find uncovered heads “offensive.” I could go on all day.

Do you see my point here?

The fact that you find something “offensive” cannot possibly mean anything to anybody other than YOU, because if it did, if the world really had to respond to every offense ever taken by every person to ever walk this earth, well come on, you know that’s ridiculous. Nobody would be able to say or write or do anything. The world would turn into some giant vanilla ego-stroking orgy. And there’s no way that’s any fun.

So if that’s true, if quite clearly the world can’t respond to every offended person on the planet, WHAT, dare I ask, makes you so fucking special?

Oh, yes. That’s right. You’re not. You’re only that special in your own head, and possibly your mom’s.

So once again, we’re back to “your problem.”

My problem.

So please, people of the interwebs getting offended all the time and sharing it with us (and then getting more offended because nobody cares), for the love of logic and effectiveness, move beyond your damn feelings for a minute and look at what’s causing them.

Tell me why I’m wrong.

Tell me what I’m not seeing.

Tell me what you’ve experienced that I have not, leading you to see the world differently, from a different place in a different way, and maybe, just maybe, even an asshole like me will take a moment to think about what you’re saying.

Because to begin with, you’re actually, finally, saying something.

So go you.

And now, a moment of silence in reverence for Stephen Fucking Fry. The man-god.fryII

 

 

Brutal honesty and denim

by renegademama

 

So I have this friend. She’s kinduva bitch.

And I mean that in the entirely derogatory sense of the word.

I can do that, because she knows she’s a bitch. Like I know I’m offensive.

One must own their shit, ya know.

This woman will tell you what’s up and she won’t sugar-coat it, and yeah. Sometimes it STINGS.

She won’t soften it to save your delicate feelings or protect the soul of your vulnerable inner child. Fuck your inner child, I hear her saying, “you’re a big girl now.”

Sometimes I want to punch her in the face because I’m like “look lady, leave me alone, I don’t have time for this shit and I’d REALLY APPRECIATE IT if you’d just let me hide out in my warm little delusional cave.” But she won’t. It’s outta the question.

(Not gonna lie, it’s a little unnerving to be around that much honesty. Kinda makes you realize how totally and completely full of shit most people are (including me!)).

But after that initial “I’ll kill you in your sleep” passes, I want to kiss her and tie her up in my basement until she promises she’ll never leave, because I realize I have a friend who loves me enough to tell me the truth.

Like the other day when I showed up at her house in The Only Pair of Jeans I owned, which happened to be a size too big and consequently hanging off my ass, a feature that was particularly problematic when I would bend over, since my underwear aren’t the grandma kind (if ya know what I mean). And, if you read my last post, you know I have NO BUSINESS WHATSOEVER wearing non-grandma underwear. But I do anyway, because I got hooked on them in college, and I’ve never gone back. So in short, my bending over revealed what I can imagine was a somewhat disconcerting montage of cotton, cellulite and butt crack, with possibly a few stretch marks thrown in for good measure.

Hot. “Hot” is the word you’re looking for.

Anyway she basically recited the aforementioned paragraph to me in no uncertain terms, punctuating the entire thing with “we’re going today to get you new jeans. Today.”

Luckily, my two other way nicer and way gentler friends were there to soften the blows of The Bitch, and luckily the four of us are the most perfect disaster in the world, so we could go to the mall with the distinct purpose of fixing my broke ass and it felt alright and was only kind of embarrassing.

We’re like a Sex in the City episode, only with way hotter, smarter women (um duh), and not in New York. And possibly less expensive shoes. And not quite so skinny. So maybe not like it at all. Let’s move on.

So we get there and The Bitch starts running around grabbing shit off shelves, demanding my size and that I try certain things on, then hauls me into the dressing room where she sits there and watches me squeeze my rear end into approximately 9,000 pairs of jeans she chose.

Ah, but then the miracle happened. I put a pair on. She said “Holy shit, those are hot. Your ass is amazing. Your thighs look so thin it’s criminal.”

I turned a couple times in front of the mirror. She called my other friends in. They all agreed. They all discussed my amazing ass.

They told me the TRUTH, and I knew it. I knew there was nothing but honesty, and my feelings weren’t being factored into their assessment, so I could rely wholeheartedly on anything they said.

And there is no better thing in a friendship, as far as I can tell.

So I bought the damn jeans, and I wear them, and I know I look good, and I feel confident and loved, because I’ve got friends who are willing to help me, even if it may embarrass me to be helped.

I have friends who love me even though I’m a certifiable dork who can barely dress herself, who repeatedly wears clothes that should be thrown away, and will continue doing so until somebody has the balls to say “Janelle. SERIOUSLY?”

They know all this, and they’ll say it out loud, and then they’ll handle it, for me, with me.

In spite of me.

Until they’re the asshole in the saggy jeans, and I’m the bitch, and it’s my turn to tell the truth and drag them into the dressing room, loving them anyway, for being such a dork, for needing me to pick them up, save them one more time, with brutal honesty, and denim.

You see that face she’s making? Yep. It says it all.

 

 

18 Comments | Posted in nothing to do with parenting. | January 30, 2013

Attention: Miserable Fat Women

by renegademama

 

Yeah, that’s right. I’m talking to you. Are you offended by that?

Well then you’ve come to the wrong blog.

We like to say it like it is around here. And some of us are fat. Call it whatever gentler name you want (fluffy, overweight, bulky, weight-challenged), but the problem remains: We’re FAT.

And some of us are miserable about it. Some of us aren’t exactly “into” the way we look.

Yeah, I’m talking to you. If you’re fat and happy, I’m not talking to you.

If you’re fat and okay with it, get on with your bad self.

If you’re 3 pounds over your “goal weight,” well done, but you are so not my target audience.

I’m talking to the women who are fat and fucking miserable.

I’m talking to the ones who hate themselves for the way they eat, the ones who stare at themselves disgusted, the ones who lie down at night wondering “WHY? Why did I eat like that AGAIN? What’s wrong with me? God I hate myself.

The ones who would rather have 6 root canals than go clothes shopping. The ones who can’t sit on the floor. The ones with limited mobility (if you can’t run on the beach with your kids, if you can’t squat, you have limited mobility, baby). The ones who will fucking cut you if you take their picture. The ones who look at themselves in the mirror when nobody’s around and shake their heads in amazement, because they just can’t believe they’ve become that woman.

The fat woman.

The one who’s embarrassed to eat in public because she’s a fat person eating. The one who won’t eat junk food around others very often, because she’s always aware, aware that she’s a fat woman eating badly, and people are probably thinking “Look at her. Look at what she’s eating. No wonder she’s fat.”

GROSS.

The woman who’d rather not have sex because there’s just nothing hot about her. Or so she thinks.

The one who hates herself. The one who hates herself so much she keeps on eating. The one who can’t stop eating the foods that comfort her – in some sick cycle of self-abuse, engaging in the act that’s making her miserable.  The woman who’s so fat she doesn’t care anymore.

I’m already disgusting. Might as well keep eating.

I was that woman.

At my biggest, a few years ago, I was 255 pounds. I am 5 feet 8 inches tall. I wore a size 18.

After I had Rocket in 2005, I was about 30 pounds overweight (a good weight for my body is about 150 pounds, which is a size 8). In 2006 I went on a psych medication (trying to treat my drinking problem) that caused me to gain 70 pounds in about 5 months. The next thing I knew I was 100 pounds overweight.

I was obese.

I had never been that woman. I had always pretty much eaten what I wanted. I was able to regulate my weight with small dietary changes and a little exercise, but all the sudden I was The Fucking Fat Chick.

Everything I mentioned above was my life: the self-hatred, the disgust, the lack of sex drive, the limited mobility, the sick relationship with eating. The mind-boggling inability to change one goddamn thing about my diet.

I used to defend my fatness by telling people (and myself) about that medication, and that was true, but I was off all medications by the end of 2009. SO WHY WAS I STILL FAT?

Well, because I was eating like a fat person. I figured what the hell, I’m already gross, why not eat like a gross person? I lost a few pounds when I went off the meds, but not much. When I found out I was pregnant with Georgia I weighed 250 pounds and I fucking flipped. I COULD NOT GAIN ANY MORE WEIGHT. So I exercised and ate really well during that pregnancy, gaining only about 22 pounds.

I lost that plus about 20 more after she was born, mostly due to a uterine infection a couple days after her birth that sent me to the hospital on IV antibiotics for 3 days, plus 30 more days of antibiotics that killed my appetite. SCORE!?

But then I just hung out, fat.

I was about 230 pounds in January of 2012, when I hit what could be called my “bottom,” that point when I’m ready to change. That point when I just can’t stand myself for one more goddamn moment, when my excuses make my toes curl and my skin crawl, when I see myself for exactly what I am without any polish, and call myself out on my own bullshit.

Janelle, you’re not fat because of that medication. You’re fat because you’re eating like a goddamn fat person and not exercising and you hate yourself so you just keep on doing it.

SO DO SOMETHING DIFFERENT.

You’re 33 years old and you’re wasting your life. There will come a time when your body will fail you. There will come a time when no matter how thin you are or how much you exercise, your joints will hurt and your bones will be weak and it will hurt to do things.

And yet here you are, wasting your body while it’s still good. When you could be vigorous and strong and free.

ONLY YOU CAN DO SOMETHING. So do something.

So at the first of the year I started swimming laps and I did the Fat Smash diet, AND I DIDN’T CHEAT. I was willing to do anything to lose that weight, to feel human again, to use my body like it was meant to be used, to feel pretty, even occasionally. To not feel like shit all the time.

And by July of 2012 I had lost 50 pounds (a total of 70 since I was at my fattest).

Now I weigh 180 pounds and wear a size 12.

I feel alive again. I can run with my kids on the damn beach. I can walk up stairs and not get winded. I can sit on the ground and get up again without struggle. I can squat (for a minute, but HEY).

But check it out: the good is the enemy of the best, and now I find myself with a WHOLE NEW SLEW OF EXCUSES keeping me from losing my last 30 pounds.

But Janelle, you’ve already lost 70 pounds. You’re good.

You look so much better than you did before.

The last 30 are so hard to lose.

Basically, because I’m not fucking miserable anymore, I think I can just hang out where I am, even though I’m not where I want to be.

And so here’s to you, ladies, the ones who are suffering, the ones who can’t stand themselves.

The miserable fat ones.

What stories are you telling yourself?

What’s keeping you from living, from becoming strong, from being where you want to be?

I’m 100% convinced  that success of my life is determined in direct proportion to my ability to see through my own bullshit, to call myself out on my own lies, to see through the fallacies I sell myself as truth.

Fuck honesty with others. That’s easy.

The hard part is honesty with myself. When nobody’s looking. When nobody’s around and I’m going through the fast-food line, or eating my third cookie, and acting like it just isn’t my fault.

Or I’ll change it tomorrow.

I swear I will.

But I lie down at night and I’ve done it again and I hate myself, for being a liar, a fake and a fraud, a damn pig.

I’m telling you all this because I’ve got to be accountable to somebody, and you all are my favorite people in the world.

This isn’t a resolution. This is a promise to stop lying to myself.

They say the truth will set you free. Maybe. I guess we’ll see.

It’s January 23, 2013. Most resolutions have died. But it’s a new year and we’ve got 11 more months to stop the bullshit that’s killing us.

What are you going to do with it?

I, for one, am going to lose 30 fucking pounds.

And now I’ve said it out loud, on the internet, where even a bull-shitter like me can’t hide.