"I've decided that perhaps I'm bulimic and just keep forgetting to purge."

-- Paula Poundstone

Monday, August 30, 2010

Pounding the pavement

Screw the scales.

My dear friend Brooke told me that a few months ago, trying to get me to measure my success in other ways.

Well, considering I somehow managed to gain 5 pounds this week, I’m thinking it’s brilliant advice.

After all, I walked my first official 5K on Saturday as part of the Crim Festival of Races!

Not only that … I think I did really well.

My official electronic chip time was 52:13. That breaks down to this:

I was 290th out of 906 in my age division (ages 30-34 – and I’m 34!).

I was 290th out of 1,662 women.

And I was 413th out of 2,554 walkers overall!

So, I finished faster than 2,141 other people.

Hey, I’m as shocked as you are.

My little man, who will be 2 in October, also held our hands and walked the entire length of his quarter-mile Teddy Bear Trot.

There were lots of smiles this weekend.

I’ve come a long way since I started walking in March, when it took me over 21 minutes to walk only 1 excruciating mile.

Some days, you’ve just gotta say screw the scales.

Today is one of those days.

Pounding the pavement

Screw the scales.

My dear friend Brooke told me that a few months ago, trying to get me to measure my success in other ways.

Well, considering I somehow managed to gain 5 pounds this week, I’m thinking it’s brilliant advice.

After all, I walked my first official 5K on Saturday as part of the Crim Festival of Races!

Not only that … I think I did really well.

My official electronic chip time was 52:13. That breaks down to this:

I was 290th out of 906 in my age division (ages 30-34 – and I’m 34!).

I was 290th out of 1,662 women.

And I was 413th out of 2,554 walkers overall!

So, I finished faster than 2,141 other people.

Hey, I’m as shocked as you are.

My little man, who will be 2 in October, also held our hands and walked the entire length of his quarter-mile Teddy Bear Trot.

There were lots of smiles this weekend.

I’ve come a long way since I started walking in March, when it took me over 21 minutes to walk only 1 excruciating mile.

Some days, you’ve just gotta say screw the scales.

Today is one of those days.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

That love/hate relationship

Usually when I walk on the treadmill in the mornings, my son is still asleep. Today, he was up and walked into the room where I was walking.

I was grateful.

I had read a friend’s Facebook posting yesterday that her toddler granddaughter had handed her her baby doll and said she was going to work out.

How wonderful is that? What a great example she is setting on such a regular basis that her granddaughter would mimic that.

I haven’t felt like a very good example lately.

My working out has been hit and miss. And my diet has been, well, pretty much all miss.

That picture is from my very first blog posting about this journey. It illustrates my love/hate relationship with food.

I see major strides in some areas. When I first started out in March, 1 mile on the treadmill left me in pain and exhausted. Now I’m doing 3.

But I still fight the food battle day in and day out, and right now I’m losing.

Today has started off right.

I’m thankful for the promise of each brand-new day.

That love/hate relationship

Usually when I walk on the treadmill in the mornings, my son is still asleep. Today, he was up and walked into the room where I was walking.

I was grateful.

I had read a friend’s Facebook posting yesterday that her toddler granddaughter had handed her her baby doll and said she was going to work out.

How wonderful is that? What a great example she is setting on such a regular basis that her granddaughter would mimic that.

I haven’t felt like a very good example lately.

My working out has been hit and miss. And my diet has been, well, pretty much all miss.

That picture is from my very first blog posting about this journey. It illustrates my love/hate relationship with food.

I see major strides in some areas. When I first started out in March, 1 mile on the treadmill left me in pain and exhausted. Now I’m doing 3.

But I still fight the food battle day in and day out, and right now I’m losing.

Today has started off right.

I’m thankful for the promise of each brand-new day.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Movin’ on down

Well, my little get-moving scheme worked.

I threw in several walks, some late-night dancing, a sweaty trip to the batting cages and a couple of Zumba classes for the week.

The result: I lost those 3 pounds I had gained in my two “off” weeks.

That’s back to 43 pounds lost.

I’m hoping I can quit playing around with these few pounds and keep losing now. The key will be to get my eating under control again.

I’m still finding the comfort in it right now, and I need to train my brain that food is fuel again.

It doesn’t love me. It doesn’t control me.

I know these things, but man, it’s hard.

During a walk last night with friends Kristy and Kim (and two of our little cuties, shown here), we trekked through this beautiful neighborhood where homes had their windows open to let in the fresh air.

Well, it was dinner time, and they were also letting out their delicious aromas.

Seriously. I hope Kim and Kristy will comment on this, because I don’t know if anyone will believe it.

We started out, and the air smelled like hamburgers on a grill. A little farther down, it smelled like bacon. Heavenly bacon.

Then a few streets over, I swear we smelled marshmallows roasting on an open fire.

Finally, chicken teriyaki. We were certain of it.

I kid you not, I thought we were on some kind of hidden-camera reality show. I was waiting for a man with a mic to run up to me.

“Hey, fatty! We really thought we had you with the bacon. Tell us … how did you keep going?”

Ah, well. I am keeping going, one day at a time.

How about you?

Movin’ on down

Well, my little get-moving scheme worked.

I threw in several walks, some late-night dancing, a sweaty trip to the batting cages and a couple of Zumba classes for the week.

The result: I lost those 3 pounds I had gained in my two “off” weeks.

That’s back to 43 pounds lost.

I’m hoping I can quit playing around with these few pounds and keep losing now. The key will be to get my eating under control again.

I’m still finding the comfort in it right now, and I need to train my brain that food is fuel again.

It doesn’t love me. It doesn’t control me.

I know these things, but man, it’s hard.

During a walk last night with friends Kristy and Kim (and two of our little cuties, shown here), we trekked through this beautiful neighborhood where homes had their windows open to let in the fresh air.

Well, it was dinner time, and they were also letting out their delicious aromas.

Seriously. I hope Kim and Kristy will comment on this, because I don’t know if anyone will believe it.

We started out, and the air smelled like hamburgers on a grill. A little farther down, it smelled like bacon. Heavenly bacon.

Then a few streets over, I swear we smelled marshmallows roasting on an open fire.

Finally, chicken teriyaki. We were certain of it.

I kid you not, I thought we were on some kind of hidden-camera reality show. I was waiting for a man with a mic to run up to me.

“Hey, fatty! We really thought we had you with the bacon. Tell us … how did you keep going?”

Ah, well. I am keeping going, one day at a time.

How about you?

Friday, August 20, 2010

Just a swingin'

Many thanks to my work pal Alan, who took me to the batting cages yesterday. 

He plays for the super-cool throwback Bay City Independents base ball (yes, two words) team, so he pretty much schooled me.

But it felt good to swing a bat again. Natural. Calming.

And … I didn't even throw out my back!

It was fun. Lots of fun.

This weekend, you find something fun to do, too, eh?

Just a swingin'

Many thanks to my work pal Alan, who took me to the batting cages yesterday. 

He plays for the super-cool throwback Bay City Independents base ball (yes, two words) team, so he pretty much schooled me.

But it felt good to swing a bat again. Natural. Calming.

And … I didn't even throw out my back!

It was fun. Lots of fun.

This weekend, you find something fun to do, too, eh?

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Well, that was weird

While I had been pretty consistent on the treadmill up until my father’s death a couple of weeks ago, I had been horrible about the gym.

I hadn’t been in a few weeks even before the death.

So, I made my way back last night for Zumba.

Probably about 20 seconds into the first song, I started crying.

I wasn’t particularly sad. I wasn’t particularly happy. I wasn’t in pain.

But I was crying.

And this lasted well into the second song.

I have no idea why this happened. Don’t know if it was some residual emotion that still needed to be released. Don’t know if that skinny bitch I swear is inside me was crying to get out.

Just don’t know.

But I do know that me shaking my bootie with tears streaming down my face had to make a few people think I’m cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs.

Ah well. Tonight, I’m hitting the batting cages. I’ll try not to cry.

There’s no crying in baseball.

Well, that was weird

While I had been pretty consistent on the treadmill up until my father’s death a couple of weeks ago, I had been horrible about the gym.

I hadn’t been in a few weeks even before the death.

So, I made my way back last night for Zumba.

Probably about 20 seconds into the first song, I started crying.

I wasn’t particularly sad. I wasn’t particularly happy. I wasn’t in pain.

But I was crying.

And this lasted well into the second song.

I have no idea why this happened. Don’t know if it was some residual emotion that still needed to be released. Don’t know if that skinny bitch I swear is inside me was crying to get out.

Just don’t know.

But I do know that me shaking my bootie with tears streaming down my face had to make a few people think I’m cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs.

Ah well. Tonight, I’m hitting the batting cages. I’ll try not to cry.

There’s no crying in baseball.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Cake walk

Some days are better than others.

Yesterday: 3 cupcakes.

This morning: 3 miles on the treadmill.

However, I walked them in my fastest time ever.

Now, I’m sure it could be considered foolish to say cupcakes give you super powers, but …

Cake walk

Some days are better than others.

Yesterday: 3 cupcakes.

This morning: 3 miles on the treadmill.

However, I walked them in my fastest time ever.

Now, I’m sure it could be considered foolish to say cupcakes give you super powers, but …

Monday, August 16, 2010

The odometer is rolling again

Our Teddy Bear Trotters. Mine is the
second from the right, with the Zoolander hair.
Back to life. Back to reality.

Back to the treadmill.

Whew.

I have not done a thing toward weight loss since my dad died two weeks ago.

Wouldn’t it be great if this post was all about “Tips for Staying Healthy While Mourning the Loss of a Loved One”?

Yeah, well, I ain’t got ‘em.

When Dad died, I shut down mentally and physically, and I went all rogue on my diet.

I’m even battling what has to be my 10th head and chest cold since my little germ magnet started daycare in January.

I wouldn’t recommend any of that. When I finally dragged myself onto the scale this morning, I had gained 3 pounds.

But as my alarm started blaring today, I heard the voice of one of my best friends, who reminded me recently that the key to exercising success is doing it when it’s the last thing you want to do.

So, I resumed what I now consider my routine and got in 3 miles.

I have to: We’re in training around here!

See that picture? Those are four boys who were all born between Sept. 11, 2008, and Oct. 9, 2008. They were about 3 months old in this picture, so they’ve changed a bit since then.

But one thing that hasn’t changed is our desire to get them all together occasionally. As they are nearing their 2nd birthdays, we’re entering them in the Teddy Bear Trot portion of the Crim Festival of Races on Aug. 28 in Flint.

While I was signing up my son, I noticed a 5K Walk, so I signed myself up for that.

And then a week after that, I am doing the 5-mile Mackinac Bridge Walk, which will be the first official thing I mark off my Bucket List.

So, I’m picking myself up, brushing myself off, and I’m moving once again.

Who’s with me?

The odometer is rolling again

Our Teddy Bear Trotters. Mine is the
second from the right, with the Zoolander hair.
Back to life. Back to reality.

Back to the treadmill.

Whew.

I have not done a thing toward weight loss since my dad died two weeks ago.

Wouldn’t it be great if this post was all about “Tips for Staying Healthy While Mourning the Loss of a Loved One”?

Yeah, well, I ain’t got ‘em.

When Dad died, I shut down mentally and physically, and I went all rogue on my diet.

I’m even battling what has to be my 10th head and chest cold since my little germ magnet started daycare in January.

I wouldn’t recommend any of that. When I finally dragged myself onto the scale this morning, I had gained 3 pounds.

But as my alarm started blaring today, I heard the voice of one of my best friends, who reminded me recently that the key to exercising success is doing it when it’s the last thing you want to do.

So, I resumed what I now consider my routine and got in 3 miles.

I have to: We’re in training around here!

See that picture? Those are four boys who were all born between Sept. 11, 2008, and Oct. 9, 2008. They were about 3 months old in this picture, so they’ve changed a bit since then.

But one thing that hasn’t changed is our desire to get them all together occasionally. As they are nearing their 2nd birthdays, we’re entering them in the Teddy Bear Trot portion of the Crim Festival of Races on Aug. 28 in Flint.

While I was signing up my son, I noticed a 5K Walk, so I signed myself up for that.

And then a week after that, I am doing the 5-mile Mackinac Bridge Walk, which will be the first official thing I mark off my Bucket List.

So, I’m picking myself up, brushing myself off, and I’m moving once again.

Who’s with me?

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The beginning at the end

Dad’s Funeral, Part 7
The burial and meal, noon Saturday

After the funeral, I pulled my car directly behind the family hearse for the drive from Calhoun, Ky., to Sacramento, Ky., for my father’s burial.

It was a 10-mile trip that included a swing through Semiway, a hamlet in our county where I think my dad lived after returning home from Georgia, where he lived throughout my entire childhood.

Upon arrival at the cemetery, I wondered if the skunk that had fallen into Dad’s grave had been disposed of.

“Uncle Dave would think that’s hilarious,” Tawna told me at the funeral home.

Then I definitely got his sense of humor, because I immediately filed that away in the Funny Shit You Can’t Make Up part of my brain.

It appeared the scene was skunk-free, and I immediately started to wonder two things as I climbed the small hill to Dad’s grave: Would I turn my ankle in these damn heels, and where should I sit/stand when I get there?

Uncle Charlie answered both of those questions about halfway up the hill when he took me by the arm for the rest of the walk and guided me to the Reserved for Family section under the tent by the grave.

The graveside ceremony was short and somber, including a roll call over the prison guards’ radios in which officers answered “present” until they called out Dad’s badge number.

Silence.

Some of the guards standing behind the tent started sobbing softly, and I so wished I had known this man whom everyone loved so much.

Afterward, the church across the street had a potluck dinner prepared, so I went.

I filled my plate with comfort food … if not now, when? … and I sat beside 6-year-old Chloe, one of my brother’s two children. We talked about her starting school in two days and her loose tooth, and I wondered if I’ll get the pleasure of more of these wonderful conversations.

A friend of Luke’s was sitting near us, and he introduced her to me.

“Are you two related?” she asked.

Luke and I smiled at each other.

“You could say that,” we both answered.

“We have to come up with an answer for that now,” he said to me.

“You could just say I’m Misty. That’s the answer I gave when someone asked who I was at the funeral home,” I told him.

“Misty is Dad’s estranged daughter,” he told his friend.

I’ve been called strange, but never estranged. It worked, I guess.

Luke and me.
“Oh,” she said.

“Awkward, huh?” I said with a laugh.

I finished my meatloaf, mashed potatoes and corn, and people began to trickle out of the church.

Joanne, my dad’s wife, sat one table over. I wrote out all my contact info and handed it to her, and told her to use it if and when she is ready.

Near the food table, Tawna was just getting the chance to eat, so I stood and talked with her a minute.

“Your dad seems very overwhelmed by all this,” I told her.

“He is. We all are. We never knew it was true,” she said. “When you approached me about it our freshman year of high school, I went home and asked, and they asked Uncle Dave, and he said it wasn’t true.”

Wow. Punch in the gut.

“Well, that’s all you could do, Tawna,” I told her. “And in all honesty, if I had asked my uncle a question like that, I’d have no choice but to believe his answer. I don’t blame you.”

And I don’t. Here’s a family that had just lost a man they loved, and lost all chances to ask him any questions after being blindsided with a long-lost daughter who showed up at the funeral.

My heart ached for them. None more so than for Uncle Charlie.

After Luke and I hugged, took pictures together on each of our cell phones and vowed that this is the beginning, not the end, Uncle Charlie walked over and sat next to me.

“I want you to come around, be part of the family,” he told me, not realizing I live in Michigan now.

I vowed I’ll stay in touch and swing by at the holidays so they can get to know my son, a chance my dad will never have.

“Did your mom ever marry?” he asked.

“No. She always worked two and three jobs, and honestly, she never had time to really date,” I explained. “We never got any money from Dad, and the one time we asked for help, he said he couldn’t.”

The look on Charlie’s face broke my heart.

“I didn’t say that to hurt you,” I said. “I’m just explaining how it was.”

“I know,” he said. “But I am so sorry. On behalf of the whole family, I’m sorry.”

We talked a little more, and as I prepared to leave, Charlie told me he was so glad I had come down for the funeral.

“Thank you for that. I’m glad I came,” I said. “My uncle had warned me that he didn’t think I should, because it would just ‘stir up shit.’”

“You tell your uncle that the only thing you did was come down here and gain a new uncle,” he said.

Indeed, I will.

The end.

The beginning at the end

Dad’s Funeral, Part 7
The burial and meal, noon Saturday

After the funeral, I pulled my car directly behind the family hearse for the drive from Calhoun, Ky., to Sacramento, Ky., for my father’s burial.

It was a 10-mile trip that included a swing through Semiway, a hamlet in our county where I think my dad lived after returning home from Georgia, where he lived throughout my entire childhood.

Upon arrival at the cemetery, I wondered if the skunk that had fallen into Dad’s grave had been disposed of.

“Uncle Dave would think that’s hilarious,” Tawna told me at the funeral home.

Then I definitely got his sense of humor, because I immediately filed that away in the Funny Shit You Can’t Make Up part of my brain.

It appeared the scene was skunk-free, and I immediately started to wonder two things as I climbed the small hill to Dad’s grave: Would I turn my ankle in these damn heels, and where should I sit/stand when I get there?

Uncle Charlie answered both of those questions about halfway up the hill when he took me by the arm for the rest of the walk and guided me to the Reserved for Family section under the tent by the grave.

The graveside ceremony was short and somber, including a roll call over the prison guards’ radios in which officers answered “present” until they called out Dad’s badge number.

Silence.

Some of the guards standing behind the tent started sobbing softly, and I so wished I had known this man whom everyone loved so much.

Afterward, the church across the street had a potluck dinner prepared, so I went.

I filled my plate with comfort food … if not now, when? … and I sat beside 6-year-old Chloe, one of my brother’s two children. We talked about her starting school in two days and her loose tooth, and I wondered if I’ll get the pleasure of more of these wonderful conversations.

A friend of Luke’s was sitting near us, and he introduced her to me.

“Are you two related?” she asked.

Luke and I smiled at each other.

“You could say that,” we both answered.

“We have to come up with an answer for that now,” he said to me.

“You could just say I’m Misty. That’s the answer I gave when someone asked who I was at the funeral home,” I told him.

“Misty is Dad’s estranged daughter,” he told his friend.

I’ve been called strange, but never estranged. It worked, I guess.

Luke and me.
“Oh,” she said.

“Awkward, huh?” I said with a laugh.

I finished my meatloaf, mashed potatoes and corn, and people began to trickle out of the church.

Joanne, my dad’s wife, sat one table over. I wrote out all my contact info and handed it to her, and told her to use it if and when she is ready.

Near the food table, Tawna was just getting the chance to eat, so I stood and talked with her a minute.

“Your dad seems very overwhelmed by all this,” I told her.

“He is. We all are. We never knew it was true,” she said. “When you approached me about it our freshman year of high school, I went home and asked, and they asked Uncle Dave, and he said it wasn’t true.”

Wow. Punch in the gut.

“Well, that’s all you could do, Tawna,” I told her. “And in all honesty, if I had asked my uncle a question like that, I’d have no choice but to believe his answer. I don’t blame you.”

And I don’t. Here’s a family that had just lost a man they loved, and lost all chances to ask him any questions after being blindsided with a long-lost daughter who showed up at the funeral.

My heart ached for them. None more so than for Uncle Charlie.

After Luke and I hugged, took pictures together on each of our cell phones and vowed that this is the beginning, not the end, Uncle Charlie walked over and sat next to me.

“I want you to come around, be part of the family,” he told me, not realizing I live in Michigan now.

I vowed I’ll stay in touch and swing by at the holidays so they can get to know my son, a chance my dad will never have.

“Did your mom ever marry?” he asked.

“No. She always worked two and three jobs, and honestly, she never had time to really date,” I explained. “We never got any money from Dad, and the one time we asked for help, he said he couldn’t.”

The look on Charlie’s face broke my heart.

“I didn’t say that to hurt you,” I said. “I’m just explaining how it was.”

“I know,” he said. “But I am so sorry. On behalf of the whole family, I’m sorry.”

We talked a little more, and as I prepared to leave, Charlie told me he was so glad I had come down for the funeral.

“Thank you for that. I’m glad I came,” I said. “My uncle had warned me that he didn’t think I should, because it would just ‘stir up shit.’”

“You tell your uncle that the only thing you did was come down here and gain a new uncle,” he said.

Indeed, I will.

The end.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

‘Reserved for Family’

Dad’s Funeral, Part 6
The Funeral, Saturday morning


I arrived at the funeral home around 9:30 that Saturday morning, giving me enough time to settle in, calm my nerves and share pleasantries with folks I did and didn’t know before my father’s 11 a.m. funeral service.

Nods and friendly smiles were exchanged with his family, who occupied the first few rows of the left side of the chapel in pews that bore signs reading “Reserved for Family.”

Those rows were starting to fill. And well, I just didn’t want to open that can of worms.

So, I sat down on the opposite side, fourth row. The first two rows on this right side had signs reading “Reserved for Pall Bearers.” The third simply said “Reserved.”

As the time for the service neared, I got up to use the restroom, leaving my purse so no one would take my seat.

When I returned, I found my purse had a new butt sitting very close to it, so I turned around to survey my options.

The chapel was full.

I quietly grabbed my purse and slipped onto the end of the empty third “Reserved” row. A few minutes later, a white-haired funeral home worker leaned to whisper in my ear.

“Ma’am, are you with the Guard?” he asked, referring to my father’s prison co-workers.

“No,” I answered, hoping he’d say it was OK and just walk away.

“Well, are you family?” he asked.

I couldn’t speak. I couldn’t believe this was happening.

I looked toward Luke on the front row of the family section, hoping he would save me, but he couldn’t see what was happening.

“Ma’am, are you part of this man’s family?” he asked, a little more stern this time.

“Actually, I’m his daughter,” I said, my voice starting to break.

“Well, then, why don’t you go sit with the family?”

“I don’t want to sit with the family, sir.”

God, please just go away. Please. People are watching.

“I’m sorry if that’s a strained situation,” he said. “Why don’t you just sit on the front row then?”

Dear God, please make me invisible, I prayed. Or, I could just leave. Yes, I’ll just walk out instead of getting kicked out of my seat at my father’s funeral.

“Ma’am?”

“OK, I’ll go to the front,” I said as I grabbed my purse.

He sat me on the end of the front row, one marked “Reserved for Pall Bearers,” which made no more sense to me than where I was before.

Tension made its way up my neck. I couldn’t look back. The whole chapel had just seen what had happened.

Oh my God, Misty. Do not cry. Just look at the casket and do NOT cry.

Out the side of my tear-filled eye, I saw someone walking toward me.

“Come on,” said Paula, Dad’s brother’s wife.

I looked up, and she had her hands held out for me.

“Come on, you’re sitting with the family.”

I grabbed my purse with one hand, and her hand with the other, and tears started to slip down my cheeks with every step to the “Reserved for Family” section.

I sat on the second row, beside Cousin Tawna.

Uncle Charlie and my brother, Luke, both turned around from the front row and put their hands on me.

And I started to sob in my first real cry since I’d been home for the funeral.

To be continued …

‘Reserved for Family’

Dad’s Funeral, Part 6
The Funeral, Saturday morning


I arrived at the funeral home around 9:30 that Saturday morning, giving me enough time to settle in, calm my nerves and share pleasantries with folks I did and didn’t know before my father’s 11 a.m. funeral service.

Nods and friendly smiles were exchanged with his family, who occupied the first few rows of the left side of the chapel in pews that bore signs reading “Reserved for Family.”

Those rows were starting to fill. And well, I just didn’t want to open that can of worms.

So, I sat down on the opposite side, fourth row. The first two rows on this right side had signs reading “Reserved for Pall Bearers.” The third simply said “Reserved.”

As the time for the service neared, I got up to use the restroom, leaving my purse so no one would take my seat.

When I returned, I found my purse had a new butt sitting very close to it, so I turned around to survey my options.

The chapel was full.

I quietly grabbed my purse and slipped onto the end of the empty third “Reserved” row. A few minutes later, a white-haired funeral home worker leaned to whisper in my ear.

“Ma’am, are you with the Guard?” he asked, referring to my father’s prison co-workers.

“No,” I answered, hoping he’d say it was OK and just walk away.

“Well, are you family?” he asked.

I couldn’t speak. I couldn’t believe this was happening.

I looked toward Luke on the front row of the family section, hoping he would save me, but he couldn’t see what was happening.

“Ma’am, are you part of this man’s family?” he asked, a little more stern this time.

“Actually, I’m his daughter,” I said, my voice starting to break.

“Well, then, why don’t you go sit with the family?”

“I don’t want to sit with the family, sir.”

God, please just go away. Please. People are watching.

“I’m sorry if that’s a strained situation,” he said. “Why don’t you just sit on the front row then?”

Dear God, please make me invisible, I prayed. Or, I could just leave. Yes, I’ll just walk out instead of getting kicked out of my seat at my father’s funeral.

“Ma’am?”

“OK, I’ll go to the front,” I said as I grabbed my purse.

He sat me on the end of the front row, one marked “Reserved for Pall Bearers,” which made no more sense to me than where I was before.

Tension made its way up my neck. I couldn’t look back. The whole chapel had just seen what had happened.

Oh my God, Misty. Do not cry. Just look at the casket and do NOT cry.

Out the side of my tear-filled eye, I saw someone walking toward me.

“Come on,” said Paula, Dad’s brother’s wife.

I looked up, and she had her hands held out for me.

“Come on, you’re sitting with the family.”

I grabbed my purse with one hand, and her hand with the other, and tears started to slip down my cheeks with every step to the “Reserved for Family” section.

I sat on the second row, beside Cousin Tawna.

Uncle Charlie and my brother, Luke, both turned around from the front row and put their hands on me.

And I started to sob in my first real cry since I’d been home for the funeral.

To be continued …

Friday, August 13, 2010

‘A pretty good first day’

Dad’s Funeral, Part 5
Visitation, Friday evening


Awkward.

Luke had just told me that he never told his mom that her husband’s long-lost daughter was coming to his funeral.

“Well, I’ll let you handle that,” I said, and he walked away to meet her.

I turned around to look at all the photos they had displayed of Dad.

I stood there looking at pictures of a doting father cradling babies that weren’t me, and a smiling grandfather playing with kids that weren’t my son.

Such a good man, everyone’s told me. Loving, caring, funny. Yes, the pictures seemed to prove as much.

“Damn it, Dad. Why couldn’t we have gotten this right?” I thought.

“Misty?”

I turned around.

“Yes,” I answered.

“I’m Joanne, David’s wife,” she said.

“It’s nice to finally meet you,” I said. And I meant it.

“Did you come all this way just for the funeral?” she asked.

She looked stunned.

“Yes.”

“Well, I’m glad you’re here,” she said. “He would be glad you’re here.”

About that time, my father’s wife had to turn around and talk to more well-wishers as the line started to lengthen again at the funeral visitation on this Friday evening. I quietly slipped to the side.

“Whoa, that was weird,” Luke said as he approached me.

“Why?” I asked.

“I never got to tell her you were here,” he said.

“What … how?”

“I went to talk to her, and she saw you standing there and asked, ‘Is that Misty?’” he explained. “I told her yes, and I asked her how she knew, and she said she’s seen pictures of you.”

I don’t know if she meant pictures I sent to Dad when I was little, or with the graduation invitation I never heard anything back from, or recently when he and I had become Facebook friends.

One thing was sure, though. I wouldn’t get any of those answers during this most tragic and hectic of weekends for her.

And many answers to all our questions will never be revealed, since the one we needed to talk to would be buried in less than 24 hours.

I hated that most for Charlie, my father’s brother. Of everyone, I think he was the most shocked and confused and hurt about me and my absence in his family’s life.

You see, I thought he had known about me my whole life. Come to find out, he didn’t know until recently.

“I think I’m the only one who didn’t know,” he would tell me later.

As the chapel cleared of those who knew and loved Big Dave, I made my way toward the back, where the family was gathering their things.

I gave more hugs, and we said we’d see each other in the morning.

Joanne gave me a smile, as if she just realized we never really got to finish talking earlier.

“Misty,” she said.

“Joanne, I’m so sorry for your loss. And I’m so sorry we are meeting under these circumstances,” I said.

“He would be so glad you’re here,” she told me again.

“I don’t think we’ll really have time to talk tomorrow,” I told her.

“No, I know we won’t. Don’t take that personally, but tomorrow will be rough,” she said.

“I understand. And tomorrow isn’t about me,” I said. “It’s about you and Luke, and for those of you who knew him and are hurting.”

“That’s very giving of you,” she said.

I hugged her and turned to face Luke.

“Well, it was a pretty good first day,” he said as we hugged.

Not too bad. But tomorrow will be rough.

To be continued …

‘A pretty good first day’

Dad’s Funeral, Part 5
Visitation, Friday evening


Awkward.

Luke had just told me that he never told his mom that her husband’s long-lost daughter was coming to his funeral.

“Well, I’ll let you handle that,” I said, and he walked away to meet her.

I turned around to look at all the photos they had displayed of Dad.

I stood there looking at pictures of a doting father cradling babies that weren’t me, and a smiling grandfather playing with kids that weren’t my son.

Such a good man, everyone’s told me. Loving, caring, funny. Yes, the pictures seemed to prove as much.

“Damn it, Dad. Why couldn’t we have gotten this right?” I thought.

“Misty?”

I turned around.

“Yes,” I answered.

“I’m Joanne, David’s wife,” she said.

“It’s nice to finally meet you,” I said. And I meant it.

“Did you come all this way just for the funeral?” she asked.

She looked stunned.

“Yes.”

“Well, I’m glad you’re here,” she said. “He would be glad you’re here.”

About that time, my father’s wife had to turn around and talk to more well-wishers as the line started to lengthen again at the funeral visitation on this Friday evening. I quietly slipped to the side.

“Whoa, that was weird,” Luke said as he approached me.

“Why?” I asked.

“I never got to tell her you were here,” he said.

“What … how?”

“I went to talk to her, and she saw you standing there and asked, ‘Is that Misty?’” he explained. “I told her yes, and I asked her how she knew, and she said she’s seen pictures of you.”

I don’t know if she meant pictures I sent to Dad when I was little, or with the graduation invitation I never heard anything back from, or recently when he and I had become Facebook friends.

One thing was sure, though. I wouldn’t get any of those answers during this most tragic and hectic of weekends for her.

And many answers to all our questions will never be revealed, since the one we needed to talk to would be buried in less than 24 hours.

I hated that most for Charlie, my father’s brother. Of everyone, I think he was the most shocked and confused and hurt about me and my absence in his family’s life.

You see, I thought he had known about me my whole life. Come to find out, he didn’t know until recently.

“I think I’m the only one who didn’t know,” he would tell me later.

As the chapel cleared of those who knew and loved Big Dave, I made my way toward the back, where the family was gathering their things.

I gave more hugs, and we said we’d see each other in the morning.

Joanne gave me a smile, as if she just realized we never really got to finish talking earlier.

“Misty,” she said.

“Joanne, I’m so sorry for your loss. And I’m so sorry we are meeting under these circumstances,” I said.

“He would be so glad you’re here,” she told me again.

“I don’t think we’ll really have time to talk tomorrow,” I told her.

“No, I know we won’t. Don’t take that personally, but tomorrow will be rough,” she said.

“I understand. And tomorrow isn’t about me,” I said. “It’s about you and Luke, and for those of you who knew him and are hurting.”

“That’s very giving of you,” she said.

I hugged her and turned to face Luke.

“Well, it was a pretty good first day,” he said as we hugged.

Not too bad. But tomorrow will be rough.

To be continued …

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Hugs, tears and fears

Dad’s Funeral, Part 4
Visitation, Friday evening

I walked across the parking lot and let the uniformed guards open the door to the funeral chapel for me.

Inside, I noticed another guard standing beside my father’s casket. One would be there every time I looked over the next two days.

Dad was a lieutenant at a prison. He probably didn’t get much lip, I reasoned. He was a meaty 6-foot-4 man, and many who had written get-well wishes on his hospital website referred to him as “Big Dave.”

I got that gene.

It took me a while before I even realized that it was a closed casket, because I couldn’t make myself go toward the front for a while.

I dropped my purse in a pew and looked around for familiar faces. I found a few, and spent my time making small talk with many of them before making my way toward the unfamiliar ones.

I was standing in what would continue to be a decent-sized line of well-wishers when I made eye contact with Tawna, my friend from high school.

She was also my first cousin, but we didn’t speak about that.

She smiled and came to my side. We talked, and I was happy for her yet pissed that she had not seemed to age one day since high school and four kids.

I didn’t get that gene.

I noticed as we made our way toward the casket that she was intentionally staying with me. A tour guide on my trip to Bizarreville, if you will.

Whatever it was, it made me feel better.

“This is Misty,” she said as we approached her mom and dad. I had seen her mom many times over the years at school functions and in the community, but never her dad.

Charlie, my dad’s brother, reached down and gave me one of the biggest hugs I’ve ever gotten.

Two thoughts popped into my head as I also wondered if he’d ever let me go: Is this what Dad hugged like? Am I getting makeup all over the shoulder of his white shirt?

Charlie held me in that bear hug as he seemingly said everything he wanted to say in one shot, just in case there weren’t any more hugs.

“If you need absolutely anything to help you through all this, you just let me know,” he whispered. “Blood, DNA tests … I will be here to help you any way I can.”

Whoa.

In that moment, I fully appreciated that that would forever be THE weirdest “nice to meet you” conversation I will ever have.

I thanked him, confirmed I had indeed left a makeup smudge on his shoulder, and moved a step left to hug my father’s son.

Luke and I had talked many times since January 2007, when I found him on MySpace and asked him one simple question: “Is David Frailley your father?”

“Well...first of all...yes...David Frailley is my father. And secondly, and this is going to sound really crazy....I was just thinking about you,” he wrote in the opening lines of what turned into some really great communication for a while.

From my understanding, it would be a few years, though, before he would tell our dad that we had talked.

But here we were on this day, Friday, 3 ½ years later, standing beside our father’s casket.

“So nice to finally ‘meet’ you,” we both said as I got another great hug.

By the time our embrace had broken, my father’s wife had walked to talk to someone a few feet away.

“Is that your mom?” I asked.

“It is,” he said awkwardly.

We both smiled nervous smiles, and I could tell something was terribly wrong.

“Luke, what’s going on?”

“Well, I never really got around to telling Mom you were going to be here.”

To be continued …

Hugs, tears and fears

Dad’s Funeral, Part 4
Visitation, Friday evening

I walked across the parking lot and let the uniformed guards open the door to the funeral chapel for me.

Inside, I noticed another guard standing beside my father’s casket. One would be there every time I looked over the next two days.

Dad was a lieutenant at a prison. He probably didn’t get much lip, I reasoned. He was a meaty 6-foot-4 man, and many who had written get-well wishes on his hospital website referred to him as “Big Dave.”

I got that gene.

It took me a while before I even realized that it was a closed casket, because I couldn’t make myself go toward the front for a while.

I dropped my purse in a pew and looked around for familiar faces. I found a few, and spent my time making small talk with many of them before making my way toward the unfamiliar ones.

I was standing in what would continue to be a decent-sized line of well-wishers when I made eye contact with Tawna, my friend from high school.

She was also my first cousin, but we didn’t speak about that.

She smiled and came to my side. We talked, and I was happy for her yet pissed that she had not seemed to age one day since high school and four kids.

I didn’t get that gene.

I noticed as we made our way toward the casket that she was intentionally staying with me. A tour guide on my trip to Bizarreville, if you will.

Whatever it was, it made me feel better.

“This is Misty,” she said as we approached her mom and dad. I had seen her mom many times over the years at school functions and in the community, but never her dad.

Charlie, my dad’s brother, reached down and gave me one of the biggest hugs I’ve ever gotten.

Two thoughts popped into my head as I also wondered if he’d ever let me go: Is this what Dad hugged like? Am I getting makeup all over the shoulder of his white shirt?

Charlie held me in that bear hug as he seemingly said everything he wanted to say in one shot, just in case there weren’t any more hugs.

“If you need absolutely anything to help you through all this, you just let me know,” he whispered. “Blood, DNA tests … I will be here to help you any way I can.”

Whoa.

In that moment, I fully appreciated that that would forever be THE weirdest “nice to meet you” conversation I will ever have.

I thanked him, confirmed I had indeed left a makeup smudge on his shoulder, and moved a step left to hug my father’s son.

Luke and I had talked many times since January 2007, when I found him on MySpace and asked him one simple question: “Is David Frailley your father?”

“Well...first of all...yes...David Frailley is my father. And secondly, and this is going to sound really crazy....I was just thinking about you,” he wrote in the opening lines of what turned into some really great communication for a while.

From my understanding, it would be a few years, though, before he would tell our dad that we had talked.

But here we were on this day, Friday, 3 ½ years later, standing beside our father’s casket.

“So nice to finally ‘meet’ you,” we both said as I got another great hug.

By the time our embrace had broken, my father’s wife had walked to talk to someone a few feet away.

“Is that your mom?” I asked.

“It is,” he said awkwardly.

We both smiled nervous smiles, and I could tell something was terribly wrong.

“Luke, what’s going on?”

“Well, I never really got around to telling Mom you were going to be here.”

To be continued …

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Our first and last meeting

Dad’s Funeral, Part 3
Heading to visitation, Friday afternoon

On the 10-mile drive from Mom’s in Livermore, Ky., to the funeral home in Calhoun, I got more nervous the closer I got.

I passed my high school, the one and only in our county. It was there, in November 1993, that I met my father for the first time in the parking lot after my basketball scrimmage. I was 17.

And it was there, midcourt during halftime of a boys basketball game just two months later, that I would see him for the last time.

We spoke briefly about why he had stood me up for the Get to Know Each Other Dinner we had planned during our initial meeting two months before, and then we were on our way.

Sixteen-and-a-half years ago, and I never saw him again.

What a shame, I thought, as I pulled into the funeral home parking lot on Friday afternoon.

I sat in the back of the lot, watching people park their cars and walk inside to comfort the family and pay their respects.

All of a sudden, I couldn’t breathe. And my stomach still hurt.

Why was this happening? Why was I here? Why in the hell had he not made more of an effort?

Holy shit, I COULDN’T BREATHE.

From the time I had learned of Dad’s motorcycle crash until his death a little over a week later, I prayed for a happy ending.

Maybe he would need an organ transplant, I thought. And being as I’m his only blood child (his son is adopted), they’d have to contact me.

And I’d come to the rescue and give him a kidney or whatever, and he’d recover and thank me and love me and be my son’s Granddaddy, and we’d all live happily ever after.

Or his son would get the email I sent him in the final two days of our dad’s life and accept my offer to travel to Nashville and talk to him to help wake him from his coma.

Can you imagine? I save his life with a part of my body or be the voice that snaps him from his coma?

Well, that’s the way it would go if I were writing that book.

But this wasn't a book, and I sure as heck didn't write it.

He was dead. No tidy, heroic endings here.

Deep breath. I’m going in.

To be continued …

Our first and last meeting

Dad’s Funeral, Part 3
Heading to visitation, Friday afternoon

On the 10-mile drive from Mom’s in Livermore, Ky., to the funeral home in Calhoun, I got more nervous the closer I got.

I passed my high school, the one and only in our county. It was there, in November 1993, that I met my father for the first time in the parking lot after my basketball scrimmage. I was 17.

And it was there, midcourt during halftime of a boys basketball game just two months later, that I would see him for the last time.

We spoke briefly about why he had stood me up for the Get to Know Each Other Dinner we had planned during our initial meeting two months before, and then we were on our way.

Sixteen-and-a-half years ago, and I never saw him again.

What a shame, I thought, as I pulled into the funeral home parking lot on Friday afternoon.

I sat in the back of the lot, watching people park their cars and walk inside to comfort the family and pay their respects.

All of a sudden, I couldn’t breathe. And my stomach still hurt.

Why was this happening? Why was I here? Why in the hell had he not made more of an effort?

Holy shit, I COULDN’T BREATHE.

From the time I had learned of Dad’s motorcycle crash until his death a little over a week later, I prayed for a happy ending.

Maybe he would need an organ transplant, I thought. And being as I’m his only blood child (his son is adopted), they’d have to contact me.

And I’d come to the rescue and give him a kidney or whatever, and he’d recover and thank me and love me and be my son’s Granddaddy, and we’d all live happily ever after.

Or his son would get the email I sent him in the final two days of our dad’s life and accept my offer to travel to Nashville and talk to him to help wake him from his coma.

Can you imagine? I save his life with a part of my body or be the voice that snaps him from his coma?

Well, that’s the way it would go if I were writing that book.

But this wasn't a book, and I sure as heck didn't write it.

He was dead. No tidy, heroic endings here.

Deep breath. I’m going in.

To be continued …

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Conclusions on a country road

Dad’s Funeral, Part 2
Friday, mid-afternoon

After driving nine hours home to Kentucky from Michigan by myself on Thursday, I was exhausted.

Let's be honest: I've been exhausted since I was in Kentucky just a month ago. And really, I feel like I haven't slept well in years.

On this day, Friday, I had woken up several times in the morning but welcomed the chance to go back to sleep when I realized that today was visitation day at the funeral home for the father I barely knew.

I continued this wake-up-then-be-overcome-by-dread-then-nearly-panic-and-finally-fall-back-asleep pattern until Mom came into my room to tell me it was noon.

I rolled over and picked up my phone. I had missed a call from Candace and text messages from Tifany and Tara.

Funny, I'm 34 years old. I've made many friends since moving away to college and then in my 11 years in Michigan.

Yet three friends from childhood were the ones checking in on me on this most grueling and awkward of days.

During lunch, between Mom’s “crunch, chew, chews,” I looked at Friday's local newspaper. That contributed significantly to the aforementioned irritability and sadness.

After such a great phone conversation with my dad’s son on Wednesday night, I had held a smidge of hope that Dad's obit was reprinted on this day after the one that ran Thursday failed to mention me as a survivor.

No such luck.

And then I made the mistake of reading my horoscope.

"It's one of those days when the people you try to please the most are likely to be the least appreciative of your gestures. You can't be all things to all people, so don't even try."

Well, son of a bitch.

All the way home, I had wondered what exactly my purpose was for driving nearly 600 miles for this funeral, beyond the unlikely chance for closure.

"If I don’t know what I'm looking for, how will I know when I've found it?" I posted to my Facebook while driving down I-75.

I came to a few conclusions over the next few hours of that drive.

One: The peace, if any, found this weekend may not be my own.

Crap.

Come on, God. Could I really be driving 600 miles for someone else's peace? Please don't let that be the case. After 34 years, don't I deserve the peace?

Two: I don't want anyone to go to the funeral home with me. I've had plenty of offers from family and friends, but I don't want to go there with a group of supporters. I don't want to turn this into a production about me. This is not about me.

This visitation and funeral are for Dad’s "real" family. The ones who have known him and loved him all their lives, and who are hurting and mourning. The last thing they need is the long-lost daughter showing up and stealing the spotlight.

Wait, is there a spotlight at a funeral? Well, if so, I don't want it on me.

Yet, I would take a little acknowledgement. I didn't get it all my life. I didn’t get it in Dad’s obit. And I can pretty much expect I won't get it in the funeral service on Saturday, either.

Sigh. What the hell am I doing here?

And that horoscope? Jesus. What if it's about my dad's wife? What if I'm somehow subconsciously hoping to make her feel better in all this, and yet she turns out to be the one who is "least appreciative of my gestures?"

Plus, who at the funeral home will know I'm his daughter? Who won’t? How much more awkward could this be?

My stomach hurts.

But I have to go get ready. Visitation starts in two hours.

To be continued …

Conclusions on a country road

Dad’s Funeral, Part 2
Friday, mid-afternoon

After driving nine hours home to Kentucky from Michigan by myself on Thursday, I was exhausted.

Let's be honest: I've been exhausted since I was in Kentucky just a month ago. And really, I feel like I haven't slept well in years.

On this day, Friday, I had woken up several times in the morning but welcomed the chance to go back to sleep when I realized that today was visitation day at the funeral home for the father I barely knew.

I continued this wake-up-then-be-overcome-by-dread-then-nearly-panic-and-finally-fall-back-asleep pattern until Mom came into my room to tell me it was noon.

I rolled over and picked up my phone. I had missed a call from Candace and text messages from Tifany and Tara.

Funny, I'm 34 years old. I've made many friends since moving away to college and then in my 11 years in Michigan.

Yet three friends from childhood were the ones checking in on me on this most grueling and awkward of days.

During lunch, between Mom’s “crunch, chew, chews,” I looked at Friday's local newspaper. That contributed significantly to the aforementioned irritability and sadness.

After such a great phone conversation with my dad’s son on Wednesday night, I had held a smidge of hope that Dad's obit was reprinted on this day after the one that ran Thursday failed to mention me as a survivor.

No such luck.

And then I made the mistake of reading my horoscope.

"It's one of those days when the people you try to please the most are likely to be the least appreciative of your gestures. You can't be all things to all people, so don't even try."

Well, son of a bitch.

All the way home, I had wondered what exactly my purpose was for driving nearly 600 miles for this funeral, beyond the unlikely chance for closure.

"If I don’t know what I'm looking for, how will I know when I've found it?" I posted to my Facebook while driving down I-75.

I came to a few conclusions over the next few hours of that drive.

One: The peace, if any, found this weekend may not be my own.

Crap.

Come on, God. Could I really be driving 600 miles for someone else's peace? Please don't let that be the case. After 34 years, don't I deserve the peace?

Two: I don't want anyone to go to the funeral home with me. I've had plenty of offers from family and friends, but I don't want to go there with a group of supporters. I don't want to turn this into a production about me. This is not about me.

This visitation and funeral are for Dad’s "real" family. The ones who have known him and loved him all their lives, and who are hurting and mourning. The last thing they need is the long-lost daughter showing up and stealing the spotlight.

Wait, is there a spotlight at a funeral? Well, if so, I don't want it on me.

Yet, I would take a little acknowledgement. I didn't get it all my life. I didn’t get it in Dad’s obit. And I can pretty much expect I won't get it in the funeral service on Saturday, either.

Sigh. What the hell am I doing here?

And that horoscope? Jesus. What if it's about my dad's wife? What if I'm somehow subconsciously hoping to make her feel better in all this, and yet she turns out to be the one who is "least appreciative of my gestures?"

Plus, who at the funeral home will know I'm his daughter? Who won’t? How much more awkward could this be?

My stomach hurts.

But I have to go get ready. Visitation starts in two hours.

To be continued …

Monday, August 9, 2010

Dad’s Funeral

Note: I did not weigh in today. Ever since finding out about my dad’s death last Tuesday night, weight loss and any efforts toward such have been the furthest things from my mind.


Yes, I will get back to both my weight loss journey and blogging about it. But for now, I have to get the whole “going home for the funeral of the father I barely knew” story out of my head and into written form.


So, starting today, here is the story of that journey.


Part 1, 1 p.m. Friday

I'm sitting on Mom's couch in Livermore, Ky., and I am wondering how many potato chips can possibly be in her tiny Lay's bag across the room.

"Crunch, chew, chew. Crunch, chew, chew.

“CRUNCH, CHEW, CHEW!"

Wow, I’m irritable. And sad. But really, really irritable.

Today's Friday, I recall. Oh, thank God.

I can take my antidepressant.

I started on Pristiq last year when I felt I had nowhere else to turn. I had just had a baby, lost my job, my marriage was suffering, and I had just decided that spending all that money taking classes toward a teaching degree that had the potential to be worthless in hard-knock Michigan was not the best plan.

I was lost.

My marriage counselor had suggested I might benefit from an antidepressant, considering the "circumstances."

"Marriage counselor." I use the term loosely. My husband and I had gone to her only a few times and stopped after she fell asleep during our last session.

Yes, seriously.

Anyway, I went to my OB/GYN and explained the “circumstances,” including the counselor’s suggestion, and he prescribed the antidepressant.

Since losing weight, getting a job, etc., I have been in the process of weaning off the Pristiq for the past month and a half or so.

I went from a pill each day to every other day, to every three days, to now, two times a week. I took one on Monday, and now it's Friday. Pill day. Praise the lord and pass the bottle.

I'll do this for another couple of weeks.

My doctor had diagnosed me with "situational depression," so I guess if I can steer clear of any more "situations," I'll be off the happy pills.

At this very moment, I'm skeptical.

And today, I have a situation.

To be continued …

Dad’s Funeral

Note: I did not weigh in today. Ever since finding out about my dad’s death last Tuesday night, weight loss and any efforts toward such have been the furthest things from my mind.


Yes, I will get back to both my weight loss journey and blogging about it. But for now, I have to get the whole “going home for the funeral of the father I barely knew” story out of my head and into written form.


So, starting today, here is the story of that journey.


Part 1, 1 p.m. Friday

I'm sitting on Mom's couch in Livermore, Ky., and I am wondering how many potato chips can possibly be in her tiny Lay's bag across the room.

"Crunch, chew, chew. Crunch, chew, chew.

“CRUNCH, CHEW, CHEW!"

Wow, I’m irritable. And sad. But really, really irritable.

Today's Friday, I recall. Oh, thank God.

I can take my antidepressant.

I started on Pristiq last year when I felt I had nowhere else to turn. I had just had a baby, lost my job, my marriage was suffering, and I had just decided that spending all that money taking classes toward a teaching degree that had the potential to be worthless in hard-knock Michigan was not the best plan.

I was lost.

My marriage counselor had suggested I might benefit from an antidepressant, considering the "circumstances."

"Marriage counselor." I use the term loosely. My husband and I had gone to her only a few times and stopped after she fell asleep during our last session.

Yes, seriously.

Anyway, I went to my OB/GYN and explained the “circumstances,” including the counselor’s suggestion, and he prescribed the antidepressant.

Since losing weight, getting a job, etc., I have been in the process of weaning off the Pristiq for the past month and a half or so.

I went from a pill each day to every other day, to every three days, to now, two times a week. I took one on Monday, and now it's Friday. Pill day. Praise the lord and pass the bottle.

I'll do this for another couple of weeks.

My doctor had diagnosed me with "situational depression," so I guess if I can steer clear of any more "situations," I'll be off the happy pills.

At this very moment, I'm skeptical.

And today, I have a situation.

To be continued …

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Let It Be

I just wanted to jump on here real quick before I head out to Kentucky for my father’s funeral.

I’ve been an emotional wreck all week. That’s why I’m not blogging right now.

Well, except for right now. You get the point.

For days, I had wrangled and fought and prayed and lamented over whether I should go to his funeral, mainly because I don’t want to hurt anyone in his family, even though I do need to say goodbye.

This is an odd situation for everyone.

That was never as clear as when his son called me last night.

We talked for quite a while. We laughed, we got choked up.

We want to meet.

And he said one thing at the very end of our talk that removed all doubt about whether I should go:

“I’ve thought long and hard about this, Misty. And I want you to do what you need to do. And if you come down here and one person – anybody – gives you a hard time about being here, you tell them to come talk to me.”

My stuff is packed, and I’m wearing my Beatles “Let It Be” T-shirt.

Ironic or symbolic?

Only time will tell.

Let It Be

I just wanted to jump on here real quick before I head out to Kentucky for my father’s funeral.

I’ve been an emotional wreck all week. That’s why I’m not blogging right now.

Well, except for right now. You get the point.

For days, I had wrangled and fought and prayed and lamented over whether I should go to his funeral, mainly because I don’t want to hurt anyone in his family, even though I do need to say goodbye.

This is an odd situation for everyone.

That was never as clear as when his son called me last night.

We talked for quite a while. We laughed, we got choked up.

We want to meet.

And he said one thing at the very end of our talk that removed all doubt about whether I should go:

“I’ve thought long and hard about this, Misty. And I want you to do what you need to do. And if you come down here and one person – anybody – gives you a hard time about being here, you tell them to come talk to me.”

My stuff is packed, and I’m wearing my Beatles “Let It Be” T-shirt.

Ironic or symbolic?

Only time will tell.

Monday, August 2, 2010

I’m shrinking, but I’m crazy

Hello, Monday. You cruel vixen.

And hello to another weigh-in day.

Somehow, I managed to lose 4 pounds this week!

That brings my total to 43 pounds lost in 22 weeks.

It’s still quite a bit behind my goal of 2.3 pounds a week, which would put me at 50.6 if I were on target.

I’m trying not to stress about that.

A very smart friend asked me recently why I don’t just take the deadline (Dec. 31) off of this weight loss thing.

He said he thinks it would relieve a lot of the anxiety I’ve had about the weight loss and this blog if I just said I’m going to lose 100 pounds but not kill myself to get it done by a certain date.

I have mixed feelings about that.

On one hand, I don’t get much of anything accomplished when I don’t have a deadline. I worked nine years in a newsroom … need I say more?

Plus, having that deadline gives me – and you – an idea of when this blog will end. For some reason, that gives me comfort, and I’m not sure how many of you would still read this if it just kind of went on forever.

However, on the other hand, it did give me a small sense of relief with even him giving me “permission” to remove the deadline if needed.

But then it created a whole other issue for me, which is why do I need others’ permission to make these kinds of choices in my life? Why do I feel better getting permission about MY LIFE from someone else?

See? I’m half nuts. I’ve made no secret about that all along.

Oy. Have a good week.

I’m shrinking, but I’m crazy

Hello, Monday. You cruel vixen.

And hello to another weigh-in day.

Somehow, I managed to lose 4 pounds this week!

That brings my total to 43 pounds lost in 22 weeks.

It’s still quite a bit behind my goal of 2.3 pounds a week, which would put me at 50.6 if I were on target.

I’m trying not to stress about that.

A very smart friend asked me recently why I don’t just take the deadline (Dec. 31) off of this weight loss thing.

He said he thinks it would relieve a lot of the anxiety I’ve had about the weight loss and this blog if I just said I’m going to lose 100 pounds but not kill myself to get it done by a certain date.

I have mixed feelings about that.

On one hand, I don’t get much of anything accomplished when I don’t have a deadline. I worked nine years in a newsroom … need I say more?

Plus, having that deadline gives me – and you – an idea of when this blog will end. For some reason, that gives me comfort, and I’m not sure how many of you would still read this if it just kind of went on forever.

However, on the other hand, it did give me a small sense of relief with even him giving me “permission” to remove the deadline if needed.

But then it created a whole other issue for me, which is why do I need others’ permission to make these kinds of choices in my life? Why do I feel better getting permission about MY LIFE from someone else?

See? I’m half nuts. I’ve made no secret about that all along.

Oy. Have a good week.