Saturday, December 4, 2004

Hell Week

Oh, my darlings, this week has been every bit as hairy as I had feared when last I had time to post here (see below)... and then some, with a family issue I can't really talk about here that turned out even more painful than I had feared, and an envelope-stuffing project that was turned into a disaster by those who sought to help me — bless their little hearts, they simply didn't understand that when things are in alphabetical order, there is probably a reason they are in alphabetical order, and quite probably should be kept in alphabetical order instead of thrown around willy-nilly so that I have to spend four or five hours going through all twelve hundred and forty labeled envelopes and putting them back into order, which is (in their defense) only half as long as it would have taken me to do all of the labeling by myself.

But with all of the printing and envelope-stuffing I had to do, it came as a nasty shock Wednesday when the photocopier started churning out black copies, and the repairman couldn't come until the next day, which meant that one time-sensitive printing project had to be put off and the other had to be taken to Kinko's. And then the office was terribly busy, with the boss off at meetings every day, and my coworker swamped with phone-calls while I was trying to do all the printing and word-processing and bookkeeping that needed to be done this week. All the while, I wasn't sleeping well, and so couldn't bring my A-Game to the mess. It was just hell, unadulterated burning cacophanous hell.

And I still have to finish the envelope-stuffing, I am about three-quarters done but there are perhaps another hundred-and-fifty-or-so envelopes to stuff, and then take them down to the office to stamp them, and to the post office to mail them. And then I have yet another show at Harvey's tonight, for which I am only mildly prepared (I know what I'm going to wear, and have a faint idea what I'll perform, but haven't learned the words yet or packed the clothes). And there is still laundry to do, and errands to run, and church to go to tomorrow, and, and, and...

I am exhausted, completely and utterly done in. And hungry! I noted before that it is very difficult to go on a low-carb diet just as the weather is turning so bitterly cold (bitter for us, anyway, down in the forties and fifties with a distinct bite in the air), prompting my Nordic genes to try to fatten me up for protection; but it's really hard to stick to a low-carb diet when you're upset about something, or several somethings... all "comfort foods" are high in starch and/or sugar, carbohydrates are so soothing and reassuring (again with the ancient genetic codes, in which evolution favored those who packed on fat in times of stress, storing the energy for any eventual lean times).

So after a week of feeling like I'm starving, and only missing two gym-days despite the near-impossibility of scheduling a gym-visit each terribly tiring day, it was quite discouraging to step on the scale each morning and still be the same weight I was on Sunday (209.5 lbs). I haven't lost a single pound, or even a half of a pound, all week.

Of course, I have to remind myself that this isn't necessarily about losing pounds as it is about losing the fat around my torso. I have to remind myself that all this exercise is also increasing my muscle mass, and that adds rather than subtracts weight. I am at the same time noticing a greater visibility of my cheekbones and hipbones, and I appear to jiggle a little less than I used to. So I am (starting today) going to chart my progress with a measuring-tape as well as a scale.

So, for the record, my waist at the widest part (where my pants sit) without sucking in is 38"... though this strikes me as odd, since all of my pants are marked as having 34" waists; my chest under the arms is 43", which I know for a fact is two inches bigger than it was two months ago when I measured myself for a dress I was ordering online, and yet the fat-pads under my arms are visibly smaller (I've been doing isometrics to pump my pecs up); my biceps are 14.5" (and I don't want them any bigger, thank you), and my thighs are 22" (and could get bigger); my hips are still 43", same as in September. I'll measure again next week and see where I've gotten to.

With so much going on at once, it seems I'd have something more to write about, n'est-ce pas? But no, nothing. Besides the family issue that has taken up a huge amount of energy, weighing heavily on my mind and severely cutting into my sleep, but which I cannot talk about in this forum (at least until it is resolved in the more traditional forum of actually talking to each other). Or complaining about all the shit that went on this week, which I've sort of already done. So...

There is one interesting thing I learned this week when I was trying to find a Latin title for this post: there is no word in Latin for "week." I guess the Romans didn't have weeks, just months and the midpoints of months (ides). Or else the word is so irrelevant to modern usage that none of the online dictionaries I found had any translations. I was trying to play off of Queen Elizabeth II's touching pronouncement of the Royal Family's annus horribilus of 1992 that included the death of Princess Diana and the fire in Windsor Castle... but it's a no-go, there was no "weekus horribilis" for me.

Which kind of puts the whole thing in perspective, doesn't it?

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