Thursday, April 22, 2010

Deep Thoughts and Ham Wallets

Tracey graces me with lovely southern man terminology from time to time. Yesterday, he wanted to know how my doctors appointment went and if my "ham wallet" got the all clear.

And yes it did! I didn't think of any funny jokes to tell the doc while he was inspecting my lady station. But, I was thinking real hard if that counts!

He reviewed my blood work and yes, my cholesterol is still too high. Remember when I went to my health fair here at work in February and it was 218 (and it should be under 200)? Well, it's still around 218. Both times I was checked, I had been it is pretty accurate. I want to scream...ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Down 138 pounds and it's still high. But doc says its hereditary, and since we are a family of heart disease, he would like to put me on an over the counter med, which is actually a vitamin called Nyacin. I am probably spelling it wrong. Anywhoozle, it is meant to lower bad cholesterol and pump up the good. So I will try it for 3 months and then recheck.

I wanted to do a post before we head off to northern Alabama for the weekend. There is no way I will be able to catch up on blogs when I return, so if I miss something good please email me. I mean it.

Here is my question for you: What do you hide behind?

Your hair?

Your weight?

Your clothes?

Your kids?

Your fat?

What is your protection? I know some of you have had very open, heartfelt blogs recently where you explain why you have hid behind your weight. It made you feel safe.

So have you thought about what will happen when that weight is gone? And if it's not your weight that is "protecting you"...then what is it? For you?

For me, it is my humor. I make jokes to make others happy. I make people laugh because it brings me joy. But my humor has always been my protection.

If I can make them laugh with me before they laugh at me...I will be one step ahead of them.

I honestly believe that is why there are so few thin, hot, funny women! It was not a trait that they needed to develop...that had other traits that could get them through. I don't think that I will ever be able to not hide behind my humor. I use it when I am nervous, scared, hurt.

It's something to think about before you start getting close to goal. What's really hard to put into words is how it is weird that I am, in a sense, losing my identity. I have always, ALWAYS, been the funny fat girl. And I was proud that I was that fat girl who had friends, was a cheerleader, a dancer, in the spotlight. That is the reason I wanted to get on Oprah in the first place! I wanted to be the fat girl exception to the rule!

And now I am not the fat girl.

Well, I guess technically I still am, but in terms of the American woman's weight, I am "average".

So now what? A new Amy I suppose. A new chapter?

It's very interesting because I had never given thought to this...this change.

What a journey this is!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. I promise to take lots of pictures! How about everyone just DOESN'T blog this weekend...k? A blog blackout of sorts!

For those of you not on my FB (why aren't you?), this is what I saw when I got into my car today! A little note from my mans. Sigh. Gotta love him.


  1. Amy, I just started crying at my desk when I read this. This is something that has been on my mind for so long. My whole adult persona is me the fat funny lady. I am always the life of the party, I am funny, I used to do stand up for crying out loud, but my funny is my protection. I always make a joke about my shortcomings and my fat, before someone else has a chance to think it. I don't know how I'll be if I ever get thin, but it does stress me out. I hope you have a great time on your trip, and what a sweet note!

  2. My fat was my shell. My protection from the world. My reason why I would feel like a failure or anything less than what I should be. It has been very liberating but at the same time I realized today that getting so near my goal, I've never NOT been on a diet or at least thought about one. So this is definitely a life changer for me. I let my fat dictate many circumstances in my life...not seeing friends, not going to reunions, not dancing at parties or weddings, not going out period just because I was...fat. Not any more. Those days are over.

  3. That is so sweet (the note :) ).

    I didn't think about you going to Northern AL when you asked those ?'s on my blog, so I was taking my sweet time replying. Sorry about that :(. But the park is Oak Mountain State Park. It is right of the Pelham (Birmingham) Exit, I believe. The man knew about it from before we went because he has traveled up there a ton. It is the biggest state park in AL so he said. The rangers at the bottom of the mtn will tell you how to get to the waterfall (but, essentially, you need to drive up near the top of the mountain). It is $3 a person. It's a fairly small amount, but you should know about that too if you plan to do it. There are other things to do all around the mountain. They have horseback riding (although I think that costs a pretty penny), canoeing, peddle boats, etc., etc. You could also just hike up the mountain (not to the waterfall).

  4. And you CAN play in the water at the waterfall btw. :) And there is a creek going down from it too. There was a dog there when we hiked to it. He looked like he was having fun. I think I put my feet/hands in it. I can't remember how big width-wise or how deep it was though, so it may not be enough to actually swim in--it might not allow you to do any more than just splashing and that. But there is a lake or something at the bottom--where the boats are. You might can swim--regular swimming--there. ????

  5. HAHA! Ham Wallet! I also love "axe wound".

    I too hide behind humor. I could copy and paste your reasons and post them as my own. It was a defense mechanism.

    Yes! I promise not to blog this weekend!

    PS. How great is Tracy? A: mega-great!

  6. humor.......I go ahead and make jokes about my weight and other things before anyone else has a chance to say it first!

  7. Aww, Tracey is awesome! Kudos for him.

    I hide behind my humor just like you.
    I on the other hand never joke about my weight..I guess
    because I don't really see myself fat.

    But I have to make other people laugh so that they won't focus on
    my weight.

    Have a wicked awesome weekend Amy!!

  8. wow! what a tear jerker for me...i agree with you but i have hidden behind my fat and used it as an excuse so i can copy and paste exactly what Jo (your previous commenter) said. I have used it as an excuse to be a homebody, not deal with people, not have a life, I could go on and on (in tears). I am still having a hard time not hiding behind it because I still feel like I AM the fat girl. I dont see what everyone else sees. Well, enough of that because i'm crying at work and I dont want my comment to be too long soo...

    oh an you are so lucky....what i wouldn't give to have a man like Tracy...what a sweet heart!

  9. In your honor I will not post this weekend. Cause I love you SOOOO much.
    I'm having the same identity crisis. We'll get through it. All of us - together.

  10. Wow...this post was actually hard for me to read...I had to take a break and come back to it because apparently, my brain didn't want to think about it.

    Once, a few years ago when I was on the WW boards, I struck up a friendship with a girl in British Columbia, and we were chatting one day, after both of us had lost in and around 40lbs. And suddenly it struck me and I said to her "oh my god...what if we actually DO this??" and I swear to you it made my blood run cold. The thought that I would have made it to my 30's as the funny fat girl, when the whole time, if I'd worked at it, I didn't have to be the fat girl. And honestly, I think that was my downfall. I lost about 5 more lbs, and then started to re-gain.

    My identity is EXTREMELY tied up in being a fatty. Because I LOVE who I am...and how I am. But I think that even if I'm 100lbs, in my head I will always be fat.

    I wonder if I'll flirt less when I'm thin. If I'm thin. See...right now it's just all too scary to think about. Because thinking about it opens up the question of can I even do this. Don't get me wrong, I totally think I can, but the fear of another failure is always there...lurking.

    What kind of asshole posts a blog like this before she LEAVES TOWN FOR THE WEEKEND???? Are you trying to kill me?? If you need me, I will be in the fetal position in the corner for the next few days.

  11. I totally hide behind my humor. If I can make fun of myself before someone else can thatn I did my job.

  12. Everything that Gilly said. I guess we will have a slew of posts on Monday or maybe Drazil will just reuse your questions on the BYOC on Friday. You made us think, that's for sure. I hope none of us lose our sense of humor. It'll be a sad day in the world if that happened.

  13. That, my dear is some heavy shit! What a great post! These are things that someone like just isn't thinking about - I can't comprehend not being fat - so I guess I think I will always hide behind my guilt. Yup, I hide behind guilt, only I call it Catholic Guilt - you've heard the term before, I am sure.

    I have had this guilt for as long as I can remember and it drives everyone crazy. Apparently my favorite word is "Sorry". I can't apologize enough, it seems. WTF am I sorry about? It is so bad that I even apologize to inanimate objects if I bump into them... I try to laugh it off when someone calls me on it - my husband or my friends - hence calling it Catholic Guilt, but I know that it has everything to do with hiding. Your post made me think - am I sorry for being fat, is that what this is all about? It just might be.

    Have a great trip this weekend and I might not "talk" to ya until I get back from my cruise, so I will miss you!

    BTW, thanks so much for your comment today - it made me cry! You actually used the word "stunning", thank you! <3

  14. Tooo deep of a post today as I am one that used my weight to protect me and being on t-3's today does not help.. LOL so here is another form of protection just change the subject and tell you the pulled pork turned out awesome.. LOVED it. Loved the left overs today... Have a great holiday...

  15. Sorry about your cholesterol Amy. I’m sure the vitamin will get it down. Positive vibes.

    Tracey is so sweet. I hope that when I’m ready to date again they are still making ‘em like him. One can hope you know.

    Now on your question. I had to breathe before I began writing this because the tears wanted to come.

    What do you hide behind?

    I hide behind my intelligence. Now before anybody rolls their eyes in the top of their head read on. I was a loner as a kid. In my family I was the only dark skinned girl in the family with short ….no hair. My mom treated me no different than my brothers and sisters, but my aunts treated me different from my cousins who were all light skinned with long hair. I used to put clothes pins on my little pony tails to make my hair shake. I loved books at an early age. I mean really loved books. I stayed in the house, learned to cook at 9 with Moms while my brother and sisters went out to play. When I wasn’t cooking (and eating) I was reading. I would even read the dictionary. One day (I don’t know at what point) I got it in my head that if I was smart it wouldn’t matter that I wasn’t light skinned, had long hair or was skinny. In other words it wouldn’t matter that I wasn’t pretty. I was so consumed with being smart that I began reading the dictionary to learn a word a day. I became obsessed and would learn five a day. I had to be smarter than everybody else. One day in third grade (yes 3rd grade) there was this guy we called “Steve-o-lee” His real name was Steven Lee, but hey we were kids. He had failed a couple of times and was clearly older than the rest of the kids on the bus. Well I had just visited the candy lady and bought a box of Lemon Heads. As “Steve-o-lee” passed my seat he slapped me in the back of the head. Needless to say those 2 or 3 lemon heads I had just popped in my mouth slid down my throat almost choking me. I whirled around and let him have it. I said “You Juvenile Deliquent!” He walked back up to the middle of the bus where I was sitting while all the other kids gasped and said “oooooh”. I felt satisfied with myself that I had eloquently cursed him out without him knowing it and didn’t see him getting ready to put me in a head lock. We faught and by the time I realized anything I was sitting on top of this big kid screaming and stabbing him with mypencil that used to be freshly sharpened and crying. The bus driver had to walk me into the school where they called my mother because at that point I was hysterical. Steven Lee never bothered me again. In fact after many stints in juvi (spelling ?), he was arrested later for murder at 18.

    I said all that to say this. Being smart has always been a shield for me. I could hide behind it when it came to what I thought were flaws, being fat, not light skinned, not cute, not a cheerleader or a majorette. In high school everybody would come to me for the answers to test questions or want to cheat off my paper. It somehow made me feel like I belonged even though it was wrong and I didn’t really.

    To this day I still think I hide behind my smarts, but I think I used my powers for good now ;-). I am making better decisions about life, men and the future and not to mention my HEALTH. My BFFs say that when I make it big my license plate should read LADY BAW “Lady BIG ASS WORDS”. I laugh at that and can feel good about it now.

  16. Sorry for the long post y'all I guess I needed to get that out.

    Have a great trip Amy!!!

  17. Amy, that is the sweetest thing ever (Tracey's sign). He's a good one for sure.

  18. I am the fat funny girl too and I suppose it is something I've always hidden behind, just never really thought about it! I will now. Thanks Ames!

    What is your email and facebook address? I want to "friend you" or whatever its called! Have a great weekend!

  19. I don't really know if I can comment on this one, other than Tracey is super sweet!!

    I don't know if I'm ready to think about this one yet. With everyone sharing their stories, I have thought about mine but I don't really know what was so wrong in my life that I didn't care about me.

    Have fun on your trip!

  20. I hide behind the illusion of a tough girl persona that some people perceive from me. I can come off as really distant to some people and that intimidates them and thus insulates me from having to get too close to people. Most of the time, people have let me down in my life... or is it that I've had standards of people which they didn't achieve, making it easier to avoid them?

    In any case, I hate people trying to label me, come off as bipolar with my ups and downs - I can be super perky when "on" and for people who haven't seen that out of me before, they will get floored by how different I can be... yet there are times when I am genuinely "sassy" as you might say. I DON'T KNOW! WHY DO YOU MAKE THESE THINGS SO HARD?? YOU'RE GOING TO DRIVE ME TO DRINK CARBONATED BEVERAGES!!!

    Uh... I hide behind my hair and my kid or other people when it comes to picture taking. :)

    I once saw a bumper sticker on someone car that said "I ♥ my bad reputation." I wanted to steal it so bad. I've been searching for it for sale online for a couple years now.

    Sometimes I hide by not hiding at all. Does that make sense?

  21. Oh, nice... my last security word was "STOUT." So fitting...

  22. Okay so kisses to Tracey for being so wonderful. He totally gets "special" attention for something that sweet...right?? (Yes Tracey, this is me looking out for you)

    I hide behind humor, and I always put everyone else first...take care of them, divert their attention then they won't notice me! I am going through the "people are noticing me" phase right now and it's freakin me out a little. But adjustments must come to more than our wardrobes because of this. We will all be the better versions of ourselves when this trip is over!

  23. Thought provoking post...
    I think so many of us hide behind humor or sarcasm. I know I'm guilty. At work I'm the superstar who is super intelligent and extremely efficient. Why would they care whether or not this employee is fat...boy is she excellent at her job.
    But don't you think asking "What do you hide behind?" is only half of the about "What is it from which we're hiding?"

  24. Humor, Sarcasm, a bit of wine now and then... definitely - and yes, the weight has always been my shield which is why I think that I am subconsciously having a really hard time passing the 200 threshold into the 100's...

  25. Bwahahaha! Ham wallet. That's one I haven't heard, before. :P

    Thanks for the head's up about Niacin. I am definitely going to add it to my line up. Can't hurt. :D

    I use fat for protection, to make myself invisible. Or... I should say, I used to. I refuse to allow myself to do that, anymore. As it begins to disappear, I am going to have to learn to embrace being visible. And everything that entails. Time to let the past go. :D

    I hope that you don't lose your sense of humour as you draw closer to your ultimate goal, Amy. It is your gift. And to lose it would deprive the world of something special.

    Have a great weekend, you, your man and your ham wallet.

    Ham wallet... lololololol

  26. Ames~3 things.
    1)Ham wallet. HILARIOUS!!

    2)I hide behind my actions. What I mean is that I go above and beyond for everyone no matter what. I guess if I prove to them they need me, it wont matter if im fat.

    3)That sign is awesome! What a great man. Major points for Tracey.

    Have fun this weekend. Muwah :*

  27. I hide behind many of the things mentioned already but number one for me has been my kindness... constantly doing for others everything I can to make them happy knowing that they are unhappy with me because of my fat. Plus the nicer you are to people the harder it is for them to be mean to you. I enjoy giving to others, helping, comforting (I'm a school counselor for pete's sake, of course I'm a nurturing person deep down to the core of my soul), making it all better, understanding, accomodating,etc, etc, but it just got to the point where I did everything I could to avoid taking care of myself. I was too busy taking care of everyone, really everyone but me! I think that is where my blog title "It IS all about ME" comes into play. I finally decided to step back at take care of myself for once.

    Thanks for asking Amy- you got me thinkin'!

  28. Interesting post to ponder. I guess I hide behind always trying to be the good girl and doing my best to please EVERYONE!! I just hope my husband doesn't get nervous or insecure when this weight comes off. I absolutely adore him. Last night I went to Zumba and got home about 5:45. The table was set and dinner was just a couple minutes from being finished. He is awesome. That was a very sweet note from Tracy.

  29. My man calls them "meat curtains"!!! AWESOME, Tracey is a keeper, very sweet note. Have a great weekend!

  30. Thought provoking questions. I did have a period of my life where I was thin and I was definitely a more confident, adventurous person. I think now that I'm a little older, I will be even more confident once I get this weight off. One thing I really HATE that I find myself doing now is I make fun of myself and how big I am. I know that is pitiful and ultimately it makes people uncomfortable, but I can't seem to help myself. I will be so glad when I don't feel the need to do that any more. I am so jealous of the note Tracey left for you. How romantic. I'm going to make sure I tell my hubby out it. Maybe he'll get the hint. As far as FB, how can anybody keep up with blogging AND FB? You youngsters are too much.

  31. i think i hide behind my blunt ass (often called bitch) attitude. i mean, i'm just straightforward this is how it is, how i am, deal with it or get over it. i don't necessarily like being that way but i've found that it has seemed to work well with me for dealing with things like men and comments about my weight and etc. i'm really a very sweet and nice person, but acting like you "don't give a sh*t" often works when you are dealing with certain things or people and i guess i've found that that works for me. i guess it could still work for me as a skinny girl (when i get that way) but who knows?

  32. I am so using ham wallet at least 10 times tomorrow! LMAO. Ur hubby is the sweetest. And your right I have no idea what I amn gonna hide behind as I get closer to my goal weight. I amn still working on that, But I am so trying to figure it out now...rather than later.

  33. Am I the only one who is going to answer kids? I definitely hid behind my kids in a BIG way! I was not "fat", really, until I had my first kid, 13 years ago. Before that, I spent pretty much every day of my life, since age 12 or so, on a diet to control my weight. I flirted with anorexia in high school. But hey, I looked good in high school and college, I was popular, and all of that.

    But by the time I hit 29 and got pregnant with my first baby, I had been dieting for 17 or so years and was totally f*cking sick of it. So, imagine what happened when I got pregnant and realized I was not expected to be thin or dieting anymore?

    I ate like there was no tomorrow! I ate everything in sight. I had milkshakes and macaroni and cheese and mounds of chinese food...all the stuff I would "never" eat in my dieting days.

    I gained 60 pounds with that first pregnancy. And then I had another baby. I gained more. The emotional eating really took charge of my life.

    I figured out that as long as I stayed pregnant or nursing, I had a great excuse for not losing the weight. So, I kept getting pregnant!

    Having babies distracted me from the real weight, yes, but more important, the emotional and psychological issues that were driving my eating.

    As long as I had babies, and was busy planning for the next baby, or using my body as either an incubator or feed bag, I did not have to think about the shape of my body at all!

    I now know that I was depressed for much of this time, and eating helped me feel better. Being pregnant helped me feel better. I liked the attention being focused on a new baby, not me.

    As the kids got older, I spent all my time figuring out their stuff - buying their clothes, decorating their rooms, researching their summer camps, etc. Anything to avoid dealing with myself.

    I am finally getting that my identity is more than "mom," and my body really is mine. It is my responsibility, and hopefully one day it will be a body I am proud to have.

    Thanks Amy. And meat wallet? Hahahahahahaha!

  34. I hide behind a lot of things. My smarts (like someone else said, if I am really smart, they won't care that I am also the fat employee), my kids (if the kids are dressed cute, no one will notice the size of my a$$), my hair (I am going to chop it off when I hit goal), and my humor (make 'em laugh first).

    Have a great weekend!

  35. I used to hide behind my fat very well and would try to disguise my unhappiness with humour. Recently I find my self hiding behind my lack of fat, I know that doesn't really make sense. My current excuse for not enjoying life to the fullest is "I have no clothes that fit anymore and don't quite fit into 'regular' clothes yet but I'm out of plus size" Yup I don't go out cause I can't bare the thought of shopping.
    As for your cholesterol dealio, I belive it is spelled Niacin. And I'm actually surprised that a doctor would first recommend something other than a statin to lower it. Kuddo's to your Doc! Let me know how it goes I might have to convince the boss to let me start doing some experiments with it! :)

  36. How sweet of Tracey!!

    Sorry to hear but the cholesterol. I hope your doc told you about the Niacin flush. Don't be surprised to get all hot and tingly after taking it. It's a normal reaction. I've gotten it from the 5 hour energy drinks when driving back home.

    As for what I hide behind, my smarts, and I have to be the "best" at work....most efficient, most caring, organized, etc. I also hide behind my kids. I gained the majority of my weight after using Depo Provera. I never got it all off, then I got pregnant with DD. Then emotional eating while in nursing school, gained even more. Lost some, got pregnant with DS, then weighed less than I had in a long time. But gradually gained it back and hit my all time high.
    So while I hide behind them in pictures and all, they are also the reason I got my band. I want to model healthy eating habits, portion control and just be there for them for a very long time.

  37. Tracey is the ultimate romantic. What a guy. Have heaps of fun in Alabamaaaaaa :) Will miss you.

  38. LMAO!! I've not heard "ham wallet". We call it sausage wallet 'round these parts. LOL! One time, I bought a actual wallet and it happened to be pink and we called it my pink velvet sausage wallet :-P

  39. Hi Amy.

    I'm commenting on your blog after spending the last week reading it from beginning to end. A very good friend of mine is beginning her lap band journey and she told me I had to read your blog. Since we share such a great first name, I knew I had to read on. I have to say that you are one hilarious girl. I was laughing out loud, spitting my drink on my screen, and practically rolling on the ground at some of your posts. I now have a better understanding of the lap band process and I commend you on your fantastic job so far. You are and should publically be a poster child for the lap band process.

    I am one of those skinny bitches as you would say. I've been on the smaller side many years of my life but I did struggle in high school when I was a cheerleader and a gymnast and I can remember having some of the same feelings as I was one of the bigger girls on the squad. I recently went through infertility and ended up beating my infertility and got pregnant with twins. That did a number on my body and I am just now trying to get my body back. I can tell that you follow so many blogs but if you have room for another one, you can check me out at

    Thanks for all your wonderfully hilarious and honest posts. I look forward to reading more and following you to your goal and beyond!!!

    Amy P.

  40. Isn't that just the cutest note!!! Thanks for that post....I am not sure what I hide behind and that is why I didn't do Drazil's BYOC...I am not ready to find out yet either...thanks for the post

  41. It took me a few days to work it all out, but I finally posted my answer on my blog :)