Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Checking in

It has been awhile since I last wrote. A lot has changed in the last few months. It has been over 5 years since I had my weight loss surgery. Weight has been rapidly lost, clothes sizes rapidly changed and life was getting better. I had moved to Italy in 2008 after the surgery and begun cooking with Amore Sapore.  The cooking was the easy part. The hard part was dealing with all the personalities in the small group. But in that first year I lost about 135 pounds. I felt good and I had gone down considerably in size. I loved the ability to buy nice fitting clothes and wear them with a certain degree of pride. I had accomplished a lot and I was proud of myself. I did get some unfortunate resistance to my loss from my partner.  It was not easy for her to accept that I weighed substantially less than she did. It was just one of many problems we had. Those problems led ultimately to a divorce and we both moved on. 

I am sure that Sandi had she lived to see this weight loss would have approved and been proud of me.  She had gone through a similar process and lost almost 150 pounds, which frankly she kept off better than I have. When you lose that much weight you begin to see that you are very much different than what you were used to. The mirror is no longer an enemy, to be ignored if at all possible. It wasn’t vanity, it was more like satisfaction and success, finally.  After I left Italy I began a slow but steady increase in weight and regained about forty of the pounds I had lost.  The eating impetus was more emotional and snacking was a problem.

When I married Kathlyn she had gone though a lot of the same things as I had. Weight loss surgery, and the sudden death of her long time husband. She had also tried to date and develop relationships with men that were not as successful as she had before. All of these responses were similar in my case.  So here we are, closing in on two years of marriage. She retains a wonderful senxe of humor and makes me laugh, I cook for her and she proudly told me the other day that in the last year she had only gained three pounds.  I guess my Eight Bites philosophy is working at least for us. I have lost about eight pounds and slowly sliding down on the scale. I have started to go to the gym three to four times a week and working with a personal trainer once a week. I know I feel pretty good and have been lifting a lot of weight, treadmilling and rowing.  

In the last couple of weeks, I have been trained as a Food Champion with the Jamie Oliver Food Revolution and will be starting to teach kids and adults about making good nutritious meals simply, easly and with some fun. Hopefully they will take away the inherent stigma we attach to cooking now days. It really seems that most kids no longer go into the kitchen with their mom or dad and cook. Probably because mom and dad are wound up in just trying to make ends meet and resort to getting takeout, or microwaveable meals. So we will teach them some simple dishes, and include knife skills, kitchen equipment use and maintenance, and sanitation. It will be a fun time until the 20th of December when the Big Red truck leaves to head to its next stop. The local food champions will hopefully continue  to teach the kids in other venues including Boy’s and Girl’s Clubs and schools.  

So here it is almost Thanksgiving and I am preparing to cook some dishes for the family gathering. I have made a flourless chocolate almond cake, a flourless pumpkin soufflĂ© cake, a lemon tart, and am in the process of doing a few more things tomorrow.  So this Thursday will pass. Next week I will start the Jamie Oliver program.  Have a good Thanksgiving. Stay in the moment and try everything you like, but just make those tastes rather than platefuls.