We’ll, I’m back at it again. The dreaded “D” word… I’m Dieting.

For months now, I feel like I’ve been trying desperately to jump back in the game. It’s the same feeling I remember having as a little girl trying to get the timing just right to literally jump into double-dutch jump rope. The ropes would swing around and around and I’d just about jump, but then it wasn’t quite right. I’d wait again with the ropes swinging over and over, hoping and sensing for that opportunity to come. I’d wait for the perfect timing and rhythm, knowing that at some point I just had to go for it and jump in. But again, I’d wait and wait, and finally something would compel me to jump — and I can’t even begin to tell you what that something was. The opening was there, and I jumped… sometimes landing with both ropes over my head and sometimes being able to flow with the rhythm of the ropes and jump over and over again with a feeling of accomplishment.

So, after many false starts at jumping in, I’m finally in the groove again. But I gotta tell you, it’s so hard. One of my favorite adages is an old Jewish proverb that says, “The days go so slow and the years go so fast”. I’ve always felt that way about my girls growing up. When they were little, it always seemed like forever until their daddy got home from work at the end of the day, but as they got older, the years just seemed to go by faster and faster.

Unfortunately, I feel that way about dieting, too. I HATE that I let myself get into this position again, and yet, I know I have to jump in and stay in. But if feels like the days go so slow. I’ve been on a diet since Monday (always the perfect day to start dieting) but Time seems to have all but come to a screeching halt. I know intellectually that I didn’t put on the weight overnight, but so help me, it sure seems that way.

When I’m not dieting (defined as that awful process where you have to actually take in less calories than you burn), one meal just flies into another but I feel awful about myself. When I’m in that state of mind, the mantra that plays over and over in my head is, “tomorrow is going to be different”. But the next day, even thought I purpose with all my heart to “start fresh tomorrow”, something exceptional happens (like I wake up) and I have to wait for the timing to come around again for me to jump in.

I’m not exactly sure why, but I guess this week the “ropes” were timed well and I actually jumped in. And in a perverse sort of way, it feels good to not have to berate myself for failing, yet again.

But here’s the hardest part: when I deny myself and I don’t eat something I want (which, when I am dieting, seems like every minute) I expect immediate gratification (which may possibly have gotten me into this situation in the first place). If I don’t eat a piece of bread, I look down to see if my clothes are fitting better (not). Or if I take a walk, I want to check the scale when I get home to see if it had any impact (I, of course, know better). Or, after three agonizing days of denial, I will go in my closet and stand there hoping and praying that some of my old clothes (that I love and are too small) might miraculously fit so I will have something to wear. (And, no, I will not by bigger clothes when I am on a new diet even though I know that’s irrational).

So… I am on Day Four and trying to have a positive outlook with my goal of being healthy at the finish line (okay, I know that’s the right thing to say but I really do want to be healthier as well as lose weight since I know I feel better when I am thinner). Right now, I am focusing on occupying my mind with good thoughts that don’t have anything to do with food, dieting, exercise, clothes not fitting, body image, my age, etc… which sometimes feels like telling myself not to think about pink elephants.

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