Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Wednesday whine list-not so much

I'll get to my quasi (for today) whine list in a minute, but first I just wanted to say that I lost a great friend and attended a funeral this week.

*No, praise God, it wasn't my close friend Lisa who I've written about here.*  She is my AA sponsor and amazing friend/mentor who was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer over 3 1/2 years ago, having never smoked a day in her life.  She continues to put one foot in front of the other - most recently undergoing gamma knife surgery for a large metastatic mass in her left hip.  Next week she will have a similar procedure over 3 days for a spot in the L5-S1 region of her spine.  Both these places have been treated with traditional radiation before that  yielded tremendous side effects, so the finer tuning of the new gamma knife procedures will hopefully help without making her so sick.  I probably will do a post on her and her remarkable brave journey with this cancer soon.  Witnessing her in this process has informed my life in many ways.

The friend I just recently lost was a guy from AA in his late 60s named Walt, who also had lung cancer.  But when he told me about it a little over a year ago and I expressed how sorry I was that he was having to go through it, he cracked, "Well, Babe, I smoked over goddam 50 years...I can hardly be surprised!"  He also faced his biggest challenge with a lot of grace and courage, though I didn't see much of him after finding out that he had cancer.

Walt had 26 years sober when he died, and before he got sick, was a fixture at many meetings, in service at several levels of the fellowship, and just as smart and funny as anyone I've ever known.  Smart, and WISE.  He was quick to extend himself to newcomers,  matter-of-fact with a no-nonsense approach and a call-you-on-your-shit style that, rather than being mean spirited, was always extended with humor and kindness.  I'm not going to say much more, other than he was locally famous in AA for always noting that "Sobriety is its own reward".  I always loved that, because so often people come in having lost a lot (family, homes, self respect...) and once they are starting to clean up and feel better and put together some sober time, things start getting better.  People who've lost their kids get them back, new jobs, new self respect - maybe for the first time ever.  BUT not always - sometimes the shit sandwiches keep coming, and you hear people say "I didn't get sober for THIS!"  And that's where Walt's sage words that sobriety is its own reward were so meaningful.  Not at the beginning...but with time the wisdom of that notion speaks volumes.  And about much more than giving up drinking.  Which leads me to the not-so-much whine...

On my last post, I had what was probably the only negative comment I've had since starting my blog in 2009.  Compared to negative comments I've read on other blogs, this was really not even negative.  I won't bore you with restating it - you can read it if you want here.  In summation, she said that she would no longer be reading my blog because I'm "playing" with weight loss", and that I needed a good "12-step kick in the ass".  This did not feel like a hater comment.  What is interesting is the reaction I had to it.

When I saw it, I immediately felt exposed.  Busted.  Publicly shamed.  My initial reaction was to delete it immediately so maybe no one would see it.  So here's the thing;  the person who called me on my shit (perhaps not as kindly as my buddy Walt) saw the IT before she wrote IT.  Part of the shame I felt was that I knew she was right.  I want to follow that with "at some level", but really, I am playing with weight loss.  I'll lose 5 pounds and then coast - translate:  eat back the 5 pounds over a few days.  Then call in the big guns again and whittle back off a few pounds.  It's been this way for me for a long time.

This all came to me within the few minutes after I saw the comment in the first place.  I left it there, because it was her opinion of what she was gleaning from my blog for however long she'd been reading it, not dripping with hate and acrimony.  Back in the beginning of this blog, I got into the very low 190's, starting from 220.  I was going to the gym regularly - following a program pretty closely and consistently.  I wish I could channel that Leslie back!  It's not that easy and it never will be.  I'm not giving up, and I hope that with enough staying on plan and doing the right things, there will be a new and improved Leslie that will be empower my/herself with her tenacity and progress.

Anyway - I am still sticking with mostly Paleo eating, and find it's a good fit for me.  I actually like unsweetened almond milk in my coffee.  I like having guilt free fruit.  I'm not a big dairy person, though I do miss plain NF Greek yogurt, but I've had a serving every other day or so.  Got in a 3.5 mile FAST walk yesterday with a friend, and am hitting the gym today, as it's supposed to rain.

I'm not giving up, and I'm not going anywhere but here.  I need all the blog world offers me.  And believe it or not, I actually thank "Kay", for having the brass to just state what she was seeing without being mean.


  1. I saw that commment too and hoped that you wouldn't be shamed by it, but rather motivated IF what she stated was truth. On the other hand, no one is forcing her to read anyone's blog so I always feel conflicted about comments like that.

    Just as an FYI - Rich Kreps, the guy I worked with on the Zero Excuses Challenge, actually is in the camp that Greek yogurt is OK every once in a while.

  2. Leslie, I admire your ability to glean something good for you out of the comment and let the rest of it go.

  3. Well. I thought the comment about the "whine" was being mean. Really.

    Her comment about your "whine posts" was worse than a whine, it was an attack. Just so we're clear. I'd rather hear someone whine (which you did with all good humor, by the way)than read someone attack another for what they're doing with their own blog. Repressed anger shows, Kay, it shows.

    As far as the weight loss tango. Yeah. You and me both, sweetheart. And I am quite embarrassed by it.

    I loved "Sobriety is its own reward." It really struck me that I needed to look at staying on plan as an example of virtue and a good thing all in and of itself, regardless of the scale.

    A good thing rather than a sacrifice. Eating clean for the sake of eating clean, rather than as a means to an end. hmmm.

    Let's just do this thing, shall we?


    1. Hi Deb! So good to hear from you! I've been thinking about you and planning to send an email just to say hi and see how you're doing. I agree - the part about my whining WAS mean, but whatever. She can kiss my overweight backside! I think I will send you an email later - I miss your posts but totally understand.

  4. Have you ever judged that girl that left the comment? No? Then she has no effing business judging you. Good for you for not taking it harshly...but she needs to go the hell on down the road and not come back! Love you. :)

    1. Thanks, Tammy. I appreciate your loyalty!! And friendship...Love you too. :)

  5. Leslie,
    I'm glad that you were able to move on from the judgmental remark. I saw it yesterday, and I still wonder why some people take it upon themselves to sit in harsh, angry judgment of others. If she had wanted to state her feelings about your blog, it could have been done in a more constructive manner.

    The truth is this: the harshness of the remark says much more about her own repressed anger than it does about you. When I read it, I didn't think negative thoughts about you, but the first thought that came to my mind was that this person has some significant anger issues that she needs to deal with! You were just a convenient vehicle for displaced anger. I would bet that you're not the first person who has felt her wrath. Have a great day, and put this behind you.

  6. Walt sounds like a real gem, one of the old-school AA's - I'm sorry for your loss and it sounds like a lot of people will miss him.

    Wow on that commenter - the whine stuff? It's your blog - you write about what you want! I thought it was pretty funny. I commend you for taking the other part of her comment so's hard hearing things like that.

  7. Well, heck... I don't get why people write mean things in blog comments. I subscribe to the old saying, "If you don't have something nice to day, don't say anything at all." To me, the blog world should be a safe place where one can say anything and be honest and only get support in response. I can only imagine what she'd say about a yo-yo-er like me!

  8. Sorry about you losing a good friend to cancer. Sounds like he was gem.

    I didn't see that comment but I am glad that you took it in stride. I have had a few comments over the past two years on my blog that left me feeling a little "slapped" in the face. But my son pointed out to me that you can't always tell what the real intention was by reading the written word. You are missing the voice of the speaker and the body language so if you were to "hear" the same message in person it might be delivered in a more loving and caring way than it appears as written. I try to keep that in mind as I read the comments and it can make a difference in my reaction.

  9. Hi Classy Lady! You know, it's like I tell my husband, you're shoes don't fit me and my shoes don't fit you, and until they do, don't tell me how I should be do you know where I've been, the great and the horrible things I've seen/done/etc.? We all have our reasons, life experiences, etc. that shape and mold who we are, the way we think, believe, etc. And for someone to pass judgement... very sad.

    I've read your blog for awhile now...and I've never seen you "playing" with weight loss. Maybe struggle, maybe fight to keep pushing forward...but "Play"? Nope.

    This is YOUR journey, YOUR experiences, YOUR blog-and that person was plain cruel!

    10,000 Kudos for the way you handled that!

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  11. Okay, went back and read (original comment) and changed what I wanted to say.

    She didn't word herself well, I agree.

    And she probably was speaking from a point of frustration, to what we can't be sure.

    And GOOD for you that you examined your reaction instead of making it about her.

    When I read what you wrote (about what she said), my reaction was that she must have cared a lot about you to take a chance on calling you out a little.

    when I read the actual comment, it was reactive. Again, to what, not sure.

    It is good you found empowerment even in a negative situation.

    I found empowerment, long ago, in having my pilates instructor tell me to suck my belly up off the floor. It motivated me because she was also telling me I could get rid of that belly. And I did.

    some of your best friends in blog land are the ones who call you out a little, but word it better. enabling and codependency can run rampant. true friends will nudge you a little when you need it. as you said, if they can do it with style and humor, you are very lucky.

    very good post.