October 15, 2011
Did you miss me? It’s only been 3 years, 8 months, and 19 days since I posted in what was then called Refiguring. I went online with a journal in 1999, before the terms “blog” and “blogger” were the words we used to describe these collections of personal essays. I called my site “The Silken Tent,” drawing on the image in Robert Frost’s poem concerning a woman whose many roles are like the gossamer wires attached to tent pegs and keeping her anchored. I had three sections then: the general section, which went by many names and is now called Markings, a section about my spiritual life which I called Sursum Corda (the phrase in the Latin liturgy of my childhood that is rendered in English as “Lift up your hearts”), and the weight loss section. I didn’t keep at the journal of the spiritual life very long because it felt too intimate (and I am not shy about sharing things about myself!). In 2001 I pulled all the weight loss material after someone posted in a discussion about the word “stout” that she, having visited my blog, she could certainly see why I was sensitive about the word!
I’m not sure I still have any of the material I wrote and posted between 1999 and 2001. I came back to this endeavor in 2006, have started and stopped and started again several times. And now I’m back again.
Actually, I began almost three weeks ago, with this:
September 26, 2011
On this day in 1985, I weighed 185 pounds. I know this because in the morning I went to the doctor, was weighed and examined, and then told to go directly to the hospital. “This is your baby’s birthday,” the doctor said, and indeed it was. Sometime around 10:00 that night (I heard the music for the beginning of Hill Street Blues as I was wheeled into the operating room for my emergency Cesarean section) I was delivered of a 7-pound 1-ounce baby girl.
I called that post “The Day I Left Egypt.” I took the title from a faith-based weight-loss program originated in the 1980s by Gwen Shamblin. I never followed that program — Ms. Shamblin’s theology is too narrow and too conservative for me — but I did look at some of the materials. She likened the decision to embark on a “weight loss journey” to the decision by the Israelites to leave bondage in Egypt. Considering the fact that I joined Weight Watchers for the first time 39 years ago, the image seems accurate.
I can give you the numbers: 149 pounds when I joined Weight Watchers for the first time in September of 1972, having gained about 25 pounds over a summer of mourning a broken romance; 151 pounds at my first prenatal exam in January of 1985; 157 pounds at my daughter’s first birthday; 165 pounds six years after that. Things really got out of control in the late 1990s, and I zoomed into the 200s.
I can’t say that this new effort, born of something my leader said that I can’t even recall now, will succeed any more than all my past efforts. But I’m back, with a new name and a new concept for this journal: Eat, Pray, Walk — A Weight Loss Year. Come follow me, if you are so inclined.
And, as always, thank you for reading, so much, so often.