family, friends, Life, Uncategorized, Weightloss

The Facebook Post

“Are you still watching what you eat?” “What did she eat for Thanksgiving?” “You don’t want to gain any of that weight back, huh?”

Those are just some of the comments I get on the regular. Listen to me when I say I eat what I want when I want. I don’t restrict myself, but there are also many things I don’t want to eat and it’s not because they’re unhealthy. I just find myself preferring healthier options and not being as satisfied with a piece of cake. I find myself preferring to eat at home and not at restaurants. I just eat differently now and choose to fuel my body in a better way. Friday I stopped to eat my lunch at 230. My mom said, “You’re eating again? Didn’t you just eat? What was that if it wasn’t lunch?” It had been three hours since I ate and what she was referring to was my first snack. I eat five meals a day (breakfast, snack, lunch, snack, dinner) and trust me if I don’t eat you probably don’t want to be around me. I’ve worked and I continue to work extremely hard. Some days are easier than others and honestly the last 6 months have been the easiest and it’s getting easier. What I’m eating and when I’m eating is constantly observed and talked about. It’s something that makes me uncomfortable, but it’s also something I understand. We all know what we need to do to reach our goals. It’s a matter of putting what we know into our daily routine. It’s about forming habits. You’re either ready to start or you’re not. Either way, it’s okay. That girl in the first photo knew one day she was going to change her life. She honestly knew it. But she knew that day wasn’t THE day. Next time you judge someone by what they’re eating and how much of it (healthy or not) take note and maybe stop and think about why you’re making judgments or making comments. I can guarantee it has nothing to do with that person and everything to do with your own insecurities. I honestly pay zero attention to what the people around me are eating. I don’t care. I care about what I’m fueling my body with and my body alone. Ps. I didn’t mean to mean mug in that picture. 😂 I just finished a hard Thanksgiving Day workout and my face was still half frozen. Haha

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Depression, family, friends, Life, Weekend, Weightloss

My Two-Year 100-Pound Weight Loss Anniversary

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Saturday was my two-year 100-pound weight loss anniversary. Two years ago I stood on the scale and was finally under 200 pounds and I’ve been under ever since. 100 pounds was my long-term goal. I knew after I reached it I would have new goals, but 100 pounds is a huge deal. It’s a goal I reached in ten short months. It’s a goal that takes most people years. It’s a huge accomplishment and I didn’t feel anything. I wasn’t proud. I wasn’t happy. I was numb. I’m going to paint you a picture of a Rachel a lot of you don’t know and some of you know too well.

I used to weigh myself every Saturday morning, but this story is going to start the night before. I went out with a friend to a local bar. We met up with a friend of hers and an acquaintance of mine (who would later become my boss). I remember the bar was busy. We had to share a table with two random middle-aged men. They were very nice and we all made small talk. It wasn’t long into the evening before shots were being bought. Someone bought a round of Jager. I took my shot, but the other girl that was with us wouldn’t drink Jager. So, in typical Rachel fashion, I took hers for her (the last time I had Jager and the last time I’ll ever have it). I didn’t realize that while I was finishing her shot she was buying a round of bourbon for us. In no time I had a few beers in me, two shots of Jager and a shot of bourbon. When I say no time I mean in less than an hour. To say things get hazy after that would be an understatement. I remember a handful of things from the rest of that night.

What I do remember is making a full of myself in front of the guy I liked at the time. In my defense, I’m not sure when the people I was with thought it would be a good idea to show up at the bar he was at (crazy much?). I remember flashes from that trip. There’s a clip of us in my head walking in, there’s a flash of me putting my legs up on the table (apparently I have this thing where I like to be relaxed while blacked out) and him taking them off. I have a flash of us walking out and I have a bit of the conversation on the drive to the third bar. That conversation involved my future boss telling me to forget about that guy because he was going to break my heart. Literally the exact words I remember her saying. She was right. He did. I should have listened.

I have almost no memory of the next bar we ended up at. I don’t even know if I had anything to drink there, but things ended quickly. I was told I had to leave. In short, I was kicked out of that bar. When you can barely stand on your own you should probably just go home.

We had to go back to the bar we started at to close out our tab. I fell out of the vehicle after we parked. Literally just opened the door and fell to the pavement. I should note she didn’t drive a car so it was a decent fall and one I don’t remember. It wasn’t until I stood up the next day and mentioned how sore I was that I was told I had fallen. After that things are pretty black. I vaguely remember being on my friend’s couch puking in a bucket. I might have puked in the bathroom before the bucket. I’m not entirely sure. We were home, tucked in on the couch and I was puking all before midnight. This was a common occurrence that year.

The next morning I woke up before 5 in a panic because my parents were flying out of Pittsburgh very early and I never made it home the night before. My phone was dead. I found my friend’s phone and called my dad. I scared him because he thought something happened. I just needed to tell them I was okay, where I was and say goodbye before they boarded. This was a low moment for me. This was irresponsible. This wasn’t who I was. This felt wrong. This was wrong.

Eventually, the house woke up and I stood on the scale. I told my friend I hit the 100-pound mark. I texted my future roommate. I texted my cousin. I still felt nothing. I didn’t feel celebratory. I didn’t feel accomplished. It was nothing. We went to Eat n Park for breakfast. I had oatmeal. The service was terrible. I went home and got ready for a Christmas party that night. All the while feeling nothing. I drank that night too. Less than the night before, but it still involved drinking Crown Royal from the bottle. I was a mess. I was hurting. I was sad. I was angry. I was alone. I was unhappy. I didn’t know who I was. That night ended with me crying on the bathroom floor to my cousins. The first of many nights to come that month where I would be crying. Where I would be drunk. Where I would be a mess. Where I would feel like I was suffocating.

I achieved something in that day that many people never achieve. None of it mattered to me. Luckily, I can look back on it now and realize what an accomplishment that was. Now I can congratulate myself and celebrate this anniversary. I know who I am now. I know what I accomplished. I love this anniversary and I love taking a moment to be proud of myself. I am no longer that lost, messy girl crying on the bathroom floor. I still have things I’m working on, but you wouldn’t believe how far I am from the girl I was that weekend.

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family, friends, Life, Weekend

Kuss Wedding Photos

One month ago, exactly I got to witness my friend and cousin marry her best friend. It was such a special day for both and one I’m so happy to have been a part of. She received the link to all her photos and of course I went through every single one of them. I love photos and wedding photos are the best! I can sit and look at total strangers wedding photos online over and over without shame. I grabbed some of the ones I really liked and figured I’d throw them into a post to share.

The below pics are some of my favorites of the girls getting ready.

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I always love seeing the behind the scenes photos of the girls getting ready. This is the first wedding I’ve ever been in and I would have to admit that the photos always look way calmer and more glamorous than what is going on. I just remember rushing around, borrowing makeup, touching up my makeup, putting lipstick on myself and my sister, touching up other bridesmaid’s makeup, trying not to get any makeup on myself or others, spraying all the hair spray and deodorant, putting Kaitlin’s veil on, putting Adeline’s tiara back in, making sure everyone’s bags were packed for when we were ready to leave, fixing my cousins curls, fixing my friends hair, getting dressed, having the photographer walk in when I was basically naked (that’s fun) and trying to stay calm while keeping an eye on the clock. I think we all thought two hours was going to be a lot of time, but we quickly realized it in fact was not. Rushing, rushing, rushing, but I must admit it was fun and exciting. I definitely lean towards the girly side of things when it comes to getting ready. The best part about going out IS getting ready. However, I forgot to put perfume on this day and it’s something I still think about.

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That’s just me running down the aisle. Literally. We had just gone over what speed to walk and then nope I just booked it. However, I like that you can still see my Dad’s smirk. I almost walked TO him and my mom. Let’s just say being in a room full of people that are looking at only me even if it’s for less than a minute is my idea of hell. I’m pretty sure my dad could see that written all over my face.

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Addie peaking around the bridesmaids is the cutest! She did such a good job. The below photo of John is my favorite of him. John just looks happy. I can’t explain why, but this one is the best of him. I love the one of the guys goofing off while we waited for pictures to wrap up at the church. You can dress them up… haha

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This next photo is just a picture of me hugging the crap out of my friend, cousin, coach, etc who I used to see almost every day and no longer do. I miss(ed) her and love this photo of us. And one of my sister looking extra cute.

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I love this one of Kaitlin. You see relief and happiness all over her face.

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Group shots!

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Beautiful women! I love these photos and will cherish them forever.

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I wish I knew what was so funny here and what the hell was causing me to make that face. I love that Kaitlin is still perfectly posed for photos though. Now for the fun ones!

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I look crazy in that photo, but that literally sums up mine and John’s relationship. haha Laughing at all things.

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This photo KILLS me hahahahaha we went from hugging to busting a SERIOUS move.

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Safe to say… we all had a blast. One month down for you two 2343984309284930 more to go.

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friends, Life, Random Thoughts, Weekend

Weekend 43 : Currently

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Before I started this blog I knew I wanted to have some reoccurring posts planned for every week. Reoccurring posts like this are some of my favorites to read on other blogs. They also help keep a schedule and are time savers. I remembered Elise Blaha Cripe used to do a monthly “currently” post. It was one of my favorite reoccurring posts she wrote (I miss her blog so much ughhh). I decided I would do something like this every Sunday to wrap up my weekend instead of writing a long winded post. Tracy over at Shutterbean wraps up her weeks with a Every Day Life post with lots of photos from her week. I decided to take a little of both of their ideas and make my own post for Sundays. I hope you enjoy my Sunday posts as much as I enjoyed reading Elise’s and now enjoy Tracy’s posts.

realizing I need to start wearing my winter pj pants to bed. The nights have gotten significantly colder and we don’t have the heat on yet. brrr!

enjoying my favorite chocolate chip cookie recipe my mom baked this afternoon and not feeling an ounce of guilt about it. Balance, baby!

watching The Harvest Wedding on the Hallmark Channel. Sometimes I’m a sucker for a good chick flick you guys, but this leading man… really?

looking forward to next Saturday’s plans with Nikki.

listening to all the music right now and paying close attention to the lyrics that are hitting close to home.

feeling jealous of how close to the Montour Trail Maddy is, but happy we got a six mile walk in on Saturday. Walking and talking with friends might be my favorite.

hunting for the perfect motorcycle jacket with gold zippers, the right length and fit. this might be the hardest hunt… ever.

deciding to have a better week mentally than I did last week.

crossing my fingers that the rain doesn’t start until after I get to work and then stops long enough for me to walk back to my car tomorrow. I really hate taking the T you guys.

planning my next two months worth of weekends full of friends and fun outings.

wishing you a great week!

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friends

Maid of Honor

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I barely remember a time in my life when Julia wasn’t in it and I’m certain my sister and brother can’t. When I received her official card in the mail asking me to be her maid of honor I was beaming. The card was perfect for us and I was honored to accept. I can’t imagine seeing someone else stand beside her on her special day and I can’t wait to help her get there.

 
I could go on and on in this short post about our friendship, but I can’t give everything away. After all I have a speech to prepare over the next year. Julia is more than my best friend. She’s my family. She’s been there for me when through deaths in the family, when I needed to cry over a boy, accomplishments, birthdays, happy moments, vacations, concerts, etc. She’s been involved in more of my family holidays than I can count. She’s my best friend. We can talk every day and see each other all the time or go days without a text or weeks without seeing each other and it makes no difference to our friendship.

 
I’m so incredibly happy she found Martin and that he’s such a great person. I can’t wait to help them start their life together and watch them grow together in the years to come.

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Depression, friends, Random Thoughts

Self Critical

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We all have an inner critic. Some of us have a stronger one than others. Some of us just barely have one, but either way it’s there. I can tell you that mine is rock hard strong and comes out at every chance it gets. Sometimes it’ll knock the wind right out of me. It can come out over the strangest things. Things nobody would think twice about. Things I shouldn’t think twice about. Things that aren’t even real. Things I try to push aside, but can’t because I don’t have a handle on it. One of my biggest fears and something that really bothers me is feeling or looking stupid. When I say stupid I mean actually stupid, embarrassed, foolish, vulnerable, etc. Sure, these are things none of us like to feel, but I work my life around not feeling them.

 
There are times when I’m walking down the street and I’ll play out in my head tripping over something on the sidewalk and how embarrassed I would feel if that happened. I’ll figure out how I would recover from that embarrassment and what my next step would be. I’ll replay it and replay it until I’m done walking or someone or something distracts my mind. Sometimes I’ll play out a situation that could happen with me in a room full of people or at the office that would be mortifying and I’ll sit and hope and pray it doesn’t happen and worry that it will because I thought about it. This probably isn’t normal and feeling this embarrassment and shame over something that’s not even real is embarrassing (there’s that word again) to admit. In fact, it’s not something I’ve ever admitted or even talking about.

 
I talked in my depression posts about how I don’t like to not know what I’m doing or to have to ask questions. This goes back to that. I recently started a new job and the first few months of a new job can be hard for me. I want to be perfect right away. I struggle with wanting to be the best at everything I’m doing immediately. When I’m not perfect or I make mistakes my inner critic comes out in full force. When I make mistakes, I can’t help but feel as if everyone around me is thinking or talking about how dumb I am. I replay a mistake over and over in my head and wonder how I could have avoided making that mistake and how to never do it again. When my coworkers talk about people in other offices being dumb I get nervous. I hate hearing them say things like that because I associate myself with these dumb people.

 
I guess I’m different in the way that I criticize myself. Sure, I criticize my body and there are things I don’t like, but I criticize my mind and my abilities more than anything. I struggle with feeling smart enough or educated enough or capable of doing things. I’m always doubting myself. I worry about everything and if it’ll make me look foolish. I was brought up to not care about what people think and for the most part I don’t. However, when I criticize myself so severally it doesn’t matter what other people think or don’t think because I’m already thinking it myself.

 
This is something I realize I need to work on and probably should bring up in therapy. This is a reason I spend every night in the gym. A few weeks ago, I sent an invoice to the wrong client and they emailed our AR email back saying it wasn’t their invoice. I was so embarrassed because the whole team saw my mix up. I was even more humiliated when my boss emailed me to say I needed to pay close attention. Sure, it was JUST AN EMAIL, but it ruined my entire day and left me feeling shame to the highest degree. Shame over an EMAIL that my coworkers probably didn’t even notice because we get hundreds of emails. The shame followed me home and stuck with me for hours and it wasn’t until I started my work out that I was able to clear it form my mind.

 
I need to cut myself some slack. I need to remind myself that people make mistakes. We all have bad days. Things happen and we move on from them. It’s not possible to go into every new situation and know exactly what to do or how to perform. You won’t be perfect at anything and you don’t need to be. You might fall on your face in front of a block of people, but who cares? You don’t know them. Get up, brush yourself off and keep walking. Now, if I could just get this message through to my inner critic that would be great.

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friends, Weekend

Christmas in the Woods && the Farmer’s Market of My Dreams

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Another awesome weekend is in the books. I took PTO Friday. I’ve needed a mental health day for a few weeks, but I also knew after the concert Tuesday night I’d be beat. I was. When I take a day off I like to get my chores done. Sounds silly, but it allows me to enjoy the rest of the weekend with them out of the way. I went to the 9:30 Crossfit class at my gym and my favorite coaches were coaching. Yay! I’m used to having a whole day in between classes so I was a little nervous returning to the gym 12 hours later. I ended up having a great workout and left glowing. It was confirmed come Saturday that it was in fact a good workout… let’s just say my bum was very sore. haha I had planned on grocery shopping right after my workout, but I STUNK. So home to shower I went before running down to PPG Paints Arena. I had to go pick up my pre race packet. Just picking up my bib was exciting. I ran my errands and home to meal prep I went.

I made chili this week! I was craving chili a month or so ago and I found this super easy Turkey Chili recipe on Ambitious Kitchen’s website. It’s sooo good! Who doesn’t love a recipe that involves dumping everything into one pot and letting it simmer?

Saturday morning I got up early and headed to Columbiana, Ohio for their Christmas in the Woods festival. This year my mom, sister and friend Katie went. We hit some decent traffic on the way in. That’s not something we’ve dealt with the last two years, but we eventually made it. There was a lot of people, but it’s usually pretty busy. I’d be lying if I said I enjoyed shopping. I’d also be lying if I said I enjoyed crowds. However, I do enjoy being outside on a nice day with friends and family. I also went to buy two very specific items and to hit up this awesome farmers market we stumbled across a few years back.

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If you know me at all you know I love butterflies. Love. Them. Last year I stumbled upon the Insect Creatures both where I bought my first butterfly. I knew this year I had to go back for another one. I’m still hoping to get a Monarch at some point from them. There’s nothing better than a bright orange butterfly. I also have a thing for bees. Bumble bees and honey bees. Mainly because bees are so important and I freaking love honey. I would like to have my own hives at some point. A stop at the Bumbleberry Farms booth to grab my three favorite honey spreads was a must. They’re so good!

After we left the festival we stopped at the best part! The reason I go every year! The farmers market. We found this little family owned farmers market off a back country road a few years ago and I fell in love. The prices are insane! An entire pail of red peppers for 5 dollars? I mean what? A single red pepper at Giant Eagle will set you back almost 5 dollars. I told the young girl that works there that I wished they were my neighbors so I could buy all of my food from them. What I really wish is that I had my own farm that produced beautiful produce. I swear I was either a farmer/farmers wife in a past life or it’s in my future. It’s calling me.

After the market we headed home. It was a nice day and I’m really happy I go to spend time with my mom, sister and Katie. See you next year, Columbiana!

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