Yesterday, I got my long awaited reward for hitting 339 on the scale: a trip to the movies with the Hot Mess Hubby to see “The Avengers”.
I am a movie nut. It’s hardcoded in my DNA – so imagine the major shift in my life when I married a non-movie lover.
Here’s Hot Mess Hubby’s idea of how to see a movie: wait until it’s on cable, then turn it on…but talk through the entire thing, take multiple bathroom breaks without pausing the DVR, and then get bored 45 minutes into it and start playing Words with Friends. If, by some miracle, I do actually manage to drag his butt to a theater…it’s anarchy.
First, he whines and complains because he thinks I want to leave too early in order to get to the theater. If I insist, he drags his feet and comes up with little things he has to do until we’re walking out the door at his preferred time…not mine. Then he whines more in the car on the way to the theater, pointing out all the places we’re passing that would be more fun to go to. When we get to the theater, he buys the tickets and points out that we’re “4 hours early” with a sarcastic grumble. By the time I drag him to the snack bar for popcorn, the lights are already dimming in the theater. The theater is dark and fairly full as we wander around trying to find seats like a couple of complete noobs. A million meltdowns later, we actually sit down…usually in the front row because there’s nowhere else to sit, and I’ve missed all the previews. But that’s okay…because Hot Mess Hubby is congratulating himself for synchronizing his ingenius timing of our butts hitting the seats with the roll of the opening credits. What a doof.
My way is the polar opposite of his. There is a very specific procedure to be followed when I’m going to see a movie and I don’t tolerate shenanigans.
It takes about 20 minutes to get to the theater from our home, therefore we leave precisely 40 minutes before show time. Once I’m at the theater, I make my way to the concession stand to grab my popcorn & drink. Popcorn is not only the perfect movie watching food, but it also compliments the red licorice and chocolate covered raisins that I’ve smuggled into the theater in my purse.
Oh, yes, I do that. I’m not sure which will shock you more: the fact that I eat candy at the movies or the fact that I smuggle it in like a spy in a World War II movie. Back when I lived in California and theater employees would search handbags for contraband of the Twizzlers persuasion, I used to have a special bag with a secret compartment at the bottom. No shit! Before that, I would just make sure to hand my ticket to the awkward teenage boy with the bad skin and, when I opened my handbag for the required search, his flashlight beam fell on a couple of tampons and a strategically placed maxi pad.
Hey, a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do!
I do realize that the theaters make their real money off the concession stands, which is why I’m a good sport and buy my popcorn and drink from them. There’s just no substitute for movie theater popcorn and, since I only go to the movies about four times a year, I can get away with the occasional indulgence. However, there’s something ridiculous about paying $5 for candy I can get for a buck at the dollar store. And it’s all under glass…like you’re at a jewelry store, but instead of looking at sparkly baubles you’re sidling up to the counter and saying “Can I see something in a Kit Kat?” They should offer financing like a jeweler, too…ridiculous!
With popcorn & drink in hand, I find my seat. If I’ve timed it right, I have about 15 – 20 minutes to chat with the hubby and answer the movie trivia questions on the screen before the lights dim. Then I enjoy all the movie previews and settle in for the movie. Perfect! Do you see how my way is much, much better than Hot Mess Hubby’s? I knew you would.
Now I realize that y’all could have lived the rest of your lives without hearing about my movie going procedures, but I had to vent about it somewhere. Hot Mess Hubby has still not stopped rolling his eyes because he was made to adhere to my procedures yesterday. Whatev!
What I’m really here to talk about today is the fact that I’m especially grateful for change. Real, sustained change. I need to brag a little here. I am finally able to say that I can adjust my daily eating habits to include the occasional indulgence without worrying too much about tipping the scales in the wrong direction.
Yesterday, I had a light breakfast because I knew we were going to the movies. I shared a bucket of popcorn with the Hot Mess Hubby and enjoyed my movie candy. I planned on eating a light dinner, but ended up not eating another bite. I was full all…damn…day.
The difference is that in the past, this would not have stopped me from either going out to dinner with friends or heating up a dozen pizza rolls in the oven while I watched reruns of “Friends”. I may not have been hungry at dinner time, but it was…dinner time. So I ate dinner.
For the past 5 months, I’ve been sticking to my menu plans. When the time for my next meal or snack comes around, I usually feel a tad empty…but my stomach isn’t churning and gurgling. There’s room, though, and my body is ready to eat. Yesterday was amazing. I didn’t even want to think about food for the rest of the day.
When I got up this morning, I was still full. I had no intention of getting on the scale, but then I realized I needed to. If there was going to be fallout from my indulgence, it was better to know about it up front. So I got on the scale. It said 339. I felt both proud and grateful.
I feel like I’ve finally broken the unhealthy pattern of eating when I’m not hungry – although some would argue that a ½ bucket of popcorn and a bunch of movie candy isn’t a healthy lunch or dinner…but I don’t go to the movies a lot. This was not a typical day for me at all.
Sure, I could have smuggled some nasty, bland air popped popcorn in a sandwich bag and gone with the sugar free red licorice and had regular raisins instead of chocolate covered ones…but where the hell is the fun in that? Going to the movies takes me back to when I was a kid (yes, I saw Star Wars on the big screen…I’m THAT old). I thoroughly enjoy it when I go and part of that enjoyment for me is the heart- attack-in-a-bucket popcorn and the movie candy. If I only have it 4 times a year, I’d rather splurge on the real thing.
I am eating all my healthy favorites today and drinking all my water…because that is now normal for me. Back when I first started this process, I would have been afraid that a trip to the movies would send me into “relapse mode” but I see now that I’m doing just fine. I’ve got a good balance on when to allow indulgences and how to adjust my calorie intake accordingly.
So today I’m grateful…for growth, for change, and – of course, for Robert Downey, Jr.