Day 370

‘Ass over teakettle’ is an expression that came to mind this morning during my walk with Her Royal Floofness, and I decided to look it up when I got home to see if I could trace the origin. From my very brief research, it seems that it is a slightly later iteration of the term ‘tail over teakettle’ that was first used in a piece in Everybody’s Magazine from 1927. The exact wording of the altered phrase that stuck with me seems to be from Pagany, Volume 3 by Richard Johns (1932). I gleaned this information from pieces on https://english.stackexchange.com, and I thank their reader for asking as well as for the people who responded.

Whatever the origin of the phrase may be, the reason that it came so readily to mind as I walked my dog this morning is because this is exactly how I found myself flying on the trail through the park.

By all indications, with the exception of a couple of bitterly cold weeks in December, this has been the mildest Canadian winter I have experienced. There have been windy days and damp ones which make it feel colder, but for the last month, the high temperatures have been slightly above the freezing point, with the overnight lows dropping beneath. In dry conditions this causes no issues, but when there is precipitation, the straddling of that line will make for icy conditions. On Sunday we had snow, on Monday the temperatures warmed, and Monday night they dropped again. Snow turns to water; water turns to ice. Mitch’s foot finds icy patch (which are often almost impossible to see), Mitch’s feet go up, Mitch’s ass goes down.

Since my return to Canada mid-2021. This is the second time I have done this. Once was about a year ago, on a cold and snowy day just down the street, I hit an icy patch that was camouflaged by a light dusting of snow and went flying. I stayed down for a few minutes before asking for help getting up. The ordeal is outlined in an article I posted to my weight loss blog (OW! – Losing a part of me). The penultimate paragraph of that piece reads:

I don’t know how different this would have been had I been 100lbs slimmer, but I do know that I am not as young as I once was, and I have to be careful. I do suspect that if I was slimmer, and if I was not still recovering from a broken ankle and wrenched knee, I would have likely had an easier time standing up than I did.

I go on to say that I have no intention of trying this again when I have lost the weight. I could not have thought then that I would, precisely 369 days later (and eerily close to the predicted 100 lbs. slimmer) do just that.

Unlike a year ago, there was no comedic (to an outside observer) teetering and trying to retain my footing before giving in to gravity. I went right down. Exactly like a year ago, I immediately checked my surroundings for impending danger, then took inventory of my body to ensure that nothing was broken. My head (always the biggest concern in a hard fall) had not come close to impact, and my Akubra hat remained secure and straight. My right wrist hurt a little but was not injured. Anyone who has gone through serious military training understands the difference. Other than that, nothing hurt or ached. I checked to make sure my surroundings (other than that one still invisible patch of ice… even up close) were dry, and I stood up. I re-evaluated, and there was still no pain. My back, my neck, my hips, my ass, my knees, my ankles were all good.

I don’t know how different this would have been had I been 100lbs slimmer… now I know. I went through it unscathed and was able to recover much more quickly and I was able to right myself without any assistance.

I should mention that Princess Sophie was, just as she was a year ago, wondering why her Daddy fell, and was glad to see that I was okay.

Falling down is never fun… especially as we get older. While I am not going to get any younger, I will continue to lose weight. Hopefully I will never fall again, but if I do, it will be even less traumatic because I am not nearly four hundred pounds.

Yesterday was another good day on my program. I did not veer at all, enjoying all four meal replacements at regular intervals, the last one at a reasonable hour in the early evening. I drank a lot of water, and I spent a lot of time running to the bathroom. I was completely unproductive with regard to work, although I did write two articles in this journal totaling 4,000 words. I was (and I suppose still am) distracted knowing that in less than twenty-four hours I am calling an Uber to take me to the airport, and by tomorrow evening I will be in Dallas with Leslie. It has been nearly two months since we were last together, and it is hard. I know that we are lucky in some respects. Even ten years ago, a couple in our shoes would have had to spend money on long distance calls, and would have been limited to audio only, whereas today Leslie and I can video talk for free every day. A couple in the same situation fifty or more years ago would likely have had to settle for exchanging letters (remember those?) and relying on the post office. That does not make it easier for Leslie or for me that we are mostly apart and spend so much time in the Rectangle Zone. We have had so many emotional hardships due to our physical separation, but when we are together… everything is right in the world again.

This morning was the first day in fourteen that the numbers on the bathroom scale were up from yesterday. It was within the margin of error (.2 lb.) but it was still disappointing. I was hoping that two more days of loss would take me under the 290 lbs. mark for when I got to Dallas. Now that seems unlikely. Even so, Leslie looks at me on video and wonders what it will feel like to hug a much smaller Mitch than she has ever known.

We had a frank discussion this morning about my visit, and how I will be modifying my program for the week that I am there. She is worried that I am talking about a lot of different foods, and she is worried that this visit might be a trigger that pulls me off the program completely. I told her that while I am excited to be eating certain foods, I am not going to go wild, and there will be no meal where she will think I have gorged myself. I will be on a modified program, which will include a few salads for lunch from our favourite place, a few dinners out where I will eat well but reasonably, and a couple that I will prepare for her at home. I told her that I will be stepping onto the bathroom scale daily, and that if I see it is getting out of hand then I will rein myself in… but if I gain less than two pounds during the week then I will consider it a success. I would be thrilled if I do not gain any weight, but two pounds is my hopeful limit. I will mention that while I will be eating reasonably, I will be eschewing snacks, treats, and desserts. I might take a bite of something that Leslie orders, but that’s it.

Yesterday evening my diet buddy and I had our call. Last week our usual call was canceled because of scheduling conflicts, but we did want to have our touch point yesterday. We are both going through a lot, and it is important that we keep in touch to make sure neither of us has fallen off the wagon. It was good to hear that she is also doing pretty well, despite a lot of travel. She has been exposed to a lot more temptations of late than I have. She is also eating solid foods, but because of her surgery she cannot eat nearly as much as she would like and continues to lose weight. I am proud of her. My ideal situation would be to be able to only eat much less than I used to, which would mean that I could not eat the quantities I am used to. When I am ready to ween myself off the weight loss program and onto solid foods, my two main strategies will be wise choices and portion control. If I can succeed with those, then keeping the weight off long term will be easy. If not, I expect that I will spend the rest of my life gaining a few pounds and then forcing myself to diet to lose them so that I do not fall back into old habits and weights. Honestly, I think the part of maintaining for the rest of my life is more daunting than actually losing the weight.

I have done a bit of work and a bit of screwing around since I started writing, and I have things to do. I have to fold laundry and pack my suitcase, and I would like to do a little studying before my meeting and then class this evening. It is time for a meal replacement (and there are two puppies reminding me that it is time for them to get a treat), and then I will do my work. I will stay on track today…

Have a great day folks!

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