It’s been two weeks since my last hike. Burnaby Mountain and Cardiac Hill was the last one I went on and since then I’ve been busy with kayaking, kickboxing, working out with Faraaz and avoiding thinking about Sister P’s wedding. That’s right. Sister P is getting married and I am the Maid of Honour. However, she is in Edmonton and I am in Vancouver and because I have saved all my leave for New Zealand, I can’t actually get out there early to help her with wedding stuff, which by the way is in October of this year! This weekend I had a hike planned but instead, I was wrangled into another ordeal. Dress shopping. I do not really like dress shopping. There’s probably a whole slew of reasons behind my shopping issues, but I think it has something to do with when I was larger in size and how it was always so difficult to find something that I liked that was also in my size. No one ever likes to admit that they are big but other than going shopping for a new swimsuit, shopping for a dress tends to really bring a person down in the dumps, at least it did for me. One could always argue, that I have since slimmed down and it wouldn’t be that difficult to find a dress. But that argument could be applied to my situation four years ago when I was depressed and losing weight quite drastically. I went shopping for new clothes back then, including dresses and when I came back with all this stuff, the feeling of ‘happiness’ lasted for maybe less than a day and I had a new wardrobe of clothes that fit me but didn’t make me happy. Yes, I know that four years ago there were mental issues in my head that made it so that nothing would make me happy, but still I remember those feelings and it has stuck with me.
So hence the feeling of dread this morning. Or rather, it started Saturday. My hike, which was switched from Sunday to Saturday, was postponed due to rain. So I called up Sister C to see if she wanted to go shopping. I had things to get at Mountain Equipment Co-op and then we could attempt dress shopping at Oakridge Shopping Centre. Clearly my heart wasn’t in it because I forgot to bring my wallet. So even my shopping at MEC, which I truly enjoy, was made a little more difficult. And then at Oakridge, where all the stores are ridiculously expensive, it was just an exercise in patience to find stores that sold dresses in my size. And I’m not even talking about large sizes, but average sizes. Granted, I wasn’t sure what my size was anymore, but seriously when you walk into the stores and the sizes only go up to size 8, you have to wonder who they think is going to shop from them. Needless to say Saturday was an exercise in surviving frustration rather than patience. What did I do after that hellish experience in Oakridge? Ran around the neighbourhood with Sister C. If I can’t hike, then I’ll run. And I don’t really like running. But I needed to exercise. I miss hiking, but I’m not a fan of hiking in the rain either.
Now Sunday. This was the “set” day for dress shopping. This was supposed to be my hiking day. The day where I had originally planned to go hiking, only because I know that the day after my kickboxing class, I am so tired, and bruised that I need a rest day before my hike. And what do I do instead? I go dress shopping. And what is the weather like on this day? Beautiful. Perfect weather for a hike. And instead, I was inside a mall. Looking for a dress. For a wedding. And a reception. Where all the old aunties and uncles are going to ask me why I wasn’t married yet or when it’s going to be my turn. Hurray! I have so much to look forward to! I can’t wait for one of the old aunties to say that I have to get married before they’re too old to get out of the house!
It’s funny, but since I started working out with Faraaz, I have noticed things about me that I never really did before. Oh yeah, I forgot to mention that I am now working out with Faraaz as my personal trainer, in addition to him being my kickboxing instructor in the ladies class. I haven’t forgotten about Korri though. Anyway in just the three sessions I’ve had with him, he has been reminding me about posture and presenting confidence in how I stand, and in everything else I do. Chest up, head up. And as I walked through the first few stores, I noticed I was back to hunching and curling my shoulders. And when I noticed that, I went back to chest up, head up. And while my posture was better, I was still feeling uncomfortable in the store, but less so than when I first walked into it. Luckily I had Sister W with me. I remember when we were younger, we were always going out shopping or eating. We were really not good for each other. But we did have fun together. And I think it got to the point where we agreed we weren’t good for each other and settled on shopping/eating dates once a month and no more. And since Sister W moved away from Vancouver and had her babes, it’s been even more difficult for us to get together for shopping dates. So I was really glad to have her with me on this particular day. Poh Poh was with us as well, but I can only say that it added to the ordeal, not relieved it. Shopping with Poh Poh is an ordeal in itself. Her sense of timing is not so great. At least with Sister W, we have stores we want to hit up and we know when we want to be done so we know not to dawdle. I am glad Poh Poh got what she wanted. It’s always nice to accomplish your shopping goals. Still, it was an added stress to the ordeal that I had to tackle today.
Again, funny, but changing your body is a lot easier than changing what’s in your head. I know that I’ve slimmed down, my friends at work and my sisters have told me that I look good, but I still look in the mirror and see things that need improvement. I have found more energy to do things like workout everyday, play with the nieces and nephews, run around the neighbourhood after an ordeal in the mall and still I think that I need to do more. Maybe it’s because the summer is coming to an end. My kayaking classes are coming to an end. This week will be my last class. I haven’t enjoyed a water sport as much as I enjoyed this class. Last class I capsized twice. It was great! We worked on bracing, high brace and low brace and edging. I love edging. That was super fun. Mike is a really great instructor. I really looked forward to the Wednesday classes. I already have three more kayaking sessions booked with my friends. I hope they don’t back out. But I look at my schedule and I think, Gee, the summer is ending awfully quickly. Labour day is right around the corner. And I can’t help but think that I need to learn to kayak in the winter. Crazy! I know. Who kayaks in the winter? I don’t even like to hike in the rain! But I don’t want it to end. And really it won’t, but occasionally my head reverts back to the old way of thinking, the old way of thinking that messed me up in the first place. But looking at my schedule, I think that I now have Wednesdays free as of September and I think that I need to fill it with something but I don’t know what. Maybe I’ll have to go out kayaking on my own on those Wednesdays. I don’t know.
One of the things that my friends keep asking is how do I feel? I tell them I feel good, but I sometimes don’t really know. I know I should feel good. I know that I have more energy. I certainly feel stronger. And I do feel good. I feel good that I can do all this stuff now, without huffing and puffing and thinking that my heart is going to explode. I feel good that I can run up the stairs to catch the Skytrain at work and I don’t even break a sweat. That’s always a good feeling. But really, it’s hard to describe how I feel, when I’ve gone through months of ordeals to change and improve and still know that there is so much more that I can do to continue to change and improve. But this may have to be another post at a later time.
Anyway, back to the weekend ordeal. Success. I bought a dress. Size 10, petite. Yes Petite. Five feet, two inches throws me into the Petite category. But Size 10. HOLY CROW! I don’t think I’ve ever owned a dress in size 10. I still have to get shoes. When the outfit is complete, I will include a picture in a future post. Until then, try to picture a petite, size 10, ballerina in a black and purple dress. Because if you ask me how I feel right now? I’ll tell you I feel like a ballerina in that dress. And that’s a good thing.