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Holding Your Mouth Right

Friday, March 15, 2019

In the annals of folksy, old-fashioned slang, right between calling someone a "good egg" and saying you'll be back "in a jiffy," there lies the delightful phrase, "hold your mouth right." It's something oldsters (myself included) say when something needs to be "just so" in order for it to work right. If you are fighting with a particularly tight lid on a jar, and the safety button suddenly pops, you might say, "I just had to hold my mouth right!" If you fail at this, but the person you ask to help gets it right away, you might say "Ah, I guess you were holding your mouth right." Although, you'd be more likely to chuckle, "Har har, I loosened it up for you!"

I ponder this phrase a lot with regard to weight loss. I was doing awesome until I got pregnant, did awesome again right after I had the baby, but have not yet been able to adjust my eating to no longer having calories leaking out of my chest uncontrollably. I go to bed each night with a meal plan that, if followed, will lead to glorious weight loss, not unlike those meal plans I made in what seemed like a previous life when I lost about 40 pounds. By the following evening, I'm slamming Cadbury Crème Eggs as if I were actually going to pump any of them out (Spoiler: I'm not).

As an irrelevant aside, I feel I should note that I had not succumbed to the song of the Cadbury Pig, Lion, Llama, or Cat (makow! makow!) for 35 years, and only in a fit of pregnancy-induced culinary adventurousness did I decide to give one a try, and they are DELICIOUS. Where have they been all my life? There's actually an easy, literal answer for that: On the grocery shelf, where they should have remained.

But I digress. It just seems like I haven't yet figured out how to hold my mouth right. The problem is not the plan. The plan is exactly what it was before, when it worked. I mean, what was the right code in my brain that kept me on track long enough to slim down? And how do I find it again, so that this terrible ascent will stop? Besides Cadbury eggs, there's another horrifying similarity between pregnant-me and now-me: My pants. Twice this week, I put on my maternity pants. Holy (too much) guacamole. Something's gotta give.

I need to figure out how to hold my mouth right. I wish it were as simple as holding it closed, which is really the right way to hold one's mouth when one is trying to lose weight.

I just have to discover the mindset I was using when I held my mouth right (shut) and avoided the maamoul being passed around (which I don't even like, anyway) or my buddy's roasted peanuts (which I also could take or leave, if I'm being honest).

Where is the thought process behind getting to the gym several days a week and holding my mouth right to breathe heavily? I know it's in there somewhere, because I had it before. I just don't know how to get it back.

I have to imagine there are some good eggs (folksy, old-fashioned ones, not delicious, fondant-y ones) here that will be able to tell me how to hold my mouth right in a jiffy. What do you do to help your actions align with your goals? How do you hold your mouth right?

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Wow, this is a emoticon blog!

    I've never heard that expression before, it must be a regional thing. I really love how you wove it all throughout your blog and really made the meaning clear. You did it in a beautiful way!

    Well, not to be too annoying, but could you be having the post-baby blues a little bit? Because it sounds a little like that, even though your kid is a year old, I think it may still be possible. You sound like you're in mourning. I had this exact same problem when my grandmother died around Easter time one year, and I totally turned to Easter chocolate and gained five whole pounds! Beware, this is a dangerous way to mourn or occupy your time, or whatever is going on with you. Maybe you don't like leaving behind baby and going to the gym. Perhaps you should try Baby and Me Yoga or something. You like hold the baby, and do poses and get to work on your bond and get fitter at the same time. And he's a weight!
    473 days ago

    Comment edited on: 4/20/2019 9:05:18 PM
    Oh my... I am not sure. Can you revisit your why? Redo your vision board? All my whys are health related.
    507 days ago
    I had not heard that expression before, but it certainly fits the situation--holding your mouth right.

    Why, oh why, did I lose weight here on SP eight years ago, but I haven't been able to do it again since letting that weight come creeping back? Since I haven't had success in the past few years and just seem to be procrastinating forever, I can't presume to offer any sound advice, but it just so happens that I had such a bad eating day yesterday that it truly scared me, and I'm not exaggerating when I tell you that I asked myself, "Do you want to go on living or NOT?" Really, at age 62, I just can't continue behaving this way and expect to live to tell the tale. But guess what. I never, ever lose hope, and I'm pretty sure you don't either, even though I sometimes want to log in here and write in my status feed, "I GIVE UP! Y'ALL CARRY ON WITHOUT ME!" But I always, always snap out of it and think it's possible to get my head in the right place.

    Fear is a negative motivator so I know it can't last, but today, now that it's late afternoon and I'm starting to feel less sick, I look forward to all the good things that can happen if I stick to a sound plan. First and foremost, the fear will abate. I will not dread work or social obligations, as I invariably do if I'm in freefall. My work will become more efficient and effective. I will not treat Toshi badly, as I usually do when crashing from sugar and carb highs. I will not panic about clothes as it's time to leave the house to go to my class. I will feel more confident (even though still overweight) when I stand in front of my students, knowing that I'm doing my best to look good under what I hope are temporary circumstances. HOPE is the thing. Staying on plan gives hope, even though I'm not yet satisfied with the situation. When tempted, I will just try, try, try to think about the reward--REST--that awaits at the end of the day. I know in your case that's very iffy when you have a child less than a year old. I just hope that when fatigue takes over and you can't stay awake any longer, you can go to bed and pray that he sleeps through the night. If you can't resolve your fatigue through sleep, it's so hard to stay on track with food, because the quick surge of energy from food is so tempting.

    I hope you are getting enough support so that you can get enough sleep--and enough time for yourself so that you don't feel too deprived of things you always enjoyed before your little guy came along. I can't offer advice, but I know from experience that not getting enough sleep and being irked at not getting enough help can wreak havoc. As for myself, I no longer have the excuse of being too busy rasising children, but I've recently become subject to the expecatation that I visit my MIL in the nursing home three times a week, since she is now so nearby and since Toshi has a really important job that leaves him so little time, compared to my job, which he perceives to be less demanding. There's always something I need to try to manage my feelings about. I want to visit my MIL--I just don't want to be EXPECTED to do it!

    I hope that together we can find a peaceful way to free ourselves from perceived burdens and self-destructive urges and get closer to where we want to be, which is healthy and...well..small enough to fit into our clothes!

    I'm with you, BEATLETOT! Hang in there!
    508 days ago
  • no profile photo GREYTDOLPHIN
    I've been exercising more, but not sure if there's any weight loss. To be honest, I'm afraid to step on the scale. I had been going to a weight loss doc (he's a board certified internist & certified in weight management). He tells me weight loss is primarily from the foods eaten. Last time he told me to knock it off with the sugar and to load up on protein. But he also told me to let go of things----like worry about my evil MIL and to "wish her well". Maybe he's a shrink, along with his other titles?

    It's probably the stress of trying to do so much at once. It's tough working full time and having a new baby. Your little guy is the cutest little baby I've ever seen. Hope that you solve the daycare issue.
    508 days ago
  • L*I*T*A*
    great plan....................
    508 days ago
    Interesting approach...
    508 days ago
    What a great blog! I love the way you write.

    As you know I cannot offer you advice. My mouth is always in the wrong stand.

    But maybe it's an idea to try to analyze the difference between the way you were back when your plan worked, and the way you are now? Maybe that could offer clues as to how to best tweak it?
    508 days ago
    Good blog - I've never heard the expression! If I were able to bottle a mindset/attitude and sell it, I'd be a millionaire! It has something to do with my trip to Africa, I think. I came back with a renewed sense of purpose and confidence. I was able to do things there that I love -- in a whole new setting. That's the big picture, though. A lot of the progress I've made the past 3 months I'd attribute to establishing routines and developing (or relearning) good habits. There's food tracking and exercise, of course. But some of them are little things "unrelated" to food or exercise and they've made a big difference: shining my sink every night and eliminating the time bandit word game apps on my phone are just two.
    508 days ago
  • SEAGLASS1215
    emoticon versus emoticon

    On WW eggs are considered "free" food...they didn't mention if that meant chocolate eggs or Cadbury eggs, LOL!!

    Seriously, though, I understand and can relate to what you are going through. I know what I am supposed to do but getting my mouth right to do it is another matter, one I continue to struggle with. When I was my most successful, I had set up a reward that I was able to work toward (I had to lose 10% of my weight in order to use the new Vera Bradley handbag I had bought) so I really wanted to lose that 10% and stuck to it. Why I can't use that same method now I'm not sure...seems like life keeps getting in the way every time I try!
    508 days ago
    Loved your blog!
    A good plan is half the success.
    It may take some time and problem solving to find out if there is anything wrong with your plan (too restrictive? contains trigger foods? not enough fat or protein?) or the plan is just right and you "only" need to work on your compliance.
    508 days ago
  • no profile photo CD24024921
    I allow myself the occasional treat and try to be healthy for the remainder of the week. I exercise atleast 10 minutes per day usually more though.
    509 days ago
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