Finding Your Way In The Working World When Life Throws You A New Beginning

Our resident love lady is back and sharing her new beginning as a wife, stepmother and woman needing to reclaim her work identity.
Finding Your Way In The Working World When Life Throws You A New Beginning - Lioness Magazine
Kristina is ready for a new beginning.

Well, hello there! It’s been a long time since I wrote this column. I met the love of my life, we got married, I became a stepmom, and I took on a new job all within a year. Life was a little crazy to say the least and I didn’t know what to write about. My column which was focused on dating now seemed irrelevant so I decided to take time and focus on my new roles. But today it hit me, the urge to write. The desire to share my current struggle because I know I am not the only one.

In January 2013 I went through my last session with Key Hypnosis in West Springfield, Mass. and packed my car to move to Georgia. Within five months I was the smallest I had been in years and with little exercise; just clean eating. As time went on I gained weight here and there but it really was within the past year I have lost and then gained back to where I started when I finished Key Hypnosis. Some may say “it’s because you are married now, it happens, fat and happy” but it wasn’t until today it truly hit me, I am NOT happy because if I was I wouldn’t be gaining weight. Don’t get me wrong, I love my husband and my stepchildren, they are my world, they make me HAPPY but it wasn’t until complaining about being ‘fat’ and the past few weeks at church I realized I have lost myself over the past year and a half and haven’t really figured out the new me yet.

Now I know I am a wife and a mother but I lost the “work identity” we all know; that piece of us that defines who we are during the work day. I was single for so long and a development professional. I was queen of the gym and networking in western MA. Everywhere I went I was known. Moving to Georgia was a leap of faith, one that I am truly thankful for, but I have yet to find my niche so to speak. I don’t have a rolodex like I used to, it takes at least 30 minutes to go 15 miles and frankly I love my job but I am still unsure of who I want to be professionally as I continue to grow up. A lot changed in a short amount of time for me and with a focus on family I questioned my role in the working world and with that I questioned what I should do for work in order to find balance or would I ever find balance?

Finding Your Way In The Working World When Life Throws You A New Beginning

Like a new mom who decides to stay home after the birth of her baby and questions who she is now becoming leaving the work world behind; I too struggle with fitting in to my new normal. And as this struggle twisted and turned inside of me my addiction to sugar came back. I would eat the occasional bread, pasta, potato but my real struggle came with the memories of a fun childhood – donuts. As a child we would have Dunkin Donuts for every holiday, my nana and I would get a donut on Sundays after church and as I got older my mom and I would run errands and stop for an iced coffee and a donut. Donuts were a part of my life and good memories so I am realizing now that subconsciously I would go for donuts to feel good. Yes, I love other things like cake and ice cream or chips and queso but frankly they are all something I can control; getting donuts is not.

Months of negative self talk and “today is the day” continued to plague me as did the “we don’t have a gym close by like I had back home or there aren’t any good classes I can take” gym excuses. As I look back on those excuses I know now I wasn’t ready and I didn’t want to change the negativity. I would look in the mirror and tell my husband I am fat or use words like fatso, pleasantly plump and so on. I was always speaking negatively of myself. I wasn’t ready to be positive and today I finally had enough. Call it the “shower epiphany” if you will but that is where I made up my mind. I took my time washing my body noticing the tire around my waist, my swollen toes and fingers. I looked long and hard at myself in the mirror after my shower and said today I will regain my control, I will regain the positive self I once was and accept all 201 pounds of myself. I am accepting who I am today but I will not let it define my future self. I have learned to ask God for help for many things but sometimes I forget to ask him for help with me. I also don’t always trust my confusion about my professional self in the future is part of his plan; therefore, I can’t let food, well donuts, control me and my lack of knowing or trusting.

I have big hips and thighs, today I have cankles, my wedding ring doesn’t fit and I feel like I have a tire around my stomach. There is a muffin top, that shows itself and clothes in my closet that don’t fit but I am beautiful, I have an infectious laugh and a sparkling smile and my husband tells me I have a kind heart. I am a wife; I am a stepmom and pretty dang good in both of those roles. I am a doggy mom and a kitty mom. I am honest, caring and many times put others before myself. I may be overweight, or even obese according to the doctors, but it certainly doesn’t mean I am fat or ugly; that’s just the feeling I have allowed myself to believe but not anymore. I am overweight today but I am beautiful.

After my shower I decided it was time to break up with donuts. I went to Dunkin Donuts and got my four favorites, Boston Crème, Jelly, Glazed and Chocolate Frosted with Sprinkles. I came home, got a plate and laid them out. I spoke to them about the times we shared and how it was time for them to become memories and a part of my past. I sat there and picked up each donut, spoke to it, and with every bite I savored it. When I was done I said a final goodbye and thank you for the memories. I did this for all four donuts and admittedly I think it was the longest it ever took me to eat for donuts! I am sitting here writing this and instead of the normal feelings of “disgust and how could I?” after eating four donuts I feel peace and thankfulness. I am at peace with donuts and thankful for the memories we have had and the comfort they have given me but it is time for me to let them go.

I am a sugar addict and today isn’t the end of my struggle, in fact it is just the beginning. I need to re-program my brain to speak positively to me and to work to ignore sugar. I also need to trust the good Lord has a plan for my professional future and with time it will be realized and donuts will not make the realization come faster. I need to focus day by day on eating clean and eating when I am hungry and only hungry. I am beautiful and I can do this.

Goodbye donuts, thank you for all those years of comfort but today we must break up.

About the author

Kristina Baker

Kris Baker is a well respected marketing and communications expert based in Atlanta, GA. Since 2009 Baker has been navigating her professional life and her dating life and sharing her stories along the way and became a contributing writer with Lioness Magazine in 2011. She also started a blog, The Secret Lies of Lipstick, which chronicles her dating life as well as experiences of others. Baker has become a local dating expert in her community.

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