Iím going back to the dentist today. I have one crazy stubborn filling that has fallen out twice in the past year.

As annoying as it is that I did not exactly win the genetic lottery in the tooth department, I am grateful that I can afford to go to the dentist. The things that are wrong with my mouth are fixable. Even if it is inconvenient and expensive, itís still a great luxury that I can even get a cavity filled, let alone afford the oral surgery that I will likely have this year.

Also, despite the fact that Iíve got tooth issues, itís lucky that my teeth were never horribly crooked. They are not perfectly straight, but Iíve been to places where orthodontists donít do a ton of business. Iíve seen how crooked teeth can be. I think mine are just crooked enough to give my smile some personality, in a sea of perfectly aligned pearly white soldiers, but not so crooked to be distracting (unless someone happens to be excessively anal, maybe). Thatís pretty lucky, considering the fact that thereís no way in hell my parents would have gotten me braces when I was a kid.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago, we did manage to go snowboarding for a day and used up that last voucher before the end of the season. Last weekend, I went to Vermont with friends. Adam stayed home because he was far too busy with work to even consider a trip.

I got email from one of the ski resorts in the Poconos, yesterday, informing me that they are expecting another six inches of snow before the weekend. So, I donít know, I was planning to not snowboard again, after getting back from Vermont, but if the snow is there, and theyíre offering $25 lift tickets, why not?

I did check the weather today, and that expected six inches of snow has not fallen, yet. Does that mean itíll fall today or tomorrow or not at all?

Iíve been having fun with the push-up and pull-up challenges. Iíve been improving steadily, but itís been getting tough, too. My last training session, I did 142 push-ups (non-consecutive). Iím still at zero pull-ups but I feel that Iím getting stronger.

The scale has not budged, but I feel like my body composition has changed. As little as I expected from the push-up and pull-up challenges, I think those things have made a much bigger difference than I expected.

Itís getting to be rather mystifying to me that Iím perceiving such physical changes, but still without measurable results. It makes me wonder if itís all psychological.

Another addition to this current obsession of mine is the livestrong website. The author of a blog I read mentioned that she uses it to track her nutrition. I often look up the nutritional value of foods because Iím curious about them, but Iíve never seriously tracked all my food. Iíve been doing that for the past week and a half. I didnít track my food, at all, when I was in Vermont, so thereís a three day gap in there, too.

As Iíve tracked, Iíve experimented with it, and played around with various calorie goals. Right now, Iím eating as Iíve always eaten, except tracking it, to see how it adds up.

I felt that the recommended calorie goals for me were way too restrictive, so it makes more sense to just figure out what it normally takes to maintain my weight, and using that as my baseline. Since obviously, some days I eat more than others, Iíll track for 7 days and figure out my average.

Previously, Iíve never bothered with anything so detailed food-wise, thinking it would be too much of a pain, but rather than being a huge pain, Iím finding a lot of entertainment value in it, too. I think it helped that when I went to Vermont, I told myself that it would be too annoying to track food on a trip, and not to bother. It hasnít had the opportunity to really inconvenience me, yet.

Itís not a perfect tool, but I love that itís so customizable. Considering all the details that can go into tracking food, itís about as easy as such a tool can get.

I donít know how seriously I want to take this thing. Iíve always thought of myself as someone who generally eats a healthy diet and that once you start tracking every calorie, youíve crossed the line into going too far.

Then again, I am getting older now, and I donít think it can hurt to infuse more knowledge into my health and wellness.

Last night, we had our therapy appointment. I feel like itís no longer necessary, but it doesnít hurt to go, and Adam seems to really enjoy the sessions. The guy loves to talk. If heís home and not working, heís either talking to me or on the phone. Heís occasionally even tried to follow me into the bathroom to continue a conversation.

Ninety percent of the time, I have no problem with that, most of the time, Iím grateful for it. I never have to worry that heís harboring unexpressed thoughts or feelings. Heís incapable of it.

I almost never have to drive the conversation or put effort into keeping it going. We never find ourselves sitting in a restaurant staring at each other, lacking things to say; not that thatís a bad thing, I love seeing older couples sitting together, comfortable and quiet.

Since I donít ever have to be the driving force behind the conversation, I think Iíve gotten lazy about it. Iíve never been one to fear silence. Iím happy to sit quietly with just about anyone, but I donít take it for granted that other people feel the same way. They may want conversation and it isnít fair to thrust all the responsibility on them.

Itís funny, but thinking about this, I suppose thatís why I donít mind the proliferation of smart phones. It doesnít bother me when people whip out their phones in public and start thumbing away at their mini-keyboards. Adam, on the other hand, despises them. If a person brings one out in the middle of a conversation, heíll often offer to either shove it up their ass or toss it in the river for them, so they can be more aware of their surroundings.

I was allowed to update my FB status in a restaurant exactly once, and I had to be quick about it.

Anyway, all that was to explain why this guy loves therapy; unlimited talking and undivided attention. I bring it up because he surprised me yesterday. We went to the office, unprepared, had not even discussed what we might discuss in therapy. I was tired, my back was mysteriously hurting, and I was hungry. I had absolutely nothing that I wanted to hash out, and considering the fact that Iím a super neurotic perfectionist, thatís quite a feat.

Adam piped up that he had something that he wanted to discuss. That was surprising, because while he loves to chat, itís rare that heíll pre-plan anything. Maybe being a teacher is starting to catch up with him.

He said that he had called his dad earlier in the day to get his perspective on doing home improvements, and during the course of the conversation, his dad pointed out to him that Iíve done a lot of sacrificing for him. Iíve worked hard to keep the relationship together and the household running. Iíve been the primary bread winner, the primary food/household shopper and the house manager. I delegate the tasks and often assign much more to myself than I assign to him.

The only thing he does more often, than me, is cook, and while I am a better cook, heís a much more willing cook. Also, heíll do just about anything, if asked (more than I can say about most people, including myself).

Adam said that, for the first time, it fully hit him how much Iíve done for him, and tearing up, said he didnít know how to express his gratitude. His speech went on for a long time, perhaps twenty minutes, talking about the profundity of his realization, and how I deserved so much more than what heís been giving.

While, I have occasionally suffered bouts of resentment regarding the imbalance of responsibilities, Iíve also have not been quiet about telling him to step up when it bothers me, and like I said, heíll do just about anything, if asked.

It was kind of a surreal experience to be recognized in such a grand manner in therapy. It also really took me off guard, as everything was status quo, for me, and had been, for at least a few weeks.

Also, even under these circumstances, where I see an imbalance between sacrifices, I am still faring better than a lot of women I know. Weíre still being swept along by the march of history. A history, where women routinely tore off chunks of themselves and sacrificed dreams, ambitions, hopes, energy, luxuries and desires for their families, until their bones were picked clean.

Times are changing, sure. Just take a glance at how birth rates and marriage rates have changed in the past few decades. Women want children and relationships on our terms, not the terms that have been imposed on us for centuries.

Well, I could go on about that forever, but I donít have the time for it.

Although, I will say that I consider the falling birth and marriage rates to be a positive thing. Women are waiting longer to have kids, and having fewer of them because itís happier and healthier for everyone involved. When a mother isnít overwhelmed with kids, and has the strength and maturity to deal with them, everyone benefits.

We are delaying marriage to make sure that we have a fair and equal partner, before making such a commitment, rather than jumping into a potentially poisonous or just plain unhappy marriage for financial security, and status.

While I recognize that, and I rejoice in it, it still amazes me when I meet women who donít recognize themselves as people who deserve just as much as the next person.

The odd thing is, I see it in my own generation; women who are my age or younger. Women who donít recognize their inherent value or arenít willing to stand up for it.

Sure, how much one values oneself is a totally personal choice, and I generally donít judge people for their choice. I wonder, though, how often do they realize that they have a choice?

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Thursday, Mar. 31, 2011 at 3:47 PM