Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Day 20: Cardio Connection and a Letter from an Angel

One of the good things about the TAM diet "reset" is that you start to realize what your body truly wants and genuinely needs....(I'm still trying to silence Reeses Peanut butter cups and Cheetos!) Seriously, though, back when I was eating well and in great shape, I almost always started my day with eggs and toast because when I had a non-protein breakfast of just cereal or just fruit, I inevitably would be starving by mid-morning.
Where's the protein?

This morning, I had gluten free Chex with blueberries and almond milk which was delicious, but after a Think Thin Bar for lunch, I was ravenous by 3pm. I had celery with peanut butter and raisins (ants on a log) for a snack, but I was still really hungry. I finally had a few bites of leftover chicken before my workout, realizing I was craving protein. That was exactly what I needed. (And a reminder to myself that starting my day with some protein is essential! I think just adding a hard boiled egg to my breakfast this morning would have prevented crazy hunger later.)

A month ago, I probably would have blindly stuffed my face with chips or chocolate, but that little bit of lean protein was totally satisfying and stopped the cravings cold. It also gave me enough energy to get through a 2 1/2 hour workout. 40 reps with ankle weights and an entire hour of dance cardio! Whoop whoop! My Dance Cardio '08 finally arrived! I did 20 minutes of Bootcamp cardio on the rebounder and then rocked out the entire 40 minutes of my new DVD.

It is by far the best workout I've ever done of Tracy's. I really concentrated on connecting-- and it worked. I danced my tookus off and it felt awesome!

To end today's post, I want to share a story with you that made my day:

Ronnie and me through the years...

One of my favorite people in the world was my grandmother, Ronnie. When I was working as a reporter in Connecticut back in 2003, I lived with her and it was one of the most special times of my life. By the time I moved to Baltimore a year later, she was out of her wheelchair and walking again...I had gotten on my feet too-- financially and emotionally, gaining so much from being around her incredibly strong, beautiful spirit.

When she passed away, it was like losing my best friend, my soul mate. I miss "Rinalda" as I called her, every single day. We always had an incredibly strong psychic connection-- I had very vivid premonitions both times she had a heart attack and another time when she had a stroke. After she was gone, I experienced the closest thing I could have imagined as a "message" from her-- in the form of a letter...or rather two letters.

The first time, I had just moved to Atlanta and was making soup in my new kitchen. Ronnie made the most incredible soups I've ever tasted-- my favorite, was her pea soup. I talked to her out loud that day, telling her how much I missed her. While the soup was on the stove simmering, I walked upstairs to look for something and found an unopened letter from Ronnie in my bedside table. It said, "I'm so pleased you're making my favorite pea soup in your new kitchen....please know, my darling, that every time you are cooking, I am there with you..."

The second time, I had just broken up with a long-term boyfriend and movers were taking my furniture out of the house we lived in together. The master bedroom was almost cleared out except for my bedside table. The movers were outside at the truck and I started talking to Ronnie, worried that I was making a bad decision -- my boyfriend was a really good guy, but I just wasn't in love with him.

I opened up the top drawer of the bedside table and there was another letter. Unlike the first one, this one had been opened-- but I didn't ever remember reading it. It said, "I'm so proud of you for starting a new independent life, getting your own apartment. You're going to be so happy on your own..." Somehow it was the validation I needed from her to move forward with my decision.

With all the stress that's been going on the past month, especially, I was talking to my Mom on the phone and said earlier this week, "Now is when I need a letter from Ronnie! I just hope she knows how much I appreciated and loved our time together."

Well, today, in the mail, I received my offer letter and employment contract with all the info about my 401K and health insurance. I went into my office to get a pen and figured after I filled out my work info, I'd write a thank you card to JP's Mom. There in my stationary, was a letter from Ronnie.

The front of the card said, Hold onto your dreams...Inside, Ronnie had written, (addressing me by my first name, Sarah) "Congratulations, dearest Sarah! I am so very happy for you and so proud of you! I hope you will find fulfillment in your professional and personal life. All my love, Rinalda"

I literally, started to cry with joy, so thrilled that she had given me a sign that she was with me! I said, "Ron, I miss you so much! Thank you for giving me the sign I needed..."

I swear to God, under the stationary was ANOTHER letter. It said, "Precious, How good it is to hear your voice! Your loving and wonderful presence remains with me like the scent of lilacs...My heart is so happy to know you have a contract, medical and dental insurance....My darling, I love you so much. Please take good care of yourself. Thank you so much for blessing my life richly with your unconditional love."

I sat there, floored, holding all of the paperwork with my contract and insurance documents as I read her words...It was like she was right there with me, celebrating my job offer.

I don't know if I believe in God or not, but I believe that I have an angel watching over me-- and that angel is my Ronnie....

Thanks for reading, lovelies.



  1. Aw your letters made me tear up! Congratulations hun you deserve it <3

  2. Thanks for reading, Jen! She was a pretty special lady...

    Sending big hugs to you (and your coal mining self!) <3

  3. Hi Parker - thats such a great story! I was really close with my Grandma too. When she died half of me died with her and she left a big black hole that no one ever would fill. I sometimes think if she would have approved of where I am today.
    The letters you got are amazing - its like the connection never broke!!
    Congrats on the contract - see.. everything worked out in the end!

  4. Hey Nina! I feel exactly the same way--- I miss her every single day. I'm sure your Grandma is right there with you....xxoo

  5. I can definitely relate to being close to my Grandma and having a close connection with her. Glad that she's looking out for you still!

  6. Thanks for reading Danielle! Grandmas are definitely the most wonderful creatures on Earth- and beyond! ( ;