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Missing you

Not sure where this is coming from just out of the blue. Must have been the stress of last Thursday and the decent cry I finally had.

I dreamed about you last night. All night it seems. You know how sometimes you’re having a good dream and you wake up and are bummed it ended? This time it didn’t. Every time I woke up during the night I was able to fall right back to sleep and continue the dream. And you were always there. Your bright blue eyes and warm smile.

But now the day is fading and the dream is long over. Losing you was so hard. I never expected something like that to hit me so hard. Must have been related to the other huge losses this year. Just far too much of it for my liking. It’s hard to believe I’ll never see you again, never again hear your voice.

I miss your voice. Your encouragement. Your patience.

 

 

 

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Posted by on September 16, 2012 in Grief, Life

 

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Namaste, indeed.

Feels like I’m slowly climbing up from the darkness. The weather here has been wonderful for about a week, low to mid-70s during the day, 50s at night, so I think that has helped.

It’s been really hard but I’ve managed to keep my eating under control for 3 days. Doesn’t sound like much, but it’s been fairly bad for about 6 weeks now. Monday night I was super hungry after 10pm and I almost caved in and snacked but I’m trying really hard to not eat at night before bed.

Monday I got up early and walked. Yesterday I couldn’t manage to pull myself out of bed to walk, but late in the afternoon I learned about a free yoga class on the bank of a nearby river which sounded awesome. I love yoga but don’t do it often as 1. I prefer to go to a class where someone else decides what poses to do so I don’t have to think; and 2. practicing at a studio is super expensive.

I wasn’t sure if I could hold out until 8pm to eat dinner (no eating 2 hours before yoga) but at 6:30 I wasn’t really hungry yet so I quickly changed into stretchies, grabbed my yoga mat, and headed out.

Everything worked out perfectly and I’m so happy I went! Lots of parking, I was the first one there, the group was small, the instructor awesome and welcoming. And the setting could not be nicer.

This was just what I needed. I thanked the instructor so much for offering this class as it’s just what my mind, body, and spirit needed. She gave me a big warm hug and said she hoped to see me again. I’ll definitely be going back next week. Fingers crossed for good weather. But wow, am I sore today. Good sore though.

Wonderful environment for yoga

 
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Posted by on June 6, 2012 in Life

 

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More “learnings”

OK so that word – “learnings” – it’s one of those words that annoys the PISS out of me. It’s not a noun. Please don’t try to make a noun out of a verb. It really disturbs me to hear this term thrown around at work by intelligent, educated people for whom I have a great deal of respect. It just sounds ridiculous. Please just say “lessons learned”.

You may ask “Why did you title your blog post with such an offensive word?”  Well because I find it amusing to use incorrect words from time to time. My friend Renee and I are nuts and get a kick out of communicating using words that people misuse or mispronounce just for kicks. Words such as irregardless, learnings, saying pellows and melk rather than pillows and milk. That kind of thing. We are easily amused.

So anyway, there is a point to this post and it is that I have more learnings, er lessons learned, observations to share:

I’ve said a million times before that I believe calories are calories and my intent is to consume between 1,200 and 1,600 of them each day regardless of their source. For example, eat nothing but Doritos every day as long as you don’t exceed 1,600 calories in total. Or eat nothing but oranges and chocolate as long as it doesn’t exceed the maximum for the day. A calorie is a calorie in my eyes.

Although I do believe that, I have found over the last week that eating less processed and refined foods really does keep me more satisfied and my cravings better controlled than when I eat more processed foods. I believe the latter is why I’ve had such a hard time getting back on track after the past two months of indulgence. I’ve been doing great for exactly one week now and feel like I’m back on track for getting this remaining 40 pounds (or more, we’ll see once I get there) off by summer.

Last Sunday I reviewed my SparkPeople nutrition trackers from January to see what I was doing back then that was so successful. When I began this journey, I was eating more whole foods. Specifically, more chicken breasts, brown rice, and just a little bit of satisfying sweets every night. I was very satisfied and never ravenously hungry. Compare that with the last few months where I started sneaking more processed things into the mix. I find myself hungry much more often, especially at night, and often consume more sweets and chips. All within my calorie range for the day, but more nonetheless.

Over the past week I added more chicken breast back in and made up a huge pot of brown rice (frozen in single serving baggies for easy reheating). I’ve also gone back to having one or two York Peppermint Patties or Dove Promises in the evening to satisfy my sweets cravings. And I’ve found that I’m much more satisfied and not nearly as hungry between meals as I’ve recently become.

So that’s good news! I feel like I’m well on my way to getting things back under control which is a good thing. Especially with the holidays coming (food temptations and all). At this point I’m up only 3 pounds from the 40 pound loss. I’m hoping to lose that and a bit more by January 1st. If not, I’m still 40-ish pounds lighter than the same time last year and that’s a great feeling.

 
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Posted by on November 21, 2011 in Life

 

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But I live in a small town

Just realized that I forgot to mention the 2nd smalltown weirdness from this past weekend.

So while we were priming the sunroom walls on Saturday evening, the next door neighbor (Jenny) came over to let us know that they had the firepit going and that we were welcome to come over and have some beers with them. I was scheduled to work from 7-midnight but it’s all computer work so I brought my laptop over there to keep tabs on my websites every few minutes. I felt like a total dork, but I explained that I was scheduled to work and everyone was like cool whatever.

Until more people showed up and I felt more self-conscious about it which led to me actually feeling bad about myself. This all spun into Jay and I going home at about 10pm (for various reasons) and then a whole lot of overeating. Ugh. My body image is really bad this week and my eating is totally out of control. I HAVE to get back on track this week. I will NOT gain back any more of the weight I spent 9 months losing.

So what happened?

Well, more neighbors stopped by and the 20 questions started again. Where do you live, how do you like it, do you have kids, are you gonna have kids, you should have kids, do you have a dog, you should get a dog, do you have a boat, you need to get a boat, what are all the home improvement people doing in there, did you not like it, can we see it, blah blah blah. Ugh.

One gal apparently didn’t remember my name so she got my attention and asked why I had my computer with me. I explained that I work for xyz company and I was monitoring some websites. Again, everyone was cool about it. But then a little later 2 of the gals started referring to my as xyz and rather than saying hey my name is xxxxx not xyz, I just let them call me xyz.

Then before I knew it I  felt like the outsider looking in. The new girl in town who was born here, didn’t grow up here, was not part of this circle of friends since high school. I felt left out. Different. Unwanted.

And then the negative self-talk kicked in. They’re all thin, are they making fun of me, are they mocking me, they’re making fun of me, they think I’m fat and ugly, they’re mocking me, they don’t want me here. I don’t belong here.

Sometimes it feels like simple things, such as conversing with new people, that should be easy are just too damn hard. Like it’s some sort of game of oneupmanship, like one has something to prove. It’s really rather exhausting.

Add to it that the past week I had been feeling  a bit down. Missing my family and friends back home. Sad that I don’t really have any good friends here. Well, that’s not completely true. I have a few friends but most live about 30 miles away, so no one I could just call and say hey wanna see a movie or let’s have coffee. No one I have history with. I was already in a state of meh and thought going to the bonfire would help perk me up. It did for a while, but then it got all weird and I didn’t make a stand.

But then, why do “I” have to make the stand? Couldn’t Chris (yes I remembered her name) have said oh hey I’m sorry I forgot your name.

I wish I was faster at thinking on my feet and not so worried about what people think of me because now in retrospect I’m SO pissed that I didn’t take control, stop the xyz thing right away, get the upper hand. The mature adult thing to do would be to just say hey this is my name and it would have been totally cool. Why was I so worried that it would be unacceptable to correct her? Very similar to the situation last week with Mr. Piccolo. I could have stopped his rude behavior and taught the little punk that such disparaging talk is unappreciated and immature but I didn’t. And on Saturday I could have just quickly corrected her and stopped it but didn’t for whatever reason.

I need to figure out what that reason is because it’s not something I want to keep repeating week after week.

So back to Saturday…. even in the dark, Jay could sense something in my demeanor had changed. I was having fun, even with the computer holding my attention somewhat, until they asked me to take a group picture of Jenny and her 3 friends. He noticed that I had become distracted and quiet and suggested that we go home and I was glad to go.

Sunday I got up early and painted the sunroom like a madwoman. I’m good at painting and I have a good eye for design and color and the sunroom looks great. I was still a bit sad so I went for a drive to find the new knitting store that recently opened. I managed to get there without getting lost but found the store overpriced and uninspiring and they didn’t have what I was looking for. My favorite fried chicken place was next door though so I got some chicken tenders which I gobbled up on the ride home (along with a Twix) and disposed of the container so Jay wouldn’t see the evidence of my chicken extravaganza.

Ugh. This is bad. But now that the contractors are done and I’m not having to wait for them every morning, I’m getting back to my morning walks. I want to lose the 6 pounds I’ve gained over the past few weeks back off by the end of the year. I don’t have any holiday parties or events (we’re not going home for the holidays this year unless my mom says I need to get home for my dad) standing in my way so there’s no reason or excuse for not getting back on track.

I Love Me – Well, I just can’t think of anything today. I’m disgusted with my eating and my reactions to uncomfortable situations last week so I’m not really loving myself today.

 
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Posted by on November 14, 2011 in Life

 

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I just spit out a cupcake

I know! I can hardly believe it myself. An hour ago I was ready to totally pig out and now here I am spitting out cupcakes.

So I’m really struggling. Half of me wants to get back on track and continue losing weight. Half of me is responding to my physiological clock which wants me to stuff myself with high-calorie comfort foods to prepare for hibernation. Thankfully my husband is a major procrastinator and saved me from indulging and regretting the decision to do so.

Today I’m tired and cold. Jay came home and wanted dinner. Poor thing, I never cook anymore because I’m dieting and the stuff he likes to eat in no way, shape, or form fits into a diet plan. Yes, friends, he is one of those folks blessed with perfect metabolism who just naturally burns off anything he eats without having to do much physically. So unfair.

So he came home and was trying to talk me into ordering Thai. I said no, but 30 minutes later I was trying to get him to get takeout from our local diner. Takeout in the form of  a gyro sandwich, soup, fries, and something chocolate. I’ve been craving a chocolate cupcake for about 3 weeks now but have not indulged yet.

Thankfully he is a procrastinator and waited to long to respond to my request so I made a bowl of soup that fell well within my SparkPeople calorie range for the day. He went to the grocery store and picked up something to cook for himself, as well as some Stouffer’s frozen entrees for lunches.

So where does the cupcake fit into this?

Well after I plugged the soup into SparkPeople, I have 400 calories left so I told him that if there was a good-looking cupcake in the bakery case, I wouldn’t turn it down. He came home with what looked like the most delicious cupcake ever.  I licked or rather attempted to lick the frosting off the top and found it hard and tasteless. No problem, I’m not a huge frosting fan so I scraped it off thinking the yellow cake would be good. Not a chance. It was cold, hard, and tasteless to the point that I literally spit it into my soup bowl.

That’s disgusting, I know, but I’m very proud of myself. The former me, the me prior to January 2011, would have eaten that crappy cupcake anyway, not enjoyed it, and found something better to eat on top of that. The new me said nope, not worth it.

 
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Posted by on October 26, 2011 in losing weight

 

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No WONDER I’m fat!

I know I shouldn’t choose food rewards for when I reach weight loss goals, but this month it’s appropriate. In 2 weeks I’m going home to Michigan for a few days and I intend to enjoy all the Michigan only foods I’ve not had in six months. Erma’s Frozen Custard, Chinese food, El Charro tacos. That’s really it. Just those 3 things.  Yes, I intend to enjoy them in moderation and savor the taste until my next trip home.

While I’m home I’m having lunch with an old friend and he’s chosen a well-known Chinese food chain. It’s the place we always meet when I’m home. Only this time I’ve taken a peek at the menu and nutrition information ahead of time just to see what might be a healthier choice than what I normally order. I’m in the mood to try something new and maybe find something yummy that’s not the deep fried, honey-coated chicken dish I usually order.

And what I found floored me. I really hate to sound like one of those dumbasses who have no idea just how many calories they are consuming on a daily basis. I’m well aware of the fact that my past food choices have not been good at all, but to see the calorie counts per serving laid out before me really was a wake-up call.

For example, that chicken dish I mentioned… 475 calories. For one third of an order. I was regularly eating the whole order of chicken for a total of 1425 calories. Plus a few spring rolls for approximately another 400 calories. Yikes.  Delicious, but worth it? Definitely not if one eats the entire thing. Perhaps starting with s cup of soup and eating just that one portion is the plan. Tuning into my belly intuitively, I think.

I was thinking I’d order a beef dish that I know I like there but that’s 337 calories for 1/3 of an order. Double yikes. Looks like I may just have some soup and some spring rolls. Maybe the stir fried veggies. We’ll see!

But when I think that I was routinely eating like that, knowing it was high calorie stuff, it’s really no wonder I’m fat. I really never realized how bad all that stuff is though. With store-bought stuff, that nutrition label stares me right in the face. However restaurant food can vary depending on the cook so even those nutritionals could be way off. Still, I think New York and other states who make it mandatory to add nutritional information to their menus are on the right track. I know some people are against government and special interest groups forcing restaurants to do this, but it’s already helped me. In July we stopped at an IHOP in New Jersey on the way home from Connecticut. I was all set to order my usual breakfast (minus the bacon) only to find it on the menu at a whopping 1,300 calories. I opted instead for some scrambled eggs, toast and coffee, for less than a third of that.

And now this future eating in Michigan is being decided based on that info. So I think it should be there as a tool for those who want to know the nutritional values of what they think they’d like to consume so they can make an educated decision. Everyone else can just ignore it if they want.

 
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Posted by on October 7, 2011 in Life

 

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What a difference one year makes

Today marks one year since we moved from Michigan to Maryland. And I’m happy here. I never thought I’d say those words, but I’m really happy here. It sure was a long time coming though.

Several years ago my husband went back to school to get an advanced degree in information technology for Homeland Security. He graduated with honors, then started trying to find opportunities in or around the Detroit area, with government agencies there, but nothing came up. Things there were and are really bad. After many months he became aware of lots of opportunity in Maryland – opportunities that cannot be outsourced or off-shored – and started looking into them.

I was very opposed to moving again. We spent the first 7 years of our marriage moving around the country for jobs before moving back to Michigan when my dad got sick and my husband’s mom died. We’d been re-settled back in Michigan for 10 years and I wanted no part in moving again, especially anywhere out of state and away from my family and friends.

But the job situation was bleak. People were being laid off left and right from his employer. I thought my job was pretty stable but I was let go after being there for just a few months. We agreed that if one of us lost our job in Michigan, we’d work on moving down to Maryland where the jobs in his field are much more plentiful and where there are activities related to my hobby (fife and drum), as well as lots to do in the area. So since I lost my job, the move was on.

I still was not bought into the whole move thing, but felt that it was the right choice. So in July 2010 he accepted a job offer, we put our house up for sale, and (miraculously) it sold within 3 weeks. We lost some money on the deal but were able to offload the house quickly and not have to live separately while we waited for a buyer, nor did we have to leave it empty for very long. It all went fairly smoothly so I’m very grateful for that.

So we moved to Maryland in August 2010. It was so weird. We had lived in several other states already, but the swift departure from Michigan felt so odd. We got the offer on the house on July 16th while my husband was in Maryland looking for a place to rent. He came home, we signed everything, and 2 weeks later the movers picked up all our stuff and drove it to Maryland. The next day we packed up our cats and drove ourselves to Maryland. It all happened so quickly, I imagine it must be what being in the witness protection program is like. I mean, we just picked up and left and settled into the new place all within a week or so.

And now here we are, one year later. And I’m actually really happy. I’m playing in a band, I found a fife and drum corps and a knitting circle, and I’ve made lots of great new friends.  We bought a house, our cats are happy, and even my husband, who has no hobbies at all, has picked up a few things he’s really interested in. So life is good.It’s not been easy finding new doctors, stores, veterinarian, finding our way around, etc.

We’ve had some sucky things happen. Like our old cat died about 8 weeks after moving here, I smashed my car on Memorial Day and it took all damn summer to get it fixed properly, the basement in our rental flooded last fall when we had biblical rains, and the rental people were just awful to deal with. But we got thru it together and came out on the other side.

I do miss my family and friends quite a bit though. I miss being able to spend a day or just a few hours with my best friend. Especially now that she’s recovering from surgery and could use my help and companionship. We talk on the phone here and there, but it’s not the same. I’ve only been home twice since we moved but plan to get home in October for a few days.

But all in all, I’m happy. I never would have thought it possible, but I am.

 

 

 
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Posted by on August 6, 2011 in Life

 

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