Chubby Yogi?

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Very comfortable. This my morning practice I do when I am getting ready to go to work, that is why I am in my jeans.

 

My mother was joking about when I was little saying, “You were such a little Hellion. You were a difficult child, running and talking 23 hours a day, but it always amazed me when Mr. Rogers was on, you were quiet, enwrapped in the program. I mean not a word was spoken when that man came on the TV.” Mr. Rodgers with his calm, quiet, dulcet voice, pastel sweaters and serene demeanor, was so unusual to me. I grew up in a full, loud and boisterous house. My life was and still is full of noise. I am a loud person, from my booming voice to my full, deep, whole hearted laugh. When words come to my mind I speak them right away. My siblings are pretty similar.

I guess this is why I am totally enamored and fascinated with calm, quiet people. I have always whether consciously or unconsciously sought them out. I can’t handle not knowing what is in their brains and why they don’t feel the need to speak all those locked up thoughts. It’s like knock, knock, knock….what is in there? My Dad used to say, “It’s one thing to be stupid, it is another to open your mouth and let people know you’re stupid.” I guess maybe that is another reason I am lured to quiet people, I believe them to be wise.

I am pretty proud of my downward dog, even though it could be better.
I am pretty proud of my downward dog, even though it could be better.

The biggest reason I think is that yen yang thing. The whole attraction to what you haven’t mastered. My mind is in constant motion, thinking of several things at once. Most of it seems to come out of my fingers on the keyboard (a thing that has saved many relationships,) or out of my mouth. I fidget, squirm, and rarely sit still. My husband used to say to me, “Can’t you just sit and do nothing??!!!” While the invention of the tablet allows me to do that because I can read and watch TV at the same time, and I have also learned that quiet people don’t always have pearls of wisdom hiding in there…I still long for stillness and quiet that eludes me.

If I told you that you would probably refer me to a counselor, yoga, or meditation, right? It says something about me that I have seen counselors, but never in a million years thought about yoga or meditation. Ol’ Doc Baxter says with my fibromyalgia I have to stretch. Google says, “Fibromyalgia is a common syndrome in which a person has long-term, body-wide pain and tenderness in the joints, muscles, tendons, and other soft tissues. Fibromyalgia has also been linked to fatigue, sleep problems, headaches, depression, and anxiety.” My mom and grandma both had it. Growing up I knew; Fibromyalgia equaled pain you can never get rid of. Knowing the pain Mom went through I have already researched this disease before Dr. Baxter told me I had it. I kept “helpfully” sharing what I learned saying Mom try this, and try that. Yeah, I am that kind of friend, the fixer. Mom isn’t much for trying stuff, so now; I am going back on all that literature, and the number one suggestion: yoga and meditation. Oh, okay, so I guess I will try it.

Love a good hip stretch
Love a good hip stretch

I LOVE IT!!!! I normally hate to sweat, but for some reason I don’t really notice when I am doing yoga. My husband and I have been doing about twenty minutes in the morning and the evening. Last night I sweated a lot. With a concentration on breathing, position of your body, and balance: it is such a challenge for me that it quiets my mind. Even small stretches and poses are meant to be done in reverence and thoughtful breathing. I have found it to be so relaxing and calm, and the biggest benefit is I have noticed after just a few weeks practice I have much less pain than before.

Maybe this will lead me to be the quiet, introspective, wise person I have always wanted to be? That may be too much to ask, but at least I am on the road to far less pain.

 

 

 

The Best Advice is the One You Can Take or Leave

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My glorious and wise “Glamma”

I like reading. Magazines are my guilty pleasure. One of my favorite things to do is to lounge on the couch watching a TV show maybe even a marathon and read magazine after magazine. I read everything: Shape, Self, Eating Well, Cooking Light, Marie Claire, Better Homes and Gardens, and many more. I have a subscription where I get a hundred magazines a month and I sometimes even read Consumer Reports. Better Homes and Gardens will tell you how you can make your back porch look luxurious on little money. Some mags will tell you the best food to eat when you’re on your period.

The last couple months, I’ve been seeing the same article in many magazines. These articles say that you should keep your razor somewhere else other than your bathroom. Now, that makes no sense. Something about how the moisture wears the razor down easy and there’s bacteria in the bathroom. I was very small when I started shaving. I matured super early, my black leg hairs sprouting, around second grade. I have been keeping my razor in the bathtub vicinity since then. I have had no problems. My momma and her momma did the same thing. I know because I used Grandma’s to shave off the paint surrounding the tub.

Picture me lathering up my legs in a full bathtub figuring out I left my razor in the living room. Okay, not the most practical place to keep a razor but if not in the bathroom where would I keep a razor- maybe in the bedroom on the dresser? Either way, I would have to get out of the tub and go find a razor because there’s no way after 30 some years of shaving my legs I’m going to remember it is stored somewhere else. I’m just not going to.
What I am figuring out is that even though many educated scholars and doctors contribute to these magazines not all of their advice is for me. In fact, I find some of it to be pretty ludicrous. Maybe they just don’t shave their legs.

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My sister, the summer beauty

My Grandma, my sister Katie and I were at the lake the year before Katie graduated from college. Katie was telling Grandma every piece of advice she had gotten about what degree and school she should was considering. Grandma very gingerly patted her on the arm and said, “You know you don’t have to do any of that right?” Katie looked at her quizzically, her golden hair glistening in the sun. Grandma smiled patiently and said, “It’s just advice. No one knows what you want but you.” While I was a bit perturbed by Glamma’s wisdom there because I had been trying to talk sister into coming to live with me and go to Boise State, I realized what Grandma was saying was the best thing you could say to a young twenty something. Really, it shocked me so much, the simplicity of the statement, that it really hit home with me. It’s just advice.

Shrugging my shoulders, trying to affect a laissez faire look on my face, I say it again: It’s just advice. How freeing is that? Right now, I can go onto the internet, turn the TV to a certain channel, or open a magazine and get loads of advice. Personally I always want to improve myself: my weight, my reading list, my home, and love looking at recipes. Even though I know all advice is subjective and not always for me, it can still feel like I can’t keep up with all the advice. I still don’t have any art over the couch in my apartment I have lived in for over a year. I can’t cook chard to save my life. I will never get to finish all the books from Oprah’s book club. Don’t tease. They pick out really good books.

Time flies when you’re discombobulated

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This is me rocking the pig tails at work

My schedule has changed. For the past couple of years I have worked from 11:30 to 8:00 pm. I loved this schedule. It fit my lifestyle perfectly. I had time to sleep in but not enough that I felt disgusted with myself for wasting the day away. I also had time when I got off work to have a relaxing swim in the evening air with my honey, without those pesky little screaming children blocking my laps. I had gotten a good rhythm. I timed my meals every four hours, and then had alarms set for testing my blood sugar. Husband and I had a set a bedtime and a set wake time. Geez, I have become annoyingly boring. I didn’t used to be this so stringently scheduled, but with the sleep apnea and diabetes I have to be if I want to have be a functioning successful human.

So now I work 1:30 to 10:00 and you would think a two hour shift wouldn’t be all out chaotic, but it sure does feel like it. My internal clock is messed up and my meals are a different time and it took me a week to figure out the times I should be eating and should be testing my sugars. Husband and I still haven’t figured out when we are going to bed and when we are getting up. The first week or so, we took advantage of the sleeping in. We stayed in bed until noonish. Then we knew we were messing up because we have to fit in swimming. Well if we want to swim we have to get up at a decent time. So we are figuring that out. The good news is that we got up this morning at 10:00 am. Well, okay the alarm went off at ten, and then we sort of slowly got around. By the time we got to the pool it was about 10:50. The good news is no one was at the pool then either, so my weird schedule is actually working out in one way.

The good part about this change is lunch and dinner time are actually during the work time. So I am eating with my husband for breakfast but for lunch and dinner I am eating really healthy. Brad and I usually binged at night when we binged. So I think this will keep that from happening. No fast food and no cheap fattening meals. Everything has to be made in advance, so husband and I are eating a lot more veggies and preportioned meals for lunch and dinner. It is working out better in the end.

This change has made me realize just how regimented my life is, and how old that makes me feel. I figure a lot of us adults feel we have to be more careful as we get older, if only just to function in everyday life. I used to soak up debauchery in my schedule: eat, drink, and smoke when I wanted. I could be good to myself and instead of saying old say mature, but come on. I am complaining that I can’t eat everyday at four like I used too. This is sort of an old person problem. I long to be free, not such a fuddy duddy. My entire life is regimented; eat at this time, can’t go near cats, no smoking, must sleep this time. However, my free and easy life got me into this mess, so I guess I will just be mature.

Priorities

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I have a confession to make, and I am really embarrassed about many aspects of it. I will attempt to describe why I have been so irresponsible but really there is no excuse. I missed taking my medications for about a week. I know my health is nothing to play around with especially considering that I rely on these meds to regulate my blood sugar, my moods and my allergies.

Please allow me to back up and complain a little. This year my company has rolled out a new mandatory mail order subscription service. This is supposed to be cheaper and more convenient. It is neither for the consumer. First of all, with the eight prescriptions I am currently taking, the bill ends up being about three hundred dollars for the three month required subscription. This is a sizeable chunk of change to spring on people who aren’t that great with budgeting. Secondly, gauging when to order them is confusing. Do I need a week, two or three? Will they let me order it three in advance? I don’t want to put it on auto pay because who knows when three hundred dollars will just randomly withdrawal from my account.

Every seven days, I put my pills in one of those dispensers. So I forget sometimes how many I have left, until the end of the week. So basically, I got to the end of the week, realized I only had four more days left and no money to buy refills. Ergo, I ended up not having my meds for a few days.

Needless to say, I need to pay better attention to the mail order process. It really wreaked havoc with my system. I take an anti-depressant. I started taking it about a year ago when I was having an extreme menstrual cycle. I have talked about this before. It lasted about six to nine months and I ended up in the emergency room on morphine. I broke down in the doctor’s office crying uncontrollably. While the wonderful Dr. Baxter backed away slowly she wrote me a subscription for this wonderful pill. Even after my horrible sickness passed, I continued taking it. The prescription helps me be a normal person.

Everyone knows not to skip days of an antidepressant. So, almost a week without my medication was bad.  My moods swung wildly, and cried a lot. Add to that other side effects of going off my meds- diarrhea and allergies- I was a droopy, stoned, nearly catatonic mess for the first part of this week. Even knowing being off my meds was the reason for my mood, it didn’t make a difference. I still was a weepy and sad.

The good thing is that now I am beginning to adjust to my meds again. I have been super hyper the past couple of days. That is the other side of my emotional problem. I get sort of super excited about everything. I have been writing, editing, swimming and jumping up and down.  It’s good for your bones!

I think my husband gets less annoyed by the depressive times than the manic, but he is dealing. In recent days, he is living with a cheerleader on crack, and we are normally very calm people with a sedate, quiet lifestyle.

I have concluded- in order to stay sane I need to put this prescription service as a priority. Maybe I can avoid divorce with the reason of insanity. I am tough enough to live with, without going off my meds.

The Search for Healthy

I have been off the wagon. I have to tell you I have been not consciously indulging. I have been just letting myself pick whatever I want and it isn’t good. I have been deliberately not paying attention to what I have been putting in my mind. On the vampire diaries, they have this thing were vampires can turn off their emotion if they want. It is when they do the most horrible things. When something hurts them badly and they don’t want to feel it, they turn off their emotions and then they do horrible things. I am sure you can imagine. I mean I am not quoting great literature here, but the metaphor is still valid.

I have been turning off my brain/emotions. I’ve not been reading about health or thinking about it. I have been taking a break and I have to be honest. It doesn’t feel good. I could tell you all the reasons that I believe this happened. I am a little off kilter. I have been adjusting to life with another person living in our house. My husband graduated and is looking for a job which may mean we have to move at a moment’s notice. With Christmas preparations, I have been very busy and this is the first time I have had to write. I think that reading and writing about my health really does help me do the right thing. It is as if I am living it.

A friend of mine started using these energy drinks and diet pills at the same time. She is a gloriously smart woman, and brilliantly beautiful. She is plus sized and that bugs her. She knew she shouldn’t have done it. She knew in the fiber of her being she was messing up her health. She is lucky she didn’t do worse damage to herself. The thing is, when she was telling me why she did it anyway, I was thinking I totally understand. A lot of people think about what they eat constantly. I know skinny women who plan their entire day. I know because for the past couple months I have been doing that, that there is some joy in that. When you are doing good, while tedious, it feels amazing to be that in control over your body and what you put in it. You feel smart, and light, and have energy. Now if you aren’t doing good watching what you eat, or you are succeeding watching what you eat and still not losing weight there is shame in that. It feels like something you shouldn’t have to do. Sometimes I have even lowered myself to be jealous of those people who don’t have to worry about food. I know women who eat when they feel hungry and don’t when they aren’t. I know women who eat small amounts of horrible food and lose weight. I mean it doesn’t do any good to be jealous or to resent your lot in life, but sometimes you can’t help it. You can’t help feeling sorry for yourself that you are addicted to food. I relate to that in a big way. I understand the idea of taking something that frees you from the constant worry of what you’re eating. To not think about food, and to only live freely, that is a dream idea. I don’t think they will ever come up with the safe drug that’ll do that. It’ll ruin your kidneys, but you won’t think of food for a month! Yeah, not so good. I know she isn’t the first one to do something so crazy, and she won’t be the last intelligent woman to do it either.

I can’t judge at all. I mean how healthy is eating yourself to death. I need to get back to the straight and narrow and I just like my friend are getting back down to business. My off the track thinking has got to stop. My first step is getting back on this blog and being accountable to you my readers. If some of my face book friends notice you haven’t heard from this blog in a while, maybe you could nudge me a bit. It probably means that I am using the ostrich method of facing my problems, and burying my dream of fitting into single digit size clothing. I made a deal with this friend to get back to journaling and weight loss. So I weigh in tomorrow to see what damage I have done and that hopefully will shock me back into losing. I will accept prayers and good wishes this holiday season. My aunt makes prime rib and is a caterer. We bought Goody’s chocolates and have a full box in the house. I am going to try and “indulge responsibly.” We also have many holiday parties to attend, including a dessert filled wedding. There are lots of battles ahead, but I will persevere.

To all those out there working on themselves in any way or just trying to get healthy, I want to say that I am hopeful that you can get through this like me. You can fall down and get back up. It is hard, because as with anything it is easier to put down the load than it is to carry it. I have hope. That is what we need hope and courage. I will be here trying with you. I think that my friend has made me realize more than ever, that we need support. Everyone needs support and encouragement and commiseration.

Many mistakes

 

Hello Blog Followers! I am so sorry it has been almost a week since I posted and that is because I had a really bad week. Wednesday was one of the most rotten days I have had in customer service and I have been doing this almost fifteen years. I was working taking calls, like I do, and every call from nine in the morning to one in the afternoon yelled and argued with me. I am not exaggerating at all. Sometimes you don’t know what comes first, your frustration or their yelling or if it is all a simultaneous poopy experience. Either way I really lost it. There was a time around eleven that I told the person next to me that I just wasn’t going to take anymore calls and I sat there for a full five minutes trying to think I was making some kind of stand. I just sat there in protest for five minutes. I thought I am not taking a call until they come over and make me. I am just going to sit here and zen out. I tried deep breathing. I stretched. I tried thinking about all the wonderful things in my life. I tried to picture all the things I wanted to do with the money I was making. It was fruitless. My blood was still boiling, but I came to my senses and decided to take calls anyways. The last call before my inevitable break down was a man arguing with me over every thing. I mean he didn’t like one thing I said and thought that I was really putting him on. It was a very humbling and aggravating experience. When he finally asked for my supervisor I was so relieved. I then hung up my headset and started bawling. In fifteen years I haven’t ever broken down like that for work but I was really going at it. My supervisor came over and asked if I was okay and told me to step away for a few minutes. So I went to the bathroom and hid in the stall crying and puffing like you do when you are really going at it properly. I was talking to myself saying things like, some people don’t have enough food but I just have people who yell at me. I repeated that over and over and it still didn’t seem to do very good. Luckily when I finally went back I only had about 15 more minutes to be on the phones and then didn’t have to hear anymore yelling.

 

When I got off work I was tired and beat and still upset, and I fell into the car and started bawling. My husband was so sad for me, and held me. We then went and got burgers. Now here was our thinking-Wednesday was my last day of work before vacation and on vacation we couldn’t eat organic all the time so why try and we were now officially on vacation and I had a bad day. Ain’t that bullshit? We really know how to explain our deviance don’t we? We ate Jack in the Box, and I felt awful.

 

The next day I struggled with the answer to the problem. Not only did I fail at keeping my resolution to not eat processed food, and to eat good for my body, but I also broke down. I didn’t find the joy in my day. I didn’t try to keep a smile on. I have been struggling with that since Wednesday to figure out how to not do these things. I didn’t want to write until I had the answer.

 

Unfortunately for some of this there is no answer. My husband and I talked about the cheating and decided that when I have a bad day or him and we haven’t already prepared dinner we will go to a very nice vegetarian cafe we know of that serves the most divine mushroom soup. The other option is going to our neighborhood coop that has a wonderful deli with many organic quick foods, and we will also get the rosemary Ciabatta bread they sell from Zeppoli’s which is always a treat for me. We have to sometimes work around our neuroses, and I think that will work.

 

Now the breaking down. I don’t know if you can live a life without breaking down. I think that I was trying so hard to not be sarcastic and bitter that it built up inside and I exploded. I think you have to have a valve were all the hurt feelings get out. I am not saying you have to wallow in it, but if you aren’t heard by anyone then you start to feel really put upon. I think you need to really get it out, but then once you do, maybe then you can let it go and move onto the joy.

 

Also my husband gave me a really good tip he said that he sometimes pretends that the angry customers are children. He says that is the only way he can have patience enough to understand unreasonable demands. We also talked about how customers that are yelling are only really trying to desperately seek respect and control over their on lives, so if I maintain a cognizance of that then perhaps that will give me the wear with all to handle it. That might work, but I might just go back to my tried and true method of a sarcastic funny remark, but follow it up with the new methods of trying to remember why I am there and finding the joy in my everyday.

 

I am still on vacation, but am trying to eat healthy again. I guess the main thing is not to sulk in your mistake, right. Make a mistake and move on? We have been eating our veggies and trying to get in our servings at the very least. I will keep you updated on how it is going.