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finally stopping by to say hi

Man it has been a long, long, looooooonnnnnggggg time since I’ve stopped in to chat.  Life has been so crazy the last month and a half and things are finally starting to settle down a bit!  As some of you may know/remember from my previous posts, we had been packing up like crazy at our place.  This was one of the last scenes I showed at our apartment…

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Meanwhile, while we were packing our place up, we were moving Scott’s mom.  Yep, that’s right, two moves in a matter of a month!  Scott and I pretty much did all of the moving all on our own for us AND his mom.  We had help one day with the big furniture items since I’m not that strong, but we did the rest on our own.  That consisted of moving Scott’s mom’s things out of the storage unit (the massive storage unit) that was stuffed FULL of her things, as well as some of ours, too.  It worked out that we both got places in the same town, just a few minutes away from one another.  So making trips out to her place also allowed us to swing by our place, too.  We took some days off of work to get the last of our things out of our apartment, cleaning the place entirely (including wet-vac’ing the floor) and settling ourselves into the new place.

It’s been an exhausting month and a half, but the worst of it is over.  We have the main things put in place at our new townhouse, which we just love.  It’s farther from work for both of us, sadly, but it has so much more space!  It has three “bedrooms”, (one is our bedroom, one is an office, and the third will be a spare bedroom with my old bed and furniture-set), a HUGE BRIGHT kitchen (note my excitement, after our last small cramped dark kitchen) a full basement and two car garage.  We love it.  Here are a few pictures that have been taken…

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So weird seeing this place empty!  I’m going to miss it a bit.  This was the first place Scott and I shared together.

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A sneak peak of the initial chaos.  Oy, am I glad that we have made a LOT of progress since these pictures.  Phew.

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Our first morning after our first night in our new place.  Sunshine, warm weather, coffee, all enjoyed on our new deck.  Absolutely perfect morning!

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The kitties took a little time to get used to their new surroundings…but now they seem back to their normal, cute, silly selves.  Plus, they have so much more room now, too, to explore.  An upstairs AND main level to explore (although the basement is off-limits)  They are loving it!

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Some beautiful views from our new place.  I just love it.  I’m really excited about this place! 😀

That’s all I’ve got for now, just wanted to stop in and say hi and let you know that I’m still here!  I’ll try and get back into a somewhat normal routine of blogging again soon!

 
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Posted by on October 7, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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What Makes You Feel Alive?

I asked a co-worker this question the other day, and he jokingly responded with some sort of comment about hearing his heartbeat, waking up each morning and not being dead, etc. etc.  While that is clearly a true statement, there is more to living then just being alive in a physical sense.  I was talking more about an emotional, mental and spiritual level of being alive.  As part of my recovery, I’ve been trying to establish and get a clear understanding of what it is that I enjoy about life, what types of things I do or enjoy that are more prominent and important than any eating disorder could be.  In order to fully let go of an eating disorder, which is a full-time, all-consuming job, you have to find something(s) to take the place of all your laborious thoughts and anxieties over food, weight, calories, eating, body image, and the like.  Otherwise, there’s this big void of ‘nothing’ that will fill your life.

I think I’ve struggled with finding that thing or things in the past that really make me happy, that I personally enjoy, that take me to a new level of happiness and contentment.  Since I couldn’t find anything that was ‘mine’, I felt lost.  I wanted to be good at something.  I wanted to be a good artist, or a good photographer, or a good writer.  I wanted to find my calling.  But the more that I looked for that calling, the sadder I got.  Why?  Because I was expecting just one thing to be my go-to thing.  Maybe I had a warped sense of what I needed in order to fulfill my life because my eating disorder was one big massive thing and that, and that alone is what took up all of my days.  So perhaps I thought that since my eating disorder was one beast, I had to find just one thing that could replace it and be ‘mine’.  Nevertheless, I drove myself up a wall because I am not a wonderful artist, I’m not an amazing photographer, I’m not a poet or skilled writer.

After searching and looking for the one thing that I could call my own, I gave up and felt like I’d never find it.  But then my approach changed.  Life and people aren’t made up of just one singular thing.  We are a composite of our beliefs, interests, passions, and purposes.  We are three-dimensional, with layers and depths.  How could I look for just ONE thing to fill that void?  It’s simply impossible.  So that’s when I slowly but surely started to peel away those layers of who I am and what I enjoy and love.  I started to find the things that make me feel alive.

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I started to do more things and widen out a bit and by doing so I started to be able to tell what things I enjoyed.  But it was more than that, there were some things that made time disappear, hours or minutes flew by and I had no idea.  I would have those moments where I could completely submerse myself in what I was doing and feel completely consumed by what I was doing.  It’s a healthy, natural escape that I never experienced before.  My eating disorder was that escape, only in an unhealthy way.  It allowed me to escape any feelings by restriction or by binging…either numbing the pain by starvation or numbing it by covering over it with food and more food and more food until I felt sick.  So I’ll share a few things that I recently discovered and am still working on implementing and using as my ‘go-to’ instead of resorting to eating disorder behaviors.

1) Photography.  “What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce.” – Karl Lagerfeld

Photography is beautiful.  When I pick up the camera, I have no sense of time or place.  Everything else that is on my mind completely melts away.  It’s almost as if the camera is in a complete world of it’s own and when I pick it up, I become a part of that different world.  Every other thought or concern seems to just melt away.  However, it’s not just the act of taking pictures that I love.  I also love looking at photography.  There is something so magical about a photo.  Just like the quote says, it’s a moment captured in time that can never be duplicated or replaced.  Each picture contains a story of its own.  I find that I can look at a picture and sink myself into it.  I think of the circumstances that may have led up to the picture being taken, what is captured in the picture, the story it tells, the secrets it holds, the mystery it maintains.  There is so much to be deciphered and interpreted by a picture, yet often times it’s something that is viewed differently and understood differently by each person.  I love that.  It is similar to a poem with no clear meaning or intent.  It’s left to be deciphered by the person who reads it.  Much like a picture.  I just love it.

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2) Music / Live Music / Concerts.  “There’s nothing better than live music.  It’s raw energy, and raw energy feeds the soul.” – Dhani Jones

This has been a somewhat recent discovery for me.  There is something completely electrifying about being at a concert and listening to live music, especially when the music taps into your emotions in one way or another.  I’ve had the occasion to be at some concerts that are a completely captivating experience and one that leaves you feeling completely out-of-body (but in a really great way!).  When I’m at a concert, it’s like I am a different person.  All my apprehensions, worries or fears disappear.  When I normally am super conscious of how I look and how others perceive me, at a concert, I become concerned with only how I feel in the moment, attuned to the music and how it makes me feel, and the world and everyone else in it fades away.  When prior reservations about dancing or moving to the music would be on my mind, when I let myself become part of the music and be free to move, I have no cares about how I look or what others think of me.  It’s just me and the music and it fills me with an inner peace and solitude.  I can be free.  I can be me.  It is a raw energy that just consumes me.  I feel so alive during and after I leave a concert.  It’s thrilling.

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3) Being out in nature.  “Those who dwell among the beauties and mysteries of the earth are never alone or weary of life.” – Rachel Carson
There is something so inexplicably peaceful and beautiful about being out in nature.  It’s something that can’t be felt in a shady part of a busy street.  It’s the quiet, serene woods where you hear nothing but the wind rustling the tree branches or the soft, quite sound of a stream rushing over the rocks.  It’s the scurry of four-legged creatures as they move about.  It’s the sound of waves crashing on a beach (that isn’t covered with people).  I love to appreciate the natural, raw beauty this world has to offer.  There is so much of it to experience and enjoy and take in.  I feel so at peace when I submerse myself in a natural environment, where you can’t hear cars passing by on a nearby freeway, or the sound of construction work being done down the street.  When I went to Colorado and spent time in the Rocky Mountains, I got to enjoy that kind of serenity and beauty.  There is really nothing quite like it.
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4)  Traveling.  “Travel is more than the seeing of sights; it is a change that goes on, deep and permanent, in the ideas of living.” – Miriam Beard
There is something so magical about traveling…about going somewhere new and different.  Traveling is an adventure.  It breaks up the normal everyday monotony.  If I could travel all over the world for the rest of my days, I think that is exactly what I would do.  There is so much beauty that our world holds and I feel like I’ve only experienced such a small, insignificant fraction of it.  And the sad thing?  In my whole life, I will probably only experience a small, insignificant fraction of it…although I hope it will be a greater fraction than it is now, at least.  When a person travels, you get to experience all new surroundings, places, people and things.  It’s such a free feeling and if you do it right, it can also be an experience that allows you to grow as a person.  Each place I’ve traveled to has become a part of who I am, some places become bigger pieces than others.
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5) Being with the people and furballs I love.  “Happiness is only real when shared.” – Jon Krakauer, Into the Wild
It doesn’t matter what I do when I’m with my family and closest friends, as long as I’m with them it’s guaranteed to be a wonderful time.  I gain such happiness and personal satisfaction when I am with those I love and who love me back.  There’s a beauty that comes from being completely you, true to who you are, and I am able to be me in the fullest sense when I am with my family and closest friends.  Even my little furballs…I can be completely, unapologetically myself and they will still love me, no matter what.  To be yourself, to be loved for being yourself, there is no greater feeling in the world.  No matter where I go in life, no matter what I experience or face, I know that I will always, always, always have my family and dear friends there to provide me with strength and support.  The times we share together enrich my life.  There is nothing that comes close to being with them.  Even the simplest moments and times shared together become some of my happiest, most enjoyable and memorable times.
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As I continue forward, from this moment on, I want to continue to do more of what makes me feel truly at peace with myself and the world.  I want to enjoy life, enjoy the things that I love, and spend more time doing these things, and less time doing the things that take away from me being me, and me being happy.  Realistically, I know I need a job, but do I need the job I’m currently working in?  I don’t know.  I want to be open to entertaining the idea that ‘no, I don’t need to stay where I’m at, just because it’s safe and just because it’s comfortable.’  If there’s something that screams to me, that is calling me, I want to be there to answer that call and not just shoot it down because it’s not the safe route.
I want to seek out opportunities to do the things I really, truly love and not feel guilty for spending my time how I choose.  I also want to explore more things that make me happy and feel a sense of satisfaction and joy.  Because let me tell you what?  I think there are many more things out there for me.  I have never felt more excited about discovering what those things are.  This is my life, this is my time to LIVE my life and I want to start enjoying my days more.  Life is short, and it is fleeting.  We spend too much time doing the things we feel we should or have to do, and so little time doing the things we actually want to do.  I think now is the time for me to choose my wants over my shoulds.  I think now is the time that I let myself feel ALIVE.
 
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Posted by on August 8, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Life and things like that…

I just wanted to take some time to share some thoughts that have been on my mind a lot lately. So here goes…

I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about my life and what it is I’m looking for. I really don’t have a clear idea of what I want from life, in a full sense. I was thinking about my recovery and what helps motivate me. I find that when I’m able to get excited about life, I lose focus on the eating disorder, on the food and the binging, and what I should or shouldn’t eat and focus on something else, something that provides me with a sense of happiness or satisfaction. I don’t have many hobbies or things that I can do that I get really, truly excited about. Work is work. It’s a job, and nothing more to me. Yes, it’s a good job, a great job even..but it doesn’t provide me with any real personal satisfaction or enjoyment. I feel the most alive when I experience life. I have never felt so alive before, than on the trip I took out to Colorado. There was something magical about being out there, something I’ve never experienced before and something I can’t quite put into words. I felt so happy, I fully enjoyed myself and I felt submersed into a “new world” that I haven’t experienced before. I miss that feeling so much.

I go to work Monday through Friday each week. I get up in the morning, get dressed, go to work, come home, do things around the house, eat dinner, relax for the evening, go to bed, then begin the process again the next day. Weekends allow a little more time for enjoyment and being able to do things, but even then there are the errands that need to be done which cuts into being able to do much. Granted, I have a great job and I am forever thankful for that, but I know there is more that I need and crave. I love traveling. I love going somewhere new and experiencing new things and areas. I love taking photos and being outside and in nature and just enjoying life.

I feel like I play it so safe all of the time. And while that is good and safe, it leaves me feeling like I’m missing out. After coming back from our trip to Colorado, the desire to pick up our things and move out there was so dang appealing to me. I’m not 100% sure why. I think a lot of it had to do with me just falling in love with the beauty out there. I felt something truly magical there and it felt so good. I think I’m used to always playing things “safe” and I worry about not taking risks or chances in life. I worry that I’ll stay here in Wisconsin, in this job for the next 30+ years until I retire. I don’t want that. I know it would be easy, I know it would be safe. But I don’t know if that is what I want for my life.

While that may just not be plausible now, to up and leave, I want it to be plausible in my future. The only thing really keeping me here is my parents. They are my strongest anchors here. I know it may not make sense but there is something just so amazing and exciting and awesome about experiencing life and being able to see what this world has to offer. There is so much beauty that this country alone has and I have seen so little of it. All I want to do is take it all in and experience as much of it as possible. That is what truly makes me feel free. That is what provides me with happiness and excitement and that itch to live. In recovery, we’re instructed to try and find what we’d like our life to be like, sans eating disorder. I want to explore. I want to not always make the safe choice, just because it is…well, safe. I want to be afraid of the risks, but still take those risks anyway. I want to get excited about things in life and not just get through each day feeling ‘pretty good’. I want to have that fire burn inside of me, waiting for the next adventure to begin. I just don’t want to live with regrets…wishing I would have done more or seen more while I was young and in good health. You can always have the excuse “I’ll just do that later” and keep pushing it off until the “time is right”. My thought is, why can’t the time be ‘right’ now? Will the time ever be ideal or perfect? Most likely not. If you’re waiting for the ‘right’ or ‘perfect moment’ before doing something, it will never happen. I’ll sit by and watch year after year pass me by…just getting older and older.

So I’m not sure what that fully means for me. Maybe Scott and I will try and travel more together. But, he doesn’t have much vacation time to really accommodate that idea. So I think I may entertain the idea of traveling on my own a bit. I did it for the first time when I went to Philadelphia. I loved it. Also, I won’t always travel by plane either, and will try and find things in WI or closer to WI that I could drive to and do short, overnight trips to as well. Maybe I could even bring some friends along, too. I’m not really sure yet. I don’t have it all ironed out or worked out yet. I just know that I need a change and I need to start doing more of what provides me with happiness and excitement. Otherwise, I’ll go through my life never truly living or experiencing life. I’ll stay at my current job and be a claims adjuster for the next 30 years, with no outside life other than what I have right now. I know that that is not what I want for my life. So, we’ll see what this means and how the future unfolds for me. All I can say is that I’m excited to see what happens next!

 
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Posted by on July 22, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Inspiration

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Day 8: What inspires you?

Inspiration can come in many ways, shapes, and forms.  It can be something outside of yourself, a song, a movie, a poem, a person you meet.  It can be in the way the sun shines after a storm, the way a cancer patient always finds a way to have a smile on their face.  It can come from the most random or least expecting places.  But when you find it, you just know.  You can feel it.  When something inspires you, it moves you, it moves something down deep inside of yourself.  It creates a beauteous reaction in the depths of you, that moves you to action.  Inspiration, in whatever form it takes, sets a fire beneath you, causing you to have no choice but to respond and to move.

The reality is that we all find inspiration in different places, at different times, for different reasons.  But I think we’d be hard pressed to find someone who hasn’t felt inspired at some point in their life.  I know for me, when I get my head out of the clouds, or stop focusing on myself or my problems, I’m able to take in everything that goes on around me that much more.  It’s a beautiful thing when you open your eyes to see the world around you.  The more you close yourself off, or lock yourself in to your own thoughts, feelings, and problems, the more you can start feeling overwhelmed or even depressed.  I know for myself, when I get focused on one particular problem or thought that causes concern for me, it quickly becomes all consuming.  I get so caught up in thinking ‘woe, is me!’ that I start feeling sorry for myself and all my troubles.  But the minute you allow yourself to step outside of your own life and the things you deal with and open your eyes to the world around you and see what others are facing in their lives, it can be a very humbling and moving experience.

The times that I am able to get outside of my head and my world are the times that I usually find the most inspiration.  Sometimes you need to look for it, to really search it out.  Other times, you can just happen to stumble across it, when you least expect it.  It could be something that happens on your way to work one day, a story you hear on the radio, a person you pass on the side of the road.  It can be just as simple as a change in perspective, over something small, or a change in thinking over something much larger.  Inspiration is all around us, if you’re daring enough to look for it.  I say ‘daring’, because I feel that with being inspired, there is a risk we take.  Inspiration moves us to action.  When we are inspired by something or to do something, we usually feel the need to act.  That can be a scary, unknown world we are opening ourselves up to.  It can mean stepping outside of what it safe, or what we have known, and take a risk.  It can often allow us to push ourselves outside of our comfort zone.  To be brave.  To really, truly, honestly learn to live.

For me, I find inspiration in all sorts of places.  I find inspiration in the stories I read of others who despite their plight in life have such an optimistic attitude, or even just have the mentality to keep going each day.  I find inspiration in a song, in the words that speak to me or the melody that moves me to tears.  I find inspiration in a fleeting thought that comes to mind, of hope, happiness, a look toward the future.  I find inspiration in the lives and experiences of my friends and family.  I find inspiration in the pages of a book, telling a story of life and living.  I find inspiration in the moments I’m brave enough, or selfless enough, to turn off all the negative or problems I have, and embrace the world around me.  I find inspiration when I take that leap of faith, jumping into the unknown, submersing myself in a world that can at times be scary, but at other times can offer so much hope and light, even in the darkest of hours.  I dare each of you to take the risk of stepping outside of yourselves, to embrace the world around you, and be a novice to being inspired.  Let it mold you, change you, push you to step outside of your comfort zone and live.  If you let it into your world, you will never be the same again.

 
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Posted by on March 9, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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The Big Bad Binge

Because I believe in fully being open on my blog and not giving off pretenses that are not true to my own reality, I decided it was time to talk about something that has become a big part of my life lately.  It’s with frustration and a bit of shame that I bring it up today, even.  But I think I need to bring it up somewhere and get the chance to talk about it openly.  As some of you may know or remember, as part of my recovery from anorexia, I developed the habit of binge-eating at night.  As I limited my calorie intake during the day to minimal amounts of food, my body just knew I wasn’t giving it enough, and evenings turned into full-on binge fest for me.  Although I’ve had a period of time where I was doing better and the binging subsided, it has resurfaced yet again.  I would like to nip it in the bud for good, once and for all, as I know it will impact my health in very drastic and negative ways if I keep on doing what I’m doing.

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So because I want to make changes to my life and not continue on this way, I know I need to start somewhere.  I’m sick of stuffing my face with food, just because it’s my ‘routine’ in the evening.  I’m sick of turning to food for comfort.  I’m sick of eating a lot, especially sugary, non-nutritious foods late at night before going to bed.  I’m sick of it all.  I’m sick of telling myself I will stop binging come morning, yet each night give in yet again.  I need to change NOW.  I discovered this website that suggested the 50-day Binge Free Challenge and decided I’d give it a go.  What do I have to lose, right?  Since it’s March 1, it seems like an appropriate day to start.

The question for day 1 is: Why are you doing the 50 day binge free challenge?

I think I alluded to why above, but just to expound a little more…I’ve been working hard towards recovery and have made huge, HUGE improvements.  I’m at a healthy weight now, the majority of my behaviors have minimized substantially, but I still struggle with not getting enough in during the day (food-wise) and then making up for it by binging at night.  The problem is that I let it happen, and then let it happen, and then let it happen again and again.  It became a pattern.  I’d eat minimally during the day, eat a lot at night, and either feel so sick the following day that eating minimally was all I could stomach or I’d feel the need to restrict during the day because of my binge the night before, and around it goes in a circle.

I am working toward a very large goal right now of training to do a half-marathon.  In the past I had attempted to start running and progress to do a half-marathon, but each time I trained, I had to stop because I was too sick with my eating disorder and over-worked my body, to the point that it gave out on me and I had no choice but to stop.  I know I need to get my nutrition right this time around or I will not achieve my goal yet again.

I also know that I’ve been getting a lot of cavities lately because of how much sugar I’m eating.  I also worry that I will end up developing diabetes.  It already runs in my family, so I’m at an even great risk of developing it.  But I personally know someone who developed it solely because he (actually once suffered from an eating disorder himself) and ate little-to-nothing during the day and would have a large meal late at night and it completely messed up his body as a result since it didn’t know when it would get food next or how to properly handle the large amount of food it was given all at once.  But aside from the health reasons, I just want to eat like a normal person.  I just want to be free of this.  I am so hopeful that one of these days it will just ‘click’ for me, and I find that I’m even more disappointed each time it fails to do so.

Yet, I can’t give up.  I can’t NOT try.  So even if that means waking up each morning with a renewed sense of wanting to get my nutrition on track, that is a small victory in itself.  The moment that I accept this as OK, is the moment I give up my fight.  See the thing is, I want to live…fully.  I want to be able to put food in it’s proper place.  I want to be able to look at food as a means of giving my body nutrients and NOT as something to keep me busy, or something to fill a void, or something that I can reach out to because ‘it’s that time of night’.  It’s time I take a gamble on myself and stand up for what I want.  So, I’ll give this 50 Day Binge Free Challenge a shot.  Am I expecting perfection?  Surely not.  Am I anticipating that I might hit roadblocks?  Yes, I most certainly am.  But as long as my resolve remains the same, that of trying again, and then again, and then again, I am hopeful that I can eventually get this right.

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Posted by on March 1, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Learning to live (MIMM)

Happy Monday to all you lovely people!  Since it’s Monday, that means it’s that time of the week again to hook up with Katie for focusing on all the positives and marvelous things that we’ve been enjoying lately.  I love the whole concept of this link-up and try to never miss the opportunity to focus on the positives!  Since we are again freezing cold here in Wisconsin and gray and cloudy yet again (with snow!) I thought I’d start off this post with a little bit of sunshine to get the whole “happy” mood thing down pat! 🙂

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Okay, I’m not going to lie, it took me FAR TOO LONG to find the perfect sun picture 😉  I needed the perfect cute little sun.  I think I finally picked a good one!  Anyways, now that we’ve got some sunshine to start off this post, which just makes everything feel so much better and happier and warmer, let’s get talking about all my marvelous things that I’ve been enjoying lately!

These.little.smooshies!  Guys, I am officially in love. ❤

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Oh.my.gosh…heart melting!  They were watching a movie together with us.  Looks like Dexter is making a move on Meeko 😉  The whole stretch-your-arm-put-it-over-your-girl’s-shoulder bit.  Smooth Dexter, smooth! 🙂

Saturday morning, I woke up to snuggles with these little smooshies.  Best way to wake up on a Saturday morning, hands down!

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(Thank goodness you can only see half of my face…this is right after I woke up.  Meeko loves me regardless of how messy my hair is and how tired I look!)

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Two cats on one lap?  Not only did they provide me instant warmth, but I felt so much love.  Mums lap is big enough for both kitties 🙂

Scott slowly rolled out of bed, and we got ourselves ready for the day.  We had one thing we needed to get done during the day, which involved picking up his mom’s truck from the service shop.  We also decided we’d stop off at Snap Fitness to cancel our membership since we’ve recently invested in a treadmill and weren’t making use of our membership.  We decided on the spur of the moment that we’d go ice skating that afternoon.  Eek!  We had been talking so long about going and we were finally going to make it happen.  Guys, I have never ice skated before.  It was something I avoided so long because I was so afraid to do it, but not anymore.  We’ll talk a bit more on that later.

So we headed on out, bundled up in the freezing cold.  I love Scott all bundled up and with some scruff on his face.  He was not a happy camper having to fill up his car with gas in the cold, but he managed to get a half smile out!

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We made our way to the service store in the southside of Milwaukee where the truck was getting worked on.  I have to say that I really just enjoyed that drive with him.  We had a really good conversation and it was just nice spending time with him.  We had to wait a little bit since the truck had the check-engine light go on when Scott attempted to leave.  There waiting area blew.my.mind.  I found this:

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A waiting area with a PUZZLE?!?!  This is the first time I have ever seen a puzzle in a waiting area.  Best.idea.ever!  I was so excited when I saw this.  It reminded me just how much I love puzzles!  I never thought I would say this, but I actually was a bit disappointed when the truck was ready…I wanted to work on the puzzle some more! 😀  Oh well, it just made me want to start one of my own again.  So I think I’ll make that happen!

We stopped of at his mom’s place to drop off the truck.  It provided a great opportunity to see Max again, too!  We then made our way over to Eble Ice Arena in Brookfield.  It was time to get my ice skate on finally!  I avoided it long enough.  Truth be told, I was afraid to do it…anticipating that I’d end up breaking something since I am not very coordinated to begin with.  But for several reasons, I decided I needed to get that silly fear out of my system and just give it a go.  I realize that I need to make my life as enjoyable as possible and I don’t want to rule things out or hold myself from doing different things.  It’s time to experience my life fully!  I talked about that a bit in my last post.  Saturday morning I didn’t feel well, and I could have used that as an excuse not to go.  But I made up my mind that I was going to go no matter what.  I also want to try and experience things with Scott that I know he enjoys, and not say ‘no’ so easily to things because they may not be the first on my list of things I’d want to do.

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All laced up!  AND my official penguin hand stamp!  This is the real deal, guys!

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PROOF!  I was on the ice.  I didn’t just get some skates and sit on the sidelines 😉  The wall was my best friend for quite a long time.  Little kids, beep beep, amateur skater coming through.  I was terrified of leaving that wall.  But eventually I had no other choice as there were roadblocks present (i.e. people).  I thought about holding onto them as I passed their area on the wall, but thought they may not like that too much.  Scott was absolutely great with me.  He was so patient and helped me when I needed him too.  I fell a total of two times.  One great crash on my left knee and another one on my tooshy.  Good thing I’ve got some nice cushioning! 🙂

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Scott is really good.  I let him have a some fun and skate around a bit when I needed a break.  It was really fun.  I had a great time.  It exhausted me in ways I didn’t expect.  I think the newness of it and using different muscles, etc. than I normally do just took a lot of me.  But I definitely want to go again sooner rather than later.  The more I do it, the more comfortable I’ll become.  I don’t want to let myself get “rusty”.

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He’s so cute! 😀

After skating, we made our way to the grocery store.  We had to pick up a few things since we were having his mom over for dinner and to meet our new addition to the family.  We planned to make our “signature dish” of chicken breast in cream of mushroom soup (with extra mushrooms) served with rice.  And our absolute favorite side of portobella mushrooms with cheese and seasoning on top.  The mushrooms get so tender and the cheese gets all melty.  Mmm.  While the food was cooking, I managed to get in my 2 mile run that I had planned for the day.  Then I discovered this sucker on my ankle:

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I think that’s how you know you’ve done your first attempt at ice-skating right!  Battle scars!  My knee also has this nice little lump on it.  It’s not bruised really, just nice and puffy and sore.  But it apparently wasn’t too bad since I could run just fine.

Dinner was a great success.  It turned out perfectly.  We watched Star Wars after.  I have to admit I’m not a fan, but his mom hadn’t ever seen them.  (WHAT?!?)  So since she was our guest, we let her pick.  It was a really great night.  The whole day was absolutely perfect.  I wanted to just enjoy it as much as I could.  I want to learn to enjoy the little things.  Even going to pick up the truck with Scott was so enjoyable.  It was such a rewarding day.

Okay, I want to talk a bit about my running.  I am SO happy to be running again! 😀  This is my new fraaaand

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It feels so good to be back at it again!  This time I’ve found a schedule that I am committing myself to following.  Not that I will be rigid with my runs/when I get them in, but I will honor the pace at which it progresses and honor the rest days especially.  That was something I failed at in the past.  I also pushed myself way too hard and it caught up to me quickly.  The cheesy saying ‘slow and steady wins the race’ will be my mantra this time around.  I have no need to rush or hurry or push myself…I can really take my time and build up my mileage and work on my speed in time.  It feels good to honor that and recognize it.

My first week of runs:
Saturday 1/18: 2.5 miles
Sunday 1/19: 2.75 miles
Monday 1/20: off
Tuesday 1/21: 3 miles
Wednesday 1/22: 2.5 miles
Thursday 1/23: off
Friday 1/24: 4 miles
Saturday 1/25: 2 miles
Sunday 1/26: off
 

Plus I’m also fully aware that my stomach problems could be a hindrance in my ability to run long distances or for long periods of time.  So I’m not banking on being able to work up to half marathon status, but if I can do it, then I will be SO happy and so proud of myself.  That is my goal and I will work hard at it, but I will also be realistic about the potential limitations I may have and run into.

Sunday was an errand-running, church-going, easy day.  It was super relaxed which was exactly what I wanted it to be.  The weekend was absolutely awesome.  I needed it so bad.  Sadly, Sunday night is the last night that Scott will be staying with me over at the apartment for a WHOLE MONTH!  😦 😦 😦  His mom is going to visit a friend down in Arizona and since they have a puppy and a cat, he needs to be over there for them.  Since we now have two kitties, I need to stay over here for them.  It’s going to be a hard month, I think.  I’ve really been enjoying having him over here.  Things have been going well with us lately and it will be hard not having him around as much or seeing him as much.  😦  But hopefully the month will go fast and he’ll be back over here before I know it!

I think we need to give Monday a break this week, guys.  He has it pretty tough…

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Posted by on January 26, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Learning What’s Really Important

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Looking back on things, I have a lot of regret about how I treated myself.  I never really developed any form of self-love or acceptance of who I was, nor did I ever treat myself and my body as if it was something of the utmost value to me.  Instead, I treated it poorly.  This started from a young age.  I never valued the importance of taking care of my body; I shoveled food into my mouth with no consideration of what harm it could do to my body.  I ate junk food on a regular basis and in amounts that I had no need for.  I can’t remember ever having a healthy relationship with food.  Similarly, I would eat all of that junk food and not exercise.  I had no desire nor understanding of just how important it is to incorporate a healthy amount of exercise into my life.  The times when I did have to exercise (i.e. gym class) were brutal for me as I was very much out of shape.

When I finally got an understanding that I was living an unhealthy life, I decided it was time to get serious and make some significant changes to get healthy.  I finally realized I was very unhealthy and wanted to make a change to that.  So I made huge changes.  I started exercising regularly and incorporating healthier foods into my diet; slowly weaning myself off of those ‘junk foods’ I coveted.  The changes began to be evident.  I saw the number on the scale decrease, I felt my clothes fitting looser, and in time, the compliments from others started coming.  This was the fuel I needed to keep me going.  And so I did.

When I finally reached a good, healthy weight, I had lost over 60 pounds.  I went from clinically obese for my age and height, to being healthy as the BMI categorized me.  When it would have been a good place for me to stop, I didn’t; I couldn’t.

I was educating myself on healthy foods and unhealthy foods, things to take in and things to avoid or limit.  Yet I got so caught up in being thinner.  There was always more to lose in my mind.  I should have trusted a doctor to tell me what was enough or at the least the BMI to tell me when it was a good place to stop.  Yet, I didn’t.  I got so bent up in losing more, cutting more, and becoming more toned and skinnier, that it consumed me.  That is again where I started to fall out of balance and become unhealthy to the opposite extreme.  I beat my body into submission.  I slaved away working out, I depleted my body of what it needed, cutting more and more out of my diet, limiting more and more of what I’d allow myself to eat or drink.  It turned into my depriving myself to an extreme degree which just facilitated the development of my anorexia.

Again, I wasn’t showing any love or importance on being healthy and taking care of my body.  It may have started that way, but I quickly lost my grip on that.  Looking back, I wish I could have told myself what I know now.  I wish I could have told myself to stop, to keep myself where I was when I was still healthy.  How badly I wish I could go back and redo that part of my life and take control of my health at the point where I was at a good healthy, balance in my life.  But, I can’t.  What’s done has been done.

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I treated my body horribly in the subsequent months and years.  I will forever regret that.  Even in the process of recovery, I’ve half-assed it.  I’ve been able to do what is comfortable for me, not pushing myself, not challenging myself.  I’ve made excuses for myself and accepted them as my reality.  The reality is, I’ve played it safe because that’s what comes easy.  There could have been times I could have taken a huge chance and risk, yet I haven’t.  I’ve talked myself out of it, scared myself into listening to the negativity, and accepted that as my reality.  All because of what?  I’m afraid of what?  Am I still holding on to this superficial idea that being thin is the only way I will be happy or content or acceptable?

These last few weeks have been really difficult for me.  I’ve been dealing with health issues that have my life pretty miserable for me.  The most difficult and frustrating part of it?  I don’t know what’s wrong.  I don’t know the problem so I don’t know how to find the solution.  I’ve had stomach issues for years, so I know that my issues aren’t from my eating disorder.  But I also know that the restricting and binging phases definitely did not do anything to help my GI problems.  I recently tried to cut out gluten and dairy from my diet in hopes that ridding myself and my body of those things (which are known to be problematic for digestion) would be the answer to my problem.  I also went so far as to remove all of the sugar-free foods and drinks from my diet because I read just how bad they can be for GI issues, among other things.  With all of these significant changes, one would think or hope that some improvements would be seen.  Yet, things have been worsening lately.  Which is not only perplexing to me, but also extremely frustrating as well.

Without getting into too much detail about what it is I deal with on a daily basis, suffice it to say that it’s not fun and it literally makes life difficult.  Eating anything is a challenge.  Which of course, is not conducive for a girl who in recovery from an eating disorder.  I need to eat regularly and not pass up eating because I feel too miserable to eat anything.  Regardless of what I eat or how much I eat, it impacts me right away.  Some days are better than others, some times throughout the day are better than others.  Yet lately it’s more negative than positive.  I’ve been trying to keep positive and not be overwhelmed by things, but it’s really REALLY hard.  I can’t keep on every day like this anymore.  Something needs to change.  The doctor(s) need to figure out what is going on or I don’t know what I’m going to do.

It’s awful because everything else in my life seems to be going so well and finally coming together.  I’m finally feeling really happy and things are going so well with my job and with Scott and with family and friends.  I want to be able to be happy and to enjoy life.  This has sucked the life out of me.  It’s so upsetting.

I’ve been doing everything in my power to help my situation.  I can’t tell you how much research I’ve done, looking for any answers or any potential answers that could help.  I’ve made another appointment with my GI doctor for this coming week, and will also attempt to make an appointment with my regular doctor as well (as now I’m wondering if it may be linked to endometriosis, which my doctor at one time thought that I had and which I failed to get properly tested for in the past), plus I’ve recently got peppermint oil tablets, activated charcoal, and papaya enzyme tablets that I’m taking on a daily basis to try and help.  I have also looked into acupuncture, as I read an article saying that it can really be helpful for GI issues as well.  At this point, I am willing to do anything and everything in my power to try and feel better.  That is the only thing that I’m concerned with right now.

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I want absolutely nothing more in life than to feel healthy.  In the days that I’ve felt absolutely miserable, it has shown me just how much I take for granted when I’m feeling healthy.  It also has shown me what really matters.  I kept thinking to myself, I didn’t care about what weight I was, how much I exercised, what foods I was eating, I just wanted to be normal.  I just wanted to feel healthy so that I could live and enjoy life.  Feeling healthy, feeling good physically, mentally and emotionally, is the most important thing to me.  I will do whatever I can to help myself get to a healthy place.  Now, my health is a priority.  I also now realize just how much I love and value myself.  I no longer except feeling miserable as ‘okay’.  I no longer want to “punish” myself or my body, like I did in the past with my eating disorder.  I want to find my healthy and happiness and live fully.  I value myself so much more now and that, to me, is a beautiful thing.  I now realize what really matters.  It isn’t being skinny, or making sure you work out a certain number of times a week for a certain amount of time.  It has nothing to do with what size jeans you wear or the number that shows up on the scale.  All of those thoughts or ideas meant absolutely nothing to me when I felt miserable.  All I wanted was to feel better.

Sometimes it takes something like this to really make you realize what matters most, and what doesn’t matter at all.  I’ve spent so much of my time thinking that my weight and body would provide me with the happiness and self-esteem I was looking for.  Now I realize just how foolish that really was.  I wasted so much of my life and time focusing on things that matter so little.  I truly want to make it my effort and goal now to take care of myself, in whatever shape or form that is.  Feeling healthy and being happy are the most important things for me in my life.  I will never stop fighting for myself and my happiness and health.  It’s about damn time I do things the right way and take care of myself fully.

These days, I’ve been clinging to the ‘good’ or ‘okay’ moments I have.  Any time that I feel somewhat decent and not miserable, I celebrate.  I try to do as much as I can and live up the times that I’m feeling good.  I want to make the most of my life and truly live fully.  Even if that means that I forever have to deal with the issues I have right now, as long as I have moments where I can feel good, I will celebrate those moments and try to experience and enjoy life as much as possible.  All I want is to feel good and to live.

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Posted by on January 5, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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