Wednesday, November 30, 2022

HOw in the world?

 How in the world is it really the end of November?  This last month has flown by!  And seriously, is it really the Christmas season already?  I'm NOT READY!  

I have been busy.  It feels as if I am on the go all the time.  The only time I have to sit is when I'm at work (I work a desk job).  Every night after work we are out running and doing something or the other.  Consequently, I am always feeling as if I am failing at everything,  because I feel so rushed.

Let me just get it out there and over with.  November saw no weight loss on my part!  I am disgusted with myself and KNOW that I have to make changes in my lifestyle.  The good thing,, I'm not gaining.  I am maintaining.  So while I WANT to be thinner, I am counting a maintain as a huge victory.

In my last post I wrote about I had this depression (or whatever you want to call it) culminate in a panic attack.  LUCKILY, that bad one was the only one.  I have managed to walk away, divert my thoughts and attention and have managed to keep the anxiety at a more manageable level. (Meaning I haven't had any more instances when I can't breathe and am sure I'm going to die).  Jason sticks pretty close to me and keeps an eye on me pretty much all the time.

Yes, Jason is able to keep an eye on me pretty much all the time because he is still off of work.   We have passed the first complete month since his accident with the axe. He is now able to walk on the foot.  And we are working to be able to put his foot in a shoe.  The wound was still open and draining at his last visit (which was right before the month mark) but he did get the stitches out.   So per doctors orders, he is still restricted until that wound is totally healed and until he can manage to put his foot in a shoe. (and walk and move it normally). Until then, he will not be cleared for work.  

I somehow managed to complete my porch scene in miniature.  The kit was ordered back before we bought our house and I have managed to carve out some times here and there (can we say 3-4 in the morning when I can't sleep) to work on this scene.  My scene is "Appalachian Wash Day" and I am quite happy with it.  It was created for a dollhouse creating competition.  I was seriously thinking I was going to be working up until the last minute (Submission Deadline is December 9th) but I managed to complete it and I got my pictures taken and my submission was entered just this week.  It was a good project for me as my mind tends to focus on my current projects (and ideas for projects) so that took me away from the anxiety at times.  

Christmas is right around the corner.  This year will be a small Christmas for Jason and I as he is out of work and that means we are a single paycheck family for a bit.   We have decided that we will do a nicer gift giving next year...maybe a small Christmas in July.  BUT, we did put up the stockings and the tree! (and I will make sure that there is something in Jason's stocking on Christmas, especially knowing that I hung the stockings and I saw him feeling the toe of his stocking within an hour to see if there was anything in it!)  Yes, the animals have to share their stocking!  

December is my birth month.  I can't believe that I will be 50 years old this year!  My word!   And that age is just one more reason to finally get my butt in gear and get healthy!  I'm not waiting until the new year.  I'm planning on getting a jump start on the new year and I'm starting now.  (even though my brain is screaming to 'have dessert tonight and start tomorrow....and better yet, enjoy December and start in the new year!).  

Wednesday, November 09, 2022

I Never Wanted to see that Again

​I’m struggling…and I’m struggling big time.  Yeah, with my weight, but while I am trying it’s not my focus right now.  My focus right now is putting one foot in front of the other and making it through each day.

Back in early August I started to feel ‘off’.  I found myself crying…a lot.  I felt overwhelmed with everything.  I was struggling.   It was really bad for a few weeks.  I remember mowing one day and just crying…. and there wasn’t any one reason to cry.  Nothing was that horrible. I tried to convince myself that I was just tired….as I get quite weepy when I’m tired.

I have had a few times in life where I have had bouts with being depressed.  Once in college, once while teaching and periodically during the demise of my first marriage.  It was all situational and each time I knew that if I removed myself from the situation that I would be fine.   So I knew what I was feeling.  I was also concerned because there was no real situation to remove myself from. My marriage is good.  We have a property that we are enjoying bringing back to life.  Sure, I was worried about mom…and in august I was worried about my job security.  But not enough to sink into that awe full feeling of depression.   Yet there I was anyway. As much as I didn’t want to admit it, a bout of depression had made its way back into my life.

The months passed and I continued to struggle.  Holding it together, barely.   And then this week it got bad again.  It got bad enough that I had an attack such that I had when I was teaching.  Where my throat closes up…and I literally can’t breath.   This sent me to the hospital a few times way back when because, well it’s not a good feeling to not be able to get a breath of air.   Jason was there this morning when it happened  and he was terrified. He told me later that he was on the verge of calling 911.  I recognized it for what it was and worked hard to get myself calm…because even though it was 22 years ago since the last time, I well remember how they feel and how I got through them.    In the midst of trying to calm myself I heard Keewee, the bird starting to get stressed out in reaction to me.  (I asked Jason about that later and he was like, “ oh yeah, as soon as you started to struggle to breathe that bird got freaked out’). 

This bout of depression and whatever kind of attack you want to call my breathing issue,  is bothersome.  Life is good.  Yeah, I have a gimp husband at the moment due to his run in with an axe.  Sure finances will be tighter without his income while her recoups. (Which is why we bought a house that while in good shape that  needed some TLC, as it kept our price down…and thus as close as possible to being able to live on one paycheck.) But that’s normal life stuff.   

I have been battling a rash off and on since mid august.  It was bad for about 3-4 weeks…and then I had a week of bliss with no rash…and it came back with a vengeance.  Another month of misery (medication from urgent care did nothing).  I had about a week of bliss and voila…it’s back.  Luckily not as bad, and no where near as widespread as it was the other two rounds.  But just enough to be bothersome. 

Jason’s food is doing well.   The wound itself   Is healing, but slowly.  The doctor has left in the stitches as the wound is actually still bleeding and seeping.  (He only had the bare minimum of stitches to hold the wound together as they said they wanted it to heal from the inside out…and to allow it to drain to try to prevent infection.  So his stitches will remain for almost a month (if they take them out at the next appointment.). We still are on the conservative path in which we are giving his body a chance to heal before we rush into surgery.  So far so good.  When the doctor called us about the test results he was on the fence about surgery or not.  At our appointment this week he was happy with the progress of Jason’s issues /wounds and flat out recommended the conservative approach.  So that’s a good sign.  We shall see what happens with the next appointment which is in a few weeks.  

Jason’s dad has been fantastic.  We started working on that shed on our vacation and had been sneaking a few hours of work in on it on the weekends (literally we were doing about 3-4 hours each weekend…so it was going slow).  Since Jason’s injury, his parents have been coming over every few days and putting in a few hours on the shed to help us get it under cover and closed in before winter.  It also gets Jason out of the house as his parents pick him up on their vehicle and drive him to the shed…and he hangs out on a chair with his foot propped while they work.   (I struggle to keep him off his foot…but Mamma  Staggs keeps an eye on him when he is down there….although I’m not sure she has better results either!).  

My weight.  ~sigh~.   I’m trying.  I really am. I’m failing…yes I am.  And of course, the failure at losing weight adds to my emotions.   Jason’s words today were ‘put the weight on the back burner for now until you are feeling better.’  But that is giving up….and as I said in my last post, I may not have control of a lot but I do have control over what I eat.   So I will keep pushing forward and at least trying…even if I occasionally struggle and give in to the stress eating, the comfort eating, the whatever eating.    My only consolation is that my weight has stayed within a 3-5 pound range.  So I’m not gaining!   But I’ll admit to being stressed every time I step on the scale, worried about what I will see.

So I’m here.  I’m hanging on by a thread, but I’m here. 

Wednesday, November 02, 2022

A Year for the Record Books

​I’m telling you, this year is the year that is just not letting up!  It’s been one thing after the other!  Some good others bad!  It’s been nuts!

The first part of the year was swallowed up whole as we hunted for and bought a house

We settled on our house and then commenced the never ending move that stretched almost two complete months. We finished the move, drove back to the apartment (an hour and fifteen minutes away from our house) grabbed the last and turned in our key…and smiled because life would slow down then!  And quite literally my mom had a stroke the next day.    The madness of life continued as I tried to continue taking care of the house, the yard, put in my  time at work and make trips to see mom.  (I’m about 35 minutes away so any visit starts with an hour of travel time.  

Summer flew by like crazy as I ran around like a chicken with my head cut off.   I literally fell into the habit of cleaning the house at 6am…why?  Because that is when I could carve out a few minutes to do it.  I can clean the toilets and the bathroom sinks on my 15 minute breaks from work….which is what I do. I prep foods for dinner during my lunch break so that I can clear up an evening to go see mom after work.   I literally run around trying to make the most of every minute.  (Jason works a 9-1 hour day and has a 1 hour commute each way… his time is just as limited.).  I kept my head above the water…even though it felt like it was just barely.  

My weight maintained but only because I remained so busy.

I started Weight Watchers at the beginning of September and and had some success as I lost almost 10 pounds in that first month.  I was tickled too because I was super stressed due to some fear about the longevity of my job.  The end of August and most of September also marked a nice vicious case of poison.  All over my arms, legs and torso.  I pushed through with over the counter medication, but did not have a fun 3-4 weeks.  Things started to turn at the end of September.  The poison cleared up for the last week of the month.  Even better, at the very end of September I found out that my job was secure.  The timing for both of those things was perfect as  we had the first week off for vacation and to celebrate our anniversary. 

Our vacation was a staycation.  We decided to do a few little things local but to stay at home and work on the shed.   The shed on our property needed some love.  The leanto portion on the back was ready to cave in.  So we spent the week clearing the brush around the shed,  tearing that down (the leanto is 20x10), burning everything in the fire pit (one piece at a time) and starting the rebuild process.   I actually managed to maintain my weight over our vacation week. That is all thanks to being so active because I was ravenous the whole time!   

 On the third day of our vacation, I woke up and felt some itchiness…yes, I had managed to attract poison AGAIN.  (This was actually before we cleared the brush…so go figure).   The poison kept getting worse.  So bad that I ended up in the Urgent Care on the first day back to work after vacation.  They gave me steroids and sent me on my way.   

Steroids…well you know what that did to my weight!   Seeing it pop up did something to my mental capacity and will power and I began to struggle with tracking my food.    Oh, and the worst part of it?  The steroids did NOTHING for the poison and rashes!  Oh my word, the poison was so horrible!  What I thought was a bad case in September was nothing compared to this!  My complete torso was covered…my legs..arms, neck and even patches on my face.  My torso and thighs were the worst and I maintained this fire engine red color for weeks.  It wasn’t just itchy…it was painful.  Horrible!   Finally about the third to fourth week of October the bright red and terrible pain and itch had passed leavening me with dry scales skin.   I am still dealing with that and with bouts of itchiness.   What a month!

At the end of October they started to talk about sending mom home from Rehab.  She is super excited.  My brother and I not as much.  She is NOT ready to live on her own and we know it.  Ratchet up the stress another notch.

And then on October 27th, I went to visit mom after work.  I drove home and got home after dark.   I pulled in and saw Jason at the chopping block splitting down some firewood.  All was completely normal as I got out of the car.  I turned to head into the house and Jason had already gone inside.  I walked into the kitchen and noticed Jason bent over, but I was rushing to get dinner on the stove and in the oven since it was so late.  I greeted Jason and his words weee ‘I just cut myself’.  I asked if it was bad, still not shifting my focus from the stove and my dinner plans.    ‘Yes, really bad, I need to go to an urgent care’. I turned, shocked because he avoids doctors at all costs! That is when actually took stock of my kitchen…aka the crime scene.  Yeah, the axe slipped…went through his shoe…through his sock and right into his foot.  I grabbed a clean towel for him (he was using his sock to try to staunch the blood) and we headed out to urgent care.   Just as a side note…if you arrive with a foot wrapped in a blood soaked towel, they hustle you right back to a room.  The doctor wakes in soon thereafter and took one look at his foot and said ‘yeah, you most likely severed a tendon’ and sent us to the ER.  (They wrapped the foot …so that he was not leaking blood everywhere…which was nice of them, but slowed down our care in the ER as he was at that point not a bleeding priority).   X-rays and a phone consult with a podiatrist as they were also not sure of the status of his tendons.  We got home super late and I scrubbed the kitchen floor at 2AM and then went to bed.  I was up at 4:30 and out the door early for some other things concerning mom’s discharge…but made it back home in time to take Jason to his appointment with the specialist.  The specialist ordered an MRI because the tendon damage possibility could still not be determined.  Well on Monday we had the MRI and got the results.  He severed one tendon and nicked a second tendon.  Surgery or no surgery.  It’s possible they will heal on their own.  But possible that he needs surgery.  It’s up in the air and I believe we are going to try the least invasive, no surgery option.   At the worst, he will need surgery eventually.  At the best…it heals on its own.    So he is supposed to be no. Weight bearing for the next couple weeks…then a restrictive boot for a few more weeks.     Yes, I’m stressed to the max!

Ohhh and he can’t work…his employer is a small business with only a handful of employees…there is no short term disability.  We are now (and for the unforseeable future) a one paycheck family.    I’m trying to remain calm.  But it’s difficult.

So life is crazy.  So very crazy.  My eating has been steady…but not great.    My emotions are in an uproar as I feel like I am failing at everything I do.  Trying to do it all and falling short at everything.   Last night I sat on the couch trying to occupy my mind and I had a thought.  It was a thought that I had held onto tightly during the end of my marriage.   And that thought and mantra was ‘I can not control much of what is happening in my life and surroundings.  But I CAN control what food I put into my mouth’.  (For the most part…at 1AM leaving the ER having not eating in 14 hours…there wasn’t many options for where to pick up dinner…but I still had control over what I ordered.).    

  So if my food is the only thing I can control….control it!!!    This, this morning I pulled out my WW app and I have entered my food into the tracker.  I’m going to revel in the control I can have!!!