What Makes Us Different…

makes us the same.

It starts early in my day on Fridays. I start thinking about what I want to blog about. I worry no one will read my thoughts or worse that no one will care.  Sometimes I wonder if the effort I put in is worth it. Then I remember this blog is for me. I write as a way to keep myself in check. I share how I am feeling in the hopes that what I have to say helps one person to realize that they are not alone. We all struggle with something :  loneliness, depression, weight, beauty, stress from a bad marriage, death of a loved one…the list is endless. What makes us different makes us the same.

I started this weight loss journey again in February. I decided it was time for me to change my outlook (I had painted it grim, I was buying my own lies hook, line, and sinker). I forgot how to be happy, to live in my moments. I had spent so much time and energy trying to be the best daughter to my Pops, who suffers with dementia, that I had stopped taking care of myself. I stopped caring about me. I should have reached out for help. Maybe, I wouldn’t have gotten so lost if I had just stopped and asked for direction.

I throw a wall of emotions out in front of me to keep me safe from prying eyes. I make people laugh so I won’t cry. I sing because I am in distress. I eat because I am angry and I don’t know how to use that negative energy in a positive way. I decided that those things that are sometimes true about me needed to be changed. I needed to change. I am learning to own my anger. I don’t have to self-destruct. I am bigger than that. I am worth more than that. I am learning to laugh from joy. I sing because it makes me happy. I  try to talk myself out of my anger. I am trying to let go of things I am unable to change.  I am growing as a person, not in the waistband, a first for me.  = )

The truth is everyone is afraid to get hurt. Life is not a free ride. It comes with pain and disappointment. It has moments of grief and anger. It is the longest, most intense adventure you will ever undertake. You deserve to be in every messy, wonderful, emotion filled moment of it. Learn to be kind to yourself. You do it for other people, learn to value yourself. Stop blaming yourself for the way things have gone in the past. Live for the now.

You have the chance to be a better version of you, right now.  You are strong enough to stand up for what you want. There is no need to feel guilty about being successful at being you. Never give up on the person you are meant to be.

What makes us different makes us the same  =  ) We can do this Cupcake!

 

 

The Hands Of Time

Time speeds by. It’s true nature is to keeping on ticking. You can’t get back lost time. You can’t jump into the future or to the past. Even though you can finds ways to save time; it won’t be in a bottle so you can use it at the end of eternity. Time is the great evader, just when you think you have enough you are all out of it. You can free up time but we usually waste what little of it we have. Life speeds by. Once I was a little girl, feels like yesterday. I can recall a time when I was just starting to feel like a grownup. Now I am on the precipice to middle age? How did that happen? Youth made me wish away my life so I would be old enough to drive, to go to college, to be an adult. What???? I thought, if only I were an adult, I would be Okay. I could do whatever I want, whenever I want, anytime I want. I kind of miss the foolishness and immaturity of youth {{{sigh}}}.

Wishing, wanting, needing more time doesn’t get you more. If it did I would fill out the required paperwork right now. I need more time. I want to go back to a happier time when the people I loved were young and happy and here.
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Yesterday I snapped this photo of my hand on my Dad’s hand. It struck a chord in me. How much my hands look like my Mom’s. How strong and virile and young my Dad once was. How much I miss my kid sister and my Mom. When did my Dad become old? How did I not notice?

They say that time is a healer but I think that is a lie. Time is a thief. It slowly robs you of the people you hold most dear to you. Live in your moments. Love the people in your life while you have them.  Make time to be with people you love. They want nothing from you but your time. Spend your time with them wisely. Reap its rewards. Go live life! Make memories.

You’ve Changed

It’s me, not you. I’ve changed. What is it about change that people hate? Okay, maybe hate is too strong of a word. Let’s go with strongly dislike. Change is not a bad thing. It has a terrible reputation. Without change things would become boring, routine, mundane. Life is messy. It never comes wrapped in a tight little package with instructions that say:  just add hot water, cover, let stand for 5 minutes and then enjoy. That only happens with Ramen noodles and there is nothing good about that. Let’s be honest.

Change is scary. Change is intriguing. Change is inevitable.The seasons change. As we age we change. New love changes into something life long and wonderful or divorce depending on life circumstance. Change equals growth.  It takes courage to change.

I’ve changed. I decided it was my time. It was time for me to stand up for the lost soul I allowed myself to become and reclaim my life, my way. I walked back into WWs  because I deserve to treat myself better than I have in the past. I walked away from bad habits. I am no longer willing to be afraid of change.  In fact, I embrace it. I have grown. I am better at giving hugs and taking them as well. I am better at stopping to think about why something is making me angry or tense or nervous. I am learning to let go of things beyond my direct control. Sort of a cosmic live and let live attitude, I guess. I was willing to take a chance on myself one more time. Take a chance on yourself. Change just one thing and watch where it will take you.

Eleven

Twelve is my all time favorite number but I have always had a thing for eleven. An odd number I know but there is just something so easy and smooth about 11. Stand together and we are strong = ) two pillars side by side shouldering an enormous weight. Today I needed those pillars of strength. I almost let anger make my food choices today. I stopped and thought about how angry I was; how angry I still am. I didn’t let anger win. I won. I have been working my butt off on this new program. This Saturday it will be eleven weeks . I refuse to give up on myself.  I chose my health over my anger. =  ) Yea me!!!

I am liking this new version of WWs. Food is not the way to calm emotion. I am trying not to feed my feelings. When I make that mistake I am never quite full enough. I will eat and eat and eat desperately trying to fill a void. Food can not make you happy. It has taken me a lifetime to realize my happiness is something I am responsible for. It doesn’t come in a jar or a fancy package; it comes from within.

Owning your emotions or taking responsibility for them is not an easy task. Emotions can make you feel so wonderful and so uncomfortable at the same time. Only I can make myself feel worthless and small within my own mind, never speaking a word aloud when I am feeling vulnerable or afraid. It is tough to stand up to yourself and demand better treatment. It is not ok to take the back seat to your own life. I decided that on this road trip I would be the one in the driver’s seat. Windows down, tunes blaring, happy to be….able to do so much more than I have ever allowed myself to.

Be happy with the wonderful hot mess you are. Love the who that you are. Be the best example of yourself for yourself because you are worth it and you deserve to be at peace. Who am I? To some I am everything; to others a whisper on the wind. I am who I am. Lover of life. Good friend, good wife, a writer, a laugher, a reader, a comic, a singer of songs.

Never give up on the person you are meant to be.

 

TEN

On a scale of one to ten please rate your pain today. The little smiley/sad faces on the chart at the doctor’s office are there to help you express how you are feeling. You have the oil changed at your local car dealership or lube shop and they want you to fill out a survey. On a scale of one to ten  with one being the lowest score how would you rate your visit today? Were you satisfied, somewhat satisfied, depressed, ecstatic or just plain giddy? Questions, questions, questions. How am I ? I feel wonderful, alive and at peace. I am in a good place right now. I plan on enjoying this journey back to me. I am learning to live my life again. I am making better choices. I feel like I have new avenues to explore and adventures to take part in. I am watching my confidence bloom into an amazing bundle of hope. With hope anything is possible.

I had a great week. I guess I had my first real “feel good” non scale victory. I logged all of my food and all of my sins. I chose more than once not to take the easy way out by grabbing a fast snack. I am planning out more of my meals. I have returned to the all important making of shopping lists. I am reading my labels with better understanding. I am scanning labels I am unsure of and making educated purchases. Damn, it feels good. All it took was a glimmer of self belief. You really can start a fire with a spark.

I love getting up early on Saturday mornings to go to my meeting. I have promised myself to go and to stay for my meeting each week. So far so good  =  ) I have challenged myself to join water aerobics and buy a waterproof fitness band. I am trying to move more.

On a scale of one to ten? Yes, I am a TEN and not just two fives in the wrong place.

Never give up on the person you are meant to be.

Week Two

Week Two is drawing to a close. What a ride. This week I anticipate no weight loss coming my way. Not because I didn’t try. I made better choices all week so I am already ahead of the game. I just let too many things distract me this week. I ate some homemade goodness brought to me by people in my life who love me. This time around, however; I am trying to be in the moments of my life. Guilt is something for a court to decide, not for me to carry around like unwanted carry-on luggage. Who needs it? Not me.

I have made a commitment to myself. Let go of the things in my path that serve no useful purpose. Be kinder to my inner self; stop ignoring that little voice in my head that screams to be heard. I can do this. I want to do this. I am responsible for my own happiness. Imagine how much easier it is to row a boat in a body of water than on dry land. Odd comparison but my whole life I have been trying to row my boat up a mountain.

This week I pep talked myself into getting back on task if I wonder off course. I was able to get right back on track. I promised myself to log every thing. Make myself accountable. No blame game going on here. I ate. I logged. I moved on. No angry thoughts about should have, could have, would have. It is what it is. My journey continues…

 

I went to WWs this morning. I weighed in (like the courageous soul that I am) and… to my delighted, surprise I lost weight  =  )  Yippee! GO ME !!!!

Just breathe, believe in the power of yourself and DO wonderful. Never give up on the person you are meant to be.

That Unknown Part of Me I Can’t Let Go

You were like a Spring rain. Intense with high potential for damage. Just like a storm you left someone else to do the clean up, me. In your wildest dreams I bet you never imagined one little girl could leave behind such devastation. Hearts were broken, lives ruined; and yet the sun came out. The sun always shines after a storm. Even the heavens want the world to know there is light after darkness.

You taught me to be brave. You forced me to embrace my life. You have brought me places I wouldn’t go myself, you made me participate in my own life. All it took was you dying. So very sad , so very true. Why did you self destruct? Why didn’t you try harder to leave him? why didn’t you value yourself like I valued you? why didn’t you believe in the wonder that was you?

I have lost my way without you. I like to pretend I am above my feelings. I am drowning in my own pool of denial. The more I try to lie to myself about how I am doing the deeper the pool becomes. My tiny craft is taking on water. I am unable to bail the water fast enough. I am circling the drain wondering where all my time has gone off to adventure without me.

I am becoming an old lady without you. I used to wonder what that unknown part of me was. I finally figured it out. It’s the shards of my broken heart. Just when I think I am in a good space, I feel their pain as they push against my soul. Your laugh I hear only in dreams. Your smile a faded memory that mocks me from photographs. I miss the sound of your voice. I am afraid if I let you go, I will lose what little I have left of you.

She

She used to be here. Now she is not. She used to love me; now her love lives in my heart. With her I never had to be anything more than who I already was. She never wanted anything from me other than myself. She was my biggest fan and my best friend. The youngest of three. She was known as kid sister to me.

One might think that eleven years later my sister’s death would be easier to live with. I move through life. I am still waiting…for the pain to be less, for the sting to fade but it lingers.

I am that favorite vase. Shattered and cracked. Fused back together with Superglue and good intentions. Like the vase I look ok but if you get close enough things might let go and spill its contents over the floor.

She had a way about her. She was so shy almost timid when she was a little girl. Fragile. I always felt like I had to protect her. She got hurt anyway. I couldn’t save her from that. People played on her vulnerability. She knew how to be defiant. She would fight with her whole being to suppress a tear if it meant she held the upper hand. When she would allow herself to cry it was usually in my embrace. Me, her safe haven.

The saddest thing? She never understood what SHE was worth. I know what she was worth. My time, my life, my joy, my laughter was better with her in it. She is still missed. I still look for her in a crowd, certain she is out there somewhere just out of reach, waiting for me.

Wish You Were Here
Wish You Were Here

The Power of a Hug

I have never put much faith into a hug. Confining in nature almost claustrophobic for me. I do not have a great personal history with hugging. In fact, I would say it is one of my greatest weaknesses. My kid sister was the only person who’s hug I would accept. She had a way about it. She’d hang onto me like our lives depended on it. Almost as if she knew there was a storm coming. Her hugs meant the world to me because she put so much of herself behind that embrace.

Something has changed in me lately, perhaps it is because my Dad is in a nursing home. I have had a change of heart about hugging. A true hug should be given free of will and with a depth of meaning to it from you for the one you hug. There a few residents where my Pops now hangs out that feel the need to hug me. I hug them willingly. Like small children these souls hug from their hearts. Overflowing with love for someone they once knew. Some days these people think I am their loved one. They ask me about children I don’t have; husbands and grandchildren that are not mine. I go along with their alternate reality the best way I know how by not rocking the boat. People with dementia or Alzheimer’s are still who they used to be somewhere in their minds. Everybody needs love and affection.

My Pops is the same even if his memories falter or the endings to his stories change. I try to hug him more than I have in the past. I think we both need it more. I miss him. I never realized before how much power comes from such a little thing. A hug makes the weary less tired. To the sad it lends hope. To the loved it spreads an untethered joy. To the lonely a sense of inclusion, that someone cares. To the lost a ray of light showing a safe way. Hug someone today.

Capable or Culpable ?

You decide. On this journey, we all must choose what we are. Capable? Willing? Wanting? Or ?

I make it no secret that I am a semi-active member of Weight Watchers. I say semi-active because while I attend my meeting most weeks I haven’t been “living” the program for a very long time. I could list a bunch of excuses, but really c’mon who wants to hear that BS? Life is an undertaking. The world continues to go on even when you don’t. I am capable. Very as a matter of fact. What I am is not willing. There is a part of me that is unwilling to try to be part of my solution instead of most of my issue. Do you get what I am trying to say? I get lost in the anger of my life. Perhaps anger is not even the correct feeling. I am frustrated. I am sad. I am disappointed. I am overwhelmed. I feel like there is never enough. Enough happiness, enough sunshine, enough love, enough peace, enough of whatever magic ingredient I feel that I am missing. Maybe there isn’t enough of me. I don’t give enough of myself to me so I can be more capable and less culpable.

I overeat that is why I am overweight. Simple. If you put 5lbs of sugar into a 2lb bag the contents will spill out. I am culpable. No one else is to blame for what I have done to my body, to myself. Just me.

What’s next? I think the answer lies in the questions. What do I want for myself? Am I capable? or am I more comfortable in the role of “won’t do”? Do I have enough faith in myself? Am I willing to embrace this program? to come to terms with the fact that left unattended I will always make the wrong choice because it is the easier path? Am I ready?

I need to look at each of the questions. I need to work on finding what works for me and what doesn’t . I need to be more into my success and less in to why I keep faltering. I don’t have all the answers. I will work this journey one moment at a time. I know I can do this. I want this.