CRAZY_KAT_1984   28,357
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Like no Grief Before

Saturday, February 02, 2013

Its February already?! Where has the time gone?
I've never really felt like I was "in mourning" before. Sure, many people in my life have died-friends, classmates, family. I went to a Catholic school, so any time a member of the student body died, we had a funeral at school. Cheery, huh? While I was close to some of those, I was so depressed in those years that I was more thinking that I should be dead instead of them. Now, I may have mentioned in previous blogs about my uncle who was too young to have been diagnosed with colon cancer early enough to survive. He had been on a very steep downward slope for the last month. His last round of chemo almost killed him. So, he was out of options and off chemo. We had a "Celebration of Life" party for him. It was like a going away party. All the people that knew him in his life were there, telling stories of his past. We had plenty of cards for everyone to write memories of him, arranged in an album. He was yellow from liver failure the whole time but seemed to enjoy himself. A week later, my dad called me to tell me my uncle was on his way out, not expected to live 2 days. Our family had over a year to prepare, so all the arrangements had been made. I still couldn't even believe this happened. He lived 12 more days before he died. Its been the hardest loss I've ever dealt with. He was a big part of my life, being my mom's youngest brother. He lived in the same small town his entire life, and I never went more than a month without seeing him. I skipped the visitation because I knew the funeral would be hard enough, but I had no idea how much I would cry! I couldn't help it, it must have been nearly 2 hours straight. It was hardest on his brother, I think. They were so close that they would talk for hours every day, on the phone and in person both. Its been so rough for me, though, and I am doing pretty well in not turning to food for comfort. As for alcohol, though, I would've been drinking more if I hadn't had strep all week. Or if I could afford it. All I can say is that I've been enduring, no more, no less. I guess I can hope that the grief suppresses my appetite. Anyway, that's how things have been going for me. In case any of my SparkFriend were feeling neglected or wondering why I haven't been as active on my SparkTeams lately. I'm working back up to it.

As for my goals, I've exceeded my weight-loss goals for January and am very proud of myself! I'm pretty sure I lost at least 4 pounds, double my goal of 2! As for my other goals, I don't even care. They're just icing on the cake. I met a few but not others. My most important one is always the weight-loss. It feels great to have met it for once! My highly active job is surely to thank for much of that, since I've been burning between 4 & 5K calories a week and walking 20 miles weekly. And thank you to my wonderful FitBit tracking all these things for me!!! Surely they would have gone untracked otherwise. Onward and upward to a new month emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GMO_JEN 2/2/2013 9:30PM

    I am so sorry for you and your families loss.

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ANGRITTER 2/2/2013 6:44PM

    I am so sorry that this loss has been very hard for you and I can totally relate. I just lost lost my father's uncle to a horrid stroke that took him just 2 days after his first small stroke. He is my favorite uncle and I miss him terribly and reading this just brought it all back to me in such clarity. I grieved for him the way I grieved for my fallen dogs, which I prefer to people almost ANY day. Donald's death, to me, was a fiercely physical pain as well as emotionally intrusive.

So I feel ya, sister! And I don't want to be in your shoes at all. I know the dragging feeling this has to have on you, and I am thankful for your busy job as it must keep you occupied for long enough for it to be bearable.

And please know that if you ever need to reach out, I am a SparkMail away. I can listen, talk, cry, support you, and honey I am sure I can make you laugh (I merely list the injuries I have caused myself throughout the day... and the STOOPID ways I get injured. Yes that is spelled incorrectly on purpose as they are simple things that go wrong for me. Like I should be in a video called "When Bread Ties Go Bad"!). So if you ever need any of those things, remember who your SparkFriends are. We are here for you, so reach out and slap us and we will be there!

My hugs, love, and deepest sympathies for you. Ang

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FRAN0426 2/2/2013 6:09PM

    So sorry for the loss of your uncle; even when we have time to prepare of someones untimely death----it is still taken very hard.
Good job on controling the overeating during this time, and glad you dinn't turn to drinking---as we all have to come to grips with such a loss.

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1STATEOFDENIAL 2/2/2013 5:52PM

    Getting strep might have been a blessing in disguise. Trying to stop or slow our grief by overeating, drinking alcohol, or avoiding it hurts us a lot. We must face our grief and feel it to get through it; avoiding it cause it to last much longer and can eat us away from the inside out. For some, this means crying, screaming, and breaking down; for others this means remembering who was lost and imagining what the future will be. Whatever way you feel grief is right for you.

Losing anyone we care about sucks. It just plain sucks. Those who are left behind are left to pick up the pieces, but we are only able to accept (doesn't mean like or enjoy, just we know we can't change it) the loss and move forward when we've grieved the loss. My condolences.

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JUSTME29 2/2/2013 4:55PM

    I'm so sorry for you loss. Having time to prepare doesn't do anything to take away from the grief - I know that from experience. I'm glad you have such good memories of him, but I truly am sorry.

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STAY39 2/2/2013 3:49PM

    emoticon emoticon

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LADYPYE 2/2/2013 3:13PM

    emoticon emoticon

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BARCLE 2/2/2013 3:11PM

    emoticon I'm so sorry you're going through this too. My brother in law died yesterday and it's just so so hard to deal with. You have my comforting best wishes too emoticon

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NITTINNANA 2/2/2013 3:05PM

    SO sad with and for you right now!

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A whole new level!

Thursday, January 03, 2013

emoticon emoticon
I did it! I reached Level 14! My progress on here was kind of slow, because I slacked off on here frequently for the first few years...some of my excuses were good, some of them not. However, an excuse is just an excuse for not trying harder! A reason, such as injury, is different. Of course, you should try to reduce your risk-I digress.
As some of you may know, I am dealing with depression. I have taken, what I consider, to be a violently proactive defense. I am a realist, but I have taken to the practice of refusing to dwell on the negative & only considering the positive. Any of you who have spent a week or more languishing about the bad in your life/the world will understand what I mean. For me, I have been dealing for about 19 of my 28 years. If you spend too long in the darkness, you will claw your way to the light. I don't know, I think its the human spirit/fight for survival and all that jazz...So, I deal by refusing to waste any more time focusing on the negative, being overly conscience of my thoughts and refusing the negative. Furthermore, why not?! Is life not more enjoyable by focusing on the positive? Whoa, whoa-almost broke into sermon there, let me climb down off the soapbox before I fall emoticon
Anyway, my uncle has been dying from colon cancer for a year and half or so now. He was underage for a routine colonoscopy, as well as lacking in symptoms, until it had metastasized and caused problems with his brain. Then, he discovered he had a genetic marker that made 90% of chemotherapy ineffective. Save, of course, the ones with the harshest side effects...He's spent over a year battling, but his liver is over 95% cancer and is his last round [of chemo] nearly killed him via liver failure. *I suppose here I insert that from all the testing we found that this is NOT a genetic cancer and was most likely caused by environmental factors. It matters some to me for screening purposes, but he's still dying emoticon Anyway, he's only 47, and its been rough on the whole family. Well, I found out late yesterday that they're discontinuing chemotherapy, there's no other treatment options, and we're having a "celebration of life" party Sunday to say goodbye. I imagine with his liver failing, he'll die sooner rather than later. This is my mom's youngest brother, and it makes me sad to think that he'll be gone...I'm sure its harder on her. its sad but we new it was coming when they diagnosed him. Or at least, I did, because it had already spread before they found it...I feel like I've been dealing with death most of my life, so to me, I feel its a part of life. I really feel loss here, though, because I was pretty close with him.
More to my point, last night I went to work with this on my mind. My coworkers asked me the courteous, "how are you?' I always think before I reply, but tonight, I said, "Good." Even though, he is going earlier than I think he should, I am exceeding my fitness minutes and calories burned goals. I have lost 25 pounds and will lose more this year. It all depends on how much strength I can muster over what goes in my mouth. I'm in control. I really feel like I've embraced my new lifestyle, I love my FitBit in so many ways, and my life is improving. Sure, I still have hours, maybe even a day when feel that deep, dark, painful sadness, but it is so much a relief and improvement to not feel it for weeks any more. You know how I found it? Exercise. A good sweat makes it all better emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

1STATEOFDENIAL 1/3/2013 12:49PM

    My condolences to you and your family. Looking to the positive, you can say it's a good thing you get to tell him goodbye and celebrate his life while he's still around. It doesn't make losing him okay in any sense, but some find it easier to prepare for it than to be blindsided.

Don't forget that every person feels sadness and moments of depression now and again. It's part of the human experience. If we don't feel pain, sadness, loss, anger, etc then the happiness and joy wouldn't feel as good. The problem comes when the depression takes over and uses up our lives. Finding a way out of the long-term depression and to only a few moments/days is doing pretty good. It's something I've been working on as well, in spite of my family. I hope for both of us the worst of it is over and we can find a happiness we never knew previously.

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January Goals for 2013

Tuesday, January 01, 2013

My goal is a strong start this month! I'm tired of being a PROcrastinator (as is in, I'm really good at it!) I'm waiting to start the January Jumpstart Challenge until the 6th, since I'm in it for the prizes! LOL Yesterday, I posted my goals for the year. I have certainly broken these down, to be tackled by month. Of course, some of my goals can't be put into steps any more than they are. There you have it. I'm trying to gear my monthly goals this year toward supporting my year goals, something I vaguely did last year. I'm making a point of it this year. I think, the more specific you are about your goals, the more likely you are to achieve them.
January Goals:
1) lose 2# by 1/30 (a rate of 0.5#/week)
2) prepare 8 recipes, 4 from SparkPeople cookbook, 4 from other collections
3) contribute at least $60 to my emergency fund
4) read 31 chapters of my books
5) earn 800 SparkPoints
6) all laundry & dishes cleaned & stored
Onward to a healthier lifestyle!
I've also figured out that I don't think I'll be able to jump to Level 20 by this year. If I progress more than 1 level, I'll be super-stoked! I'm just trying to be reasonable.
So, my other part of my plan is my workout plan. My work schedule has increased to 5 nights/week approximately 7 hours of cleaning & walking. In spite of this, I'm challenging myself for the January Jumpstart Challenge, so I'm aiming for at least 10 minutes cardio 5 days/week, plus the ST videos. With the help of my handy-dandy FitBit, I'm tracking at least 4 days of 30 minutes of cardio just doing my job, so I've got that covered. Plus, extra cleaning for my parents, grandpa & myself, I've got it covered. I just gotta do those ST videos daily! I'm ready! I can do this!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PHAMS85 1/3/2013 9:10PM


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CRAZY_KAT_1984 1/2/2013 12:37PM

    Oh, I've started anyway! I've just not officially joined the challenge yet. I'm still working on the goals, at least 10 minutes of cardio & ST videos. I like Coach Nicole's videos & am trying for at least 3/week. The prize-winning period of the challenge doesn't start until the 6th, that's why I'm waiting to join. This week is my "practice week," if you will. Thanks for all your support! emoticon emoticon

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1STATEOFDENIAL 1/1/2013 2:41PM

    Best wishes on all your goals! Is there anything you can start on ahead of time before the challenges officially start? No point in putting off starting if there's something you can do early.

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SCHECK5 1/1/2013 1:18PM


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LABRATIAM 1/1/2013 9:42AM

    emoticon goals!

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NITTINNANA 1/1/2013 7:33AM

    Yes, you can!

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2012 Finale

Monday, December 31, 2012

Wow! The year is OVER! I can't believe it emoticon
I didn't really reach my goals for 2012-any of them. However, I did keep trying all year. I didn't give up or quit, even though I stumbled. I think a more modest approach for 2013 is in order, especially since I need to develop my patience anyway. Compassion for myself-at least as much as I have for others-is also in order. I was inspired by The Slowest Loser's blog about how he stopped the Mayan Apocalypse and decided to set my own slow weight loss goal for this new year.
Goals for 2013
1) Lose 26# As of what I weight 1/1/13. That's 0.5#/week. I'm working on my consistency! Its also to remind myself that I am more than a number on a scale and focus on getting healthy. My specific steps to accomplish this include 30 minutes of cardio 4 days/week, Coach Nicole's ST videos of each major muscle group 2 times/week, walk 10K steps/day, and stay within my calorie range 5 days/week.
2) Prepare 2 recipes from my vast untried collection/week: I want to eat less processed foods and cook more myself. I have several cookbooks I haven't tried as well as an electronic database of email and SparkRecipes. I will prepare 1 from my SparkPeople Cookbook, starting with the staple recipe list, and one from my other collections. I also intend to have treats I've made on hand (chocolate, especially!) so I can control the nutritional value more. I'm also thinking that if I have them all the time, I will not feel the need to overindulge. Something about knowing they'll be there tomorrow, I feel like that might work. Plus, its cheaper cooking at home!
3) Complete the first three baby steps of Dave Ramsey's Total Money Makeover. I'm trying to get my finances in order after a year of underemployment and legal expenses. I'm designating 10% of each check to each step in order until completed. I can do it!
4) Read all of my books at least once! I have so many books I haven't read, including the free ones that came loaded on my ebook reader. I'm going to read one chapter a day from these until I finally read them all!
5) Reach SparkPeople Level 17: earn 2K SparkPoints every month by completing the daily SparkPoint Challenges and possibly buying The Spark
6) Begin working to complete Associate's Degree via free online courses: some kind of grant to help people earn their degree. Several colleges are offering free online courses to help you earn your Associate's degree. I already have 31 credits, its time to finish up! I have found a list of the colleges, now I just need to pick and program and get it all set up so I can begin as soon as possible when I return from helping my friend move to Austin at the end of March.
7) organize house & rummage sale suprlus by the end of Summer: My place is cluttered and in general disaray. I'd like to catch up on all my housework and organize everything. Additionally, I need to get ride of all the stuff I don't use & get as much money as I can from it. I have already created a detailed list of cleaning assigned to each day, so I just need to stick to it!
8) Learn more about investing: I have a dream to live off my investments one day, but I need to learn more about it! This year I will read at least three books about it, one of which will be Total Money Makeover. I also intend to take advantage of my credit unions free meeting with a financial adviser.
9) This one concerns my religious beliefs and being more religiously observant. I believe religion stays in the home, so I will not elaborate here.

I have a plan & I will stick with it! Its not as aggressive, so I feel more like its practical. I plan to update my blog frequently with progress!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LESLIE_2B_LESS 12/31/2012 10:25PM

    Great goals and very achievable!

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1STATEOFDENIAL 12/31/2012 6:54PM

    You have a lot of long term goals here, but I'm wondering about your short term and medium term goals that will help you reach your long term goals? You said you didn't accomplish any of your goals in 2012 - that should NEVER happen, because you should be setting smaller goals that are relatively easy to attain. Doing this will help you feel accomplishment and movement towards your bigger goals.

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CRAMOMMY 12/31/2012 6:02PM

    Good for you! A plan with attainable goals ... perfect!!

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ANGRITTER 12/31/2012 4:37PM

    Love that you have a plan! Gotta be the first of the people I know who have a plan that fleshed out! I will wait until tomorrow and decide what I am doing next year. i know I am going to lose another 40 pounds; that is a MUST.

But the rest of the plans for my life, well, I am in limbo until someone tells me I am finally bad enough to be disabled.

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NITTINNANA 12/31/2012 3:51PM

    Sounds like you've put some major thought into this. Go for it!

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COOP9002 12/31/2012 12:35PM

    Wow! Sounds like you had a rather busy & productive 2012. Blessings upon you in the new year.

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My first day with FitBit

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Wow! Can you say user friendly?! It was so simple to get going, I couldn't believe it. Plus, I totally love that it tracks for me! I've started this overnight cleaning job, which translates to about 7 hours of cleaning/walking time. I'd been trying (not too hard, though) to figure out how to track this exercise. Enter FitBit. It tracks more calories burned for me than SparkPeople, but I'm sticking with my SparkPeople calories burned. By the way, thank you SparkPeople for linking with FitBit! You have helped simplify my life!!! Although I don't know the formula used to calculate, I ended up with cardio minutes and certainly my 10K step goal before the day is through. I was a befuddled when it reset itself at midnight (who else noticed?) I didn't realize that was why for a few minutes-why did my numbers reset when there's no reset button like with a pedometer? But I figured it out (cuz that's what I do!)
That's all for now, since its nearly my bedtime. I just wanted to say my FitBit Zip is awesome, and exceeded my expectations emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OAKBORN 12/29/2012 8:34PM

    I have a FitBit too. I am very happy with mine as well. Hope to see you around the MidMO team!


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SKEEWEE2MEK 12/28/2012 9:05PM


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OHANAMAMA 12/27/2012 12:06PM

    I got one too! I have a desk job tho.... :/ so nowhere near my 10K steps yesterday! I need a more active job! That would help!

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3G1RLS4ME 12/27/2012 11:53AM

    I'm getting my fitbit one today can't wait to join the Sparkpeople challenge

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BATCHICK 12/27/2012 11:40AM

    Yay! Fitbit is awesome!

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HEALTHY-SPARK 12/27/2012 11:30AM

    I love my fitbit too -- super motivatign to try and get to that magic 10k number everyday, even on days where it's a bit of a stretch to get it all in, it motivates me to just do it.

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HOLLYM48 12/27/2012 11:24AM

    I love my fitbit but since I decided to do 45 mins to an hour of exercise a day I decided that I won't rely on that ony to account for those minutes. I still get on my bike and my elliptical to get in my hour and then those are bonus exercise minutes for me. I work in a busy dept of a hospital so I usually get in about 7000 to 8000 steps there but still want to get in my other cardio. I love the fitbit because it keeps me accountable for steps and when I am not moving around enough! Glad you are liking yours. emoticon emoticon

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TXTOAD9970 12/27/2012 11:22AM

    I love my fitbit! It's awesome! emoticon

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