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60: Current State of Affairs

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Well, I haven't been blogging much lately, and despite the fact that I log onto SP every day to read my friends' blogs, I haven't been very active.

Generally I keep my posts to the subject at hand: Healthy living, weight control, and exercise. I'm always amazed by those of you who can lay it all out, whatever is going on in your lives, your trials as well as your triumphs.

There is, definitely, a mental aspect to this journey, and everyday happenings, good and bad, play a huge role in whether or not we are successful on our journey to better health and wellbeing.

There are many different ways we can cope in any given situation, and if we discover that our coping style is not successful, there are ways to learn how to copy differently. It's largely trial and error. And while I believe you can teach an old dog new tricks, it will take the old dog a bit longer.

Rambling here, I digress. This is going to be about my current state of affairs.
I believe in order to keep my sanity, I need to put it out there somewhere, and SP seems like a good place to start.

If you have followed my status updates you are aware that there is trouble in paradise with my 17-year-old son. Huge trouble in paradise. I've been dealing with his defiance for over a year now, his hanging with the wrong crowd, his getting kicked out of school, his smoking weed, his staying out all night, and on and on and on.

Yes, I've been dealing, but really feeling helpless, not knowing what to do, wrecking my brain for a way out, and not finding any solutions.

I'm convinced that my son is depressed and would greatly profit from therapy, yet, he refuses, not matter what I bring to the table.

Sh!t his the fan this past Saturday. He'd snuck out of the house right around midnight on Friday night and stayed out all night and ended up taking some hallucinogenic drug, which made him go off the deep end.

When I returned from grocery shopping, he was home, in handcuffs in the back of a police car, paramedics and ambulance also at the scene. Everything in my garage had been trashed. My neighbor, who heard the ruckus and came over to see what was going on got punched in the face, but did not press charges.

I spent the rest of Saturday in the ER. I was furious and had him committed on a 51/50, so he spent 72 hours in a psych hospital. Didn't do any good of course. We picked him up yesterday and he still does not get it and is in need of good therapy more than ever before.

Let's just say, things are a little tense around here today, and I feel like I'm sitting on a barrel of gun powder...

As I single, widowed, mother, I have been raising my kids by myself for the past 10 years. My daughter, 21, turned out just fine, but my son, my pride and joy (sarcasm here...), just takes the cake. I can understand that it is difficult for a boy growing up without a dad, but hey, there are many others and they turn out alright.

He will be 18 in two months, and I'm seriously considering blackmail at that time. Either get yourself into therapy or get out.

I desperately need a break!
Good thing I'm not one of those emotionally charged people, I'm actually rather tough :), else I probably would have lost my sanity a long time ago.

Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers, as we weather this storm.

And, if anybody wants to know how to lose 3 lbs in 4 days, talk to me...

Thanks guys.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FLUTTER-BY)L( 7/1/2011 6:07PM

    I wish I had good words of comfort. I think being a mother of teen plus aged boys is harder than being the mother of babies. Say a prayer, drink some water, don't forget to breathe.

I don't think I would be above ultimatums at this point. But, since I am not walking in your shoes I have no real idea.

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SIMPLE_IS_BEST 6/30/2011 11:44PM

    NOW I notice that other people have told you the same thing. Sorry to offer you the same advice as everyone else, but that probably means it's good advice.

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SIMPLE_IS_BEST 6/30/2011 11:43PM

    Wow, you are going through a tough time for sure. I am sorry, and I hope it gets better. I don't have any advice for you, except that you might consider therapy for YOU. Getting your thoughts about this out to a therapist might help you decide on the best way of dealing with the situation. Good luck!

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MARLINDA5 6/28/2011 12:26AM

    Going through this is difficult - what helps as one of your spark friends above - is for you to go into therapy for you to deal what is going on with your son.

Our prayers are with you during this time.


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IUHRYTR 6/27/2011 8:27PM

    If he won't go to therapy, would your going alone help gain insights into how to deal with him? Hoping all works out. There's no telling the potential that hides within him if he can stop the drugs. -- Lou

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KNITTABLES 6/24/2011 3:52PM

    Hugs is all I can give you since I don't have any kids. I will pray for you and your son that you will get through this and your son will smarten up(not the right words). Take care. emoticon

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ANGIES1963 6/23/2011 10:22PM

    I will keep you and your son in my prayers. My son older now, 27 and still worries me. He drinks too much and his only "real" friend supposedlyl does various drugs. I am so worried that Bryan, my son, will decide to give them a try. The only good thing is Bryan doesnt make a lot of money and cannot afford a habit like that.
Anyhow, just know that i am praying for you and that you are in my thoughts.
I am glad you were able to share this with us--your Spark Friends.
emoticon emoticon

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TEDYBEAR2838 6/23/2011 4:45PM

    I am so sorry for the difficulties with your son. It's not easy raising kids, especially alone.

I am all for 'tough love' but not everyone is. I know you will make the right decision.

My thoughts & prayers are with you.

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MALEXANDER4 6/23/2011 7:35AM

    I have to give you a hug first emoticonbecause not so long ago I was where you are at. My son is an addict who is also bipolar. Oh my god the days I went through. One night he was out partying and I was awaken by a knock on the door, in my tired state I saw the state trooper hat and fell to the ground. I knew this time he was dead. No the trooper reassured me and my son was in the back of the cruiser. High and caught. Oh How I begged for help, but at each turn I was told it was a domestic problem. After I had had enough, my nerves were shot, we put him out. He in turn got himself arrested and spent a while in the county jail. Not once but twice. He is since grown a bit, and holds a job, is on meds for his bipolar, and has a girlfriend. Now i'm not saying his is "cured" because we have had setbacks but at this time my mind is clear and he is on his some point we have to decide if putting them out is better for us than the whole family suffering. I know my daughter suffered because all my time was wrapped up in Josh, but I can only appologize and move forward. My heart goes out to you dear friend. we are here anytime you need to "put it out there" Michelle.

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    I had a feeling something like this was going on. I wouldn't say that its typical, because it's not, but I wouldn't say its unusual either. Go out on a beer hike with us and you'll hear all of us "boys" talking about our days like this. Some boys were worse than others, some got caught more than others. One of my good friends sounds just like your boy when he was growing up. He turned out to be quite successful. If there is a depression issue, continue to try and help him with that. Honestly, that's the only thing that concerns me. The drug use may be self medicating, but also may be just kid sh1t. Get help for the depression and we'll find out which one is the case. Second, does he have any productive interests? Does he tinker with things? Like to work on cars? Create things on the computer? Anything? If there is any positive skill you can help him develop, that's a huge step for him to get past this.

The usual disclaimer applies, I don't know anything, my advice probably stinks ... I'm just going from personal experience and you've probably already thought of all of these things. But just in case you haven't :)

If you ever need a stupid boy perspective, I can oblige.

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KOFFEENUT 6/23/2011 12:24AM

    Know that a lot of us have been there - regardless of whether our kids grew up with one parent or two. I really believe they go through a phase when their brains are not connected to anything. Will keep you in our prayers -

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    Oh, my. I have been in your shoes. I have had to wait a week while my son was in jail. Hardest thing I've done, but I had no choice. I really and truly could not see the light at the end of the tunnel. He had been heading for some real trouble with drinking and the wrong kind of friends, and finally, he had to learn some really hard lessons. This is Jeff I'm talking about, the son I just blogged about getting his wisdom teeth out.

There was a time when I would go to bed dreading that my phone would ring in the night again and sure enough, it did. We couldn't get through to Jeff that this was his LIFE, and it was serious!

Somehow, by the grace of God, we weathered the storm of his rebellious years! He is now 22, works in the meat market at a supermarket, has a nice girlfriend, and is finishing school. Two years ago, I did not think this would happen.

I'm just emphasizing this to encourage you. HANG ON, mom. Let your son suffer his consequences... they will help to keep him out of prison later, as a dear judge friend of ours told me when he insisted we leave Jeff in jail that week. If you want to save his life, make it difficult for him to destroy it, if you can...whatever it takes. And, no need to tell you this, but... tell him he is worth everything to you, and that is the only reason you are letting him suffer his consequences. I can almost promise you that he will later thank you.

I'm going on too long... but I just want you to have HOPE. It is NOT EASY, but you can DO THIS. I'm going to bed now, to pray for you, my friend, and for your dear son.

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CARTOONB 6/22/2011 11:12PM

    Wow! You are having a rough time. It's so hard to see someone you care about suffer without being willing to accept your help. I hope you get the break you deserve. BTW...I'll pass on your weight loss plan! LOL!

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FRAN0426 6/22/2011 10:24PM

    Will keep you and family in my thoughts and prayers, this crisis with your son is one of the toughest dealings with raising children. Our son has an alcohol problem and when he moved back home my hubby told him staight out( after a few DWI's---straigten out or get out, the free room and board will be over regardless of you being in college. He turned himself a 360 degrees and hasn't drank in over eight years, has a full time job and is doing a full time masters degree at the U of M. We are so thrilled for him. So there is always hope, but toughening up the rules helped in our case. I think that 72 hour hold isn't enough to get anything going for a depressed person, but know that is all they can or will keep them these days---darn, would be easier if as long as they aren't 18 they could help them in hospital if parent wants that. Good luck, and hope this problem with your son will be resolved for all of you.

Comment edited on: 6/22/2011 10:25:52 PM

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VIBRANTVAL 6/22/2011 9:49PM

    Aw! Thinking of you! Tough stuff your dealing with! When my son was 16, he got arrested 5 times in one year! Marijuana related. (Only sharing that so you will know you are not alone!) emoticon

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48: Meet Mayhem

Saturday, June 11, 2011

(And no comments on the name please... not my pick...)

Meet my new walking buddy, Maymay :)
He's a 4 month old German shepherd.

We picked him up last weekend.
Sure is strange to have a dog in the house/yard again; it's been almost 2 years, and it was time for a new puppy.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LUV2MUNCH 7/4/2011 1:26PM

  so cute, will get you into tiptop shape i'm sure. enjoy. cheers, barbyk

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KNITTABLES 6/15/2011 4:38PM

    Aw so sweet and congrats on the new puppy!

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IAMWINNING 6/11/2011 7:20PM

    What a sweet-looking dog....don't tell him I said that. He is definitely handsome. I'm sure you'll have a wonderful time, and I agree that he will have YOU trained one of these days. emoticon

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CARTOONB 6/11/2011 6:41PM

    He's adorable! Enjoy your new walking partner.

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IUHRYTR 6/11/2011 5:06PM

    Such a goo looking doggie but is his name Mayhem or Maymay? -- Lou

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NATURALLYJJ 6/11/2011 11:39AM

    He is beautiful and will definately keep you active.

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    Oh, a German shepherd is my DREAM dog!!! I am so happy for you! And there isn't anything wrong with that name! emoticon

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TEDYBEAR2838 6/11/2011 8:14AM

    It's a cute name and a really cute puppy. Wow, he already
looks bigger than a puppy. Love German shepherds you don't
see them as much anymore.
Hope you enjoy him for a long time to come. (Or I guess
it's Her?)

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    At a loss for words. He is too damn cool. Bring him by and I'll take him for a beer hike. emoticon

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MALEXANDER4 6/11/2011 2:20AM

    He is beautiful. Now you have no excuse to not get out and move. when he has you trained it will be all over but the sweating. lol. I know my dogs keep me moving. enjoy him and by the way I love his name. Heck I have a duddly. What is a name really?

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DEEGIRL50 6/11/2011 12:57AM

    emoticon Enjoy your new walking companion!

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33: And then there are those days

Friday, May 27, 2011

emoticon when you can stare down a chocolate chip cookie with ease
emoticon when you don't have to fight a single craving
emoticon when no amount of stress can put you over the edge
emoticon when things just seem to fall into place
emoticon when my world is in perfect balance and life is good

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARLINDA5 6/3/2011 1:07AM

    Beautiful picture & sounds like a great day emoticon

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SIMPLE_IS_BEST 6/1/2011 11:05PM

    Those days are great! Too bad they are also few and far between. :-)

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CARTOONB 5/27/2011 10:15PM

    Those ARE good days.

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BOVEY63 5/27/2011 3:48PM

    Sounds wonderful!

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KNITTABLES 5/27/2011 2:16PM


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TEDYBEAR2838 5/27/2011 12:00PM

    And - When is that?

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VIBRANTVAL 5/27/2011 9:50AM

    NICE! Could you send some of the karma my way? emoticon

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MRPLATSON 5/27/2011 8:54AM


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LIONINTHESKY 5/27/2011 8:31AM

  Been havin some great days like that.. theyre the best!

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MALEXANDER4 5/27/2011 3:34AM

    I love days like that. Had a few of em the last two weeks. It is getting easier to step away from the no nos

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  I've had the hungry's for days. ARG! I'm glad you had an awesome day!

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SUPER3800 5/27/2011 1:18AM

  Ah! Life is good! Well done!

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FRAN0426 5/27/2011 1:00AM

    Sounds like the perfect day congrats on that. As for me I had the munchies today, and those chocolate chip cookies called me more than once---I'll be better tomorrow.

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    Oh, WOW! Can I come over and have that kind of day, too? That's awesome! emoticon

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12: I Am Done With 1200 Calorie Days!

Friday, May 06, 2011

I'm reading, I'm listening, I'm learning, and I'm experimenting.
Impossible for me to sustain 1200 calorie days. Here is my life when my goal is 1200 daily calories:
Day 1 - no problem
Day 2 - still okay
Day 3 - starting to struggle
Day 4 - barely able to stay with it
Day 5 - PARTY :( - (Not the good kind).
Day 6 - party recovery and realization that 4 days of hard work became undone just like this... This, too, is yoyo dieting and while it keeps me within my weight range I'm working way too hard to stay there.

"Eat more nutrient dense foods", you may say. But I already do. So while this is good practice it is not MY answer.

"Use your weight range", you may say. True, but my mind does not work that way. When I'm in the 1200 calorie mode, 1201 calories will put my mind over the top. Who made up this 1200 calorie story anyway?

I'm sure that many people get great results living on 1200 calories a day, and once upon a time so did I. But things change, metabolism changes over time due to various circumstances, and I can attest to the fact that 10 years ago, losing weight was a lot easier than it is now.

I have learned from more than one source, that a messed up metabolism can be healed in a matter of a month or two, but you have to abandon your belief that the only way to lose weight is to keep your calories as low as possible.

Rather than 1200-1200-1200-1200-the sky's the limit days, consistency is key. Keeping intake consistent at a higher daily calorie intake is key.

True or false? I'll be able to report back in a couple of weeks.
For the past few days, or maybe even a week I've been eating a minimum of 1400 calories a day with a max. limit of 1700. (It is an absolute mystery to me, why my head accepts a calorie range between 1400 and 1700 calories, but goes absolutely berserk with a range of 1200 to 1600.)

Truthfully, I lost count of how many days it's been, because I'm totally coasting. Food does not dominate my thoughts and my days. I have a pretty good eating routine which is usually breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner. A second snack either between breakfast and lunch or after dinner as needed. I hold myself to preset time ranges. Crazy? Maybe, but it works for me right now.

Of course I jump on the scale every couple of days to monitor this. I'm not gaining, on the contrary. I love it when I can live in my 29 Levis :)

I'm excited to find out how long I can ride this ride and what results it will bring me.

On a non-Spark related note: I am without kids tonight and I'm absolutely ecstatic! DD is house-sitting & DS is spending the night at a friend's house. I've already finished my "yeah-no-kids-until-tomorrow-night" dance (can I log it? :)) I know, I'm terrible, but honestly I'm completely "teenagered" out. My doors are locked, my shades are drawn, the world is outside and in here there is nothing put PEACE!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BETHV10 5/19/2011 11:24AM

    I completely agree with you on the 1200 calorie target. I just can't do it consistently. I've tried and failed over and over. Some people can do this , but it isn't me!
So if losing becomes slower, then so be it.
So glad to hear that I'm not the only one! emoticon

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GRYPHON55 5/8/2011 1:21PM

    I know what you mean about the brain and 1200 calories. I'm finding that with 1500 calories a day, I don't have to work hard at tracking or figuring out what to eat, but 1200 is a struggle and, yep, the party/binge day comes around quite regularly. Argh!

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WILDVIOLETS 5/7/2011 10:39PM

    I find 1200 cals too hard for long. Great dance!

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    Hope you enjoyed your night...

1200 calories is enough for my daughter, but not for me!

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MALEXANDER4 5/7/2011 7:45AM

    Can I join you? This wedding is driving my mad. today is the day and then I need to get back on track because I don't like this me. I miss the old me. lol. I find I have to eat more now myself or I hit starvation mode. Not good. Leads to eating frenzy. I also do better on a set schedule...breakfast, snack, lunch, dinner. This is a lifestyle and we have to find what works for us.

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GRACEFULIFE 5/7/2011 1:43AM

    ....I could have told you 1200 would be too little for maintenance. Especially since you have been putting on muscle with the iron, which as you know raises your metabolism a bit. In fact that's one of the points. The difference is less than most think it is... somewhere in the range of 7 more calories per day for a pound of muscle in place of a pound of fat. IIRC last time we checked you had gained 8 lbs muscle and lost 4 lbs fat? You probably boosted your required maintenance calories 80-100kcal/day just during that time period, and as long as your measurements and skinfolds indicate you are still doing the same you are doing the same thing.

1200 kcal/day is the minimum calories ever recommended for anyone, much less someone active. I'd be amazed if maintenance for you isn't at least 1500 kcal/day. Probably more when you are active, and you could eat even more if you did a couple days of IF through the week. Naturally I actually read the rest of the blog entry and you are already talking about that range. Heh, nice.

I did the same thing the last couple days... just got tired and hungry for carbs after cutting hard for several weeks. I suspect it's my body trying to tell me something.

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    Sounds awesome! Teenagers really can take their toll on a parent so you have to enjoy the peace when you get it. Victoria

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IUHRYTR 5/6/2011 8:28PM

    Sure, log the dancing. emoticon As for the calories, maybe this will help if you're not already doing it. At the beginning of every month input on the weight tracker on the start page your weight and what you want to weigh at month's end. That will give you a range of calories to eat and the amount to burn every week to reach that end of month goal. If you exceed that goal or don't make it, adjust it at the beginning of the next month. Doing this has helped me. Perhaps it will help you, too. Wishing you the best of success. emoticon -- Lou

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KNITTABLES 5/6/2011 1:56PM

    emoticonI hope you enjoy your night and good luck with the calorie range. I can relate.

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BOVEY63 5/6/2011 11:53AM

    Hope you enjoyed your kid-free night!

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    LOL... oh, I remember those "Yeah, the teenagers are gone for the night" dances all too well!

I know you've heard this before, but it's worth hearing again from a recent empty-nester...

ENJOY the CHAOS of teens while you can! It's like a graveyard when they've gone. emoticon

I know you're going to do well on this new calorie range. I just canNOT do the 1200, ever! It would put me over the edge in no time! emoticon

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CARTOONB 5/6/2011 9:33AM

    I don't do the 1200 calorie range thing either. Or if I do, I do the same thing you on day three or four or five. I hope this new range works for you.

Yes...log the no kids dance! I love having the house to myself. Hope you enjoyed every minute of it!

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SIMPLE_IS_BEST 5/6/2011 8:11AM

    I'm with you on the 1200 calorie thing. That's the low-end of my range. Up until this week I've never managed to only eat that many calories. This week I managed, and have since mostly blown the rest of the week. I think eating that low put my body in starvation mode or something. Although it's probably all just in my head.

Anyway, enjoy your kid-free day!!!

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    You know I'm a big fan of eating moar!! Typically when I bump up, I'll have some initial rapid gain ... like a pound a day for a few days. It's a little tough to deal with mentally at first, but things level off and sometimes even crash. You can definitely reverse any metabolic adaptations that have occurred on sustained reduced calories. I guess the only thing I'd be concerned with is if the behavior doesn't change, but the calories do. IOW, you still have a little binge day. My guess is that you're probably having a little binge for a reason, that reason being that you're ratcheted down all week.

Anxious to see how this plays out. I like that you're the guinea pig instead of me. emoticon

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TEDYBEAR2838 5/6/2011 7:43AM

    YEA, on the time alone. Parenting is pretty much 24/7. ENJOY!

I like your new eating program. I think it will really work for you. Just don't obsess, ok?

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KKP4673 5/6/2011 1:54AM

    So... sounds really wise to me! I bet increasing your calories and being consistent is going to work! Did you hear about Bob Greene's new book about the 20 year younger diet? I believe he suggest the same sort of calorie counting.

AND, as far as being teenaged out?! High Five on that one!!! --I have 7 more years of active parenting.... And then, I move on to being the parent of adults, which so far, is sort of painful....

I'm wishing you the best success!!

emoticon emoticon

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8: The Wild(er) Side of LA - Fieldtrip Day

Monday, May 02, 2011

Today was field trip day. Our destination: Griffith Park Observatory.

Haven't been there in many years and it sounded like a fun thing to do.

While everyone was still puttering around inside I was exploring the outside. Found a marvelous hiking trail and we ended up doing a completely unscheduled hike. Didn't even check the time, but I'd say we were on the trail for about 60 minutes with one bottle of water between us. Finally some hills to hike. Felt like we were far far away from civilization. Only encountered one other hiker.

Hollywood sign on the other side of the mountain.

And a look towards the city.

All in all a marvelous day and only around 45 driving minutes away from home. Makes me wonder why we don't do this more often.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    had to check but it was the wrong LA. we are in Louisiana emoticon

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IUHRYTR 5/6/2011 8:31PM

    I'm envious in a good way of the hiking trail you showed us. And, don't you enjoy the observatory? Pretty cool place to visit. Are you in touch with Victoria (HIKETOHEIGHTS)? You two must live close together because she often hikes with the Hollywood sign in sight. That'd be exciting to have a hiking partner. -- Lou

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BETHV10 5/3/2011 8:54AM

    I love the Hollywood sign picture. What a nice hike you must have had.


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CARTOONB 5/2/2011 10:31PM

    Very cool! I love doing stuff like this without having to travel hundreds of miles from home!

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SCHNOOTIE 5/2/2011 11:18AM

    Thanks for taking me on that walk!! Love the pix!

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    This is my kind of day. Nice pics! Thanks for sharing.

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MALEXANDER4 5/2/2011 4:23AM


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KNITTABLES 5/2/2011 12:41AM

    Great pictures. Thanks for sharing.

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