Monday, January 02, 2012
I made and printed out Spark People menus for the rest of the week (I'm finishing the holiday leftover soup and stuff tonight.) I've never done this before. Man, they have you eat some weird combinations of apparently random items. It took me an hour (mostly because I just went to the grocery and don't intend to go again until next weekend) but I switched around and modified and left room for the occasional dirty martini. Next week, I'll start on Sunday with what coupons are available in the paper, make the menus according to what I actually want to eat and work backwards into the menus.
Yesterday I started the 60 minutes of exercise per day for 365 +1 days and I already feel like blowing it off, but even I'm not that ....whatever you call that. Lacking in resolve, perhaps. Anyway, I feel certain I can do the 60 minutes today (I have actual work - pile the wood - to do outside, so that takes care of half of it right there) and I hope it'll become routine as the days go by. It'd be a heck of a lot easier, though, if all the cats and the dog didn't want to participate in all the lovely hopping around and/or lying on the floor.
I've decided that this is the make-it-or-break-it year. I'm going to give this whole Getting Healthy deal my best shot, no cheating (well, no serious cheating, like blowing off an entire month) and at the end of the year I'll see where I am. If I'm still 200+, I'll accept that and move on - I don't need or want repeated failure. I'll also learn where my true priorities lie. But I"m hoping that this time next year I'll be back to my old self again, at least physically.
Mentally, emotionally and spiritually, while nothing on earth could have made the last couple years okay, I suspect they would have been a little less difficult had I not responded by gaining sixty pounds and drinking like the proverbial fish (only, of course, not water.) I now realize that even though you never know what's coming at you around the corner, if you're in a body you recognize and respect, you're better able to do what needs to be done, whatever it may be. I'm hoping that being in control of my own body will help me feel more in control of my life (even if that's an illusion - I haven't worked this out all the way yet. I'll get back to ya.)
So there we are. SP menus printed and workout schedule in place. I'm gonna have to call on my inner Highlander to get this one.
(This one's for you, sweetheart)
Monday, January 02, 2012
'cept me and a half dozen cats and dogs, all of whom are annoyed at me for keeping them up. So, as much as i loathe setting rules for myself, I'm going to have to tackle this one. I admit that in my wildly misspent youth, I did a lot of diet pills and...other stuff...that kept me up for days at a time. But I aged out of all that nonsense.
Ten years ago I could fall asleep literally in under a minute. My husband used to think I was kidding him - I wasn't. I was always a really light sleeper, though - the tiniest sound, the dimmest light would keep me up. I had to tape over the light on my computer case because it bothered me. The supposedly calming white noise generator kept me up.
I made a few rules for myself a while ago - if I'm fussing about something, instead of lying in the dark and "awfulizing" (imagining the worst possible outcomes), I'd get up and read. If I kept it up, I'd get out of bed and potter around aimlessly until I wsa tired, then give it another shot.
However, I just read the Healthy A-Z article on insomnia, and i'm going to try incorporating a few of the suggestions.
- no more drinking alcohol before bed. That one may be the death of me, but I'll try it.
- read in a chair or in another room. I've been reading in bed since I learned how to read. Again, it's going to be tough, but I'll try it.
- I thought a hot bath before bed was a good thing. Apparently not! Who knew?
- No more daytime naps. I thought of naps as a way to keep the lack of sleep from killing me, but maybe its instead making it worse.
- a clean and comfortable bedroom - well, I can work on that while I'm Not Napping.
- Melatonin. All I know about that is that it governs skin color, but apparently has something to do with diurnal rhythms as well. What the heck, I'll give that a shot too.
I don't do caffeine other than a mug of coffee in the morning, and I don't exercise at night. I try to keep regular hours, but when I'm with the kids, as I have been for the last two weeks, they get me all turned around, and I don't want to go to bed at my regular time and miss the time together.
This one wasn't suggested in the article, but I remember reading someplace that a protein snack before bed will help blood sugar levels keep from crashing, which wakens lots of people. So I'm definitely going back to that. And I know I can't have the bedtime cup of tea, tempting as it sounds. Trips to the bathroom are chilly and long.
One thing I know will help is getting the excess weight off. I'm a back sleeper, but once I passed about 180, I started to snore. Being a light sleeper, I woke myself up constantly, Now I have to sleep on my side or on my tummy, which is okay, but not as comfortable (or, according to my chiropractor, as good for my alignment.)
I do sleep with a cat or two and a mid-sized dog, but there's room for all of us, and we're more of a comfort to one another than a hindrance to sleep.
I've never been a "night owl". I'm one of those disgustingly cheerful people who are up with the sun eveery day, even if the night was sleepless. Once the sun's up, so am I.
If it's post-menopausal, then I'm just SOL. I dearly hope that's not the case, but if it is, well, think of how much more I can do in a day (and a night....)
Anyone with any suggestions, please feel free to tell me. I'm not miserable, just tired and I know I can't bring my A game to anything if I'm not well-rested.
Sunday, January 01, 2012
Someone, I forget now who it was (that's last night's dirty martinis talking), said that instead of a list of "resolutions", she had learned to take a yearly theme instead. I like that. I'm no good with rules and regulations, even if I make them myself (that's why my Tumblr and livejournal both are named "mumsananarchist", courtesy of the daughter who answered that way when asked whether her parents were Democrats or Republicans.) So I spent most of yesterday in silence - not difficult, since I broke the tv - and decided that my theme this year was to be (insert drum roll here) FEARLESSNESS.
I forget, once again, who said that there are only two emotional states - love and fear. I started rolling through lots of the events of the last couple years, and realized that most of my reactions had to do with fear: fear of being alone, fear of being penniless, fear of failure, fear of success, fear of new things, fear of loss, fear of hard work, fear of looking silly, fear of change in general. Many of these fears were masquerading as sensible things - I mean, who wants to fail, lose their investment and look like an idiot? - but at base, they were still fears.
If we're not acting out of love, we're acting out of fear. If I try to tie my daughters, both in their 20s, to me, that isn't love, that's fear of loss. If I refuse to spring for some new art supplies, or make some changes to my house, that's not love of the way things are, that's fear of penury or of trying something new. If I don't work at the novel or the Other Book, that isn't because I'm busy, that's because I'm afraid to invest the time in something that may not work out (another fear.)
So this year, I refuse to be afraid. If something doesn't kill me...well, Friedrich, it may not make me stronger, but it will make me wiser. And braver in the future. I joined a team that centers on doing an hour of exercise per day, based on some Irish legend. I don't have any Irish blood in me that I know of, but I have lots of Highland Scots, and that sort of challenge appeals to me.
I've been leery of quitting the evening alcoholic beverages - what if I can't sleep? Well, then the next day I'll be tired, but I imagine I'll survive just fine.
What if the book flops? At least it made it into print - even if I have to print it myself.
What if following what I truly enjoy doing leads me into (another) bankruptcy? Well, the first one didn't do me any harm - in fact, I learned things from it I would never have known otherwise. Meanwhile, I've been having fun.
There's nothing and no one holding me where I am now, in terms of employment (got none, lol), family (ditto, at least within 400 miles) or any other yardstick I can think of. I may be 56 and significantly overweight, but I can lose the weight ( I can't get any younger, but I can feel and maybe look younger), get my physical strength back, and find new passions (arts, my friends, not men) to pursue. Hell, I suppose it's not totally outside the realm of possibility to marry again - I suppose I shouldn't rule it out. I've only ever traveled north and south (PEI to Key West), but there's no reason why I can't go west. Or east, although that gets wet fairly soon.
A quick Rumi quote:
LIVE WHERE YOU FEAR TO LIVE.
DESTROY YOUR REPUTATION.
So that's the plan for 2012. And if I show any signs of fear, any Fraidy-cat bull!@#$, I expect you, my friends, to call me on it.
Best wishes for the best year of our lives!
Friday, December 30, 2011
So, as I understand it, this will be our last New Year's. Apparently the Mayans, who had a sort of cyclical calender, didn't go beyond next Winter Solstice, and so we conclude from this that the world will end next December 21st.
Let me point out that if there's New Age hooey to be bought, I'm first in line. I absolutely, positively believe (and have experienced) lots of "impossible" or "unrealistic" things and have no problem with shifting paradigms. But this one has me shaking mah head.
I'm not criticizing the Mayans. They did pretty well for themselves, and their influence is still felt in neighboring cultures, as well as having the only (I think I'm remembering this correctly) fully articulated written language in the Pre-Columbian Americas . They weren't knocked out by the conquistadors - in fact, they're still around, although spread throughout nearby areas. I'm sure they knew what they were doing with their calender - it's our own interpretation of it that I doubt.
There's a Mayan specialist at Colgate University (quite nearby to me) and he insists that we've got it wrong - it's not the end of the world, just the end of a cycle, and that that doesn't necessarily mean anything huge or disastrous at all. Maybe it's due to all the years (and years and years) I spent in academia, but I'm inclined to believe him over Llewellyn authors who have doomsday books to sell.
What fascinates me about all this isn't whether the world will end or not - I mean, what can you do one way or the other? - but how people will react to the predictions. Will there be all kinds of Stuff purchased with a "no payments until 2013!!" guarantee (enjoy now - be dead before the payments come due!) or will people stop buying altogether, gathering their resources in survivalist strongholds?
Should we bother to decorate for Christmas? Should we buy as usual and just celebrate early? Should we pull all of our money out of the stock market and buy Stuff to play with this year, since next year (and thus stock dividends and the opportunity to enjoy them) won't be happening?
As far as I'm concerned, these are the interesting questions. I think there was a movie out a few years back about all this, but I somehow missed it *cough*
I guess we'll just have to wait and see what happens. Isn't this more fun anyway?
AND ABOUT THAT Y2K MESS.....
Funny, I always felt partly responsible for Y2K. I was in grad school in the information science department in the late 1970s, working on computer languages, and I remember a few of the coding guys noticing that they hadn't put in a provision for the century to change.
In those days we were just getting away from keypunches and it was a big deal to go back and change something, so like the people who have their corpses frozen in the hopes that future generations will know how to thaw and cure them, we just said, "Oh well - they'll be able to handle it then." And then I guess we forgot about it.
But the future generation *did* notice and figure it out in time, so the crash of the banking system and the stock market and all the other dreadful things never came pass. They just dragged us geezers back and made us fix things in languages mostly no longer used - things like COBOL (mine was SNOBOL) and FORTRAN 4 and other computer Sanskrits.
So it all worked out in the end, and there was no computer-generated Apocalypse.
As Gilda said, "It's always somethin'. "
Thursday, December 29, 2011
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