METALBABE's SparkPeople Blog METALBABE's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Day 19/11 Halfway through my 21-day challenge! Today was a long day of teaching, and I'm pretty tired, so will keep this one short. On Tuesdays in spring, I teach two sessions of a class called Cultivating Mindfulness. It's a curriculum I came up with after I started exploring mindfulness and meditation practice as a tool to cope with chemo. I thought that what I experienced might be helpful to others, as well, so I have been teaching it for the past five years or so. In today's morning session, I... Wed, 1 Apr 2015 00:26:58 EST Day 18/10 WARNING: Today's blog entry is graphic and gory! <BR> <BR> So, I have been walking around with glass in my heel for about a month. The morning of my lecture at the college, I was getting ready to walk out the door, and felt a sharp pain in my heel. I took off my slipper and pulled a shard of glass out of my foot, but I could tell part of it had broken off inside. But I had no time to stop and dig it out, so I just put a sock on and went! Six hours later, I finally got home, and my sock w... Mon, 30 Mar 2015 23:41:10 EST Day 17/9 Seven loads of laundry. Weeds cursorily pulled. House aired and vacuumed. Garbage and recycling taken out. Some semblance of order reestablished. Nice to be home all day for the first time in literally weeks. <BR> <BR> Spring term starts this week, and I will be teaching five classes a week, in addition to my other jobs. Trying to do as much prep ahead of time as possible, and maintaining my new exercise and eating habits. It's a lot, and I'm trying not to feel too overwhelmed. <BR> ... Mon, 30 Mar 2015 00:04:24 EST Day 16/8 Taught all day today - a very difficult group. It felt like such a thankless job. I was so glad to have it be over. Then I went out with a friend for dinner. She drove, and somewhere along the way, I lost my keys (house, car, work & PO Box). Argh! So stressful. Looking forward to bedtime and trying to sleep it all away... <BR> <BR> But I wanted to do my homework first. I'm really feeling strapped for things to say I like about myself. I like my cultural background. I am half Japane... Sun, 29 Mar 2015 01:24:21 EST Day 15/7 Ugh, ugh, ugh. You know that sick-to-your-stomach feeling you get when you feel hurt and betrayed and terrible and lost and...? I have it in my gut - no, down to my BONES - right now. It's like someone drained all the blood from my body and I'm just left sort of numb and nauseated. <BR> <BR> It's too long of a story to drag you into, but I ended up spending time with my stepdaughter, my ex, and his dad (who was in town for a visit) today. I visited my ex's workplace, and think I met his ... Fri, 27 Mar 2015 22:41:16 EST Day 14/6 Two weeks back on Spark! Nice round number to celebrate. It really does keep me on track to have this accountability, and I am glad to be here. <BR> <BR> Today's thing I like about myself: Kids like me, and I am good with them. I'm good at goofing around with them, teaching them, calming them down, riling them up, and even disciplining them. I strive to give kids self-confidence and self-esteem in my interactions with them - things I wish someone had helped me to develop when I was a kid... Fri, 27 Mar 2015 01:24:34 EST Day 13/5 I forgot to mention in last night's post that I was really proud of myself for not indulging in the treats that I and my students brought to share for their final classes yesterday. There were lots of my favorite splurges there, including cheesy popcorn and lots of chocolate and cookies, but I didn't have any. Felt pretty good about that choice. <BR> <BR> Today, I stayed within what SP told me is my target calorie range (amended for the calories burned by my exercise today), but I still fe... Wed, 25 Mar 2015 23:32:49 EST Day 12/4 These long days don't seem to end! I just got home from teaching (it's 10:30PM), and still need to unpack, and repack tools and meals for tomorrow's jobs. But I wanted to get my blog in before I pass out. <BR> <BR> Today's self-appreciation/acknowledgment/noting is a rare physical trait that I like about myself: I like my hands. I like what they can do and how they look. They are delicate in a way that no other part of my body really is, and they can perform very precise tasks. They ... Wed, 25 Mar 2015 01:14:50 EST Day 11/3 Trying to come up with another positive trait I can name - not thrilled to notice that I am already struggling on Day 3! <BR> <BR> The third positive thing is that I am pretty funny. I make people laugh. Sometimes I take it too far, or my humor is a little inappropriate for the situation (though that's usually what makes people laugh), but most of the time I am just doing something to let people laugh AT me. It helps me not take myself too seriously at the same time. <BR> <BR> Today wa... Tue, 24 Mar 2015 00:28:22 EST Day 10/2 I am so exhausted, but I didn't want to go to bed without fulfilling this commitment I made to myself. Today's entry will be short, as I will just be doing Day 2 of my 21-day streak where I think of something positive about myself. Today's choice is: I am a good teacher. When I am present and not wrapped up in worry or people-pleasing, I am good at helping people understand concepts, and also helping them to have confidence in what they are doing. It always gives me pleasure to have the r... Mon, 23 Mar 2015 01:09:24 EST Day 9 Today was another long one - I was out the door by seven to start setting up for my workshop, and then taught until 5PM. I came home, stopped for groceries, cooked dinner and ate. Now it's only 7:30PM and I am ready to drop! I was planning on going to the gym tonight, but I am so worn out. Maybe I can make myself do a little yoga before bed. <BR> <BR> I read an article tonight on promoting positive self image, and think I will try to do some of the exercises it suggested. I'm always sur... Sat, 21 Mar 2015 22:44:27 EST Whoops! Day 8 OK, so not having a specific time of day that I do my Spark routine (blog, log food, etc.) is a bad plan. I will need to look at that for the week ahead. I completely missed blogging yesterday, though it is one of my goals to do this every day. I was going to do it in the morning, but then I thought it would be more helpful to continue evening blogging to report/reflect on what I faced or noticed throughout the day. Then I just got too busy and skipped it all together. So I guessed what ... Sat, 21 Mar 2015 00:00:26 EST Day 6 I am super proud of myself today. Even though I was coming off my loooooong Tuesday and got to bed late, I woke up early this morning and instead of turning over and hitting snooze, I got up and went to the gym! I walked on the treadmill for 40 minutes, went home, took a shower, picked up my juice for today's cleanse and still got to work on time. By the time I got there, I was feeling pretty great! I overate a bit for dinner, but am not going to beat myself up about it. The things I ate... Wed, 18 Mar 2015 22:38:50 EST Day 5 Tuesdays are my super-long day, so I am going to get my blog in now. I've packed lunch and dinner, and already logged my food, and I plan to "stick with the program." Luckily, when I am teaching, I am able to shift my focus from any hunger I may be feeling to the needs of the students, which is a great distraction! <BR> <BR> The hardest part about Tuesdays is how late I get in. Even though I am exhausted by the time I walk through the door (around 10PM), I am usually so wound up from goi... Tue, 17 Mar 2015 12:24:36 EST Day 4 Dang, this taking care of myself thing takes SO MUCH TIME!! I work two jobs most days, and trying to find time to shop, cook, pack lunch for tomorrow, exercise (haven't exactly gotten there yet) and blog, log food, etc. is feeling a bit overwhelming. I know I used to be able to do this, so I know it is possible! Just need to get back in these good habits... <BR> <BR> Today, I am just so grateful for "old friends." I don't know how you knew that I was back on here, but I am so grateful fo... Mon, 16 Mar 2015 22:12:24 EST Day 3 This morning I woke up in the BLACKEST of moods. Depressed, angry, hopeless - the whole package. I keep missing Keith and blaming myself for the end of the relationship (more than a year ago already, and I can't let it go), then being mad at him for leaving and remembering that he was never really present in the relationship, or appreciative of me when we were together. I have never been particularly thrilled with myself, but during the four years that I was with him, my self-esteem really... Sun, 15 Mar 2015 12:38:22 EST Day 2 <img src=""> <BR> <BR> OK, so I don't know if I am ACTUALLY motivated, or if I am still trying to convince myself that I am. I woke up with morning without my alarm, and though I didn't exactly feel "refreshed," I didn't feel like I needed to roll over and sleep for another three hours, either. <BR> <BR> I also wanted to note what I have been experiencing in my body. Some things I hope will change as I go forward with a healthier lif... Sat, 14 Mar 2015 12:23:08 EST Day 1: 2.0 Well, here I am again, back at square one. I am back at Spark People because this is the only thing that has ever worked for me in terms of finding a balanced, healthy lifestyle, and I need some support. So much has happened and changed. The biggest of which is that in my last surgery, my phrenic nerve was severed, leaving my right diaphragm paralyzed. I am learning to live with it, and am tired of all of my health problems holding me back. I really want to get back to a healthy place ag... Sat, 14 Mar 2015 01:29:09 EST Day 62 Well, it has been almost a full month. I feel like I have been sort of holding my breath all month, waiting for my surgery date. Now it is tomorrow, and here I am. <BR> <BR> Much has happened this month. I am grateful that my surgery is tomorrow, because my health has challenged me this month. I still have a hard time breathing, and my heart continues to be out of rhythm despite the beta blockers. The meds I am on make me feel lethargic, exhausted, and cause me serious GI upset. Can'... Mon, 25 Feb 2013 20:58:54 EST Day 61 I took Bunsen to the vet today. He has gained weight inexplicably and his skin has been horribly itchy. He's also super-stiff. I feared something systemic and horrible. But the vet thinks he's just excited about food after having his abscess removed last year and his weight is hard on his joints. And his itchiness? Fleas!!!!! I never thought I would be grateful my cat has fleas, but I am. <BR> <BR> I'm also so grateful for my friends, especially Bev, Mel and Shirl. Without their support, I... Fri, 1 Feb 2013 21:07:31 EST Day 60 Well, my next procedure is scheduled - February 26. I still have not had my consultation, but I asked to schedule it now so I could start getting subs for my classes, etc. My consultation will be next week. <BR> <BR> My brother is terrified (like, clinically phobic) about flying, but for about a year he had to fly at least three times a month for his job. During the height of this torture, I asked him if doing it so often was helping to lessen the effects of the phobia, like exposure ther... Fri, 25 Jan 2013 21:44:26 EST Day 59 I am truly grateful to say I have gotten the job! Ok, I should say that the boss still wants me after my "full disclosure" email. I am grateful to be able to add to my income, but perhaps more importantly, I'm grateful to have the opportunity to work for an employer with such integrity, values and HUMANITY. I have become so jaded with my past few employment situations that I think I stopped believing such a thing even existed. I feel very fortunate! Thanks for cheer eading me on, gals. Thu, 24 Jan 2013 00:37:11 EST Day 58 Well, another day spent in bed and I am still totally exhausted. Not at all ready to face a long week of teaching. I think it must be the effects of the beta blockers I am feeling. They depress the whole circulatory system - slowing the heart rate and lowering blood pressure - but really they just end up depressing ME. I feel lethargic and dizzy and totally not myself. I really, really hope i am not on these for long. The blood thinners also are throwing me for a bit of a loop. I bruis... Mon, 21 Jan 2013 23:15:24 EST Day 57 The procedure went smoothly yesterday. After the IV blew out three of my veins, everything else was predictable and relatively easy. It was a huge relief to wake up from anesthesia in a regular heart rhythm. I could take a deep breath for the first time in days. It's funny how we take that for granted. <BR> <BR> I'm still pretty exhausted, but I drove, cooked and went back to work for half a day today. Also had a job interview today. More on that at a later date when I have more energy. Jus... Sun, 20 Jan 2013 00:53:00 EST Day 56 Oh, boy, has it been a long day. I have been in atrial fibrillation since Tuesday - a crazy rhythm of 190bpm at rest. I saw the cardiologist in hospital today and after many tests learned that I need to have a TEE (trans esophageal echocardiogram)-guided cardioversion tomorrow morning to restore a normal rhythm. He put me on beta blockers and a blood thinner. I feel so totally exhausted. My heart has basically been running a marathon for two days straight. <BR> <BR> I'm not scared of the pr... Fri, 18 Jan 2013 00:46:25 EST Day 55 <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I am grateful to have survived my first week of teaching despite somehow STILL being sick. This sore throat just will not quit. My voice is mostly back, but if I use it too much, I go hoarse right away again. And still so tired. But hanging in there! It could be worse! <BR> <BR> I am grateful that I got to be there with Jillian for her first viewing of Star Wars. I know I am a total geek, but seeing this mo... Mon, 14 Jan 2013 00:24:42 EST Day 54 Still slogging through this nasty illness. I am grateful to have survived this first day teaching. I hope I can do tomorrow with two classes in a row until 10pm. I'm grateful that my partner doesn't seem to have this bug. <BR> <BR> That's about all I can muster tonight. Trying to get an early night's sleep. Thanks for all the well wishes. Tue, 8 Jan 2013 00:17:22 EST Day 53 I am grateful today to have a bit more of my voice back, since i start teaching early tomorrow morning. I wish I felt better though. I actually feel WORSE since my voice started coming back. Headaches and exhaustion. Hope that leaves soon too. <BR> <BR> I am grateful to be back teaching. As nice as the break was, breaks mean no income, which is not ok. I hate being this hand-to-mouth with income. Hopefully something loosens up soon. <BR> <BR> I am grateful that I only have one class ... Sun, 6 Jan 2013 20:32:24 EST Day 52 Oh, dear, I have really fallen off the wagon with posting. I have been spending so much time on the computer looking for jobs and working on a new budget in Excel that my eyes are bleary by the end of the night. That and I have made the mistake of waiting until the end of the night to do my gratitudes. While it's a nice time to be able to reflect on the whole day, it's difficult to muster the energy to do anything after the rest of the day is through. <BR> <BR> My voice is coming back, ... Sat, 5 Jan 2013 13:56:00 EST Day 51 Ugh. So sick. Lost my voice last night, and not from New Year's Eve reveling. I'm feeling disappointed and scared about too many things to be feeling much gratitude unfortunately. Trying to be positive for the new year ahead, but feeling a bit discouraged right now. <BR> <BR> I had to miss the friends and family day at Nia today because I am sick. Jillian, Jan and Shirl were all going to come with me. But it wasn't in the cards. When I woke up Jillian and told her, she said, "That's alright... Wed, 2 Jan 2013 00:56:39 EST Day 50 Totally sick. Passed out last night before writing. I think I have an ear infection, and maybe strep? Guess I have to wait the weekend until my doctors' office is open again. I really need to find a new doctor. The PA in my current office seems to just act like I'm bothering them when I call because I'm having a problem. I'm following up on a mass they found on my liver back in May right now, and I swear I can practically hear the eye-rolling over the phone... Not cool. <BR> <BR> I think ... Sat, 29 Dec 2012 10:02:14 EST Day 50 Totally sick. Passed out last night before writing. I think I have an ear infection, and maybe strep? Guess I have to wait the weekend until my doctors' office is open again. I really need to find a new doctor. The PA in my current office seems to just act like I'm bothering them when I call because I'm having a problem. I'm following up on a mass they found on my liver back in May right now, and I swear I can practically hear the eye-rolling over the phone... Not cool. <BR> <BR> I think ... Sat, 29 Dec 2012 10:02:14 EST Day 49 I woke up very early this morning with a very sore thrit and it's been downhill since then. Now I'm feverish and headachy, and my sore throat now includes an earache as well. I was sad not to be able to really enjoy our last morning of our mini-vacation, but at this point, I am just glad to be home. <BR> <BR> I am glad that the sickness didn't hit me until after a very nice day of vacation. <BR> <BR> I am grateful to be home. <BR> <BR> I am grateful to be going to couples' counseling w... Fri, 28 Dec 2012 00:42:51 EST Day 48 Wonderful day today. I got to go snowshoeing for the first time ever, had a great meal and a bath in a tub deep enough for tall people, all with no fighting with my partner! Bliss. <BR> <BR> I'm grateful for the sun on my face for a bit today. In Portland it's been raining nonstop for about a month and a half. This was such a relief from those doldrums. <BR> <BR> I'm grateful that I was able to keep up with the snowshoeing group relatively well without embarrassing myself too badly. It r... Thu, 27 Dec 2012 02:16:02 EST Day 47 <BR> <BR> Merry Christmas! Tonight I'm writing snuggled up in a big comfy bed in a quiet cabin surrounded by snow. The morning was hectic with a stressful drop off of my stepdaughter with her mother on the way out of town. Three hours of white-knuckle slippery blizzard driving later, we are here, safe and sound. I am SO GRATEFUL that we were able to get here safely despite the road conditions. It's been a while since I drove in snow and never in this car. Thank god for manual transmissio... Wed, 26 Dec 2012 02:29:20 EST Day 46 Yes, I skipped a day yesterday, but I was so tapped out by the end of the open house and a long night with my stepdaughter that I just didn't have anything left. <BR> <BR> The party went well, though I realized that I am actually a totally antisocial person. I ended up in the kitchen and running around the whole time, making sure everyone had beverages, cleaning up after kids, etc. part of that was me being a good host, but I realize much of it is the fact that when I am not "serving," I d... Mon, 24 Dec 2012 10:52:15 EST Day 45 Tonight, as I prepare to sink into unconsciousness, I am grateful for the relative bounty that I am able to share with those I love. I was able to afford to buy the ingredients needed to bake hundreds of cookies which we'll be distributing at the open house on Sunday. I know they're not extravagant gifts, but I hope their recipients will recognize that they're from the heart. <BR> <BR> Sweet dreams, everyone. Sugarplums, and all that... Sat, 22 Dec 2012 02:48:20 EST Day 44 Just checking in before an early bedtime. I'm exhausted. I'm grateful that tonight's class seemed to have been successful for Paul and Mel. I'm grateful that Keith and I had a peaceful (as in no fighting) night. That's pretty much it. I sleep now.... Fri, 21 Dec 2012 00:35:59 EST Day 43 Just wanted to slip a blog entry in under the wire before I pass out today. I had another crazy but productive day today, starting with a follow-up ultrasound to look at the masses on my liver. The tech of course couldn't/wouldn't tell me anything about what he saw, but he did call in the doctor on shift to come take a look as something he had been measuring. Guess I will have to wait to hear what my doctor has to say after she receives the results. I am grateful that the test is over. <B... Thu, 20 Dec 2012 02:55:52 EST Day 42 <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Today has been a hectic day again. I feel like I say that too much. But lots to be grateful for. <BR> <BR> I am grateful for my partner's help tonight with the continued baking marathon. It actually was really healing for me to have him in the kitchen baking with me, rather than in the office on his computer. i know he had no real interest, and it was a sacrifice for him. It meant a lot. <BR> <BR> I met wit... Wed, 19 Dec 2012 02:17:51 EST Day 41 Today, I feel deep gratitude for two things related to family. First, I am grateful to have siblings. I know I have mentioned my brother specifically before, but I also have a sister for whom I am grateful (most of the time). I spoke with her today, and the genuine affection she expressed was really great. Having people around your age who have known you all of your life and shared many of your experiences is incredibly valuable. I will miss being with them very much this Christmas. <BR... Tue, 18 Dec 2012 02:34:22 EST Day 40 Today, I am so grateful to be feeling more like myself. It took until the afternoon before I could actually say that, but it seems to be holding now, and that's great. I ate some simple foods and nothing seems to be immediately exploding out either end. Life is good. <BR> <BR> I am grateful for the other best Christmas present ever, which I got last year from my BFF. She gave me her kitchenaid mixer because she never used it. I use it ALL THE TIME and think of her every time. We literally m... Mon, 17 Dec 2012 01:24:06 EST Day 39 Just read Mel's blog and it sounds like Ellie and I are still in the same boat. My stepdaughter is on her way here, and I am sort of bracing for impact. I'm not good at disengaging myself from her/them, and she always wants to hang all over me. As I've said in the past, I am happy she likes me, but I'm just not up to it tonight, so we'll have to see. We were supposed to go look at Christmas lights tonight, but now it will have to wait till next week. Sigh. <BR> <BR> I am stupendously grat... Sat, 15 Dec 2012 21:55:46 EST Day 38 I don't know how it's possible, but somehow I seem to have caught Ellie's stomach bug! I woke up a bit nauseated and now am in full-blown grossness. It's stressing me out not just because I feel so bad, but because I don't have time to be down right now. Ah we'll, not much I can do. <BR> <BR> I am grateful that I was home when this hit. <BR> <BR> I am grateful that my stepdaughter won't be here until 6pm tomorrow. <BR> <BR> I am grateful to have been contacted by another old friend fro... Fri, 14 Dec 2012 23:41:21 EST Day 37 Today was my last day of teaching for the fall term. I am grateful to have open time, now, to put my full attention into the studio and then to holiday planning. <BR> <BR> I'm not going to force myself to identify three specific things or events for which I am grateful every day. I want to really FEEL gratitude for the things I write, not just check the task of finding three things I am grateful for off my list. So I may have one on some days, or maybe even nothing for which I am particu... Thu, 13 Dec 2012 19:09:01 EST Day 36 I've been having some sort of PTSD from the miscarriage for the past week. It was almost exactly a year ago that I was pregnant, and it's hard to believe that I have been arguing with my partner for a year to try to do it again, this time on purpose. It's hard not to think of what life would be like if we had had that baby. I wish I could have known that experience. A year of fertility when you are 40 is very, very precious... <BR> <BR> I am grateful that I was able to conceive, even tho... Wed, 12 Dec 2012 19:29:39 EST Day 35 Today, I'm grateful for: <BR> <BR> The relatively low death toll after a man let off many rounds from a machine gun in a local mall. It's still a tragedy, of course, and I'm sure the families of the people who died don't see any blessing in it, but the story is that the gun jammed at some point and put a premature end on his spree. Tragic, but sounds like it could have been even worse. I am also grateful that my loved ones were nowhere near the mall when it happened. <BR> <BR> The oppor... Wed, 12 Dec 2012 01:13:27 EST Day 34 I'm at the arts center getting ready for class, but don't want to miss my gratitudes for the day, so I'll keep 'em short. <BR> <BR> I'm grateful for a retail sale of a pair of earrings from my Facebook page. When I sell from a gallery I only get 50% of the price, so retail sales make a huge difference. It also makes me realize that I really need to get an Etsy site up and running, and to redo my web site, which is frozen in 2001 when I finished my thesis. While it's awfully nice to have a... Mon, 10 Dec 2012 20:57:47 EST Day 33 Today was an emotional day for me. I spent the whole day with my stepdaughter and her dad (my partner), doing lots of holiday activities and projects that I had planned out, playing games, etc. I make a lot of effort to make her time with us fun, and especially lately to pass on holiday traditions and instill a sense of magic in this time of year for her. So, when she said, "I am going to miss you when I leave, Dad," when the three of us were sitting doing one of these projects, it's hard ... Sun, 9 Dec 2012 23:24:36 EST Day 32 Today was a long exhausting day so I'm going to keep this short. <BR> <BR> I'm grateful that I got to take a short nap today. Dealing with my stepdaughter always completely wears me out. <BR> <BR> I'm grateful that my finger doesn't seem to be infected where my cat bit me yesterday. It was a bad puncture wound and I was worried because it ached deeply at first, but I think it's healing. <BR> <BR> I'm grateful that our friend was not only willing to lend us his gas hedge trimmer, but he ... Sun, 9 Dec 2012 00:52:39 EST