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Winter blues and a death

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

So my grandma died on Friday. We'll get back to that later.

I walked outside today at work to get something from my car. Not only was it dark (yes, i had forgotten the sun sets) but there was snow every where. It was there when I got to work but the sun was out and I just ignored it. (Denial. My favorite coping tool.) So I saw the snow and having become more in tune with my emotions and my physical reactions to them since starting my journey, I immediately noticed my shoulders drop and I could feel a frown on my face. My stomach flipped and internally I was sad. WHAT'S THIS????

I've always hated January and February. When I look back, I can rarely remember them. This year, for the first time ever, I'm literally depressed. The winter blues. I've never experienced this before or have I?

I wouldn't know. I've spent much of my life putting my head in the sand or partaking in activities that allow me to avoid negative emotions (including boredom created by cold weather). I hate feeling this way. It makes me angry and annoyed. I don't want to deal with winter. I hate snow. I hate cold. I hate being stuck indoors. I hate not seeing the sun after about 5:30 p.m. I hate getting back to real life after the holidays. I literally wanted to cry and scream like a little brat when I realized I couldn't do what I usually do to chase away boredom (eat and drink) because it interferes with my weight-loss goals. I'm still mad as I write this but I don't have a choice. Today is the a do or die for me, which brings me to the loss of grandma.

The first thing I wanted to do when I heard she was ill was eat to calm my nerves. Then when I found out she had died, I had to travel to her hometown (about four hours away). I went into panic mode. I knew I would not have a place to workout or maybe even time. I got in a workout Friday before leaving and I took my workout clothes hoping the weather would hold and I could get in a walk.

It all went to hell when I actually got there. I ate like crap. Not only bad food but crazy hours. We very rarely had a chance for breakfast. It was an endless stream of visiting and visitors. There was always a beer to be drunk or a plate of food waiting. I came back today feeling like a cow and a little disappointed I didn't find a way to handle it better. I didn't know how to eat healthy and exercise in that situation. I'm trying to evaluate and see if there were areas I could have made different choices. To top it off, we were in a small town that has limited food choices. For example, we went to Pizza Hut and I ordered a salad. It came with lettuce, cheese and croutons. That's it. No other vegetables and no low-fat dressings.

So here I go today back to the gym and hopefully I don't die. I don't really feel like it because it's cold and I'm hungry and I'm pissed but I suppose I'll do it anyway.

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I am truly sorry to hear about the loss of your grandma. I know you will miss her. All I can say is what everyone else has already said. Do not beat yourself up over the food choices you made. Sometimes things are out of our control. You made a true effort to do what you could in a sad circumstance. Would the "old Laney" even taken workout clothes or attempted to get a salad at Pizza Hut? It is the small steps that matter. You could not have gone that whole time without eating at all.

    I have not gotten the winter blues before, but I do get cabin fever being stuck inside. I do not like the cold or snow or ice or anything about winter either! It sucks! We just joined a gym this last week and even though it is inside it is bright and some place to go other than home and work! I really hope you feel better soon. emoticon emoticon A little sunshine and warmth to brighten these gloomy days!
    2223 days ago
    Losing someone really important will reek havoc on your life. It's ok. It's ok that you didn't exercise or eat right, it happens. What's more important is that you don't let it permanently set you back. Eventually you will resent your weight loss program if you beat yourself up too much when you stray.

    Hugs and thoughts your way
    2224 days ago
    I am sorry for your loss. Emotions are so tied into eating. The line gets blurred easily. The important things I see here is,you took clothes in case you could work out. You were trying to focus on eating healthy. Your focus was on healthy choices,it did not happen,but really look at it.
    It like a bag in the middle of the road and you are driving,avoiding the bag could lead to a swerve and a ditch or another car,trying to miss it. You could run over it,but what could be inside? It may be nothing,it could be a bag of nails. You have every intention to do one thing,but you never know what could change it in any given moment.
    What important is what you do now. Give in a little( the choices you made) is not giving up. You can do this ,Laneygirl. Minor setback. Your mindset is about getting healthy and working out. It has not changed.
    I believe this is the grandmother who calls you Laney. I am sure she will be missed.She would be proud of the things you are doing for yourself. emoticon
    2224 days ago
    So sorry to hear about your grandmother. Take some time to take care of you, give yourself room to grieve.

    Also, I have heard so much recently from other Sparkers about being hard hit by SAD/Winter Blues. Living in FL, I can't speak form experience, but everyone really seems to rave about those Verilux lamps....
    2224 days ago
    My sincerest condolences for your loss. You shouldn't be too hard on yourself at a time like this. You have to let yourself go through the grieving process without being too hard on your body.

    I hope you don't find it to hard getting back to the gym. Also, for your feelings of depression, I'd recommend you start taking some vitamin D supplements if you haven't done so already. I suffer from depression year round, and I have found a big difference since I've started taking the vitamin D, especially now that I'm not getting enough light.

    I hope your healing process progresses smoothly.

    2224 days ago
    S.A.D. is a real thing - many people get depressed in the doldrums of winter - rarely seeing sunshine, gloomy weather, clammy cold. Yuck! You just had a loss it's a temporary setback. Saddle up and get back on the horse!
    2224 days ago
    Winter blues can hit hard and never give up, right? I feel like that too. Don't give in! I know it is hard, but you are strong and can get thru. I am sorry you lost your grandma, it is so hard to loose a loved one. Hugs.
    2224 days ago
    I'm so sorry about your grandmother's passing.

    I'm not a fan of winter either. Having horses requires me to be outside whether I like it or not. I've just learned to dress warm and layer. Same with when I workout. Ther'es been a few occasions that I've only been able to just stand being in the barn...and no outside time.

    You know, some gyms give day passes. Cost really depends on the location but my mother in law lives in a very small town in Vermont...there are no, I bought really nice workout clothes for up there. I wear them here, too...the side benefit...but there's always some place to walk...another thing I do is bring a couple workout videos. Anything walking. I miss my strength training...but even I found a cure for that. I have a couple workouts that use bands. That one and a walking video go in the bag...always.

    Another cool thing is can rent cathe workouts there and some others. I was able to stream them on my phone...turbo bar was fantastic. 2.99 and I got to use it as many times as I wanted for 7 days.

    So...some ideas for the future...but I'm really sorry this time became so lousy...because...when my grandma died, I really felt horrible and I found that kickboxing really helped did the stair climber at the gym.

    Big hug.
    2225 days ago
    Sympathies about your grandmother.

    Hope the gym wasn't too rough on you.

    And I second Plumeria's notion about light; I know a couple friends bought light boxes (best description I can come up with) that were helpful with their S.A.D. Might be something to look into.
    2225 days ago
    First of all, I am sorry for your loss. Don't be too hard on yourself. When my dad died, I was about 15 pounds away from goal weight. I did not eat or sleep the week of his death and funeral. When I returned to work, I had no desire to continue my healthy lifestyle. Here I am now having regained ALL of that weight.

    Secondly, try to get as much natural light as you can (daylight or those mood lights) to help you deal with the winter blues. That is a real condition. it is not in your mind.

    Take a deep breath. Recognize you are not in a good space and restart a little at a time.

    2225 days ago
    I am so sorry for your loss. Don't be so hard on yourself. It makes sense that you would be feeling a little down right now. emoticon
    2225 days ago
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