Thursday, August 18, 2011

100 Days toward a healthier life - Day 100

Well, only four days late, but unavoidable.  One would think, perhaps even hope, that a hundred days of focused intention and serious commitment and actual hard work would be useful somehow.  One would think that.

And, if I am going to be reasonable about this time spent with the intention of having a healthier life, that forward movement towards that is a given, even it one is not working her ass off to have that, you know, sort of by default and the passing of time.  Even I would have to work very hard to find myself worse off after more than a few months of intention.

So, I am not mentioning the food thing, even though I can remember what I ate.  It was more of the same, healthier choices, and really not all that important, big-picture-wise.

I could go back and read what my goals were for this time, so I will go and do that and be right back.  Well, it seems that my vision problems, the retinal bleeds (and then the posterior retinal detachments) were the main catalyst for this project.  That has pretty much resolved and I have since learned that my crappy eating habits had little to do with any of it.  Sure, avoiding simple carbohydrates is best for me, but the two eye issues are more related to my age than what I cram down my pie hole.  And, in addition to everything else, I have had the opportunity to use the words "pie hole."  That pleases me on some crappy level, probably best left unexplored.

So, the eye issues and my struggle to join Weight Watchers.  That latter one never resolved.  It was too difficult to connect with the correct (their word) person each time I went there.  There were either too busy or they were too busy. smiley: laugh  Really.  I am not sure when I finally gave up, but I did, although my desire to join that program has not diminished much.  As my process progressed I just forgot about it, unless it was in the middle of the night and at a time when I could not actually do anything, and then I gradually stopped thinking about it at all.  Still would like to join that thing. 

Next was actually losing weight.  I have done that, even though I stuck to my determination to avoid the scale, weighing stuff, counting calories and all of the angst usually associated with that for me.  I focused on portion sizes, following the food pyramid and then the food plate thing when that was released as the new and improved food pyramid thing.  I naturally choose smaller portions than I used to eat.  I rarely, like a few of times a month, eat snacks between meals, and only in response to my body's need for food because I did not eat enough at the previous meal.  Not even when they are offered to me, and especially at work where there is always some bakery or other special treat for some thing or another.

In the battle with my flab, I am winning.  I have less of it.  There is a visually comfortable less of my physical body.  I have gone down at least two clothing sizes.  So, that is good.  I was able to do that without all of the dieting processes that do not work for me. 

I have not had a second heart thing, and I guess that it is only fair to myself that I fess up that it was a heart attack.  Just a small one that did not require hospitalization, weird and expensive medications or any kind of extraordinary action on the part of anyone, but that did come with a lecture, which I totally deserved for being such a physical mess and not taking any of this, or myself, seriously on the level that the lecturer(s) felt appropriate.  That whole thing was a mess and very distressing when the people I am paying to take care of this little thing are yelling at me, even though I deserve the yelling and a whole lot more that the yellers are not doing.  And, at this point, like right this minute, I am more opposed to dying than ever, although there are factors that change that at what seems to be minute-to-minute some days.

As for the rest of what I wrote at the beginning stages of this project, well, I am not going to read them.  I rarely read anything I have written, preferring to just spew and avoid looking back.  Maybe that is not a beneficial choice, but I really do not think that I am capable of learning anything from this right now.  Maybe later.  Maybe not.

I do believe that my ultimate and loftier goal of becoming over-all healthier has happened.  My blood stuff is better, my weight is lower, my eating habits are so much improved that I can hardly believe it, really, and I just feel better in lots of big and small ways.  Sometimes I will be doing something physical and suddenly be aware that it is easier to do, produces less discomfort or pre-planning and that I am doing whatever that particular thing is without any thought, naturally and spontaneously.  That part is very, very cool. 

I believe that I have set a new standard for how I am going to be in my body.  I have absolutely no concerns about going back, sliding back, to my former icky habits.  I believe myself more able to resist using food to alter my moods, comfort me and help me to lose myself in food ecstasy in an attempt to blot out the more problematic parts of my life.  So, all of that is good and sustainable.  My joint and vision issues are the same and I am just going to live that that and make adjustment when needed and stop feeling so guilty and such a failure because I am unable to fix something that is beyond my control in the first place.  More slow learning, but I am getting there.

I divested more things.  Not as many as last year, but objects and the ideas/dreams/hopes/desires connected with those objects.  I can see that my life is moving in a direction that I did not think that I would be able to consider with any seriousness or hope of achieving.  At least now I am connected to the true possibility of all of that.  More stuff is on its way out.  The process is difficult for me, and there is still an entire basement of stuff to be sorted and hopefully tossed.  There are days, moments, when it is my hope that I live long enough to finish this, although my commitment to this is strong and it will be done, in time.

And, connected to that is, of course, the aspects of my life that do not work and managed to become more significant areas of distress.  O.K., all that ambiguity translates into people.  We all have them, those persons who, well, it is just not in our best interest to have them around, but, there they are, sucking the life right out of us, and we keep them in our lives for lots of reasons.  Sometimes we feel that we need that distress for some perverted reasons, usually connected to not believing that we deserve better, that they are the price we pay for not being perfect and for making mistakes.  They are the consequence, the punishment, and anyone who denies that such a person exists in their own life, or has at some previous time, is just deluding themselves.  We all do it.  It is part of our nature to punish ourselves for our true and perceived imperfections.  It may be subtle, small, personal, intimate, but it is there; we do it.  Sometimes it is a family member, sometimes a friend, maybe a crappy co-worker or fellow volunteer, a terrible boss.  It is one of the less self-supportive aspects of being human.

Most of the time, having that person(s) in our life is a small matter, not seemingly significant, but you know that saying about not sweating the small stuff, well, most of our lives are composed and populated with the small stuff.  It accumulates, drains us, distracts us from other more important things, fucks with our focus and our dreams and plans, our desires about the kind of life we want to have.

I can, and do, admit that not absolutely everyone has this kind of person or issue in their life.  I know plenty of people who either simply do not have this, or are so competent, so expert at managing their lives that it never develops into an issue.  You know those people, too.  They are healthy in mind and body.  Their hearts are unencumbered and they handle stress in healthy ways, never turning difficulty against themselves in some messed-up belief that they deserve to be unhappy or misused or abused simply because they deserve it.

I am one of those latter persons, and it was brought home to me during a session with a new client yesterday.  I mean, talk about the teacher arriving just when the lesson is needed.  Man.

Anyway, I have worked very hard to overcome an early life that was not supportive of survival.  Truth is that three of my siblings did not survive those beginnings and the rest of us struggle with doing the best we can with all of it.  My guess is that all of them carry the same belief that they have survived better than the rest of us.  I know that I do.  I think that I am managing my life more successfully than some of my siblings.  And, maybe that is true, that each of us has created a life that works for him or her.  I guess that is what we all do, no matter how life formed us.  Huh.  I guess I can start cutting each of them a whole load of metaphorical slack about this.  Yeah, I am a slow learner.  Anyway.

Anyway.  I am still working with the consequences of making poor choices in my middle life.  And, I am not making excuses for myself, I had only what I had to work with when I was that age.  Like now, only I was significantly dumber than I am now.  I am still pretty dumb, but slightly less so, for which I am very grateful.  I did gratitude, I appreciate it and honor the process that got me to that place.

And, those consequences, well I took them on, accepted it because those kinds of things always seem like such a good idea at the time, you know?  And, there are all kinds of responsibilities that come along with the things in our lives that we choose.  And, all of the writing is just the long and torturous version of saying and admitting that it is me, and only me and my choices, that bring me here to this time.  I created all of this, my life and only I can do anything, those things that need to be done.  Or, I can choose to do nothing, which I think I can no longer do. 

So, I have made changes during this hundred days in my relationships with other people and my relationship with myself.  Some of it has worked brilliantly, and for that I am humbly grateful.  Some of it has not worked all that well, or has worked in a way not of my intention.  I accept that, even though it resulted in the loss of a friendship or two and the whole and heartbreaking betrayal thing.  I can let the friendships go, they did not work and were causing distress for everyone, but the other thing, well, I really care about that person, I love that person and whilst I am trying to work this out, trying to at least come to an understanding and acceptance about why this thing happened, I think that I am a ways away from getting there.  That person is very desirous of getting beyond this, although unwilling to address the thing that happened.  I would love to talk about it, have some understanding and all that jazz, but it seems that is not going to happen.  So, I have decided to just let it go, move on and hope that time will bring an acceptable and enduring resolution.  Really, I cannot do anything more than that.  So be it.

Which brings me to my commitment to the someone who is not me, SWINM.  The swinum.  It is still beyond my ability to understand my sense of responsibility to this person, when so much effort on this person's part is dedicated to causing problems, some of which cause suffering not only to me and other people, but there is significant fall-out that affects that person, too.  I am so stuck in this pathology that I just have to laugh in amazement, in wonder and a kind of quasi-disbelief that I am still here, but here I am, and with no deliberate plans on leaving anytime soon.  It is based, at least partially, on that person's declining health, the knowledge that that person's family has finally had enough of the shenanigans and have removed themselves from that person's life, and a bunch of other, smaller, less immediate issues.

You know, I thought that if I stayed that I could have some influence, some ability to facilitate and support that person's other relationships, that if I left that there would be no possibility of any of that becoming better, and that was especially true for the little person, now a big person, that we created together.  But, seriously, what ego, what hubris, what delusions of influence or facility.  My intentions and desires were good, they were, I do not know, maybe even a little noble, but the perspective of time has made it clear that maybe nothing that I did or did not do would have made any difference.  And, I consciously use the "maybe" because there is still that hope and all those wishes and dreams for something different.  Still, I took and continue to take my vows seriously.  Perhaps I should be smarter at this and accept that it is time to cut my losses and move on, but I cannot do that.  I am not a quitter.  I do not bail when the going get tough, or even when it becomes nightmarish.  I do not walk away from my commitments.  I stay and I work.  I am not a quitter.

So, since I cannot release my attachment to those dreams, I am doing whatever I can to create the best life possible in these circumstances.  I think that I will begin another hundred days of something, because I have so much more freaking work to do on myself and  I can handle the focus and time demands of that commitment to time.  Less time and I would be too scattered, longer and I would lose heart, so a hundred days it is.  But, what to name it.  I will have to think about that.  And, I am giving myself a week or two break before beginning that new journey, as this past two weeks was too distressing and I need some time to recover.

So, am I healthier than I was three-plus months ago?  Yes.  I am healthier and stronger in my body and in my determination to have a better, or at least an easier life.  Stuff, some of it lovely and much loved, is gone, with more to follow.  I managed to accomplish all of my intention, and then some, during this time.  I like that, that I exceeded my expectations.


  1. I think that is bloody brilliant. On you Judsie.

  2. Wow, that is high praise and I thank you and I am so honored. I really am.

    And, I am proud of myself, too. I am so much stronger than I was at the beginning of this project and I am certain that it is the foundation I have needed for lots of new growth and a less scary future. Gods, I hope so. :)