I’m not even going to break it all down. I did not stick to the plan this month. This month was just not good. I knew I would hit one of these eventually, and this was my first big bump.
It started with me getting sick, which threw off my exercise and eating. For some reason, when I get sick, I get HUNGRY, and basically want to eat all the things, which is exactly what I did. I also wasn’t really properly stocked for healthy food, so it was a lot of junk. Being sick made my mood kinda lousy, too, so getting back on track has just not been working. I haven’t been cooking at home as much either. Been going for things that are convenient because I’ve been overall blah.
Lets throw in the stress of finding and hiring a roofing contractor, then three days of banging and slamming on the roof. Zach went out of town, and while out of town got engaged. Yes, I knew it was happening, and yes its happy news, but its still kind of a shock when your child decides he wants to get married. I’ve also been having problems with friends that have made me really question WHY I’m friends with these people when I can’t trust them or rely on them.
One thing I’ve realized, though, with getting so off track, is that the exercise and the eating with a bit more care make a BIG difference in how I feel mentally, which then affects how I feel physically. I definitely need to get myself back on track with the holidays and then birthdays coming up. Got myself moving this morning. Now I just need to keep doing it.
My brain is currently hung up on this thingy I saw on Facebook (I KNOW I KNOW).
My first thought was “Um, seriously? What the fuck?” The person who posted it agreed with it. There was some disagreement in the comments saying a relationship is when two people work together, and then it went into religion and I got distracted by a cookie or squirrel or something because, well, lets not talk about my hang-ups with religion shall we? (After doing a bit of googling, I’m fairly convinced this comes from some Christian guide for women)
Then I thought, “Maybe its right, though. Is it more natural for men to pursue women?” which is obviously problematic thinking. Women should feel free to pursue men, and vice versa. This paints a picture of men being predators and women being prey, and that’s REALLY wrong, especially when you look at the news lately (hey, #metoo) and if you look at it with any sort of rational adult thought. When you look at it from a rational human perspective, its easy to fix what’s wrong with it; just take out “man/men/him/he” and “woman/women/her/she” and replace it with “person/people.” Also, remove the line about “not that into you.” Actually, I take that back. Delete the whole damn thing. Boom, edited.
What this breaks down to for me is the realization of exactly how insecure I am about dating or liking people. Its hard to tell them because rejection sucks, but I think everyone feels that. I apparently needed to write this to figure that out, and to indulge my inner armchair feminist. We can’t keep telling our girls to act a certain way to get what they want. They need to be encouraged to be themselves. Boys ,too. People should love you for who you are, not who you think they want you to be. Then again, I could be wrong. I am still single, after all.
I’m just going to jump right into this since I’m a couple days late.
Move it move it: Still feeling really good about this one. With the exception of a migraine and a sore knee, I haven’t missed my morning walks or yoga. I’m transitioning into some running, planning to start Couch to 5k this week. I’m feeling MAJOR changes in my strength while I do yoga. I can nail chaturanga, and yesterday I actually held crow pose for about five seconds. My balance in standing one leg postures is getting a lot better too. I have been experiencing some “don’t wanna” feelings in the morning when its time to walk, mostly because of the weather and the fact that I can’t head right out the door after I feed the cats because its still dark. But I’m doing it! I get 5 out of 5.
Clean my plate: Still doing ok with this, but I’ve definitely eaten more junk in the past month. I notice when I eat junky food I end up craving more junky food, so I need to be more careful. I’ve been relying on Amy’s frozen meals a little more than I would like to because they’re easy and they are vegetarian. Still haven’t fully committed to plant based all the time because not everyone in the house wants to do that, and since Zach enjoys cooking, I haven’t wanted to impose extra work on him. I’ll figure it out. Giving myself 4 out of 5 this month because I know I can do better.
Honey do: This one has moved to a different level this past month. I haven’t done a lot of things on “the list” because I spent a significant portion of this past month getting roofing quotes, and trying to round up possible candidates for other big jobs that need to be done around the house. Obviously I’m not doing the physical work on those things, but they are things that have sorely needed to be done and I’m finally in a place where I’m able to do them. Still, I could be getting more stuff done and I’m kind of mad at myself for that. Maybe I should put “don’t be so hard on yourself” on my list. Going with 3.5 out of 5.
Write like a writer that writes: You know, while it doesn’t show so much on here, I have been doing a bit better with this. Just writing things that are kind of intensely personal that I’m not sharing with anyone. Considering taking on nanowrimo next month, but I’m not sure yet. My write up for this is 2.75 out of 5.
Mini Mental Vacations: I was doing a pretty good job with this one for a couple of weeks, doing something every day. Then I hit the end of the meditation series and stopped looking for new ones every day. I know it would be really good for me to try to take this a little more seriously, but sometimes I feel like reading is my mental break. I’ll go 3 out of 5.
Earn my explorer badge: I’ve definitely been getting myself out and about more, even stepping out of my comfort zone sometimes. One thing I notice with this is I’m getting a lot more comfortable with just doing things on my own. The company of other people is nice (and probably something I should be making more of an effort towards) but being comfortable and confident on my own is kind of a big deal. I think that’s going to get me out doing more stuff on my own. Going with 5 out of 5 just because I feel awesome about this.
I’m really glad I made the commitment to do this for myself. Not only am I feeling so much better physically and mentally, but I’m learning a lot about myself. I know where I need to restrict myself, and I know where I need to push myself. I guess trying to have a healthy mid-life crisis was a good idea after all.
Today is World Mental Health day. I feel like there’s more than one of these? Maybe the other was mental health awareness day? I don’t know. When I google “mental health holiday” or “mental health day” I just get stuff about getting through the holiday season or taking a day off of work. Not exactly what I was hoping to find.
I’ve struggled with depression and anxiety for most of my life. I’ve done many not so great things to deal with it, from cutting myself to trying to drink my problems away, to just not being safe with my life and body in a number of ways (that I’m not going to get into). Right now my depression is well managed, so it’s mostly anxiety that I’m working to keep in check. Sometimes it’s the most literal kind of anxiety, like shortness of breath, tightness in my chest and stomach, feelings of impending doom and extreme fear that at times have been bad enough that I thought I was having a heart attack. Other times its just flutters that I can identify, address, and move on. Other times it leaves me feeling exhausted and afraid to get out of bed. On a day to day basis, though, my anxiety comes across more as a feeling of self-doubt and sometimes crippling perfectionism. I spend a lot of time second guessing myself and my actions (ask me how long it took me to write this!) which really slows me down. I’m getting better at dealing with this, but it’s definitely there, and its also not something that a lot of people would think of me feeling when I say, “I have anxiety.”
My point is, and I swear I have one, that while lots of people suffer from anxiety, or depression, or OCD, etc., not everyone experiences the same illnesses in the same ways. Two people can go to a doctor and walk out with the same diagnosis even though THEY ARE NOT FEELING EXACTLY THE SAME THINGS. Even two people who experience the same event, like the loss of a parent, or a car accident, are not going to react the same way, think or feel the same things, because feelings and brains are really god damn complicated, y’all.
This is what I think makes mental health such a struggle for our society to understand and in some cases for people to accept that it is even a real problem.
It amazes me that in this day and age, people still doubt the existence of things just because they can’t see them or touch them. Learning about mental health issues, talking to people who have these problems, can be a great exercise in empathy though because it forces us outside of ourselves, makes us do our best to walk in another persons shoes. It can also lead to the exact opposite. Not understanding it doesn’t give you the right invalidate other peoples feelings. Saying things like “you shouldn’t worry so much about that,” or “you’re getting worked up over nothing,” or “you just need to cheer up,” or (I think) worst of all “you really should be over that by now.” That’s not empathetic, and that’s not at all helpful. So if you catch yourself wanting to say those things to someone, for the love of all that’s good, JUST DON’T.
If you are struggling with feelings that you don’t like, feelings that you don’t think other people will understand, I want you to remember one thing–no matter what, you are not alone. I’m right there with you, as are sooo many others. People you know, people you don’t know. Don’t let anyone invalidate the way you feel or make you doubt yourself just because they don’t understand. If someone tells you what you feel isn’t real, turn around and find someone who does. There will be someone out there that will listen.
Yes, I know. I’m late with the update, but I have a legitimate excuse, and the bitches name is Irma. I didn’t have power for five days, and cell service was really spotty for the first few. I figured this would wait.
If you have no idea what my reboot is, read this post. Now lets evaluate.
Move it move it: I’m kicking ass and taking names with this one. I walk at least four mornings each week, more often its five. I do yoga every damn day. I did Yoga with Adriene Yoga Camp again. I started Yoga Revolution at the end of August, figuring it would end perfectly on September 30th, then Irma had to fuck that up. Giving myself 5 out of 5.
Clean my plate: This one is going really well, too. I’m still cooking good meals, focusing on vegetables. Most days I track what I eat, but I allow myself off days. I do still have a sweet tooth, but I think I’m even getting that a bit more under control. One thing I didn’t put into the original post was cutting back on drinking, which I’ve done. I committed to at least 60 days with no alcohol. I did it. Since then, I’ve had a few beers, but I’m not going overboard. Score 5 out of 5.
Honey do: This one is coming along nicely, if n slowly. I’ve knocked a few things off of the list I made last month, and I’ve been going through things and weeding stuff I don’t need out. Found some pretty cool treasures, too, like old pictures of my grandparents. I feel like I could do a bit more here, but that’s probably because theres SO MUCH that needs to be done around here. Honey gets 4 out of 5.
Write like a writer that writes: Ha. Hahahahaha! Nope. This one is not going well. If making lists counted, I’d be doing well, but I’m not counting lists. It’s silly too, because I find myself composing blog posts in my head, but then I don’t write them. A lowly 1 out of 5.
Mini mental vacations: I downloaded the Headspace app, but they only give you, like, seven free sessions before they start charging you a whole lot of money, so I stopped doing that. I do allow myself mental breaks though. I don’t check social media first thing in the morning, which is a mental break in itself. I found another app to try that doesn’t have a monthly fee attached, so I’m working with that. I’m going to say 3.5 out of 5.
Earn my explorer badge: This one is hard. I went to the Ed Sheeran concert, and while going to concerts is not new or something I wouldn’t usually do, I did put myself out there, in a way, to do it. I went by myself, and I went because I really wanted to. I went ahead and seized that moment. What was crazy was I was not filled with anxiety about it, like I would have been a year or so ago. I’m getting better about getting out of the house and doing stuff in general, but I haven’t tried a lot of new things. Points awarded 3 out of 5.
I’m quite happy with my progress. Feeling stronger, sleeping better, my mood is just better. My anxiety is much more under control. Proof of that happened last week when Irma hit and I didn’t have a complete breakdown, and managed to stay fairly calm aside from the mess and discomfort. I’m definitely going to keep rebooting.
So yeah, I went to see Ed Sheehan last week, and it was AWESOME. I know there’s a lot of hate associated with him, I’m guessing because he’s successful and people like to hate successful people, because otherwise I’m not sure what there is to not like. The guy is talented. Full stop.
He didn’t have a band. He didn’t have a huge stage set up with lots of props, aside from the video screens. It was just him, his guitars, and a loop station. He sounds just as good live as he does on his albums. It was a great experience. I’ve been to a lot of different kinds of shows, I’ve seen “really popular” performers, have been to big stadium and arena shows, but this one goes up there just in terms of the musical performance. He didn’t need a lot of flash and bang to make it a good show.
When he was talking to the audience at one point, he said concerts are one place where people come together for a common interest. Sporting events are similar, but there are two sides, but at a concert, everyone is there to see the same performance, all rooting for a good show. It’s a rare moment of togetherness with strangers that we don’t get too often.
I really wish I had better words, but I’ll just let him sing for himself.
Its that time of year, the time of year when my frustration tends to reach a peak. Usually its weather related because the heat and humidity make everything feel so stagnant with no relief in the near future. Maybe the weather is playing a part in my general frustration level, but the things that are bothering me are not centered around “damn its hot” but instead its “damn I’m alone.”
I do my best to be there for people. I do what I can because I enjoy helping people, and I’m just one of those people who has that annoying “empathy” gene. I worry that I’m not doing enough, or sometimes that I’m trying too hard. If someone is clearly upset and won’t talk to me, I worry more and tend to think I’ve done something to make them not feel like they can trust me (yes, that is self centered thinking,I know). Sometimes I try to do things, whether they are actual thing things, like something someone could physically benefit from, or just to be supportive. When I try to be there for someone, or do something for someone and they reject it, it really stings.
I know I can’t control the actions of other people, and I’m responsible for my own happiness. I don’t often let people in on things that are bothering me. I either internalize them, or occasionally I come here and complain because nobody reads this. I like to help people, but I don’t like to reach out for help. If I ask for help with something, it’s usually skill related, like I need advice or help fixing some “thing” around the house that I don’t fully understand. I don’t usually tell people the stuff that scare me or upset me. Then everything boils up and I act weird around people because I really need to talk but am afraid to say, “hey, I need someone to talk to” because I’m a) afraid they’ll say no, and b) I don’t like letting people into my carefully constructed walls because that just leads to me getting hurt. Especially when I reach out to them and they won’t reach back.
I don’t know if this is making any sense. I don’t really care if it isn’t. I just want it out there. If you’ve ever been in a crowded room, a room with friends and family even, and just felt so completely and utterly alone, then you know how I feel.
A month ago, I decided it was past time to start making some changes in my life. While I’ve been feeling like a lot of things are out of my control, there are plenty of things that I do have control over, and I was not tending to them properly. Basically, I’ve been doing a shit job of taking care of myself. So lets check in, shall we? I’m going to rate each area on a scale of 1-5 (1 being “not really doing it” and 5 being “doing freaking awesome”).
Move it move it: My goal was to walk at least three days a week, and do yoga five days a week. While I was a bit slow on out of the gate with the yoga, the walking came much easier than I expected. I go first thing in the morning, and find I’m able to mostly ignore the heat and humidity. I’ve been walking five days a week, and doing yoga at least that many, if not six. I’m giving myself a 5 out of 5.
Clean my plate: My diet was atrocious, I was eating too much junk and craving junk. I wasn’t eating meals a lot of the time. Instead I was just mindlessly snacking and then eating dinner. While there’s still definite room for improvement, my goal was to eat more vegetables and fruit every day, and I’m feeling really good about that. I’ve also just cut back on junk in general. The days that I cook for myself, I’ve been leaning towards vegetarian meals. I feel like I could be balancing things a bit better, but I’m off to a good start. I’m going with 4 out of 5.
Honey do: I’ve been making small amounts of progress here and there. Part of the problem has been not having an actual physical list of things I need to do, and instead just keeping a mental inventory. I fixed that this morning, and started writing down some actual things to cross off. Still, even with my haphazard, unorganized approach, I’ve managed to get a few things done that have been nagging at me. Lets go with 3.5 out of 5.
Write like a writer who writes: Ha. Yeah. I said every day, then I said five times a week in the same paragraph on that one. Can’t really say I’ve been doing either. Most of the writing I’ve been doing is kind of free flowing “I need to get these thoughts out of my head” private journaling, but it’s not as frequent as I would like, which is bizarre because I often feel better after I write that stuff down. I can improve here for sure, so 2 out of 5.
Mini mental vacations: While I’ve been taking some time most days, it hasn’t been every day. The days I do something guided, it’s usually longer than a simple five minutes. When I get back from my walks in the morning, I could very easily use my cooling off time to just take a five minute mental break. I just need to set a timer or something. I do spend a decent amount of time reading every day, which keeps my mind focused on one thing, but reading time is reading time, and I don’t want to cross the two activities. What I need to do is learn to quiet and focus my mind when I’m feeling most frazzled. Going to give this one 2.5 out of 5.
Earn my explorer badge: The vague one, because I didn’t want to limit myself in what would be considered a new adventure. So how am I going to grade myself? Ah, hindsight. I’ve been getting out of the house more, been to a few new places, tried some new activities (and one old one that now feels extremely foreign). I’ve been trying new recipes. I’ve been trying new routes I was previously afraid to take on my morning walks. I read a book I wouldn’t have chosen on my own (and LOVED IT). I feel really good with this category. Points me 4 out of 5.
Overall, I’m feeling really good. The exercise especially, I think, has made a huge difference. I’m sleeping MUCH better, my anxiety hasn’t been as bad. I feel stronger physically and I’ve been a bit happier in general. I think I made a good choice starting this. I’ll check in again with this in a months time. Meanwhile, I’ll try to post something other than just pictures.