Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Back and ready for...Laissez les bons temps rouler

I think travel and me don't mix. I'm getting better at packing. I have no trouble with airports, planes, rentals, hotels. I ALWAYS get patted down by the TSA--I think it's the extra fat. It doesn't phase me. I actually like to travel alone. I love having a little hotel room to myself and unpacking and keeping a neat little environment (so unlike home). I managed the minus 0 temps and snow just fine.

BUT, Food is an issue for me. I have a problem with loss of control over choices, frequent and bountiful homemade baked goods, buffets for breakfast and lunch, and very nice restaurant meals with someone else paying. Mix that with a highly charged and at times confrontational week long work meeting and it is more than I can manage / handle. Meditation books, prayer, journals-tools I used much of the time. Exhaustion and stress and self doubt all of the time. Taking my fleece robe soothed me but I apparently needed more. I did experience food semi coma once--scary...numb...oblivion.

I will rethink any further offers of work travel. While part of me would like it, friends were made, work collaboration achieved. It isn't the best thing for me as a whole. All of me. The body and mental and spiritual health of me. While on the trip. Respiratory illness over. Severe joint pain and mouth ulcerations developed. I made 3 trips to a Walgreens near my work office and needed a 4th.

Back home--structure, more structure than usual food wise. Giving total control to someone else with my food as long as I know it is healthy and will not make me gain more weight is easier for me. It brings my appetite and desire to make my own healthy choices back in line.

Other remedies: Sleep-lots of deep sleep. Surrender. Aleive, heating pads, Tiger balm pain patches, and short little walks and leg exercises to strengthen my muscles. I had a regular md appointment scheduled as it was overdue. I didn't know if my respiratory illness would be over, and I figured I needed to just pay the piper. The knees are getting better, but the tongue fluctuates--my doctor looked at it and didn't see anything visual. I tell myself the weight gained is trip/pain/carb/stress/lack of exercise for most of 2015 due to illness. I drank a ton of water yesterday and was up peeing all night, literally.

Little steps. Ready for the good times to roll.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Leavin on a jet plane with fleece and self care

. (not my wolf blanket but close)


I have a work trip coming up in a couple of days , and I'm getting prepared. This is only my second travel trip for work and hopefully it might be my last. This trip was cancelled a couple of weeks ago because of the constant snow storms in the northeast. Now we are heading to the Midwest for a week of cold, some snow, and some more cold. (I'm still not healed , btw.)

This time I've focusing a bit on little tricks are to make this an even better experience for me. More Self care. Am I getting boring? I gotta keep that food addict / comfort eater taken care of. The goal here is feeling good about myself and taking care of myself when I'm a bit homesick and stressed and feeling a little 'beat up on myself about my weight / body image /I'm not verbally articulate or smart enough." I actually kind of like the clean , spare, and uncluttered environs of hotel rooms, for some reason.

Self care beings before I go.

Laundry. Piles of clothes and toiletry items ready to go. A Pile of my fuzzy socks much warmer than regular. I'm taking my plush fleece robe to snuggle in because it's like my animal fleecy blankets that I sleep with that I really, really missed last time. The robe is soft and warm and a surrogate for my dog and the neighbors' furry cat who spends about 80% of his time on the dining room table under the heat vent or in our laps. I'm taking a different purse, definitely. Bed room slippers and 2 sets of pjs. Who wants to walk on the carpet with the fuzzy socks I'm going to sleep in . One set of pjs got really old last time.

The Kindle is loaded with library books, charged and ready in case I get stuck at an airport. I have a new phone card to add some minutes to my cell phone. I just went to TJ Maxx and bought a new shirt and a nut/trail mix on sale for $1.50. I practiced self care and glanced at and fondled a few items IGNORED all the chocolate stuff. They have a lot of stuff on sale and a new infusion of clothes after the holidays. Why is it that the shirt that looks really good on me is the one that I like the least , but for $20 it's a good idea.

The other purchases: More Mucinex !, a fresh box of Omeprazole (not generic-I want the max benefit of this drug), a little travel size St Ives body wash / bubble bath (I hope I have a bathtub -not just a shower), and a little pack of Lysol wipes to clean the bathroom and room a bit , so my germaphobe self doesn't rise up. Airport magazines and snacks are ridiculously expensive , so I'm coming prepared.

Halos, jerky, nuts , peanut butter- crackers are my go to snacks. Food on the trip is a little ambiguous as there will be eating out every night. Food on the fly. My food addict does a little happy dance thinking about this. My strict dieter self (who is about as bad as my food addict self in trying to cover up real life / emotions) is rolling her eyes and getting worried and wants rules. My wiser self who wants just to be healthy , mobile, happy is aware she needs to really pre-think this and get onboard. I'm packing my journal too.

I am a little neurotic and high maintenance, but that's just me.

More examples of Self Care. Stay warm and take care of yourselves

Monday, February 16, 2015

More about self care--falling apart and putting it back together again

The last post helped me to feel I was taking control of my situation with the Winter Siege that has taken over my life and lungs. Partially it was fighting the fight with myself that I need to take something prescribed and then insisting after some failed efforts that the doctor do something. But you need help sometimes.

Since that post and the impassioned plea to the folks out there that don't take care of themselves and don't seek health care , I found myself REALLY taking better care of myself. Rather than just worrying that this was turning in to something more chronic I just wanted to fight. I really appreciated the comments and they all inspired me. I got busy. I also did a few organization things in my house , nothing major, but things that to me mean self care since they are the things I skip when I'm not in a healthy place.

Self Care:

Food
I made a grocery store trip and came home with so many healthy things to eat. I've been eating veggie frittata, roasted veg beef soup, celery/apple/mandarin orange salad, quinoa stir fry, quinoa spinach salad (n from Kroger deli) and baked apples. I've got another quinoa stir fry coming up in a day or so (these are frozen at Trader Joes - I just add veggies and / or meat).

Lots of water and less coffee. ..." Water , Water , everywhere".....S.T. Coleridge.

I'm not perfect but the percentages are better than before.

Spirit

I journaled. Not every day but a little more.

I pulled out an old meditation guide "Food for thought" that I've used off and on for many years. It is very OA oriented with talks of abstinence and food plans and that can be problematic for some. But for me, it also speaks the truth and supports healing from food addiction and so healing from obesity.

I meditated/prayed. ( I was sitting up trying to breathe anyway. ) I went to church . I visited with church friends afterwards, and then I was tired and had to take a nap.

I watched Downton Abbey...It does help my spirit. I love the clothes and the colors and the scenery. I always rewatch it again later in the week.


Body
I'm trying to get stronger so I can handle an upcoming work trip.

I just met with my RD and set up some goals for getting back to the 'normal' healthy way I live which includes adding more activity but slowly. She knows me. I'm bad about doing too much , too soon and then doing too much over all. If I feel good I want to play! My latest efforts led to a relapse , so I'm gonna go slow. I've got small goals. Maybe I'll get back to the gym in March when all the newbies that started out at New Years start dwindling away.

- do a little yoga at home ( potentially too noisy to do in public and not enough stamina for an hour class)
- get on my home elliptical and do a few minutes at least once (I think I'll try twice)
--walk in the home
--strength resistance training x 2 with light weights


I will take it slow.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Beyatchin ' About How An Obese Nurse Navigates The Health Care System, What Steals My Peace And What Maybe You Should Consider




This is what has been stealing my peace, bringing on depression and fear about my health and frustrating the hell out of me. But what frustrates me more is why this happens, and if it happens to me it could be worse for others.

And I'm a frigging nurse.

I don't believe in taking antibiotics for sinus drainage or if I don't have a fever or when what I'm coughng up does not appear to be the sickly green that usually means bacteria. So it probably is a virus. Don't take antibiotics for virus..not good. Look it up. Now, hopefully , it ends with antibiotics. Ironic.

At some point before January it began the cough , the sinus stuff, one night of a minor fever and chills

Then there was 1 airplane trip to the Northeast with - 0 temps

3 boxes of Kleenex and 2 handkerchiefs

2 crockpots of chicken soup (Jewish Grandfather)

Tea, Water, Tea

3 bottles of Mucinex DM cough syrup...I'm really liking this cherry flavored syrup but I cringe at the sugar

The over the counter stuff that is basically just for symptom relief :
Coricidin Hbp, Dayquil, Tylenol, some brand of Apple Cider vitamin / mineral drink, a new brand of Airborne lemon vitamin herb drink, Breathe Right strips, So many sugar free Halls cough drops and some Burts Bees throat drops

1 Doctor visit. A Steroid inhaler for 3 weeks that was supposed to kick in at week 2

1 Foam wedge and several pillows to sleep upright because lying flat or turning on my side is miserable. This week turning on my side makes breathing too difficult.

Not a whole heck of a lot of sleep

Avoid all dairy (creates more mucus)

3 Doctor phone calls

2 unofficial Doctor consults with a coworker

Another call to the Pulmonologist

1 Prescription for steroids and antibiotics...day 1 today

I'm just waiting for the hot flashes and the rage and the hunger that steroids brings me and I don't want to think about what the antibotics will bring

A few more days and if not better a chest xray and then what?

I've exercised 5 times in 2015 -a walk, a recumbent bike ride, and 2 very brief weight sessions at home with light hand weights bedcause my muscles are getting flabby . Usually, I relapse a bit when I exercise. I usually exercise 3 to 5 times a week.

Now, I could have gone to the ER and rung up a bill of several, several thousand dollars of which out of pocket would be BAD but this would have all been nipped in the bud. But , because I'm a nurse and I understand what's going on with my body (basically) I persist. It's not really bronchitis and it's not typical congestion. It's over reactive airways and lungs from a prior viral process. Things don't get too bad-the kind of bad that requires an ER visit. I have good days and think it's almost over and then a bad day and WOW another good day and WTF? the worst night ever.

What keeps me from going to the ER or the urgent care or back to the doctor?

Well , some of the above is reasonable and prudent health care. Because I'm obese and a nurse there is some guilt and shame. There's also fear. I had a couple of episodes last year which were basically like asthma attacks. Am I getting asthma? Am I getting chronic lung disease. I've had exposures to chemicals in the past. Doctors and Nurses are the worst for taking every bodily symptom and escalating it to the absolute worse diagnosis. This could be over with in just a few days.

But, I know for other obese people that they avoid treatment too because of the fear and the guilt and the shame. Maybe they don't even go to a doctor at all. A coworker died of uterine cancer because she was too ashamed to go to the doctor and get treatment when it was just a minor , fixable problem.

So I just wanted to post this because Yea it's a Beyatch post --I gotta get it off my chest. I gotta get it out of my chest.

But if you actually read this post all the way through and you do avoid going to the doctor other than because of finances, I hope you will reconsider.

Just go ahead and see the doctor or go to the ER or whatever.
If they bring up your weight and you need to listen and can hear what they are saying and it inspires you, then great.
Maybe you can only let them say what they want but say "thanks, I understand, I'll think about it".
If you can only say to them You are working a plan and getting treatment and you don't want to talk about it, then say it.
Even if you are only in the beginning stages or just thinking about it or just don't want to deal with it, or ask for help, then just say something.
Say anything that gets you to seek medical care.

I say

" I've lost 135 pounds , kept a hundred pounds off for 7 years, but have been through a lot of stuff and gained back some of it. I'm working a plan and getting treatment and that I'm maintaining takes a lot of effort. I don't really want to talk about THAT now, just my issue today. "


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Fragile like a snowflake

*


Or as we in our household pronounce it "Fra geeley!".

I just wanted to say "Hey" still plugging away here. I had a good day today, so I wanted to check in. I don't even know how to explain what I want to explain or to understand what all I've been going through and thinking. I'm still working on it, but at the same time, I'm also not. Not dwelling. Not obsessing. Just kind of journaling here to mark the spot and then.... Moving on. Keep on Keeping on. One day at a time'n.

I don't say these things lightly. It is HARD to move on and not dwell and to Keep Going. It's hard to forgive others and harder to forgive yourself. It's much easier to throw that pity party for one.

I've read and thought some about forgiveness for the last couple of days. It is HARD to forgive your self ( I just said that! ). So when I go to bible study tonight and the topic is 'forgiving yourself, I know that God is up there smacking me in the head like on the V8 commercials.

In a nutshell and with much hidden meaning I'll say that events took a turn last week and I experienced a couple of days of constant changes and cancelled plans and a little guilt and self anger thrown in there when some of the things happened that were in my control. I questioned myself and my intentions. I went from very low lows and feelings of insecurity and fear to shifting in to highs and a healthier mindset and attitude but then having things crash at the last minute. I know it's hard to get what I'm saying here but it is essentially like being in chaos. The first step of the twelve that talks about "...my life had become unmanageable" is pretty much the best way to describe this chaos.

The forgiveness part has to do with some of that but basically a good deal of just body and health stuff. Without delving in to details , I have a combination of feelings going on about my body and my health. It's a cycle of fear, guilt, anger, shame, frustration that cycle around and around and then back through each other. Getting mired in this stuff is one thing. Beating up on myself happens. On occasion, Food is used. Food- the known salve and also poison used for treatment of this cycle of issues. Using food and then overcoming using food and then those cycles of emotions running in and through and under just begets more feelings.

I'm starting to sound biblical. Ok, I'll just get back to the first word of this post which was:

Fragile

I have this image in my mind of a tiny, crystallized snow flake on a window pane. Becoming that little frozen bit of solidness is what I feel today.

photo from pixshark.com of snowflakes under microscope

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Self Care for Wed 2/04/15

I read a really good post about what self care is and isn't on the Weightloss blog so I wanted to share it( in my blog list) http://blogs.psychcentral.com/weightless/2015/02/the-funny-thing-about-self-care/

Self Care for me is the things I can do for myself which keep me calm, centered, and nurtured so that I don't turn to depression or anxiety and then use food or diet / weight obsessions for relief. That numbing effect.

I know it makes no sense to be depressed about being fat or not losing the amount of weight I thought I would or should, and then turning in to a Starbucks for a Grande mocha with whip and a pumpkin scone. But I've done it. My husband has a remark he'll say for this kind of thinking and behavior and calls me on it. It's based on something I did many years ago. I was bemoaning the fact of how bad I felt about my body and how I felt so fat and then we drove past a Steak and Shake and I immediately said "ooooh chocolate shakes". Yeah, that sums it up. My therapist works with me on self care-how to identify and choose it over my other behaviors. I look for it in other bloggers' posts.

Here's a little list that's going on for me today:

-- Get up early to organize my thoughts on a report I'll give later on today
-- Write up my TO DO list
-- Cancel md appointments scheduled for next week when I'm going to be out of town.
-- Gather the actual numbers so I can do this easily
-- Call my pulmonary doc to follow-up on how the inhaler is working--I still start rumbling in my chest and wheezing when I'm lying down . Should I fly? Should I have other meds?
-- Organize my desk before work
-- Sit on floor and meditate, pray , yoga stretch, breathe by my candles / fountain
-- Savour warm yummy Oatmeal and fruit /nut breakfast
-- Take Meds
-- Fuzzy socks
-- Blog a wee bit and read an inspiring blog
-- walk around during the day--step outside in to the sun but all bundled up and warm
-- rest if I need to
-- listen to music
-- snuggle
-- lotion , everywhere
-- really floss and brush my teeth
-- Water, water everywhere
-- Hot Tea
-- Say YES
-- Say No
-- Be thankful
-- Go to bed early

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Downton Abbey or Super Bowl ? Bringing The Healthy to the Super Bowel ! Super Bowl Eating




I almost wrote Super Bowel! Well, that would be an interesting TMI post wouldn't it! Hmmmm, I did mention our broken toilet issues...... : ) I could say more but won't.

I just ate a veggie stir fry with an egg for breakfast to make sure I get my veg in.

As usual my in-law family is getting together for the Super bowl and I'm bringing the healthy. The healthy that I'll still take most of home and we'll eat for a few days. I'm talking veggie/fruit/cheese tray and maybe a little fruit salad to combat the junk food extravaganza and probably a hundred cupcakes my sister in law will bring.

I asked my husband "Who is playing? Oh, is this about that alleged deflate-gate football debacle" ? He says 'Alleged". Then I say, "Who are we for?" since we've never watched ANY of these games except the Atlanta Falcons' games. He says- "Seattle". I think Coffee. Yea, Seattle sounds good. It's all about the commercials for us. Bring it.