Thought Smorgasbord

I think I have been avoiding the blogosphere lately because, well…sometimes it’s hard to examine oneself, especially when one is not being very kind to one’s own self and does not really want to examine such.

My eating and lack of any type of exercise whatsoever have been beyond ridiculous over the past several months.  And I wonder why I just keep gaining weight.  I think I have given up on losing weight and I think that all occurred not that long ago.  I am not sure how to make that change or become motivated.  There is a part of me that even thinks, “Oh, you don’t look that bad!”  Getting new clothes has helped with that, and, no, I don’t think buying new clothes when one has nothing that fits to wear is enabling a person to be heavy and not change.  It has really been necessary…can’t/shouldn’t really go to work with belly hanging out and pants cutting off circulation.

Had a very interesting discussion with QoB last night regarding laziness, weight gain/loss, exercise, motivation.  It wasn’t exactly a discussion, it was more QoB telling it to me like it is and me listening.  It can be so painful to examine oneself sometimes…seriously!

This “discussion” last night left me thinking about a lot of things today.  One of the more important ones was “I think you can love yourself more than you do.”  At the time it was said, I believe my reply was that I didn’t think I would ever be able to do.  And then there was talk about “feelings” vs. “choices” and I didn’t have much to say after that, just listened.  Sometimes I need to just listen.

I am not very nice to myself.  I am all the time telling myself how dumb/stupid/ugly/fat/worthless I am, even if that is not the image that I project, especially at work.  Those are thoughts that run through my head all of the time, however.  Those thoughts and thoughts about things that I could and should be doing.  The neverending “my house isn’t clean enough” gets really old, for others to hear, too, I would think.  It gets old for me to think about.

Change is unlikely unless one becomes uncomfortable enough with the status quo to do the things, complete the tasks, work on the things necessary for that change to happen.  I have become comfortable with being extremely overweight, with high levels of anxiety, with ignoring and neglecting my body and spirit.

I was sitting around this morning, thinking that I couldn’t remember the last time I had been truly nice to myself, nourished my very being with something positive.  It made me feel sad and confused, like you do when you realize there has been something painful going on and you suddenly realize there is something you can do about it.

I decided then and there that I needed to put more of an effort into sacred self.  I decided I need to practice loving myself so I can be a more effective and centered person.  And, yes, so I can love myself more…and start caring about things like my health, my body, my emotions, my stress level.  Instead of just plodding through.  Because, that is what I do…just plod on through and ignore and numb, ignore and numb.

QoB made an interesting point.  She said that, at some point in time, I have decided that I am going to be the best discharge planner it is possible to be.  I agree with that.  What was also said is that I have done that, accomplished that, have been working 40 hours a week, actually working, something I have never even before contemplated being able to do, and I am doing a good job.  It has become my focus, what I am striving for.  I have done this thing and ignored everything else.  Everything.

I would like to say that I am going to start exercising, eating healthy all the time (instead of usually healthy, but with regular injections of junk), quit smoking, blah blah blah.  I’m not going to say that.

What I am going to say is that I am going to work toward being mindful of how I am feeling, where I am, what I am doing.  I am going to try and pay attention to my body and what it is saying.  I am going to start doing nice things for myself and not worry so much about work and whether or not my kitchen is clean, beating myself up all the time.

I started today by giving Kizzie a bath.  It is something I keep thinking about and something that has been bothering me.  I keep putting it off because it is hard for me to kneel in front of the bathtub because I am so heavy.  This morning I practiced opposite to emotion, said, “Yes, I CAN!” and threw that dog in the tub.

It was freeing to do something I didn’t think I was physically capable of doing.  I almost felt as if a little weight was lifted off of my chest, that it’s a little easier to breathe, that possibly, just maybe, all hope is not lost and maybe I can do a few more things that I have listed in my head as physically impossible.

Sometimes, I know, I can surprise myself.

I mentioned before about getting new clothes, trying to feel better about myself and be “work appropriate.”  I also managed to find a couple of pairs of really nice winter shoes yesterday.

My hair has been really bugging me, I am really hating it, and I just had a haircut.  It wasn’t a very good haircut and I have been wearing it pulled back almost since the day I got it cut.  I firmly believe that having a good haircut is essential to feeling good, looking your best.  The haircut I had wasn’t cutting it.  Even though I know that I didn’t absolutely “need” a haircut, that I had just had one, I knew I was unhappy.

So, using my discretionary weekly money, I went and got my hair cut.  It looks amazing and I already feel better about myself.  Just doing those nice things for myself.  It’s important, and deep down I know that, I just have a hard time doing the littlest nice things, acting instead on autopilot that I am going to treat myself like I have always treated myself, and beat myself up some more.  I would like to decrease, eventually cease doing that.  So, that is what I am working on.

Rather than looking at all those little trees (losing weight, smoking, eating too much junk, beating myself up, obsessing about a clean house, drowning myself in stress), I choose today to look at the big picture, that forest, if you will.  The key in this is to start loving myself, so I can care about all of those little trees and do something about it, instead of just beating myself up.

I could use a little “feel good” music.  Have some Barry.

Barry White, “The First, The Last, My Everything”

Permission to Abort Operation Anxiety

Today has been a week of realizing and, eventually, accepting that my general anxiety level has risen to ridiculous levels over the past few weeks.  For a little while, around the time that Sondra started getting sick I started having a lot of problems with depression — lack of motivation, feelings of hopelessness, extreme sadness, problems with food/eating, extreme moodiness and irritation, so on and so on.  Of course I couldn’t just accept it as that, as some situational issues going on — I had to wallow and moan about how life was just so AWFUL. 

As that depression started to lift, my anxiety became more noticeable, at least to other people.  To Dr. Love, especially, because he’s the one who has to deal with my not-exactly-rare erratic behavior day in and day out.  I’m not proud or happy to say that I really get bossy, controlling, and mean with him when I’m anxious.  I work all day long and, if I come home and there are a couple of dishes in the sink, or some project isn’t done, I’ll go off.  If it isn’t apparent to me that he’s been busy all day doing different things, I get irrational. 

Little things set me off.  I have an obsession/compulsion about the bed being made, in EXACTLY the “right” way, all of the dishes being done and put away, the kitchen being spotless, clothes put away in closets in dressers, the living room devoid of clutter.  When I’m in my right mind, and even sometimes when I’m in the moment, I know that all of these little things aren’t super-important in the grand scheme of life, and I’m usually a little bit (sometimes a lot) embarrassed by the time I’m done throwing my temper tantrum. 

And sometimes I’ll just come home in a mood and I will sit and pick things to death.  It can get really obscene sometimes — I will sit and obsess about Dr. Love possibly leaving me or not loving me or not being attracted to me and it is a very slippery slope in my mind until it is to the point that I’m asking him ridiculous questions like, “Do you ever think about breaking up with me?”  This really pisses him off to no end and he really doesn’t like it when I go on and on about how his parents hate me, especially when I go into such detail about certain instances that I am SURE prove just how much they dislike me.  He usually ends up walking away when I start really getting into this “no one loves me, everyone is going to leave me, everyone hates me” topic matter, just because he can’t deal with how irrational I am being.  I can’t really blame him, although it really REALLY pisses me off at the time.  The problem is that, in that very moment, he can’t stop my bad behavior.  Only I can. 

Basically, my anxiety can lead to some very intense moments and I consider myself extremely lucky that Dr. Love takes these situations and generally turns them around, not getting angry or holding a grudge.  He’s really good about trying to make me laugh and get my mind off things by acting silly or distracting me with something else.  Unfortunately, there have been many days where nothing can snap me out of it.

As I said, I have been thinking a lot the past week about my ridiculous anxiety level and have decided that I really need to do something pro-active about it.  I had therapy with Goddess of Mindfulness today and we talked about what I could do to feel less anxious.  I pinpointed that my anxiety really gets ramped up after I get off work and this is when I’m most likely to go home and blow up.

During times of less anxiety, I spent a lot of time sitting on my back porch, meditating and doing mindfulness exercises.  I don’t do that anymore.  At all.  During that time, I also cooked a healthy dinner almost every night, whereas most nights now it’s just whatever I can microwave.  I’m tired of coming home from work, getting pissed off at Dr. Love, yelling at him, then eating something out of the microwave and watching TV for the rest of the night to block out (usually ineffective) how anxious I am feeling.  It’s no wonder I don’t sleep well, when I’ve been revved all evening.

As a response to fear about losing Dr. Love, I have it in my head that we have to spend every second together and I realize now that is not the case.  Dr. Love gets his “me” time while I am at work, and I come home to him every night and weekend, never having even a moment where he’s not around.  This is completely not his fault, but mine. 

I don’t take any time to meditate, practice mindfulness, cook, exercise, paint my toenails, or anything else that would make me feel good.  I’m (wrongly) driven to sit by his side, even if we’re not doing anything and are just staring at the TV together (which doesn’t usually happen because he gets tired of watching). 

I talked with him about it last night and he agrees that I need to be taking time out to do things for myself to feel better, to feel good.  When I talked with Goddess of Mindfulness about it this morning, she suggested that I need to find a way to relax at the end of the day.  When I was doing my best, I was in a routine of coming home, going for a walk, cooking dinner, and then maybe watching about an hour of TV or spending some time on the computer. 

When I come home now, my anxiety is at an unreal level and I’m so overwhelmed.  GoM suggested that, as soon as I get home, I go sit out on the porch and listen to some mindfulness exercises on CD.  She gave me a few suggestions of ones to try out and a workbook also that may be helpful.  I’m going to Amazon later tonight and will give them a try and report back, if they’re any good. 

My hope is that, with beginning to relax myself through meditation and mindfulness the moment I get home, I will have a less anxious evening and will be more amenable to cooking, exercising, blogging, LIVING.  Fingers crossed.

So this song is repetitive, but the lyrics (comments) get stuck in my head and I’m always singing it to Dr. Love.  Enjoy. 

Plain White T’s, 1 2 3 4