Checking In

Let me start off by saying, this is a way for me to get it out, a way of journaling. By sharing it here I feel like I might help someone else know they aren’t alone in feeling the way that I do. I talked about this last night with my husband and he listened – but I really think he just doesn’t understand all the emotions (or lack there of) that I’m experiencing. So if you aren’t into reading about all my current woes then here’s your chance to bail.

When we started “stay home, stay safe” for COVID back in March, I thought it would be fine – temporary. I figured I was home most of the time anyway. How hard could it be. Then weeks turned into months and shit just kept getting weirder in the world. All of the things I enjoyed doing – grocery shopping, regular shopping, visiting state parks, geocaching- the list goes on, became an unpleasant experience. Grocery Shopping felt like the Hunger Games and only now feel slightly better. Shopping at Target or Walmart is depressing – shelves are bare and everyone looks sad. I haven’t even tried to go to one of my favorite places – IKEA – because I just don’t want to ruin it for myself. I just don’t find it to be an enjoyable experience anymore – now I only go to the store for purpose or necessity. State Parks are busy and limited capacity – when before some of my favorite places were near empty. I haven’t even gone to some of my favorite nearby places to visit for the same reason – not wanting to ruin the memory of it. I miss my summer trips to Newport, Salem and Mystic.

We’ve also had some crazy family stuff happen during all this and there’s all sorts of emotions that happen with that. I only mention them to add to “where I’m at”, but haven’t really shared much outside of my house. There are some things that are meant to stay in house. It’s just been… emotional.

I’ve been trying to keep my boys out of the general public during all of this too. I hate seeing them wearing masks. Yes, I know the importance for wearing a mask – so don’t come at me for that. That’s why I just keep them home as much as possible. I don’t take them out for errands if at all possible and we are keeping them home this fall to continue distance learning for this same reason. I think the mask wearing and social distancing will be more detrimental than keeping them home with me. I am hopeful it’s short term. Most of my friends are sending their kids back in person. I respect them for that. It’s a tough decision either way. I wish I could do it too, but I also think my anxiety would be in high gear all the time. Keeping them home with me if for my mental health too. Hopefully I won’t have to fight with them as much this time around to do the work!

So after all of that, I completely lost my mojo about a month ago. I took a week off from working out, that turned into two and now I’m pushing four. I’m sleeping late and can barely find the motivation to do the simple day to day stuff. Yesterday was the eye opener for me that I am on depression’s doorstep y’all. I’m about to knock to have her let me in to join in her misery. I’ve got all the classic signs. I know them well. I’ve travelled this road a few times, it’s been a while since my last visit and I’m really wanting to bypass this stay. By classic signs – for me – I mean – no joy in the things that used to make me happy, not working at my fun job (my Etsy shop) as much as I would like, feeling empty, stopping working out, getting up late, going to bed early, not wanting to socialize with friends as much, not wanting to leave the house, eating…a lot, but then not wanting to cook dinner. There’s some of the things I’ve noticed. There’s also a lot of negative self talk happening and constant jealousy of anyone experiencing success-in anything- I have no limits on that one. It’s an awful trait that I tend to have. Comparison to others is a toxic trail to take. I need to pull a u-turn and come back to home base on that. It makes me feel ugly and pulls me deeper into where I don’t want to be.

I’m hoping that by writing this and sharing what I’m trying to do will help me climb out and get back to “normal”. I want to workout (weirdo right?) because my awful body issues are also rearing too. I keep thinking – “if I lose 10, 20, blah blah pounds I’ll for sure feel better” – then I eat two snickers ice cream cones – yep that happened yesterday. Here’s the thing, my brain knows that working out provides endorphins. Those endorphins after 30/60 minutes of exercise can be similar to taking an antidepressant. It’s proven to work if you can get your depressed ass moving. BUT THAT’S THE STUPID CRAZY PART! You’re so deep in your head that you talk yourself out of getting those endorphins!

I committed myself to a 18.9 mile virtual race this month. That I told myself I would complete by the last day of September. That means I have to move at least the amount of time it takes me to complete those nearly 19 miles. If I walk for 15 minutes a day I’ll hit my goal. I have to do something to motivate myself because the idea of being uncomfortable in my skin isn’t quite enough right now.

At the same time I’ve been trying to eat a little better. But that’s truly laughable, because who eats right when they’re stressed and feeling miserable. I’m trying to track what I eat and I even signed up for a nutrition webinar in about a week. We’ll see how that goes.

If you’re still with me-thank you. I’d like (to try again) to update more regularly. I mean I pay for this freaking blog, you’d think I’d publish more. (Facepalm) My kids are heading back to school (in my office) on the 10th – so wish me luck. I need to find that “me” time quickly in order to manage having them here all day again. Just sitting in the office with me from 7:30 to 3 every day. At least the first two days are early release?

Boost Your Body Confidence

“You can do amazing things-
Here’s how to feel great about yourself, every step of your journey”
During today’s meeting we discussed how negative body talk gets in your way of your weight loss journey.  It crushes your confidence and sabotages you before you even begin!  Some of the key points mentioned in this weeks’ handout are:
Breakout that full length mirror and grab a pen and paper!
1.  List what you love!  Close those eyes and think about the features you do love about yourself.  Everyone has at least one thing they love about themselves  But try to find at least two.  Write them down!
2.  List what you don’t.  Sounds counter productive, I know.  But close those eyes again and think of 4 to 5 areas you are least satisfied with.  Write them down!
3.  Rank Them!  I can hear you now “this is getting worse!”. Trust the process.  I’ll post my list below.  Promise.  Assign a number from 0 – 10 for each feature you listed.  Zero meaning “most content” and 10 “least content”
4.  Examine your body.  Stand in front of that mirror.  It’s time to re-frame your thinking. Close your eyes and take some deep breaths.  Visualize the body part you are most satisfied with for about 15 seconds, then re-focus your breath.  Open those eyes and look at that part for 15 seconds.  Resume your relaxed breathing.
5.  Think about it!  Open your eyes.  Look at that body part again, consider what it does for you.  Take a moment to appreciate what it does for you. 
6.  Neutralize Negative Thoughts!!  If it’s hard to feel thankful for an area as you make your way through your list, shift your reaction.  So instead of saying my stomach is disgusting, turn it neutral, focus on the shape, my stomach is round.  Then close your eyes and focus again on your breathing.
7.  Go down your list.  Repeat steps 4-6 for each body area.  Treating each area with care and respect.  Its ok to spread this activity out over a few days if its just too much for one day.  Take time to give your body the positive attention it deserves.. 
 (Taken from Weight Watchers Weeky February 26-March 4, 2017) 
So…my list.  Here it goes.   
0. Lips
1. Eyes
2. Hair
3. Chin
4. Hands
5. Stomach
6. Butt
7. Legs (in general)
8. Thighs
9. Calves
10. Arms
It’s hard.  It’s hard to appreciate your body, especially when you’re feeling awful about yourself.  But making a list like this allows you to focus on what you feel to be “good” qualities.  Many times one of the things you hate the most about yourself is what someone wishes they had.

I read a story on Facebook on a page that I follow about two women attending a yoga class.  Each with very different body types.  The teller of the story says to the other woman how envious she was of her strong legs.  After the class the other woman came up to the storys author and said ” I’ve always hated my legs, I’ve never received any positive feedback about them in my life.  I’ve always wanted legs like yours”.  The author replies “You mean this chicken scrawny legs?  Like two sticks walking?  I’d give anything for a full booty and legs like you have”.  They both laughed, hugged and left the conversation feeling newly empowered about a body part they both hated about themselves.This is a great example of how the very thing you wish you have, someone else is wishing it away.