Category Archives: Mental & Physical Health (or the lack thereof)

I know why America has an obesity epidemic (Hint: It’s not from 24oz sodas)

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I’ve been watching the news lately, far more often than I’d like due to my current living situation. This business about the – is it the mayor of New York? – (okay, obviously I watch the news without really paying attention!) anyway, the guy who wants to outlaw big sodas. Because that is going to make everyone suddenly thinner. Right.

Haven’t they  …”they” … been trying this? No more happy meals… no toys, anyway. Put nutritional info in the fast food stores.  Outlaw ‘supersizing’…. blah blah blah. And we are just getting fatter.

On the surface, sure, we are fat because we eat too much. It’s simple science… if you consume more calories than you burn, you get fat. Duh. Also, our processed foods, with all the chemicals and crap in them, are far worse than the “bad” foods our parents or our grandparents could chow down on if they were the sort to overeat.  But come on!! Do you really think that if you take away our soda we’ll get thinner??  As if I can’t buy soda at the grocery store and chug it down? I can honestly say, as an obese person, NONE of my weight is from sugary sodas. None. I don’t ever drink any soda but diet, and that only occasionally. So what’s my problem, huh? You are going to have to outlaw Ben and Jerrys, and cookies (homemade, so I guess you have to outlaw baking.)  Besides, how long have these items been in existance, and how long have we been so fat? Do you really think the problem is the food??  Geez. 

Maybe the problem is WHY we are eating so much. Why is a small soda, or one cookie, or a small serving of ice cream not enough? Think about that for awhile. Do you know? Do ya?

Okay, I will tell you what I think. (and as an obese person, with heavy friends, I think I’m qualified to tell you) We are freakin’ depressed. We are a nation of unhappy, unfulfilled humans, and we are cramming ourselves full of anything, anything, to try to get some satisfaction. Don’t believe me? Why do you think that even in this crappy economy, when so many of us are unemployed or underemployed that spending hasn’t gone down? Because some of you – instead of overeating – are satiating your needs with the junk you buy instead of the junk you eat. You know who you are – you look better on the outside than I do, but you are as unhappy and empty as I am. But maybe your shelves and your closets are fat.  Why do you think more poor people are fat than the wealthier folks? Because we can’t afford to buy nice stuff, or to try to make ourselves happy by a lovely dinner in a nice restaurant… so we ‘fill our needs’ with junk food. Because even tho I have very little money, I usually have enough for a candy bar.

Think about it. The farther our society gets from God… from living the right way … for Him, f0r other people, for our families, for our spouses and our children, from having people treat us right because we are unselfish and place others first…. I mean, when my husband is a jerk, I head for the pantry. When I feel like I have no friends, I always have the food.  On and on it goes.  Have you ever found yourself shopping for housewares when your home is full to the brim?  Or buying a new outfit when you have brand-new items in your closet that you will probably never wear? How many purses do you own? How many cats do you have??

We are looking for fulfillment. We are looking for relationship, for acceptance, for love. When we don’t find it in the right place, we try to find it in the wrong places… sex, drugs, stuff, food. Until we figure out how to get ourselves on track, to love ourselves for who we are without needing the acceptance of the other humans around us, until we ask the Lord to fill us up, to be our sufficiency, our fulfillment, we are going to be fat. No matter how much soda the government takes away.

How do you find yourself, once you become really, truly lost?

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This mire which is my so-called life has become murkier and deeper as of late. It feels as mucky as the early spring mud which sucked my boots right off my feet when I’d head out to the barn to feed the horses. (Not much is grosser than stepping ankle deep into slimy mud clad only in stockinged feet…) I feel trapped with no obvious way out. Don’t know which direction to head. How to even start.

Maybe some of this has to do with the fact that we have now been living with my parents for over a year and a half. It was supposed to be for about 6 months, maybe less. Worse, I see no immediate end to the situation. No way out. I need a full-time job, and how do you do that and homeschool your kid? Also, how do you get a decent full-time job when you haven’t really worked since your child was born, almost 15 years ago? Not to mention all the taxi-service I do for her…

Then there is my weight. Other than feeling bad about it, I am doing nothing at all. It is my addiction, to dull the pain. It hurts in the long run, but don’t all addictions work that way?

Then there is my child’s education. This past year at our co-op has worn me out. I don’t want to do it any longer. I don’t feel qualified to homeschool her completely on my own (we all know how that went over in Virginia) and I want her to at least somewhat enjoy her high school years, unlike me.

Oh, and my sister.  Ugh with the vegan-ism and the adorable outfits and the “ooh guess what we are getting a trip to Cancun this year” and oh-dear-lord what I wouldn’t give to have my little sister back so we could gripe about it together! No one else truly understands how much I can love my older sister yet hate her at that same time.

My husband is no help at all. He’s not doing anything bad, just so wrapped up in his own issues that I can’t get him to spend a moment at least trying to give me some help on mine.

I finally get why moms run away from home. Honestly, it’s all I can do some days not to just toss some stuff in a bag, hop in my car, and start driving. To – anywhere. If I had more than two nickels to rub together I’d probably go. Chances are pretty good that I’d eventually return… but maybe with my head on a little bit straighter.

Happily, blissfully alone. Unless you count the pack of hounds.

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One of the hardest things about living with extended family is that there is always someone around.  I like people, honest. But not every waking moment.  I need my alone time.  Badly.  And I haven’t had any in…. like a year.  Or two.  It’s a wonder I’m sane.   (some might say that point’s debatable)

This week we’ve been crashing with my sister and her family. No, we’re not trying to spread the love – my parents just decided this would be a lovely time to tear up the carpeting and put in hardwood floors instead. We have to be out of the house for the entire week while it’s getting done.  Well, the kids are at school, my husband’s at work, and my sis and her hubby have some errands to run. So, it’s just me and the dogs!  All four of them, (my sister’s two, my parents’ dog and mine) which is way too many for one house, lol. But I am all alone! Yay!!

UPDATE:  Well, that didn’t work out the way I’d hoped. I thought I’d have at least an hour and a half, but within 20 minutes my sister was home, happy that they’d gotten through their task quicker than expected. ~sigh~

Well, we’re back at home now and it’s smells like crazy in here. But the floors look beautiful, even if we do have to sit directly on them as we aren’t allowed to bring the furniture in yet.  Sheesh. Still, it’s good to be “home”… as home as it gets for us at this point.

Still, I wish I had a home of my own. And a little more time alone!

Now I need a crown and a new doctor

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I’m not talking about the awesome kind of crown that is shiny and jewel filled and would fit on top of my head. To wear to balls and what-not.

 No, I’m talking about the kind that goes in my mouth, courtesy of the dentist.

Much less thrilling, don’t ya think?

 

Well, ‘courtesy of’ is sort of the wrong way to put it… more like “you give me $450.00 and I will fix that timebomb in your mouth”. sigh  I don’t have an extra $4.50, much less $450.00. No idea how that’s gonna happen. Of course my dentist (who, duh, makes a lot of $$) doesn’t understand this… he thinks I should get it done tomorrow. Which, okay, yeah, I probably should… my tooth is on the verge of cracking, and it’s already been giving me some pain, which is why I mentioned it today when I went in for my regular 6 month cleaning… but, still.

Then there is the whole issue of “what is wrong with me, I don’t feel good” which hasn’t been answered by the blood tests. I am fine, aparently. At least by what you can discover in a blood test. But I still feel exhausted and lightheaded most of the time. So that’s not right. I am going to start asking around – yet again – to see if anyone has a G.P. they like and would recommend so I can spend a few more fun-filled moments at doctors offices. Yay me.

Sick and tired of being sick and tired (aka: another reason I don’t like doctors)

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Lately, I have been exhausted. Often. To the point that all I want to do somedays – all I feel capable of doing – is crawling back into bed. Somedays I feel like I can never really fully wake up. On top of that, somedays I feel a little dizzy. Not room-spinning-I’m-gonna-pass-out dizzy, just a little “off”, somehow. I don’t feel sick at all, just wiped out.

I had to go to the doctor – because, well, I’m a female and it’s been a year. You know. (Actually it’s been over a year but let’s not discuss that, shall we?) Anyhoo, she was a new doctor recommended by a friend. On the one hand, she was very thorough and she was gentle, so it wasn’t horrible even though she had a student “observer”.  Yeah, ’cause what woman doesn’t want an audience for that little procedure, huh? On the other hand… she is obviously a doctor who feels pharmaceuticals are the answer to all of mans’ (or women’s’) woes. She couldn’t understand why I would quit taking the reflux meds if they made me feel better – even tho I have accomplished a great deal by changing my diet.  She told me meds I could take for other symptoms. Worst of all, she refuses to believe that the problems I am having with my no-longer-opposable thumb and weakness in my arm is from the stupid antibiotics I had the horrible reaction to. In fact, towards the end of the appointment, she told me she wanted me to go in for an MRI because I possibly have MS.  What…wait…WHAT???  Oh-my-freakin’-gosh!!  If you go to WebMD and put in my symptoms, there are about 2 dozen possible issues that could be the problem.  Several of them pretty mild and treatable (one is even just “stress”) all the way to the most serious which would be MS.  So, seriously!!  If you are a doctor, would you not first try to eliminate the most basic of issues, and work your way up from there if nothing pans out?  Or do you just throw out a diagnosis of a progressive, non-curable, debilitating disease right off the bat??!!

I am so angry right now. I’ll admit, also a little scared. Although I think I am fine… but, still. That seed has been planted. So, it’s there. And it’s bothering me. I can’t afford an MRI so I can’t eliminate the fear.

I took a blood test to check for all the basic stuff and I am waiting right now for a call from the doctor. I am praying they find something easy to fix, like I’m anemic or hypothyroid or something…

I’ll let you know.

Update:

There is not a darn thing wrong with me.  Well, nothing a blood test can detect, anyway. No anemia, no thyroid problems, no blood sugar level issues, no inflammation, no infections, lalalalala.

I am just tired. And lightheaded. But fine. Hmmmm…

Having vegan friends is really a downer when it comes to parties

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So tomorrow is Super Bowl Sunday.  Sure, I have to work until 5pm (I am sooo annoyed about this – but that’s another story) but we thought it would be nice to invite some friends over to watch the game… then we started going down the list.  I have complained before how too many of our friends are also friends of my sister, right?  Friends who she has pulled over to the Dark Side known as “being vegan”. Anyhow, we were thinking of the snacks we wanted to make for the game – you know, the usual stuff; cheese dip with tortilla chips, little smokies in BBQ sauce, chip and dip, cookies. Crap food. Party food. Stuff most of our current friends won’t eat. Or, stuff that we’d feel guilty eating in front of them.  As my  husband said “they’d just think ‘gees, no wonder those two can’t lose any weight'”.  I am thinking that must mean the problem is… us.  Could it really be?? I suppose if we didn’t eat poorly we wouldn’t need to feel guilty about it. But, honestly, what kind of Super Bowl snacks do most people have?  Isn’t it fat-laden, meaty items? It’s not just us, right? 

It’s bad enough that the last two parties we’ve been to with this particular group of friends were full of vegan/not extremely tasty treats. Not horrible stuff, but not fantastic either. I guess I have two choices: become vegan myself, or make new friends. I wonder which choice would be more painful?

What is the deal, people?? All those poor child-insomniacs!

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For the better part of the last year (well, ever since I switched over to WordPress and have easily kept track) my overall “most read post” every single week is the one I wrote over 4 years ago about my daughter having insomnia!  Seriously!  It would seem to me, according to the number of people searching the web about “10 year old insomnia”, that this is a very common problem for 10 year old kids.  That’s so weird.

Pride goeth before a fall

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OhMyGosh I cannot quit eating!!  All through the weeks leading up to Christmas I was feeling so proud of myself because I was NOT overeating. I baked cookies, and gave them away. The ones that did stay I was able to restrain myself from.  I did soooo well. Until the actual day of Christmas!  Well, actually, even then.  It really didn’t get bad until New Year’s Eve.  I have no idea what happened.  Maybe the stress of “I have to make Resolutions now” or something??  No clue. But, it all has fallen apart. I eat and eat and eat… most of it not good stuff.

Good thing my mom bought Kiki and me a WII Fit for Christmas… I better get busy. Get my body busy, instead of my mouth!

 

Soooo… it’s 2012. And I’m not as unhappy as you think.

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I have nothing fantastic to say about this. I mean, it’s all “a new start” and all that rot… but I really don’t like making New Year’s resolutions.  I mean, if I need to fix something in my life, or change something, I don’t really think I should wait until January 1st to do it.  I usually try to fix things as they come up.  (mind, I didn’t say I did fix things… just I try to…)!  However, it is a time when a person does sort of reflect on her life a bit, examine it if you will… I mean, there’s not a whole lot else to do if you’re not out partying or something!

One thing really struck me after reading a comment on a recent post of mine. The commenter made a remark about me being “so unhappy with my life”.  And I thought “I’m not unhappy”… then I thought “yes I am” then “no I’m not” and then it rolled around a bit more in my head until I had to yell “stop”!! and then I thought some more.  🙂 Hard. Objectively.  And here is the honest truth:

I am not unhappy with my life.  I mean, not in the “I’m so desperately miserable” sort of way that the commenter thinks. Yes, there are things – important things – in my life that I am unhappy about. Things I would like to be very different.  Sure, my things may be biggish things, but doesn’t everyone probably have things in their lives they are unhappy about? At least some small things? 

I suppose I give the impression of being totally depressed because I often use this blog as my place to vent.  When something upsets me, I blog about it.  So I can see where someone could get that impression, since most of my blogs are unhappy ones.  But, after doing some very honest introspection, I can tell you that I really am, overall, happy. I am al-right. Perfect? No. Could be happier? Yes. But, okay.

In fact, it’s funny, because just yesterday my boss was telling me how much she enjoys working with me because I am so cheerful. Ha!

We had a really interesting sermon at church today, and it reminded me that I need to try harder to remember that God does what He does (or, honestly,what I struggle with is the “doesn’t do what He doesn’t do”)  because He has the bigger picture in mind.  And I haven’t got a clue.  I know what I want, but maybe not totally what I need.  Sometimes I don’t think the Lord makes any sense at all.  I ask for things like… help fixing my marriage, and I can’t possibly see what the downside of that could be – why would He say “no”? or, at least “not yet”??  I don’t get that at all. But I am a moron compared to God, so what do I know? Today I thought – maybe I need to learn to rely on Him for my needs, and if my husband was the man I wanted, I’d rely on him instead.  Maybe? Interesting …

I am just trying to see the … good.  See the point in it all, if I can. Maybe that’s what I’ll strive for in 2012.

Christmas memories – never peek at your presents

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I have known people who are experts at finding their hidden Christmas gifts. Not just children, but adults as well.  I’ve even heard of people who have unwrapped then re-wrapped their gifts under the tree because they couldn’t wait to see what they were getting.  NOT me. No way.

See, I did that one year.  I really, really wanted a train set. Wanted it so bad I could feel it.  (not as bad as all those years I wanted a horse, but while the horse was one of those things I knew I’d never get, the train set seemed possible)  One day I was home alone, and there was a gift for me under the tree that seemed like the right size!  I thought I couldn’t stand not knowing and that I’d be so excited to know if I was really getting my train!  So – I peeked.  I carefully unwrapped the end of the gift and looked in… sure enough, it was my train set.  I was prepared to be happy.  I wasn’t prepared for the let-down I felt.  Now I knew what I was getting.  I knew exactly what I was getting, and it was just what I wanted. And I also knew I would not be surprised on Christmas morning. There was nothing to really look forward to… in a weird way. Even though I was still excited about getting that train set – but somehow the wonder was taken out of the day.

I learned.  I learned it quick.  I never, ever again peeked at a Christmas gift.  And whether I got what I was hoping for or not, it was always better if it was a surprise.