Hi. It has been over a month since I last wrote anything at all in my blog. For those of you who have been patiently waiting for me to return, thank you. July has been a difficult month, along with being the good kind of busy. I am ready to start writing here again.
Yes, it is usually Thursday when I post, and it is in the wee minutes past midnight here; technically it is Friday. I have something to write about, and I don’t want to wait another week.
You see, the difficult part for me in July revolved around what I am calling the plague. Both Roy & I have been fighting it and we are finally starting to feel better. We aren’t at full health yet (gamer reference for the geeks out there), but we aren’t fighting brain fog from being sick anymore. The summer cold, sore throat, plague whatever we are fighting is a nasty bug.
While we were so sick, we realized that our water cooler had green stuff growing in it. Likely algae, possibly mold; needless to say, we stopped using it. I made an appointment with our doctor to verify if the antibiotics we were taking from a previous appointment were sufficient after this discovery. She advised that with no noticeable GI side effects, to stop drinking the contaminated water, we would be okay.
Even Jazzy, our new kitten was on medication in July.
Our going concern was hard to contain after she was spayed. Jazzy is a delight in our home but was so unaware of her surgery. She needed time to recover. The active kitten she is had ripped her stitches which caused her scar to become infected. So all three of us were sick and on antibiotics in July. It was indeed a difficult month.
With all the illness in our home, it does not surprise me that I had good news on the scale. The up and down battle is finally going in the right direction again. When I had gone on vacation, I peaked at around 326 lbs. This week, I weighed in at 318.5 lbs. I am working hard to keep this going in the right direction this time. I am making some changes.
My journey is leading me down a path of self-discovery.
It is no secret that I have been working on myself for a while now. I am trying to improve my life in terms of my health, self-confidence, and building healthy habits as I do the work. One thing I am doing is taking part in a challenge recommended by some friends. While all of the material is not all new to me, I have made some discoveries about myself while doing the work.
I was bullied as a child, and at different times throughout my whole life. Since I am an emotional person, and I have written before about eating my feelings, I have already shared my thoughts about this subject. You don’t get to be morbidly obese because you have normal eating habits. Something is broken inside of people like me who are more than overweight. It could be related to another health issue, but chances are, if you eat your feelings, it is because you are not dealing with the real issue.
As I am working on my own backstory for the challenge, which is called The Unstoppable Influence Challenge, I watch videos, and do assignments related to what I am learning. I made several discoveries, one of which I am going to share here.
When I met Roy, my husband, I was damaged goods.
He has never seen me skinny. I have been overweight, and that has progressed to being morbidly obese in the 25 years we have been together. We will be celebrating our 9th wedding anniversary in under a month. I had put on weight after having mononucleosis and tonsillitis in my first year of university, and we met the following year.
After being so sick, I had to make sure I was eating, especially because of the sore throat, and I did. As a child, I would eat my meals quickly to be the first one done to get dessert. My sisters were picky eaters, I was not. Eating was something I became very good at, in a home where we strived for approval to be good all of the time. My parents raised us well, and we were good kids. My stubborn streak is something I come by honestly, and I wasn’t a perfect child, but we all turned out to be decent human beings.
I realized something else while I wrote my backstory.
When we started dating, I told Roy that I had a protective shell around my heart, and he was patient enough to wait for me to let him inside as we fell in love and learned to trust each other. I used that analogy at the time because my zodiac sign is Cancer the Crab. When I took a long look into my past this week, I learned something else about myself.
I eat all of my feelings, including negative feelings from things said to me and about me to hurt me. Using food to build a protective layer around my whole body. I eat the negative hurtful feelings to surround me to keep more of them from getting to me. My weight is a physical manifestation (this term is new to me, from the challenge) of the negativity that I have been holding inside for my whole life.
The person running the challenge, Natasha Hazlett, said her weight was a physical manifestation of the hate she had for herself. When I heard her say that, I almost believed that this was my issue too. What I realized, is that it isn’t hate I feel for myself, but that I keep the hate I have felt from others in my life. As a result, I have held onto it because I didn’t know what else to do with it.
What does this mean?
It means I have to let it go. All of it. When you are a child and people say terrible things to you, there is no way to know how to handle those words. I cried a lot during my school days, and thankfully, most of those negative experiences are in my past. As a child, I didn’t know how to handle the negativity. If I deal with it now, to let it go, consequently, I will let the feelings go. The negativity I buried in me, from the inside out to be released with my excess weight.
As I am typing this out, I am shaking. It is hard for me to acknowledge this to myself, let alone the world at large. Since my word of the year is FEARLESS, and I want to lead by example, with integrity, it would not do me any good to keep this knowledge deep inside of me anymore.
I have a lot of work to do to lose the weight I need to lose. With this blog post, I am on the right path, finally, to be able to make the changes I need to make to become a healthier version of myself.
The biggest lesson I have been able to take away from this exercise is going to set me free.
I realized I don’t hate myself and that I never did. I love myself, and I always have. Now that I am an adult, and doing so much work on myself, it is a relief to me that my problem has never been how I feel about myself, but my reaction to how others wanted to hurt me. As a child, I did the only thing I knew how to do to protect myself. As an adult, I can face those negative feelings and chase them away.
In the challenge, we learn that we all carry metaphorical bricks in life, and they weigh us down. We learn how to deal with them, and of course, I put my own spin on this. Instead of following the imagery suggested, I have decided that I am going to grind every one of the bricks to dust, turn them to glitter, and let the ocean take them away. Sparkles in the sea, which are beautiful to me. What a way to release the things that weigh me down. Sending them to my happy place.
First of all, yes, I am writing a book called #Tishspiration: The Art of Surprising Yourself. It will be an inspirational book. You might think it is a book about my mid-life crisis if you only looked at the surface, but I know better. In contrast, it is a book about self-discovery, and how it has been happening my whole life, without me knowing what to call it. The last few years have been building me to this step, hence the mid-life crisis comment. I am preparing for one of the most important parts.
I recently participated in some free online challenges. From pushing myself in this way, I grow, and then I share my progress when I am challenged to. I have gone to the edge of signing up for a program and stopped. I am not ready. The coaches have challenged me to get ready for next year. They want to work with me, as I have kept coming back. I realized I am not ready because I have not finished exploring what #Tishspiration is. As much as I need the guidance on what to do next, I need to find out what this concept means, and what direction it wants me to go in first. This is not an excuse. It is me doing what I do. Making sure things are indeed as ready as they can be before moving on to the next step is the reason why I am holding off.
It’s not just about the money.
Sure, money is a huge factor in a decision like this. There is a lot more to the story. I am the type of person who has a good sense of when I am ready to take the next step, and most importantly when something is finished. I see it a lot in my day to day life. For example, making decisions on what to write, when to write, and finally, when to stop writing. Every story has an end. They also have a beginning, and if written correctly, an interesting middle which you can’t walk away from.
I am at the beginning of this part of my journey. The book is the interesting part which will reveal what is going to come next. That is my plan, although I could surprise myself with what does come next. It is something I have been known to do, take a step back and just revel in what I just created. It can be in the beginning, middle or end, and there is no set pattern for when I can experience it. The nature of this concept is that it can apply to everyone. I need to share it. The world needs my message. When I figure out exactly what it is.
In my own mind, I have already made it.
You already know I am working hard, waiting for the rest of you to catch up with me. I don’t write this to be conceited, or narcissistic. I am also working hard to remain humble. There will be bad days, and failures. They are inevitable. How I choose to move forward when these things happen is what is going to help me get to the next level.
I wrote a book. Me. I decided to just stop making excuses and get it done. It was hard work. It was incredibly frustrating at times. But that moment, the moment when I opened the proof copy online in front of the people watching my Facebook Live video, it was real.
It was real, unrehearsed and beautiful. I had to bail when my emotions were threatening to make me ugly cry on the internet. Nobody needs to see that. It was me, feeling all the feels, and experiencing what it was really like to have written an actual book. There are no words to truly capture what it feels like. To pour your heart and soul into what you can finally hold in your hands. The closest I can come is purely magical.
I can never have that moment again. Not from my first book. I long to feel it in relation to my current book. It will happen, and when it does, I expect a new magical moment to accompany it.
Everyone is a Critic
People are going to scoff at your dreams. They don’t know how long they have lived inside of you, or how brave you are to chase them. They wouldn’t know if they never tried. Negativity is not random, at least not in my experience. It exists, and plagues us all, in our lives. Jealousy is something that drives people to be mean. Don’t let the negative outweigh the positive. Fight to find your purpose, your passion and your pleasure. Stand firm in what you decide is right for you. Then show them how it is done.
Keep on dreaming, while taking action
A dreamer is a wonderful thing to be. I am a dreamer who comes up with the thoughts which propel me into action. I have thought up some wild plans in my life. They don’t all work. The point is to not let yourself get stuck in the thinking part. Thinking and planning are important, but executing the plan is imperative. If I was still thinking about writing my first book, I would never have completed it. Never had that magical moment when I held it in my hands. As a result of inaction, I would be in a horrible frame of mind, thinking that I was stuck in life the way it used to be, with no way to make it better.
In conclusion, what I am trying to explain here is that it is okay to dream and it is okay to think about different possibilities for yourself. However, it is imperative to take action. On what you decide is right for you. Not for everyone else, but for you. See what I mean about this #Tishspiration thing? It needs to be explored. I can’t wait to share what I find out with you all.
Why are you hesitating? What are you dreaming up to be your life’s purpose, passion and pleasure? Please let me know, I would love to help you figure out your next step. I can only do that if you tell me what is on your mind. I do love helping people, and maybe I can help you!
This week’s Trust Your Gut is inspired by a recent challenge I participated in for 5 days. It was a Hydration Challenge. I shared a bit about it on my Facebook wall, which created quite a lot of comments. I shut down on commenting about it after it upset me about how vocally people were protesting how much water I was trying to drink to improve my health. For me, it felt like I was trying to do something healthy, and I was under attack. That is where the title is inspired by. #Watergate.
First of all, it brought to my attention how many people out there care about me, and are following my journey. Some of the people that commented rarely interact with me on a regular basis, but were alarmed at the goal I set for myself. I do appreciate all of the support I get with my online adventures, but I needed to take a step back to realize that people were not scolding me for doing something wrong, they were genuinely expressing their concern for my health.
My calculations were that I should e drinking 5 Litres of water a day to lose weight. I started working towards this goal right away. I actually never made it to the 5 Litres in one day. On the day of Relay for Life, it was hot, humid and I was participating in the Zumba on stage under the lights. On that day, I reached 4 Litres, and I was properly hydrated for the event. I was able to participate in the Zumba on stage, with no issues. I do believe that on that day, I needed the extra hydration. There were extraordinary circumstances.
Photo of a wave splashing in the Atlantic Ocean. Location Chimney Corner, Cape Breton, Nova Scotia, Canada. Photographer Lisa Hill.
I took the concerns seriously and promised to check with medical professionals.
A person can drink too much water. The speed and volume of drinking water are factors in this being an issue. I am not drinking large volumes of water quickly, even on a Zumba day. My water bottle contains 750ml and I drink 2 of those in a Zumba class. One is mixed with a scoop of Biosteel, a sugar-free electrolyte booster. It’s like sugar-free Powerade or Gatorade. I drink it when I am working out, or feeling like I need an electrolyte boost. I buy it at GNC.
So on a Zumba day, I drink 1.5 Litres of water, but half of it is an electrolyte boosting drink. So the theory of too much water throwing my electrolytes off balance is not a concern when I am following this plan. I shared that I drink 3 cups of coffee a day, 3 Kcups in 4 runs on the Keurig. 3 full strength and one run through the second time. A litre of coffee a day. Coffee is a diuretic. I need more water to balance it. I drink 500 ml of water a day with my thyroid pill, as a requirement. I then drink my coffee. I then drink a 750 ml water jug. Sometimes more, and sometimes less.
Your diet can also contribute to the volume of water you are ingesting on a daily basis. Certain foods contain a higher percentage of water than others. It is also important to keep this in mind if you are eating a healthy balanced diet.
I sent an email about this to my diabetes case manager. I have not had a response. I did, however, ask my doctor about this.
My doctor advised that I should drink 2.5 litres, and that would be a healthy amount. Half of what I was aiming for. The good news is, it is a more realistic and therefore more achievable goal.
I do want to thank the people that expressed their concern. I am still working on drinking more water, as since the challenge I slacked off a bit because of the concern people expressed. I do make mistakes, and I can be wrong. It is what makes me human like everyone else. I appreciate my friends. Thanks for making me research #Watergate.
I have never shared a video on my Blog before…let’s cross our fingers that it works.
The information for the contest is in the written part, with links. It was fun. I like videos, they are usually short for me, and I just wing them. Usually.
In #Momentum18 #Week2 #Day4 the challenge was to write a blog post about the challenge. I think it is supposed to be about this current week, but my mind is still lingering on last week’s challenge.
What I learned about myself is nothing new. At least, not to me. I wanted to launch something for my blog. It was an idea I had, and I wanted to try something different. I have been thinking about it for almost 2 weeks now. Do you want to know what I learned?
I have to go back to the drawing board. You see, I am quite determined (stubborn) and I am not ready to give up on the idea of what I want to do. This idea, however good it sounded at the time, will have to wait.
I need to prepare to launch my own website. It was in limbo during November while I was writing :
Yes, that is the draft of a cover for my first book. There is a story behind the picture, of course, and it will be in the book. So that is something that I am working on, but have to put aside for the website building. (Thanks to my friend Noa Price for help with this cover picture and design advice).
This book was never even supposed to be written. I wasn’t going to do NaNoWriMo. I have learned that when an idea strikes, and it is a good idea, especially in terms of writing, that I should just write it. I am in the middle of writing the first draft of this book and will be continuing to write it after I launch the website. Unless my brain has other ideas that I am not currently aware of.
That is what is the most important thing to me right now, launching my website, not a checklist. I have been brainstorming and thinking about how to use a different theme to make it the same, but different, and to make it better than the WordPress website that hosts my Blog right now. I am not working it to my fullest potential, here, and I need to get out of the brainstorming process and put the ideas into action. Like that book I am writing. I can put it aside, for a month, and really spend every spare second into getting that website finished so I can have a place to promote and sell this book when it is ready.
I have to prioritize what I need to do first, or nothing will get done. I did work on writing the book in November. I prioritized that as my main project for November. In December, I need to make a beaded snowflake for the contest prize, maintain consistency on the blog, and get the website ready and launched.
When I launch the website, I will be gathering information on how to also launch a newsletter by Tish MacWebber. When that is ready, I will have a launch for that to get it up and running. I hope that the Treasure Seekers will all sign up. I expect it will be starting with a monthly publication, at least until I get the feel for what I want to do with it.
What are you working on in December? Do you like the book cover I designed with the help of my friend? Are you ready to move along with me to bigger and better things? I hope so because when I decide to get something done, nothing stands in my way.
Treasure Seeker Tuesday: Photo by Tish MacWebber; Photo Edited by Noa Price
Hi. I am so glad that you took a few minutes out of your busy day to read my blog. I am humbled and honoured every single time I get feedback and new statistics. Every time you take time to read one of my stories, you impact my dreams. You reinforce my beliefs to follow my dreams and make them into a reality. I am discovering my purpose here on this Earth. I am so glad that I am making it happen, and I am just as happy that you are sharing my journey with me.
I have always had a creative spark within. It was not enough. I have worked on cross stitches, embroidery, drawing, painting, beadwork, knitting and crocheting, and now I have rediscovered my love for writing. I didn’t work on my writing very much since high school. When I was in English classes, it turned me off writing as a career. I had to read books I never would have chosen to read, then I was forced to find hidden meanings that were a stretch for me to believe. I like things to be at face value. I also like to be funny, punny and clever. Dissection belongs in science class, not in English class.
After high school, I chose a path to science. I started a pre-vet program. I never made it to vet school. I did finish my Bachelor of Science in Agriculture, with an Animal Science Degree. It was an honours degree. It took me longer than the average four years to complete it, but that makes me all the more proud to hang it on my wall.
I met my husband while studying for that degree. We met through a group of mutual friends. When we decided to start dating, things clicked. We are happily married, and that is something that I can wish for all of you to find. Love. It is an adventure that we all need to grab onto and hold tight when it happens.
If you are not in that kind of relationship at the moment, please do not despair. It is not your time yet. Things happen for a reason, and I truly believe that. Your story is not yet finished, and it is up to you to get up every day and see where it takes you.
I did not find a job with my Bachelor of Science. I went back to school and trained to be a Pharmacy Technician, who currently earns her living by working in a call center. Is this the career path I would have chosen for myself ? No. Would I jump at the chance to go back into the world of pharmacy? Absolutely. I enjoyed using the scientific side of my mind. It was a satisfying career choice. But it was not the reason I ended up taking that course.
I believe that I was sent in that direction for another reason. I learned how to mix IV medications and prepare chemotherapy drugs in a sterile hood. My familiarity with working with needles helped me to adapt to having to learn how to give myself insulin. Sometimes you need to figure out what led you to the path you are on, so you can decide if you want to keep on that journey, or find a new branch and follow another trail.
No matter what path you are on, it is up to you to learn what you can while you are there. When you have finished learning all that you can, if you are not still inspired to continue learning, it is time to try something different. Even if it scares you. When you do this you are pushing boundaries, and that is when the magic happens.
Now I am going to plant some seeds. Something to think about for the week, to help you on your own journey. What choices did you make to lead you to where you are today? If it was difficult, it was to make you stronger. How did it do that? If it was easy, why was that easy for you? What things do you love doing so much that you lose track of time when you are working on them? Those are the things you need to investigate further, to see where they will take you. Maybe when you do, you will find that you surprise yourself like I do when I am writing.
One last thought. When you find yourself going two steps forward, and three or even five steps back, go with it. Dance within the ebbs and flows of life. Join me, and together we will make our own paths in this world. One step at a time.
Treasure Seeker Tuesday: Photo by Tish MacWebber; Photo Edited by Noa Price