Monday, 28 January 2013

Don't worry, be happy.

Don't worry, I haven't fallen off the face of the planet.  I do apologize for being absent, however!

After I got back from my weekend visiting my mom, I asked Dan to stay home with me for a few days.  Not only was a feeling rough physically, but I was feeling rough mentally.  Dan stayed home and helped me out around the house, and took me to all sorts of Doctors appointments, and took me to get lab work done.  While trying to figure out why I couldn't eat, my back went out again and it went out pretty badly.

We went out of town to see my family doctor again (because I couldn't get in to see anyone else), and told him that it's really tough not being able to eat and having stomach pain.  Again, he was a bit frustrating.  He kept telling me to take Rolaids for my nausea (I told him I had stabbing pain, NOT nausea but he insisted on Malox or Rolaids).  He also told me that if it was Ovarian Hyper-stimulation syndrome, that I just had to ride it out.  I told him that I had contacted a woman who was taking female patients wanting to get pregnant/who are pregnant and that she had set up an ultrasound for me to see if I had any issues.  He seemed pleased with that and sent me on my way home.

On my way home I noticed pressure in my lower back, and my right leg felt really heavy.  When we got home I got Dan to rub my back, but that made it WAY worse.  My right leg and foot started twitching and spasming like crazy.  I tried taking a bath, but nothing really helped.

Right away, I could barely move my foot at all. I physically couldn't point my toes, the muscles just wouldn't work, and some of my toes wouldn't move at all.  I contacted a family member who is a nurse, and he assured me that it all sounded like it was stemming from my back pain, probably a pinched nerve.  So I curled up on my bed and slowly the spasming in my foot and leg went away.  Over the past few days I've had shooting pain in my leg and in my back, and my feet have wanted to cramp, but it's slowly going away.

On Saturday I had my only shift of the week at work, it was only 4 hours and I couldn't finish it.  Not because of back pain, but because my feet wanted to cramp up!  I also missed my shift yesterday too and tried to spend most of my time lying down.

Today my back is feeling better, and my leg no longer feels "heavy".  But I'm still having issues with my right foot, and my back still aches a little.  I have a Chiropractor and acupuncture appointment tomorrow, so I hope that helps.  I really don't feel like going to my family doctor AGAIN.

I hope to be writing more as my back feels better.  Right now it hurts to sit at a computer, so that's one reason why I'm not on much.  And it's only been in the past two days that my appetite has been coming back, so hopefully my fatigue will disappear soon too.  I really want to get back to cooking, and working out.  I hope to get some tips too from the Chiropractor when I go tomorrow.

I really have done nothing but lie down all month.  Either from my back, fatigue, my stomach, or my feet hurting/cramping up (from my back being out).  So needless to say I'm going absolutely stir crazy at home!

Yesterday was the first day in a long time that I felt okay to go out.  So Dan and I went out for lunch at the mall.  We went to Moxie's and I had a turkey club with fries.  I wasn't worried about the calories since I have really under-eaten all week, and it was my first time having a healthy appetite.

I had planned on also walking around the mall a bit just to get in a bit of exercise and hopefully loosen up a few muscles, but sitting through lunch made my back hurt.  So we walked down the long hallway in the mall and decided to head home.  Either way, getting out and having a nice meal was a treat and I was in such a great mood for the rest of the day.  Dan had worked until about 4AM that morning, and he wasn't called in to work yesterday after he got home so we got to spend the rest of the day together.

Here's hoping my back gets better soon, and it's smooth sailing after that!  I haven't run all month, heck I could barely walk for most of the month!  My weight sky-rocketed with the swelling, but thankfully that has gone back down, and I'm only about 0.5lbs heavier than my lightest weight and I'm only about 1.5 inches bigger than my smallest.  So I lost about 2.5 inches this past week with the swelling going down and my stomach no longer feels like I have a beach ball in it.

There is lots to be grateful for.  Sometimes it's just hard when you're stuck in bed, no family members live by and you've exhausted your entertainment.  (Really, there isn't much to do when you can only lie on your side!)  But I seem to be getting better.  I have two work shifts at the end of the week, and I hope to be all better by then.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Mental games

Today has been a week since my Doctor's appointment and my stomach is still very swollen looking (I've even lost my back "rolls" because of fluid retention!).  I'm glad that I haven't gotten any bigger, but I'm also concerned that it hasn't gone away yet either.

The beginning of this week consisted of me calling doctors offices and trying to get in to a new doctor.  Only one will take me, and not for over a month yet.  Even after telling the receptionist how terrible I feel, and how things don't seem right.  I'm unsure if I should go back to my doctor and ask to be examined, or if I should wait it out.

I honestly am at my wits end with Doctors, and I have no idea how to proceed.  As it is, I can only eat very small amounts of food before I get stomach pains from eating too much.  If I do have Ovarian Hyperstimulation Syndrome (OHSS) then I'm supposed to drink nothing but Gatorade and eat lots of salty foods.  However, if it's a different type of fluid retention, then I'm supposed to avoid salty foods!  I still cannot exercise, and in fact if I do have OHSS then you're not supposed to exercise at all!  My doctor just seems to shrug off whatever I'm concerned about, so I just want to save myself the trouble and not go at all. (I seem to be full of faulty logic these days!)

To make matters a little worse, Dan has been gone all week.  It's been a very trying time with my patience.  I don't have the energy to cook, and when I do eat I get stomach pains.  So I've just been eating very tiny meals, and for most of last week I under ate because I just couldn't physically eat enough food.

This weekend I went to visit my Mom and sister which was fantastic.  It's hard being at home all alone and not being able to eat, cook, or even do laundry!  Everyone needs their mom to take care of them sometimes.  This was that weekend for me.

Moms dog Sasha.  She always sits on her bum with her feet forward like a human.

Daisy! I had to disturb her sleep to catch this picture, she was curled up like a bun.  She looks more curious than perturbed thankfully.

Since Dan has been gone for so long, he decided to take two days off to spend them with me.  I'm so thankful.  I've been going out of my mind with no work (not that I would be able to work properly), and not being able to do anything at home.  I'm getting a pretty bad case of feeling sorry for myself.

The days consist of: Video games, Gatorade, and water.

I think besides the stomach pains, and feeling like a marshmallow one of the toughest things is not being able to fit my clothes.  I can't fit ANY of my jeans. Not a single pair.  I wear pajamas all day.  Which come to think of it, if I cannot feel pretty in my own skin, and I can't even wear my pretty clothes, how can I feel good mentally?  It's tough, really really tough.

I get up in the morning and my stomach aches, I don't have to work so I just toss my hair into a pony tail and stay in my pajamas since nothing else fits.  Then I sit all day because my stomach aches to move around and I'm so fatigued!  It's very hard not to become a Negative Nancy.  Also, I learned something about myself.  When I'm a rough spot mentally I do two things. 1)I notice every ache and pain, then google it.  Then convince myself that I have MS, Fibromyalgia, or a tumor, and then get increasingly alarmed until said symptoms disappear.  2)If I watch dramas while feeling sorry for myself, I feel even MORE sorry for myself.  Or worse, start those absolutely terrible "for no reason" crying fits.  Comedies only in this house!

Let me tell you guys, only take fertility medication from a Doctor who is VERY familiar with the medication and fertility treatments.  This sucks!

I know some of you have mentioned going to the Emergency room or finding a specialist.  Here are the reasons why I can't/won't.  The Emergency room is for Emergencies first of all.  Secondly, every time I've gone I've waited for over 12 hours EVERY time.  Thirdly, if my family doctor and the women's health nurse practitioner don't know the complications of my fertility medication, then it's likely they won't either.  To go to a specialist in the area, I need a doctors referral and it takes up to several months to get in to see them.  So that leaves me trying to find a new Doctor, which is hard for anyone to find here let alone someone who already has a doctor.  Which leaves me with my family doctor, which I'm unhappy with.  So what do I do?  Wait it out, or try to get in to seem him and hope he listens and examines me this time?

Friday, 18 January 2013

Finally an update!

Some of you might remember that I had a Doctor's appointment set for Tuesday.  It was a general check-up, plus I wanted to bring up my stomach issues (which seem to be growing, rather than waning).

I've thought long and hard about what I was going to write about. I want to keep this blog real, and informative without infringing on our private lives too much.  But sometimes things happen in life, things that cause me to not have the ability to blog all week.  How do you account for that to your readers?  I could say that I was "unwell", but that doesn't hold readers attention, and it's not being true to them either.  What I've gone through this week has really upset my weight loss, and my mental balance.  I need to address it, because it might not go away anytime soon. It's not something that can be glossed over, ignored or shoved aside.

In case you missed it, I have PCOS which is a big cause of infertility in women.  I am one of those women who are infertile.  We have been discussing with my family doctor, the medication we wanted to use in November and we started using it in December.  I wanted to keep all of this between me, Dan and a few close relatives.  I don't mind people asking me about weight-loss advice, but people pestering me about babies is too much.  We will have one when we have one.  So I didn't want the whole world to know.  I also despise unwarranted advice, or people "telling" us what we should do.  I do owe you guys the truth, however.

I wanted to talk to my Doctor about the complications of the medication I was on in December.  I have a very bloated and slightly distended stomach, it feels like my skin is tight and I'm carrying around a beach ball under my skin.  I'm not able to exercise at all.  Even walking around makes me very very fatigued.  I've gained 4" on my waist (so I look close to 50 lbs heavier), and I've probably gained at least 6 lbs since Sunday morning.  I've been nauseated and when I haven't been, I've just been very uncomfortable with aches and pains in my abdomen.

Unfortunately, my Doctor didn't examine me at all.  I told him of all the discomfort, and he replied by saying I need to "relax and enjoy life."  I was a bit surprised by that.  Then when I told him that I've had on-going stomach muscle issues, and that I can't run or do Yoga he said that maybe I should try an exercise bicycle instead and shrugged it off.  My concerns felt like a slap in the face to say the least.

I also tried a local walk-in clinic and talked to a Nurse Practitioner who is great with women's health,  and she had no idea the complications of my medicine either.  She asked if I had a fever and if I was gassy.  When I told her the problem was liquid building up in my uterus and abdominal cavity, she shrugged it off too and said that I would have swollen ankles. (Even though I have a very swollen stomach already? and swollen ankles are not a symptom of the hyper-stimulated ovaries I was concerned that I had)  I left there in tears and still no answers.

So that leads up to now.  I've been very uncomfortable all week.  It is uncomfortable to walk around, to do laundry, to cook, anything.  I get tired very easily, and if I let my stomach get empty I get very nauseous.  It's a very rough mental game I'm playing right now.  I'm still trying to stay within my 1500 calories, but seeing my weight go up everyday is really really hard.  I'm not throwing in the towel and going over my calories and bingeing.  But it's also hard to eat healthy food when you feel tired and sick and it's so damn hard to move around!  Getting veggies has been really really hard.

I get the winter-blues pretty badly this time of year, and the Nurse practitioner did say that women on fertility medication can end up being very emotional (of course she said that probably because I was bawling my eyes out the whole time, poor lady) with their hormones out of whack.  It doesn't help that Dan is out of town too this week, and wont be back until sometime next week.

So on that note, I'm letting you all know that I'm not going to be doing "New foods for 2013" at the moment.  I barely have energy to heat up food, let alone go grocery shopping and prepare a new-to-me meal.  Heck, I haven't even had the energy to sit at my computer this week and  still have Christmas decorations up that I can't get down!  I promise I wont forget about it, because I'm really excited to try new foods.

In other news, The Hobbit is a good read if you have time to kill, Portal 2 is still a fun game to play on the 1000th play through, and Family Guy Multiverse is really easy to play and fun so far.

Oh, and please don't watch sappy drama movies if you have the winter-blues.  That should be a rule.

And! Sorry I don't have photos to post.  I literally  have done nothing all week, and have hated it.  I did some walking on the treadmill two days ago, and decided not to post the photo because about 13 minutes in I was already sweating.  I was going SO slooowww, and really ashamed of myself.  So no photos of that!  And no way you guys are getting photos of my awkward gi-norma-belly, and ill-fitting clothes! Nuh-uh!

Monday, 14 January 2013

New foods for 2013, Brie!

In April of last year Dan and I went down to Calgary to go to the Comic & Entertainment Expo.  While there we went to a few different restaurants, and at one of them I tried a really neat dish. Pear & Brie on flatbread.  It was A-MA-ZING!

Brie was on my list of  "foods to try" in 2013, so I thought that I would try to re-create this dish at home.  It was actually very easy to do, and super tasty.

Carmelized Pear and Brie on Flatbread

1 pear sliced thinly
1 tbsp butter/margarine
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 flatbread/tortilla
1/2 small wheel of brie (approx 40g)
pinch of Cinnamon

**1. Set skillet to medium heat, and melt butter.  Once melted stir in brown sugar, then add the pear.  Top with Cinnamon and cover. Stir occasionally.  Cook until pear is tender.

2. Place caramelized pear onto the flatbread  and top with sliced brie.

3. Place flatbread on a cookie sheet and bake at 350F until brie is melted, edges of the flatbread is brown and the center is crisp.  You do not want the center to be soggy.

Servings: 2  Calories: 224 a serving (with light margarine)
**Step 1 Is optional, you don't have to carmelize the pear.  Instead you could toss the sliced pear with olive oil and top with cinnamon, then place it on the flat bread.

This recipe was very easy to make, and would work as a side dish to a meal with lots of greens and protein or would make a great appetizer or a snack to share.

Enjoy, and remember.. I'm always looking for new recipes to add to my list!

Friday, 11 January 2013

One thing after another

I've started up a Facebook page! To follow my posts please "Like" my page here

Remember how Dan was supposed to be gone all week?  Well guess who surprised me and came home early?!  On Tuesday sometime he sent me a text saying that he was going to be working really late.  When he's out at a camp job they usually work set hours, but it looked like he was going to do a long day to get extra work done.  Fine, that's normal.  Then at 10:50 pm he text me to ask me if I was still up.  I was just crawling into bed, and I figured he was seeing if I was still up so he could call and wish me good night.  I told him I was awake still.  Then he said, "Good, cause my house keys are buried in my bags."  I squeaked and ran down the stairs, threw open the door, and there he was with all of his work bags slung around him and a big bouquet of flowers!

What a great surprise!  My brother was still visiting when Dan came home, so they got to visit as well before my brother left for home the next day.  What a lucky duck I am!

Last night was my first shift at work this year, it was a short shift and I'm glad.  When I got home my feet ached so terribly.  That's what happens when your back goes out and you lay down for most of the day for a  week!

I just about wore this new sweater to work yesterday, then I noticed that the rouching in the back was right on my back fat.  Not exactly the best design! Why is rouching a "thing" on sweaters anyways?!

I made this really wonderful sounding Banana Breakfast Loaf yesterday, but I'm pretty sure it didn't turn out like it was supposed to.  The recipe called for baking soda and baking powder, yet the loaf didn't rise at all.  It's very dense and pretty ridiculous looking.

It also tasted powdery.  It's odd because the recipe specifically said not to over mix. Just until the ingredients stick together.  I never said I was good at baking!

Today I set out to buy a new sports bra from Addition Elle, and I totally found TWO new ones! One has a racer back and does up in the front. It fit pretty well, so we will see how it works out, I'm a bit worried about the clip on the front.  I also got a new pair of PJ's!  I've always envied women who could buy a pair of pajamas and fit one size.  Usually my upper body is a size or two larger than my bottom so I could never buy a set of PJ's.  Not only that, but even when I was losing weight there was no way that I could buy a top that buttoned up.  No matter what size I was, the top would be too lose in the top, and too tight across my belly and the buttons would pop off.  Well today I got my first pair of PJ's that BUTTON up and they're sooo comfortable!  I'm very excited to sleep in them tonight!

This past week and a half has been really tough mentally.  When something is wrong physically I tend to over-react and google everything.  It makes it especially hard when you feel like you can't exercise.  How do you know when you just have to stay off your feet, and when you should go to the doctor? What's the line?  Well I have a doctors appointment on Tuesday anyways and I'm going to try to ask him about my stomach muscles hurting.  I noticed it at the beginning of December.  It hurts at the lowest part of my belly on the right side, especially when I run.  In fact it was so uncomfortable today that I couldn't run at all, I did 1 mile of speed walking.  I eventually just quit because I was just so upset and anxious that I couldn't run.

I started new medication in December, and at first everything was fine and dandy.  About two weeks after starting it, my weight started shooting up around the same time my back went out.  It was frustrating being bloated from new medication, immobile, and having your weight sky-rocket.  My stomach muscles have been aching, and really I had no idea why all of these things started hitting me all at once.  It's incredibly frustrating, and upsetting.

What I'm really afraid of, is my doctor telling me that I can't run because of weak stomach muscles.  I couldn't even do the Yoga I had promised myself that I would do.  To be honest I'm not even sure what kind of exercises I can do!  I can't think of any cardio that I can do. I will just have to patiently wait until Tuesday and see what the doctor says.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend!

Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Kitchen sink frittata and Raspberry "cheesecake"

Yesterday morning I received a ton of text messages from family members.  My Mom, Sister and Brother all decided to drive into town to see me!  I don't get to see my brother and sister much, so it totally made my day to hear that they where all coming down!  My sister works nights, so to come out during the day means she gets no sleep, and my brother lives a few hours away and just happened to have days off coinciding with mine!  We went to Pizza Hut, since it's my brother's go-to place when he comes up.  I ordered an appetizer of Pesto Chicken Spinrolls and just ate two, since I had lunch earlier.  Afterwards, mom and I went to Costco for a bit of shopping.  The rest of the day was spent visiting, and it was fun and fantastic!

My moms dog, Daisy.  She likes to lay across your shoulders so she can see out the windows!

My brother decided to spend a few nights here before heading home.  I'm really glad he decided to stay, because the night I got back from Calgary, Dan was called to work out of town for a week in the bush.  He had to pack the night we got home, and get up at 2:30am, so I didn't really get to say goodbye.  But having my brother up certainly helps pass the time!  Also, he can be my guinea pig and help me test out my new recipes!

This morning I woke up early to start on the "Kitchen sink frittata" recipe I found in my new PCOS health and nutrition guide.  

It was made from 6 eggs, 1 cup of low-fat cheese, 1 tomato, 1 sweet potato, 1/2 cup milk, and 2 cups mixed veggies.  The recipe is built so you can toss in whatever left-over veggies you have pre-cooked or raw in the fridge.  I had mushrooms, broccoli, and some yellow peppers.  It turned out being less than 180 calories a serving (6 servings).  If anyone is interested in the recipe just email me and I will pass it on!

We went out and did a bit of shopping and had lunch out.  When we got back we where craving a snack, so I decided to whip together an easy recipe I spotted in the same book. 

It is a raspberry and pistachio "cheesecake".  It is made with cottage cheese, honey, and vanilla extract tossed into a blender and then topped with raspberries and pistachios   I would say that it's really nothing like cheesecake at all.  It was more of a cottage-cheese pudding.  My brother could only eat about two spoonfuls before it was too much for him.  I liked it though and will probably eat it again.  It was again under 180 calories a serving. 

Trying new nuts where on my list of new foods to try in 2013.  I think this was actually a hit.  Not at all "cheesecakey" but still good!

This afternoon I had cautiously scheduled a run.  I've been doing really great for the last two days, and I didn't want to throw anything off by running too soon.  I haven't run since either boxing day, or perhaps the day before Christmas Eve.  It's been a long time and I needed to get one out of me!

I did my normal 5 minute walking warm-up and did stretches before running.  My legs felt really stiff so I was hoping stretching before running would help. (It did!).  I started out slower, about 4.3 mph and that was fast enough to make me feel "not right" for awhile.  I had aches and pains in my lower abdomen and cramping in the lady-bits.  But I decided to give myself 5 minutes to see how it played out.  Thankfully all the aches faded away and I upped my speed to 4.5 mph.  I did 10 minutes, then walked for a minute, then did another 10 minutes before my hips and lower back started to feel tight.  So instead of doing the last 10 minutes I decided to stop the workout there.

Pre-sweaty workout.  My hair ala lazy natural wavy and of course, another awkward face!

Tomorrow I start again with my at home Yoga.  I'm excited work has died down, so now I can focus on running, Yoga, and new recipes!  I'm much more excited than I thought I would be about that!  I must say, I'm rreeaallyy  excited to start Yoga.  I think it'll do really good things for me mentally and physically.

Now I'm off to have a movie night with my brother.  He leaves tomorrow so I want to spend as much time as I can with him before he goes.

Monday, 7 January 2013

Wedding dress shopping in Calgary

This trip to Calgary was absolutely fantastic.  It was so much fun to have some girls to gab with (gab, not rant or bitch about life) and to laugh with.  The weather was fantastic on the way down, and only snowed a little on the way home.

We only had one full day in the city, the other two where spent travelling. On Saturday we headed off mid-morning to the first bridal appointment.  It was such a beautiful drive, Calgary is a beautiful city! It's framed by mountains and these low rolling hills and then the city center on the other side.  Besides that, Calgary is beautiful with all it's houses, trees, and rivers! It's definitely my favourite city!

Dan's sister tried on a million dresses, and totally found "the" dress.  I mean, she looks drop dead gorgeous, and classy and so graceful. I really want to share the photo of her in it, but it'll have to wait!  Just imagine someone who is slender and graceful in a dress that perfectly accentuates her, and you'll have tears in your eyes just like I did.  Hooo boy, is it perfect! (I cannot rave enough about how perfect it is!)

After the first bridal boutique we had lunch at Moxie's before attempting to find the second boutique for her afternoon appointment.  I had a Spinach salad with Champagne strawberries and chicken.

It had spinach, raspberry vinaigrette,  grapefruit, champagne strawberries, chicken, goat cheese and naan bread.  I couldn't find the exact calories online. (MyfitnessPal said 400cal but didn't count the naan or the chicken!)  Either way it was absolutely delicious and very filling!

Afterwards we attempted to head to the second boutique, but after finding the address but no boutique we found out they had moved! They where across the city, and there was no way we would make it in time.  So the bride-to-be decided it was fine to skip it since she had found her dress anyways!  We decided to head to the nearest Chapters and have coffee, and of course to buy books!

I had only been to one other giant Chapters store, and it still amazes me every time I walk into one.  We only have a few small bookstores in our town, so seeing a giant bookstore was overwhelming.  I told the girls that they could have coffee while I skipped through the aisles and daydreamed. Haha!

I first decided to find a journal, so I could knock off one item on my goals for 2013; to write in a journal often.  This whole row, all the way to the corner that you see on the far right was ALL journals!  I'm really picky about buying journals, so this was heaven!  I ended up getting a journal with a leather spine and large pages.  It liked it because when it opened up it laid fairly flat. I really dislike journals that keep trying to close when you're writing in them!

I also came across this book and decided to pick it up. The PCOS Health & Nutrition Guide.  There is lots of information in it, but I wish there was more information in it.  For instance, it says to drink a certain herbal tea for infertility, but it doesn't say why exactly or what it does.  It talks a lot about a low G.I diet and gives a ton of recipes to try.  Some of the recipes are really easy, and some require buying a lot of things from health food stores.  I already have some recipes marked and I will be trying them this week and posting them here.  All three are breakfast foods.  I really need variety in my breakfast and I usually only have whole wheat toast and nut butter, (which isn't low G.I at all!) so a bit of variety would be nice.

I had an absolutely fantastic time.  But in the back of my head the same old low-self esteem song and dance kept trying to come out.  Two girls from the wedding party came along with us, and you see these girls where slim, beautiful, they had stunning smiles, and great personalities, they where full of grace, had wonderful style and where so put together.  I just couldn't help feeling like the ugly duckling.  I remember sitting at the bridal boutique with the other girls and seeing all of our reflections in the mirrors. I was so taken aback by how big I still look. (Duh! I'm still Obese!) And how wonderful they looked.  My coat was too big and ill-fitting, I wore black and pink running shoes with my orange dress coat, my hair looked so gross (yay Alopecia, where your hair thins and  falls out), and I decided to not wear make-up.

What struck me, was how I kept saying in my head, "Oh they're only talking to me because they're friends with Dan's sister.  Normally they wouldn't even talk to me."  As if!  These girls where very nice to me, and I had to keep reminding myself that it was okay to partake in the conversations. I am indeed smart, funny and not a lesser individual than they are.  Sure they where slim, with stunning smiles and full of humor.  But just because they're naturally beautiful and slim, does not mean that they think I'm not worthy of their time and conversation.  I did have a realization while I was there, that I genuinely liked these girls.  But I would never ever try to be friends with them, why?  Because I would just assume that they would never want to be friends with me.  All of them are slim, why would they want a fat friend? I would just be "that" friend.

I'm now over that self-esteem blip.  I just had to keep reminding myself of how much I have changed, and that I am no uglier than other girls out there.  I'm just different.  They're not absolutely perfect, they have rough days, ugly days, and so do I.  Those ladies where wonderful to talk to, and one even gave me a hug twice.  I really need to be more accepting of others, and accept that they can like me too for who I am.

I must say, I was also jealous of how many dresses Dan's sister could try on!  I could only try on two dresses in the whole city when I went dress shopping for my wedding.  Neither of them I liked much.  I ended up picking the one that was "less popular" and eventually grew to like it, even though I didn't like it at first.  I remember distinctly that the only things that where said about my dress (and me in it) was that it "looked good".  Or, "I like that dress".  Nobody said that I looked stunning, gorgeous, beautiful, nothing.  I remember only about two people said I looked good on my wedding day.  Everyone else said non-committal things like, "I like your hair-do".  Or, "I love the beading on your dress."  Or, "did you get someone to do your makeup?"

I'm not holding anything against Dan's sister for her beautiful dress, and how wonderfully her wedding is going.  It just drudged up memories that I tried to bury away.  Things I wanted for forget, and say didn't matter.  I am so completely happy that everything is going so well for her.  In fact I think I'd be a wreck if she was having a bad time with the planning.  It actually makes me feel better about everything to know that things are going well for her, and that I can offer her advice if she needed it!

What an emotional post! I cried like three times writing this and contemplated not posting it.  But this is an important part of my journey and being true to myself!

In the grand scheme that is life, it's is really silly to be intimidated by women who are slim.  For all the preaching out there for accepting larger women, we also need to realize that smaller women are the same, just a different shape.  Just because a woman is larger, doesn't mean that she will be any more accepting of me either.

I believe it's really important to shed light on self-esteem issues like these.  For these issues directly effect how I treat myself.  I could have binged to cope, I could have starved myself to cope.  But I didn't, I recognized the issue, addressed my feelings, and then let it go.  I'm all the better for it.

Thank you for riding my emotional roller coaster! Do you have weird self-esteem issues? Can you relate?

Thursday, 3 January 2013

Cow town!

Today was a mostly uneventful day.  It was another day of ordered rest by the doctor so I tried to keep it a low key day.  My right knee started acting up, but a friend pointed out on Facebook that it could be from lack of stretching and I might have tight ligaments.  She's probably right.  I tried doing stretches this week, but it's pretty tough when your back is out!

It was really hard to take it easy today.  I felt very restless and felt like I had to "get over it" and clean the house.  But after about 15 minutes of being up and about I'd start to get weak and shaky in the legs and would have to sit back down again.  I'm really itching to go for a run too, but I really don't want to push my body too fast. I now understand why people who are very fit get frustrated when they get injured.  It's the pits!

Dan and I leave early in the morning for Calgary.  It's been hard to try to very slowly get ready and pack.  Dan was supposed to help pack and tidy the house before we left, but of course he's working late tonight and I have to do it all.  He will probably pour himself into bed late tonight, and then have to get up early to leave!  Poor guy, he's pretty lucky that I take care of him, hey?  ;D 

I've been looking forward to this trip for months! I love Calgary, and I love travelling!  I'm a wanderer at heart, if I could I would travel all the time!  My favourite movies used to be ones full of adventure.  Like Jurassic Park (what kid didn't like that movie?!), Indiana Jones, The Mummy and so on.

We hope to be in Calgary by tomorrow evening, go wedding dress shopping Saturday, and then drive home Sunday.  It's a bit of a whirlwind trip, but it'll be loads of fun.  I'm looking forward to spending time with Dan's Mom and sister.  We don't get to see family much and visiting them is like chatting with best friends.  It'll be a girly trip, so hopefully Dan doesn't gag from all the wedding and dress talk! Hah!

This is my favourite photo from the wedding.  In fact, this is probably the only photo of me that I like.  It's funny because you don't really see my body at all.  I'm covered by a veil, my hair and Dan's smoocher!  But all the same, it's my favourite.

The last time Dan and I went to Calgary was in April for the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo. (Nerd fest!)  They had the cast of Star Trek TNG!  It was really cool to see Sir Patrick Stewart, and the rest of the cast.

We had our photo taken with the dudes who make the online comics "Least I could do" and "Looking for group".  They're hilarious guys!  Also, that coat is way too big on me now! :D  I also got pictures of Dan in a Delorean!(The car from the "Back to the future" movies) How cool is that?

Now, I really have to go and see if I can get finished packing sometime before leaving!  I hope to take lots of photos (but none of the dress, gotta wait for that!), and possibly to write something while I'm down there too.  Have a fantastic weekend everyone!

Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Goals for 2013, and reflections on 2012

I slept terribly last night.  I woke up about every hour, then starting around 4:30 AM I would wake up about every half an hour because I was uncomfortable.  I finally got up at 6:30 AM and started getting ready to head to the walk-in clinic.

I was worried that I wouldn't do very well because I'd be sitting in a waiting room for awhile.  Sitting and standing have not been very good to me.  Lying down as been the only thing to help my back.  I was pretty lucky though, I was in to see the doctor within 15 minutes of checking in!  He was extremely polite, sympathetic and loaded me up full of drugs.  He didn't specifically say that I had a pinched nerve or herniated disc.  He just said, "yup, your back is spasming."  He gave me an anti-inflammatory, muscle relaxant and some gel to put on my back for a few days.  Plus instructions to get rest. He gave me the go-ahead to go on my road-trip this weekend too! So long as I feel okay, I should be okay to go.  I can't imagine sitting for hours and hours in a vehicle with a sore back, but he figures I should be okay to go.

I decided to go to the pharmacy closest to my house, instead of the one I usually go to.  Which was a good decision.  They had to make the gel and said I needed to come back in a few hours.  This pharmacy is in the building next to my townhouse, so all I had to do was walk over later to pick it up.

I spent the rest of the day in bed and experimenting walking around a bit. I felt a bit rough when I first got home, but but mid-afternoon I was feeling much better.  In fact, I'm able to sit at my computer for the first time in days!  Success!

I wanted to share with you guys my goals for 2013.  Not really resolutions, but things to do that I think will make me feel happier in my mind, body and soul.

1. Build core strength! I want to give Yoga a really good try.
2. Be under 200 lbs and celebrate it.
3.Weigh less than Dan.  His weight changes depending on the time of year and how much work he is doing, but I don't really care what he weighs so long as I'm less! 
4. Try more recipes in 2013, including trying more foods.  I also wish to try foods from the books "The Game of Thrones". (Big surprise, hey?)
5. Run 10k by December 31st.
6. Have better posture and quit slouching.
7.Tour a part of the U.K, preferably Scotland.
8.Write in a personal journal or start a memoir.
9. Draw more.  I haven't drawn at all in 2012. I seem to go through drawing stints, and I was totally uninspired in 2012.  I hope to build more discipline with my drawing this year.
10. Read more.  I love to read, but always make excuses to do other things.

2012 overall has been a fantastic year. I hit my 100 lbs lost, finished C25K, ran a virtual 5k (and continued with my running!), and I have started this blog which makes me infinitely happy.  I have discovered so much about myself this year, it's fantastic.  Losing weight is like peeling the layers off of an onion.  Not only does the onion get smaller, but you reveal what was hidden underneath.

I've learned that I am capable.  I'm capable of doing whatever I set my mind to, and I'm capable of forgiving myself when I can't.  I've also learned that I really *do* think that I am beautiful.  It's easy to look in the mirror and pick things to hate about yourself.  At 335 lbs I thought that I was so disgusting, and that if I could get to be even 30 lbs lighter, I would feel so beautiful.  Well at 30 lbs lost I didn't feel beautiful, and at 80 lbs lost I didn't feel beautiful.  Even now it's hard to look in the mirror and like what I see.  But there is a difference between liking what you see and loving yourself despite it.  Nobody is going to love a chubby tummy, stretch marks or saggy skin.  But I love myself anyways.  My body shows a story, and a story that I have written.

Lately I've been buying more girly things.  Recently I bought a pink Princess Peach case for my Nintendo 3DS.  It's incredibly girly.  I told Dan that I wasn't sure what I was thinking buying it, it's just *so* girly!  Normally I would have bought the green Yoshi case, but for some reason I just loved the girlyness of the pink case.  Dan said that maybe it's because now that I'm more comfortable in my own skin, that I now feel more comfortable being girly. It was like a light bulb went off!  He was absolutely right!

When I was bigger, there was no way you where going to get me into a frilly pink anything.  I hated all of the "Princess" stuff that was in style a few years ago, and if it shouted girly or femininity I shied away from it.  I thought that I would look like a complete joke toting around anything "girly".  Just imagine a girl, with a large belly walking around the mall with a pink "Princess" purse.  To me I would have been a giant (pun intended) joke.  Now I'm ashamed that I didn't embrace what was really me.

I'm not really into a lot of girly things.  But now I think it's okay to embrace my femininity.  It's okay to be sexy, it's okay to wear pink.  I'm glad that 2012 brought me that realization, I just wish that I had the ability to embrace it long ago.  However I have to remember, that this is a journey and each year layers and layers are peeled away. I will get to them when I do, and not a moment before.

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Rough start to the new year

Dan and I didn't really have a lot planned for this New Years, which was probably a good idea. Yesterday I worked an 8 hour shift at work, and by the end I could barely stand. My left foot and leg where incredibly sore, my back tight, and calf muscles twitching like mad. I got home and attempted a hot shower, but nothing took the aches away unfortunately. Dan and I where supposed to go out for a nice dinner to celebrate 7 years together, but once I got in the car to go I realized just how terrible I felt. So instead Dan got takeout and I was asleep before 10pm!

Fortunately I was able to get today off of work, which I'm so thankful for. I can only stand or sit for about 10 minutes before my leg and foot get incredibly sore, it's been incredibly frustrating to spend the day laying down and finding just the right spot to lay in. Needless to say, I'll be going into a walk-in clinic in the AM.

I told Dan, that the hardest part is not being able to run. Sure I sat on the floor and tried to stretch my legs, but running and walking ate way out of the picture! Running is such a privilege and boy do I miss it! (I never thought I'd say that!). Running is freedom and health,

Today was spent laying on a too-short couch reading, when lunch rolled around I quickly made an omelette and toast, then laid down in my bed to watch movies. I'm pretty lucky that Dan is home to make supper otherwise I'd probably just have toast!

The iPad Dan gave me for Christmas has been put to great use today. I've been watching Netflix on it, and I have the blogger app so I can prop it up and blog while lying in bed! I'm pretty sure I'd go stir crazy without it.

Unfortunately I'm not exactly sure how to put pictures in the post properly. One is of my lunch and reading materials this morning and the other photos are pictures of Dan that I found on my iPad, he must have taken them while I was at work!

I hope everyone had a fantastic New Years! Be healthy, be happy.