Over the years I have started journals and diaries hoping to organize the different parts of my life...only to stop after several weeks. I still believe in the power of journaling...that it can help you realize where your strengths and weaknesses are. And because of this I will try again...this time with a deeper purpose.
Having lost my sister in Jan. 2007 I've struggled with some major depression. This is something that has always been a part of my life but not something I recognized until the past few years. The year following Lynn's death is a blur. During her illness I vowed I would take better care of myself - my weight was up as was my blood pressure and cholesterol numbers. This came from years of overeating and laziness. I promised myself that because I had the ability to change these health problems while Lynn had no control over hers that I would make the changes and get healthy.
After her death I found myself spiraling into a deeper depression. I was unhappy at work, missing my best friend, having a son get married and sending my last child off to college. These things combined led to binge eating, an unhealthy obsession with my bad work environment and lack of exercise and found me in a deep, dark place in my life. All of this was so sad because I had so much good in my life - a great husband, two wonderful kids, a sweet daughter-in-law, a wonderful extended family, some good friends, a house I love - so much good but all I could see was the darkness in life.
In May 2008 I hit rock bottom - letting things go at work, letting my house go, at my highest weight ever and totally miserable. It was time - time to realize the promise I made myself when Lynn died - to take care of myself. I interviewed and was offered a new job. It is not the perfect job but was at the time lower key and in an office where everybody does not know your personal business. So I quit my two jobs which although I hated were "safe" - and restarted my career - not an easy thing to do at 46. This pushed me to change a lot of things in my life - I started eating healthier, walking on my lunch hours, taking some time for me. I saw a huge change in the stress levels in my life - I started sleeping through the night - something I hadn't done in years - my daily attitude changed - I wasn't so negative. I started to lose weight, dressing nicer on my slightly smaller body, feeling better about myself.
Two years ago we had some major changes at work - long story - and in the end I received a major promotion. Because of this I am working crazy hours and the stress is starting to show.
But through it I continued to lose weight - lost a total of 58 lbs from June 2008. This was ok until about a year ago - I started to slip back into some unhealthy habits - not eating healthy and not exercising. Over the past year I have regained about 20 lbs and feel sluggish and look horrible - tired and haggard and old!. I find myself overeating, sneak eating and being a couch potato. My bad attitude toward life was back. This has got to change.
I have so much to be healthy for - a husband who loves me no matter what my size (and who is thin and in much better shape than me), two great sons, two great DILs and two wonderful granddaughters. I am tired of being overweight, always feeling tired, always looking exhausted, always being the overweight one in the group....
So...I plan to set some goals for myself...again...goals that will keep me moving in the right direction.
- Eat healthy...I just feel so much better when I eat better foods. This includes getting back to eating grain-free. Plus this will help me get back on track with my weight loss and working to good cholesterol and blood pressure numbers.
- Stop being a couch potato! I sit all day at my job then come home and either sit in front of the computer or in front of the TV while I knit. Not a good thing. Rework my daily schedule to include some type of exercise or movement -even if it means just dancing to the radio for 5 minutes.
- Find a personal trainer. More on this later.
- Take better care of me - making sure my hair is always cut and colored, doing my nails, taking care of my skin, etc.
- Work on updating my wardrobe, exploring my creative side with accessories. This has been hard for me because as I lose weight I am forever needing a new size and it gets expensive. So I have either been wearing baggy clothes or cheap, ill-fitting clothes. My goal is to create a basic wardrobe of decent, well fit clothes and dress it up with accessories.
- Work on my knitting obsession - while it is a good hobby - I call it my therapy - my meditation - it has become my obsession - taking over my waking hours - either through the actual knitting or the reading of knitting blogs and purchasing of yarn and patterns. This needs to change.
- Get off the computer! I spend way too much time on the computer - wasteful hours.
- Learn to use my creativeness in other ways - photography, decorating, gardening, scrapbooking and jewelry making - these are all areas I want to explore - besides my knitting.
- Become more organized - in all aspects of my life - house, work, self.
- Work on my relationship with my husband - we are enjoying doing things as empty-nesters but I want this to grow - to do some new things like hike, bike, learn to kayak, travel more.
- Work on my friendships - I've let some friendships slip through while trying to find myself again. I want to try to rebuild these as well as make new friends. I find that I want to be home more but also want to explore new friendships.
My goal with this journal is to work on each one of these goals and to explore all the possibilities out there. To stop being a spectator and be a participant in life.