Fiera's Diary

Fiera

Active member
** Warning - contains detailed description of terrifying experience / fear **

Hi, it's me. After running off the rails for several dayswith an uptick in anxiety and coming down with a cold(?) which knocked me out, I am feeling more grounded today.

I made a decision to put a chunk of money down on an annual program my doc offers. I don't think I will make the April hike in Utah as I am pretty booked with trips to see my dad in FL. I have however committed to the 4M group walk on March 20, which is 8 weeks from tomorrow. Making the decision to spend the money became easier after a talk w my therapist yesterday. It was also an importamt reminder about how *not* making decisions leads to many more things hanging over my head simultaneously.

Tomorrow is an important day of rememberance for losing my mom. So far it hasn't hit me much. I texted my brother this morning and he sent me a photo that he baked her chocolate chip cookies yesterday. I suppose tomorrow may be a different story.

I have begged off Proggy coming tonight and having him tomorrow instead. I pulled out some nice dinner components and should be more capable of cooking. Today I put together misc on hand ingredients into half-axxed chili. Will see how it comes out. 1 part prior experience, 1 part what was available, and about 5 parts gut feel. Esp without a functional sniffer, the joy of cooking is really guesswork.

Thurs was my pottery reboot (I jokingly refer to it as my remedial beginner-beginner class). It's already going better with a new instructor and clay which is fit for purpose and that is very satisfying. I spent many years of my life thinking I just didn't have an aptitude for guitar when in actuality it was simply not having a suitable instrument. It also took me a long time to learn to go through the beginner phase of something new remaining open to sucking at things. In fact, that it's OK to continue sucking at things as long as they bring me joy. Running was in that category. Hurray for Life Wisdom. It's my favorite.

Rather than watching movies/tv in the evenings, with Proggy gone I have been reading a historical book about a turn of the century religious organization (cult) and working on backing up photos off my phone. I get some peace doing these things and being alone (with K Dog). At least I explore my genuine thoughts and feelings and desires more, and not get caught up on "what's for dinner?" or the lowest common denominator "what do you want to watch?"

I am truly blessed. I still live in too much fear and I need to get on with life anyways. I found this photo from fall of 2020, it was the weekend AFTER Labor Day, when the madness was over and the campground had open capacity. I went, for one night, by myself, just so I would't miss an entire summer. I know the campground and I intentionally looked to see which other sites were reserved so I would be close to other people. But there was a storm which rolled through the day before, and har anyone showed up. There were 3 sites with people in the, and then close to 100 yards to where my site was, and they were all wooded so no one could see me. I got there early so I figured/hoped things were going to fill in as the afternoon progressed. But they didn't. I became increasingly unsettled. I usually feel enough safe there by myself but I didn't all by myself. I set up a 2nd camp chair and solo cup and tried to make it look to anyone passing by that there must be a couple there. And then it got dark, and I made my fire. And a motorcycle pulled up at the site next door with a little A-frame platform tent trailer thingy, and the big dude got inside and squeak-squeak-squeak for the next 10 minutes. I kept telling myself that the odds were overwhelming that the dude didn't come here to attack someone, he came here to camp, but by then I was already terrified. I built up a good fire and looked uneasily at the dwindling wood supply which increasingly was the lifeline between myself, darkness, and a slipping grip on sanity. Every ounce of my terrified mind was screaming at me to just give up and leave...EF's house was not far and even with the pandemic she would put me up or I could safely car-sleep in her driveway. But I kept telling myself that the Universe was giving me a chance to practice managing through fear. It was possibly the most terrifying night of my life. I barely slept, I had my alarm in my hand and a knife close by all night; I had left my duffel with my warm clothes next to the garage back at the house, and I don't know what kind of animal came up inspecting our tent. It's amazing that I didn't perish from terror. I don't think I conquered my fear. HOWEVER...The sunrise at the campground the next morning was the most beautiful one of my entire life. It was absolutely stunning. And had I gone home, or even to EF's, I would never have had witnessed that spectacular moment.

I appreciate the reminder that even though we are afraid of things, and that bad things sometimes do happen, the only way to really LIVE is to get out of your comfort zone and create space for new experiences.

Thanks Universe. ❤️
 
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Llama

Well-known member
texted my brother this morning and he sent me a photo that he baked her chocolate chip cookies yesterday.
That's lovely. I hope you can find joy in remembrance.
In fact, that it's OK to continue sucking at things as long as they bring me joy.
Yes! I feel so awkward when I suck at things but when I manage to forget about what others might think about my suckitude it's so much fun to explore new things!
HOWEVER...The sunrise at the campground the next morning was the most beautiful one of my entire life. It was absolutely stunning.
As someone who grew up being terrified a lot of the time I felt your description of that night in my bones. And I'm so glad you were able to turn it into a memory of beauty.
 

Cate

Long-term member.
:iagree: with everything LaMa said & I used to be petrified of the dark until only fairly recently & only overcame it because of where I live now. I read your last post & felt sick with fear. I think I would have frozen with fear too. Having a very vivid imagination is not a good thing.
 

Fiera

Active member
I see in hindsight that post should come with a trigger warning. I'm sorry about that and will add one. This is what I was talking about. I am not a religious person but you have to admit there is something just .... extraordinary ... about this sunrise...
 

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vic32

Well-known member
Hello, Fiera, I don’t drop by to too many post. But can I strongly recommend for you not to go camping anywhere by yourself.

And the picture you captured is sensational. I love sunrises. The best part of my day.
 

Fiera

Active member
I am grateful for the overnight snow which provided an opportunity to get out and shovel today. And shovel I did, and shovel I will do more later. I love the exercise, the rhythm, the tangible progress. There is a beginning and end point to the work at hand - the task is clearly defined. And I often do more than just my own...it is for self serving reasons, but I do take satisfaction in knowing that other people benefit.

Another benefit is that getting out and doing something alleviates the Bored Snackies, that tendency to mindlessly consume stuff when you are hanging about the house all day.

I have had a few (appropriate) bouts of sadness and tears today, esp. after I called my dad and he was preoccupied with his day and heading to lunch with Peaches and seemingly unaware of the date. He had me on speaker as usual and there was no space for me to shift the topic or articulate that I was feeling sad. He normally doesn't forget so we will see if he says anything tomorrow. If not it will wait until I am down there in person. I had this strong need to tell someone "I am hurting today"; to be seen; to have my sadness acknowledged. I texted my brother. No response. S was already reaching out to me about her relationship so it wasn't the time to raise it with her either, So I ended up melting down a little during my check in with Proggy, even though he is dealing with his own feelings. It was probably a mistake, but i
I couldn't hold it in.

I find myself judging myself for not having maintained "enough" relationships to where I can simply be authentic. But, that's not really quite the issue. One issue is that I tend to project/protect the other person's feelings and receptiveness, when perhaps they would really like it and feel important if I reached out to talk. Another habit is that I go for too long without talking to people and I tell myself it's wrong to suddenly just text or call and old friend and say "I need talk". Especially when I am not the person they would think to turn to. But then again, I am taking responsibility for their thoughts and feelings. Anyway I am just rambling but the point is to say that it has me thinking about my quality of connection with people and what I might want to work on.

S's mom is the ONLY person who reached out to me on the one year anniversary - not a single other person remembered or spoke up. It was a gesture of tenderness which I never forgot, and endeared her to me in a way I had never anticipated. Indeed, I have been feeling grateful for the older women who in some ways became adoptive moms/mom figures along the way. In fact, I think I will call IK now. Because I still can.
 

Llama

Well-known member
:grouphug: I'm sorry you were so alone with your feelings. It's tough to reach out for support when you're not used to doing so and it's even harder when you haven't been socializing as much for a while. But you're right: most people are happy to help or lend an ear, especially when the difficult feelings haven't accumulated for so long that they take over the entire conversation but leave room for lighter topics afterwards. At least that's how it is for me.
 

Cate

Long-term member.
but the point is to say that it has me thinking about my quality of connection with people and what I might want to work on.
I need to do the same. I need to work on maintaining contact with my women friends so that if the day comes that my husband dies before me I have those relationships current & have not let the friendships fade away. You have to work on it, that's for sure.
Does your Dad do messages? Maybe when you see him next ask if you could message him & get him to call you privately when you need him to.
 

Fiera

Active member
:grouphug: I'm sorry you were so alone with your feelings. It's tough to reach out for support when you're not used to doing so and it's even harder when you haven't been socializing as much for a while. But you're right: most people are happy to help or lend an ear, especially when the difficult feelings haven't accumulated for so long that they take over the entire conversation but leave room for lighter topics afterwards. At least that's how it is for me.
I appreciate the support and perspective Llama.
I need to do the same. I need to work on maintaining contact with my women friends so that if the day comes that my husband dies before me I have those relationships current & have not let the friendships fade away. You have to work on it, that's for sure.
Yes. And it has gotten way harder for me the past few years. It's not just having a boyfriend who requires a lot of attention. I isolated from most people when I was having severe anxiety last year, and couldn't function. Now I have let myself go physically (along with living a house that has defeated my best efforts) and I realized that I am letting that get in my way. There are plenty of opportunities to socialize with both old and new friends if I can run/walk/hike/kayak etc. But you are right Cate, you have to make it a priority.

I did take a new SW yesterday. 176.3. I suppose I am fortunate that things are not worse, but I can barely move right now so I don't think the scale tells the full story. I know that shedding 20 pounds would give me a big mobility improvement. 5 pounds, or getting under 170, would make a difference. Ya know, I will admit...I think I so well know what to do, like how reliably the weight comes off if I do the right things, that I keep thinking it will be easy. Well, I do still think it's kind of true - it's the DISCIPLINE which is hard for me.

Irish Friend post yesterday a bit which resonated. The article talks about how ROUTINE is the secret to accomplishment, and wins out over HEART every time. It was pretty cutthroat in making its point. About doing the biggest impact activities first in your day. About having focused time slots in your day, About not negotiating with yourself. I sat upright when I read that last bit. This was a reveal to me when I was training for a marathon...that I had to get up and just *do* the planned miles because if I found myself negotiating with myself, I already lost. It was hard for sure, but it was only DISCIPLINE that got me to a finish line as absurd as completing a 26 mile run-walk while raising money for charity and keeping up a blog...while working, and taking care of a dog and a household and maintaining friendships. Yeeps.

And, I also remind myself that getting on track with one goal is a springboard to focus and productivity towards other goals. You do have to prioritize though and stop trying to reach them all at once. You CAN'T.

I have signed up a target 4 mile well-paced group walk in 8 weeks.
This morning I will flush out a plan so that I have something to be accountable to.
 

Llama

Well-known member
Knowing your strengths and weaknesses is half the challenge - but we do still have to do the other half as well 🤔 Which can be kind of a bummer. I´ve been straying as well lately so I can do with the reminders. Let´s get back to those healthy habits.
 

Fiera

Active member
Let´s get back to those healthy habits.
I know darn well that showing up here and keeping an accountability tracker throughout the day is a key habit. So, I guess I will start with the obvious:

B: Tortilla (100), 2 eggs (144), shrimp (60) chi cheese (150) = 454
L/D: Tapas (800)
Snacks: (700)
IN: 1954
OUT: 2W (120) Indoor Track w/Proggy; Alphabet Game
NET: 1834
M/S: 10A/5P
Sleep: 7ish

Proggy is here.

I put too much cheese on the omelet. It was distracting cooking with him in the kitchen and I messed up the omelet, just wasn't focusing.

Period arrived last night. Hello. They are spreading out and I don't know when to expect it any more. But it probably was a reason I was so weepy Fri thru Sun. My body may be having some effects from the (low) amounts of T&P, even though half the time I fall asleep on the couch never applying the P.

Used determination to get to indoor track today (and Proggy came too!). Have been avoiding since Omicron but went during non peak hours and it was not busy. KN95 masks, proofof vaccine, etc.
 
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Fiera

Active member
Well, depending on which weather source I look at, it is around -1 and the wind chill is around -11. My house is far more comfortable that it was the past two years, which is still something I marvel at. We used to feel a breeze running through. There is a lot cold air gettng into the basement around the back door still. I think I am going to set the pipes down there dripping a bit...brb.

.
.
.

OK. Done. Also hung a comforter over the door and laid a blanket at the bottom of the door; combined this seemed cut down on the cold air pouring in to that back room. It's not cold enough to freeze pipes or anything but making the entire (once-upon-a-time) cozy basement somewhat cool. I think it will help the den above it (where I spend 90% of my waking hours) more snug too. It's very pleasant knowing that there are things I can do to make it better, even if they aren't the ultimate solution. I have to remember that once upon a time there was a functional storm door on that door, And there were a few times that rain from the stairwell flooded the outside of the door. It's only natural that the wood door wouldn't perform quite as well as it used to. Its just that seemingly a lot of things with this house all went bad in a very short time frame.

I am paying the price for eating snacks and carbs yesterday - sinus congestion. Blue corn tortilla chips and a flatbread were among the culprits. Oh, and some lobster mac and cheese Proggy picked up at the store. I did make salads and had some leftover spinach and things would have been Ok I hadn't gone snacking later in the evening. The battle for me has sooooo much to do with the 9PM hour...maybe I need to set my sights *specially* on that one hour per day and really observe what happens - thoughts, feelings, emotions, cravings.

I was up at 4, its 5:21 now. Going to read and see if I can get a nap.

Proggy is still here, snoozing in the bedroom. He plans to go home today.

I really want to talk more about the relationship status. What I can say is that he re-upped his decision to not talk about it last night. But things are better for me in that I am getting more of my own space and time while he is at home working on his job search. As long as he gives me space and freedom then I feel ok. We actually did talk about complaining and negativity and set about gently nudging each other whether it is getting annoyed at a driver or getting dismayed about the news. It was a much pleasanter day. Plus he actually exercised with me and we amused each other during the alphabet game. What's that? Well it is easy to lose count of laps on the indoor track (which has 11 laps per mile). And chanting "one...one...one" "two...two...two" etc all the way around is really dull. So I started using the letters of the alphabet to give my brain something to do...the first lap you list all the words you can think of starting with the letter A "apple...ambidextrous...aardvark", the second lap B words "bird...ball...boomerang" and so on. Bonus energy for something on theme or particularly creative. Yesterday the theme was the Beatles. Proggy got into it. We had some giggles. I appreciated feeling what it is like to have fun with someone. Realizing that has been missing. Everything has been serious and dark and fear and depression. Laughter is so good for the soul!

Ok. Book. Nap.
 

Llama

Well-known member
I kind of love your alphabet game! Especially when it gives you two something to laugh about together. And great to hear that your house is a little more comfortable: that would be such an anxiety reduction for me.
 

Fiera

Active member
B: BSand (Egg, 2 thin sliced, ham, butter) 1/3 banana = 340 10:30A
L: Yogurt = 80 2:15P
D: Mojcate and tort chips (350) Tarragon chx sld (300) 1/2 avocado (100) =750 5P
S: Cornbread (200) 6:15P
IN: 1370
OUT: 2.25W =140
NET: 1230
M/S: 10:30A, 5:15P T
Sleep: 12-4, 6-8:45 (6:45)

Proggy left to go home at 12:45P.

Both AN and S have been in touch, but going to soak in the solitude before getting on the phone with either.

It is brutally cold and I don't have a committed exercise plan. A failure to plan is a plan to fail. My options are: Indoor track, ride bike at health club (which I would have to sign up, for), bundle up really good and go take a walk outdoors, or do stretching and exercise video, or even just put on good music and move around to it for 30 minutes. Admittedly the lack of sleep is a factor. 3 years ago I was running in these temps, because I didn't negotiate with myself. But when you run you can keep warm better than walking/waddling. What time I am wasting even thinking about it.

So it's decided. Indoor track, 3PM. Moving on.

Food plan: Yogurt for late lunch. Dinner chicken and salad. I want chicken salad but no mayo.
 
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Fiera

Active member
I don't have a workout plan yet. But the outline is
Aim to lose 1 pound per week for next 8 weeks (3/24 event)
1100-1200 NET cals
Indoor track, Indoor bike, strengthen/lengthen/tone videos, stretching
No negotiating
Deepen awareness and strengthen "resistance muscle" for cravings
 

Fiera

Active member
Food Fail Awareness Check In

Unusually, I didn't fall to sleep immediately last night in spite of being very tired starting after dinner. I do wonder if the food I had for dinner, particularly the cornbread, contributed in any way. Or did I have some late coffee trying to wake up perhaps....I don't remember for sure. Anyway, after actually trying to go to sleep around 9 and not quite getting there, my mind just kept turning over a concern about Kdogs health, taking her to the vet (today) and the potentiality for having to cancel my visit to my dad the first week of Feb, or the more critical one in early April. This went on for a hour.

I even had my night guard in. I did the pre-sleep ritual of teeth-guard-progesterone. And I went to the bathroom and I noticed I wasn't hungry and yet I took the night guard out and went to the refrigerator anyway, So this points to it being a boredom thing or a soothing thing. Or the progesterone (which I usually fall asleep before I get to it).

Anyway, just keep paying attention. Keep trying to strengthen that muscle.

The snack I had BTW was leftover chicken salad (70) followed by 2 pieces of raisin toast when I was up again from roughly 1-2:30 (160). So already in the hole this morning, but will count those as breakfast.
 

Fiera

Active member
Am definitely not moving fast enough for someone who needs to leave for pottery class in 15 mins. 😱
 
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