Krissie: In the zone


Wrenched from sleep at 5 am with a bad stomach. Probably the fault of stress and eating salad fifteen minutes before I went to bed. That’s diet Ginger Ale I’m holding aloft this time.
Yesterday was one of those days. Didn’t sleep well again the night before (damn you, Susan Elizabeth Phillips), got up and worked worked worked, finishing the revisions. Drove 25 miles, went swimming, got dressed and met my son and fiancee and grandson at the doctor’s office. Took grandson with me back home, stopping at the drug store to get his meds (which took forever!). Got home, only to realize I’d spaced my mother’s oxy prescriptions and the health center was about to close (oxys need written prescriptions). Several panicked phone calls (they’d already turned off the phones so I needed to talk to the emergency service), raced the 7 miles back to the health center and drug store, waited around for the drugs, took them back to my mother, found my son had called in misery, talked to him for half an hour making comforting sounds, found my mother hadn’t needed the meds after all (my fault, not hers), went home and fell apart just a wee bit. Remembered “Layla” and dancing in the kitchen and felt better, went to bed at 7:30 but asked Richie to come up and cuddle, which he did, bless him. And tonight even SEP couldn’t compete with how exhausted I was.
I’ve got too much on my plate. I can’t risk screwing up my mother’s meds like that, but I’ve got too damned much going on. I’ve got to figure out how to get help with that, work on detaching with love from my son, since I can’t fix it (did a good job yesterday letting him vent).
And I’ve got a long list of things I have to do, things that are long overdue.
You know what might help? Being able to do a little sewing today. I’m going to have to take a break from keying in revisions (it can get too hard on the eyes). When that happens I should work on projects, just to sort of ground me.
In all, though, I’ve done really well this week, which is usually the week that makes me a basket case. It helped that I got an extra three days on the revisions. I managed to swim three times a week (my current goal) and track my food with varying levels of success. I dealt with huge family stress and came out the other side.
And at no time was I tempted to eat the wrong thing, or eat too much. It wasn’t that I was strong and resisted. I just didn’t want that stuff. (Though I may be eating a little bit too little — what’s a more elegant way to phrase that?). I need to make sure I get my nutrients (hence the salad before going to bed, never a good idea).
I’m really lucky I’m in the zone. As a veteran of losing weight (and other major life changes) I’ve found that once you get into the right sort of head then stuff becomes almost automatic, which is really lovely.
There’s a certain point when things shift. When temptation starts creeping back in, when you need to use more resolve, which is probably why people mostly gain their weight back again, and more. The good thing for me is that in the past ten years, every time I’ve lost weight and regained it I’ve stopped at a lower point than before, rather than a higher point. I’d gone from a resting weight (as opposed to a resting pulse) of 282 to one in the mid 250s. 30 pounds lost in a way that will stay lost.
I’m not sure how I’ll face the challenge of temptation when it comes back to me, but right now I’m cool. I took my grandson through McDonald’s drive-thru for a happy meal (yes, I know, I should encourage him with better food choices but he ended up eating mainly the apples) and wasn’t interested in anything, though I considered getting a DC for a moment. And when did McD’s start having a bakery? Wicked!
But I didn’t even steal one of Alex’s french fries.
So for today I’ll concentrate on having survived the kind of day that makes one curl up with quart of ice cream and a box of cereal (cereal being my comfort food — it helps that I’m lactose-intolerant) and hope that things will get easier.

24 thoughts on “Krissie: In the zone

  1. Jane F says:

    Good job!

    Sometimes a you just need your parents to listen and making soothing noises and that’s enough. no need for them to join the fight, come up with advice but just be willing to listen.

    Granted, I don’t know the back story but I think listening and comforting noises can be underrated.

  2. Sounds like you had a challenging day but am totally impressed you resisted the temptation to steal any french fries. What self control!

    I agree – sometimes just listening and making comforting noises is enough. You don’t have to come up with any solutions. Even if you did, there is no guarantee your advice would be taken.

    Keep up the good work and enjoy your sewing day. It’s all about finding balance 🙂

  3. Auntie JB says:

    Kudos to you for keeping perspective during a challenging week!

    One thing I’m working on related to the “too much on my plate” department is to find help for some of the things on my plate. For example, I HATE cleaning. So I hired my BFF to clean my apartment for me. It’s been an amazing relief and a weight off my back. Now I actually cook in my kitchen (as opposed to getting take out) because I’m forced to clear the counters every two weeks when she comes. This results in healthier eating choices for me. (And stress relief because I truly love to cook, so I can relax by cooking.)

    I’m trying to identify other areas in my life where I can ask for help so that I’m better able to cope with those stressful periods. Hopefully you can find some help for those times too.

  4. Kelly S says:

    Good job in not resorting to food for comfort. I am positive Richie did a better job.

    How about “under-eating” for eating to little?

    Also, while it would be best to not eat 2-3 hours before you sleep, eating low-fat protein is the best thing you can eat before sleeping. The body will use the protein while you sleep to rebuild muscle. I find beef jerky is easy to grab.

  5. Ack! Those types of days kill me–too much helping others, not enough left over for me. I usually resort to carbs, so good on you!

    The other day I realized that on days when I’m feeling completely overwhelmed and frustrated, I just need to focus on accomplishing some small tasks. It helps me feel less like the entire world is spinning out of control.

    Keep up the good work!

    P.S. I was just on vacation and SEP definitely left me sleep-deprived!

  6. Robin S. says:

    Salad before bed?! “Smack” What were you thinking? (Shudder)

    However, CONGRATULATIONS! on resisting the urge to grab the ice cream and cereal! And not even one fry? You might make sainthood yet! (snort) And, yes, you sooo deserve some sewing time. Enjoy!

  7. Tanya (Wandering Betty) says:

    Krissie –

    Does your mother have any kind of aide that comes in to help? We were overwhelmed when we brought my son home after a severe auto accident with a TBI and finally, a wonderful nurse sent a social worker to see us and they inquired if we could use some help…DUH. A short time later we were enrolled in a program called CCSP (Community Care something something) and they send in an aide 7 days a week to bathe, feed, monitor meds, run errands, clean house etc. It was heaven sent.

    Having worked with them for a long time now, I know there are a myriad of agencies and most of them are covered through Medicaid or Medicare…but you have to be savvy enough to pursue them. I would have careened around the bend long ago if not for knowing I would have a six hour break every day.

    Even if your mother is not incapacitated, it could certainly help to have someone run all those little errands, take her out periodically (my son lives for his Steak-n-Shake day with his aide on Friday)and handle pesky details.

    Sometimes it takes awhile to find the right aide, but I’ve been astounded at the wonderful people who do what is usually a relatively low-paying job, and they do it because they love it. Please ask your (or her) Doctor about getting a social worker to help you locate something like this that might offer you some relief.

    If nothing else, your mother’s age will probably make something like this inevitable and it’s better to do it now while everyone is on board, rather than trying to deal with it in the midst of a health crisis.

    Good luck – you’re doing great and I’m inspired by you.

    • You’re absolutely right. I’ve thought of this before and done nothing. I’ll check with her doctor next week (particularly after screwing up her meds) to see if he can steer me in the right direction.

  8. You’re doing fabulous, Krissie. Hang in there. I know for me whenever I used to have a breakthrough on the weight loss I’d celebrate with a glass of wine and pizza and undo the good work. Stupid, huh? I mean that’s slap upside of the head stupid.
    So I don’t do that anymore.
    I congratulate myself. I write in all caps in my diary just how great I am. I congratulate myself out loud. I am my greatest fan. : )
    Then I go and get something for me that is a real treat, like a pedicure, manicure, or facial, or if I have extra money to throw away, a massage. I love massages.

  9. Lee says:

    Way to go, Krissie! Good work on being there for your son with the soothing mother noises and letting him vent, without trying to take over and solve everything for him.

    Although – salad before bed? Really, what were you thinking?

    Raw vegetables upset me, too. Every time I try, I end up drinking soda and eating starches (yay, cereal!!! I eat it dry, too) to settle everything back down – rather counterproductive.

    So I’m now making a conscious effort at getting my nutrients by using those Steamfresh packages (it helped that they were on a great sale this past week). I nuke one package and have a cup a day at one meal until the package runs out. Then I get a package with another vegetable and run through that. A nutritionist would probably shudder, but it works for me. Maybe it would work for you too ~

  10. WOW! 30 pounds gone is brilliant!
    You must feel lighter. You may not realize, but after a day like you had, you probably coped a lot better than you would have a while back.

    Yep, balance is the key.

  11. Kathryn says:

    RE the soothing noises: I swear Greys Anatomy totally stole my method for dealing with my bat-shit crazy grandma. All it takes it 3 words.
    Well, I’ll be!
    For goodness sake.
    Heavens to Betsy.
    Oh my gosh!
    You don’t say!
    Take care now.
    And don’t forget the verbal shrug: MM, mm, mm.

  12. It really is about mental resolve — I’m impressed you kept yours in the face of so much stress. I do hope you can get some help with your mom. It really is true that there is only so much of you to go around. And by the by, I love your daily pictures. You do have such lovely skin! I love the soft color on your hair, too. Just sayin’.

  13. KellyR says:

    Hi Krissie, I was going to suggest some kind of hourly respite care but I see others have beaten me to it! I will say it was a life saver when my Grandmother started needing more and more help a few years ago. Also, in addition to assistance with things like meals, bathing etc., my mother was able to set up companion care which was just someone dropping in for a visit a couple of times a week. The companion care particularly eased my mom’s mind because it meant that someone was there to visit even on the days the family couldn’t make it (my grandmother has maintained being a social butterfly despite advancing Alzheimers) . My mom really struggled (well struggles if I am being honest) with guilt because she can’t be there all the time, especially now that grandma is in a residential care facility. Taking care of my grandmother is a full time job for several people though, especially since she broke her hip and is confined to a wheelchair and my mom has a right and a need for time for herself. Not to mention that she has her own grandchildren now.

  14. Melanie says:

    It sounds like you really NEED your sewing and/or your other crafts. And I can understand that. There’s something very soothing making something with your hands, and often your mind is able to concentrate both on what you are doing, which is often pretty automatic, and turn other things over at the same time. It’s peaceful thinking, not the kind of directed thinking where you have to reach a conclusion or make a decision, but the kind that allows you to wander around in your head in that pleasant aimless way that’s sort of like meditation. I don’t let myself do this enough, but when I do I often end up stumbling across something I needed but had lost. Hope you’re able to make time for yourself soon and that it brings you some peace!

    And you need to give yourself more credit for holding it all together. You’re amazing.

  15. Briana says:

    I’ve thought often about your situation with your mom….Is there a way that she can get a home-health person to come in? Or someone to help someway, even if not through home-health?

    You’ve mentioned attending church. One of my very first jobs (I was probably 13?) was stopping by the home of a blind, elderly woman every Saturday. The pastor is the one who suggested it. I cleaned for her — moving her “davenport” to vacuum behind it — and did things like looking up phone numbers that she would memorize to call later in the week. But mostly, I just kept her company for a little while, visited with her, and ate lunch with her.

    She was a dear, dear woman. She never knew my name because she couldn’t hear well enough to catch it. Every week I was afraid she would be dead when I pounded on the door. (I was maybe a bit melodramatic!) Eventually, her son arranged for her to have other living arrangements.

    OK. That’s a convoluted story. But I’m just wondering if there’s a way that you can get help with your mom so that you can worry about her less and maybe visit her once a week, but not stress yourself out about it quite so much?

  16. It sounds like you’re doing fabulous! And congrats on making it through McDonald’s without a DC. They are the worst temptation for me, because I can get any size (any size) for a $1, and as long as I’m going to take the plunge, it might as well be the largest they have. The rest of the food holds no interest for me. I think I ate too much of it when my kids were little and now we’re all a bit sick of it.

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