Saturday, February 25, 2012

Self Portrait 17

Before

After
What's the difference?


The first photo:  the mess really bothered me.  What you don't see are the pile of dishes behind and pile of stuff on the desk to my right.  You also don't see the debris of crumbs, dog fur, candy wrappers, and scraps of my son's duct tape on the floor that should have been swept up by my kids yesterday.

The second photo:  pretty much the same mess but this time it doesn't bother me because in between I had exercised.  I felt relaxed instead of anxious.  I could focus on what needs to be done next instead of angry that it needs to be done at all.

My perspective changed, the mess didn't.

So, yeah, I know I'm not technically in the photo for today's "self" portrait, but self includes perspective as well as flesh and bone.  I have learned that I must to do some sort of exercise to help me with anxiety and depression issues.  The mess and never-ending to-do list have to wait.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Self Portraits 15 & 16

Gray Day
Even the sky was overcast.  It was actually a very productive
morning, but when the kids and hubby came home, I felt frozen, stuck.
The urge to eat was strong.  I wasn't hungry, though -- just stuck, brain dead.
So, I went for a walk.
I may have been gone for only 10 minutes, but I felt a world better.

Mine!
I often feel I belong to everybody but me.
No one is taking advantage, per se, I've just defined
that it was okay
.  It's not anymore.  Mornings until 10:30
are mine.  Mine to exercise, prep for meals or menus, chores,
blog, shower, get ready for the day -- things that make me healthier.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Self Portraits 12-14

I've been avoiding forgetting to take daily pictures.  It's good to see where I'm at, but not always fun.  These three pictures are from my past week.  

Sleepless early morning, catching up on scripture study.
I chose to read by candlelight because I both like it and
 because we have no walls dividing our kitchen, dining,
and family room.  When I turn on a light, it floods
the hallways into the bedrooms.  Candles are softer.
I have a love-frustration relationship with the scriptures.  I was called to be a Sunday school teacher for 14-15 year olds.  It's good in the sense that I dedicate more time to reading and pondering the scriptures, but it's frustrating when I come across something that challenges my testimony.  

Every year, we teach a different book and rotate every 4 years:  Old Testament, New Testament, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants.  When I began teaching, I started with the O.T. over 2 years ago -- Ugh!  I'd be okay with some things then come across stuff that reminded me why I had been an atheist.  I've resolved to not take things literally, and that's okay because that's not the whole point of scriptures, anyway.  There are things for me to learn that can help me, and the rest I just have to put into a mental file and ask God about them later.
Little guy Skye woke up later and joined me.
I loved having him with me while he worked on
his masterpiece.
Sending my first born on the "Klondike" - a camping
trip in the snowy mountains with his scout troop.  
 I look at the above photo and remember how we almost lost him at birth.  He was born at 36 weeks by emergency c-section with an apgar of 2 and GERDS.  He stayed in NICU for about 10-12 days and came home with machines we had to hook up to him -- oh, the awful tape that pulled at his skin.  He's 12 now.  Strong and healthy.  I can't believe I allowed him to go sleep in a freezing tent on the snow.  He.loved.it.  And I love him.
Presidents' Day -- It's our turn to post the flags in
part of the neighborhood.  It's wonderful to see the
streets lined with the flags.  (Hard to see in this photo).
Our church wants to make sure all the young people in the neighborhood (non-members and members, boys and girls, financially capable or incapable) are included in activities and camp-outs and pays for all of the fees (including Boy Scouts).  In return, the young men and women "work" for it by raising money and doing a flag service.  Neighbors donate money to the fund, and the kids put a flag up in their yard every patriotic holiday for a year.  I love being a part of this.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Self-Portraits 9-11

Feb. 12a
For better or for worse, this is me making an effort.
I can't believe it's Sunday, again.
Feb. 12b
Trying a more flattering angle -- up higher.  I'm also
sticking out my chin to smooth out the double.
Don't I look hopeful?


Feb. 13
My favorite place to be.  When I was a kid having a
bad day at school, I'd mentally go to my "happy place"
which was my bed.  I'd say to myself, "This will all be
over, and tonight I'll be in bed with my pillow and
blanket and cool sheets."

Feb. 14
My almost all-time high.  (227 was my highest during
the past several weeks).  I'm 5' 8" - medium frame.
I'd like to be somewhere between 140 and 150.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Self-Portraits 6-8

This first picture came to mind when Jill (The Sassy Pear) spoke about thinking she looked better than what her picture showed and when Kyra (Adventures in Fitness) gave a funny description on her latest post about her running.  I used to run jog slog before the plantar fasciitis and hip bursitis.  I thought I was doing wonderfully.  I felt so athletic.   Then I saw my shadow one morning.  It was like seeing the shadow of a parade float.  So, I totally related to the following photo:






Feb. 9
Danny and me at IKEA.  We had a good time in spite of
his head cold and my headache.  I love his smile.
Feb. 10
He's helping me with this self-portrait-a-day project.
I hadn't snapped any pictures and didn't know what to take.
We were returning from Walmart after buying fabric for my
daughter's dress.  I'm going to teach her how to sew with a pattern
and using the same sewing machine my mother and I learned on
(1961 Brother, lavender!).


Feb. 11
Now.  Saturday morning.  My son has the computer I am
allergic to.  Danny gave me the little red one as a gift --
much better.  But, I really don't like spending a lot of time
on the computer anymore.
(My headboard used to be our fence in Chicagoland).
BTW, thank you for the support on my last post as I waded through the initial shock of what I was seeing.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Self Portrait 1-5

After the hip-bursitis diagnosis, I was really discouraged, depressed, and went into a tail-spin (and a tail inflation, too, I suppose, gaining 15 more pounds -- I'm at my all-time highest weight).  I ignored the blog and spent little time on the computer anymore.  A couple of blogs were still fed to my email.  One was Jill's "The Sassy Pear."  She was recently inspired by Kyra's "(the never ending) Adventures in Fitness (& Life)" and her project to take self-portraits every day for a month.  At first I didn't want to, but then I though maybe I could learn something from it.  I've been in a fog for months now, pretty much ignoring my circumstances and surviving on denial.

Feb. 4
My daughter and I after her Irish dancing competition.
We have a fun time together while I help her practice and
get her ready at 0'dark-thirty.  She seems to really like me
and my company.  I hope that lasts forever.


Feb. 5
Walking to church.  We have three hours:  sacrament
meeting, Sunday school, and Elders' Quorum/Relief
Society meetings.  I was "called" as a Sunday school
teacher to the 14-15 year-olds.  That has been both a
source of great anxiety and a growing experience.  It
definitely is outside my comfort zone.  I wasn't raised in
this church, so I feel highly unqualified.  But, that's the whole
point of a calling, to stretch and develop us.
When I see this picture, I remember so many times wanting to
turn around and go home and not be around others.
I often force a smile.  "Great!  And you?"
I have to say though, by the end of the 3 hours, I am up-lifted and
glad I went.  I keep telling myself that over and over as I make this
trip the following week.

Feb. 6
There it is -- the reason I avoid the camera and mirrors.
Behind me is my sweet family at dinnertime.
I am in my office, the kitchen.
I should label this, "Tired, Fat Mom Who Has Completely Let Herself Go."


Feb. 7
Day 4 was closing, and I still hadn't thought of what type
of self-portrait I should take.  I wanted to take off my shoes
and began to pull on my pant leg to lift my leg onto my other knee;
I couldn't lift my foot otherwise -- too fat, pants too tight.
"THAT"S what I should take a picture of," I thought to myself.
"It's absolutely ridiculous that I've let myself get this way.  I should
take a good, hard look of what I've become instead of numbly ignoring it."

Feb. 8
I had just taken a shower and was grabbing a bite before
heading to the grocery store.  My hubby sweetly said,
"You look pretty."
I asked him to take a picture so I could see what he sees.
I don't see it.
I see a fat, depressed, tired girl who has nearly given up and
is about to put a potato chip in her mouth.  Wow.