Self fulfilment, one wedding, a birthday party, bedroom redecorate, possible Phd/Mphill and an upcoming hysterectomy.

It’s been a week or so, mainly because I’ve been crazy busy and the chance to sit down and catch up didn’t happen. Then it seems more daunting how to begin and where to channel my thoughts. As you know I had been feeling rather down, I got caught in the trap of where my life “should” be of course which means by societal standards. Which is usually a crock of shit. But it involves ticking various boxes, get a spouse, have kids, own a house, have a car, decent career, get a promotion, better car, live through your kids, even better car, fancy holiday. It never ends, it is a fools game, I realise this but sometimes still get sucked in, still feel my worth is not as much because as a carer I am not constantly ticking new boxes.

Any way I have a technique when I get in a fug, I tend to withdraw for a while and read, I focus on inspirational stories. People who have overcome obstacles, this could health wise or most recently abuse, poverty and many other set backs as was the case for David Goggins.

He is in his own words “a crazy motherfucker” not everything in his book resonated with me, but two things that really did were his ability to just keep picking himself up and his focus on self fulfilment. When did self fulfilment stop being important? Living a life to be personally proud of, which very rarely means having the best car because we all deep down know that while shiny things are awesome they don’t fill that deep well of satisfaction that doing something you personally find fulfilling does.

My focus from now on will be just that, on the matters that fill that deep well of longing for actual meaning, teaching Charlotte, spending time with family, seeing friends and it gave me the impetuous to start putting together a research degree proposal. There is a university that is showing interest, I will let you know more as and if there is more to know.

Tricky bit recently, I went to a wonderful 50th birthday party and a beautiful wedding, both I went to sober and sugar free. I have to admit that at the buffet I picked the things that I was fairly certain were sugar free and didn’t grill the bride on the matter. Would have seemed a little dickheadish really. But both occasions nothing but sparkling water passed my lips.

I did have a really tricky few days a week ago where literally all I wanted was to eat chocolate. I wanted nothing more than to dive head first into a family pack of minstrels and devour the lot. I didn’t but it was actually genuinely hard, which I know sounds bizarre but it was.

Onto the hysterectomy, I have after many years of bleeding heavily, painfully and sometimes for half a month had a hysterectomy arranged. My farewell womb date is 4th of October. I am seeing this as a positive step, I am already perimenopausal I really don’t need another five to ten years of heavy bleeding. Of course it’s not to be taken lightly, it is a major op but the consultant seems great, I was in hospital yesterday for biopsies on the endometrial layer which went well. I’m a little “stoned” feeling today and have a sore fanny but other than that all is good.

Which is why I have spent the past few weeks furiously re-decorating my bedroom, it was previously pretty bleak and if I am to spend a few weeks needing rest breaks the environment matters. Anyway thats us all caught up. I’ll post the last two weeks natural sugars tomorrow.

Better-ish

I’m feeling somewhat better today, Generally I actually love my life. There are a huge amount of positives, I adore where we live, I have a very close relationship with my kids because life have necessitated I’m around most of the time and although far from rich I never have to worry about food on the table, or a roof over our heads.

There are times however where I have to work at my mental health, I had to when Charlotte was first diagnosed with cancer and Cowden Syndrome and every time she has a scare. I’m going to have to now coming off the back of my younger sons very serious mental health struggles. In all honesty there were points where I found his difficulties and resultant ways of coping harder than Charlotte’s cancer. With cancer it’s terrifying but there is a very set plan of action and very specific planned outcomes of each stage. The professionals speak in terms of action and reaction and hoped outcomes. With mental health it seems that getting help in the first place is a nightmare and then it’s a case of throw things at a metaphorical wall and hope things stick. For two years in my sons case nothing did. Now he seems to have started to find his way out of the mire. I’m incredibly proud of him for that. Depression is a serious illness and like cancer takes lives. I think people often forget that. He’s doing amazingly to get through it.

Anyway so that leaves me with own brain a touch fried, in the past 3 years there have been more than one moment where I thought I’d lose my daughter to cancer or my son to depression, or lose our relationship.

In a nutshell I need to work on my own mental health, I need to focus in not out. The first step to this is to step away from social media. It doesn’t help, we all know that essentially it’s a highlight reel but even within that is the reality that most people have had an easier life than ours. Not all, I know some amazing strong people who have actually had it worse, but on the whole most families don’t have to deal with childhood cancer, or a youngster life threateningly depressed. Thank heavens they don’t I wouldn’t want them to, but equally I don’t always want reminded how much of a struggle our life has been in comparison and continues to be. My husband and I have often joked that the only break we get is a bone. It’s funny because it’s true. Dark humor for the win!

So I’ve a installed a block app on phone that allows access to Facebook and Instagram only once a day, that way I can check for notices by my gym, share work posts and then step away. Only my daughter has the pin to unlock the block app. If I miss that time period either I wait till the next day or have to load the actual laptop. Who can be bothered doing that?

This means all those spare moments on the loo or in waiting rooms will be filled with reading. I’ve taken this approach in the past and found it highly effective and beneficial.

I’m going to journal again,this is something I’ve also used in the past as a tool to focus on the positive and also found highly useful.

Most importantly I’m going to make time to see friends, this has always been the most helpful to me. To work on those real life connections. As much as I back away like a wounded animal when I hurt I need people. We all do.

Finally I’m going to accept that it’s ok to struggle, we’ve been through a hell of a lot in the past few years and my role has been to hold everything together and everyone up. That takes its toll on a person. Throw in perimenopause and crazy irratic cycles even with hrt and it’s a miracle I can hold a thought. Can I hold a thought? Not sure…what was I saying?

I’ve started this as my bathroom book it’s very funny.

Oh and on a totally different note I keep having “omg I had a glass of wine by accident or popped a piece of chocolate in my mouth, I’ve failed me challenge” dreams. Ugh Catholic guilt has clearly found a way to attach itself to this year!

If you find anything of interest or use in my blog please consider sponsoring me and help work towards a cure for Cowden Syndrome. Thank you.

https://www.justgiving.com/fundraising/sugarfreeyear

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Day 16 – exhausted

I’m having a rather exhausted morning and had planned on a fairly lazy one, then I discovered I actually was driving my eldest to work…again. Which is over an hour there and back. Oh joy. After dropping him off Jasper dog and I went for a short run on the beach, it’s not one we’ve run on before and although beautiful wouldn’t be my first choice simply because it’s so busy. I quite like to have no people when I exercise, it’s headspace time. That sounds dreadfully antisocial I realise! It was a pleasant short plod, though I do wish I would occasionally feel like I’m progressing with running. It never gets easier and I never get faster! I do always feel better for it though.

This evening I’m watching Bohemian Rhapsody with my daughter, I’ve seen the film before and love it so I’m really looking forward to that!

Today’s food in words and some pictures!

Breakfast

Grapes, blueberries, yoghurt and cacoa nibs

Lunch

Corn crackers with cream cheese and baby corn.

Dinner

Chicken korma – banana, coconut milk, and chicken breast with poppadoms and brown rice.

Snacks

An Ella ball thing and 100 dark

Total sugars (all unrefined)

Day 15 – a catch up on the week

I think I passed the course, though how I did with everything going on heavens knows. I think the distraction was probably a good thing. I came home last night really apprehensive.

Today I spent the morning on the phone to various professionals today virtually begging for help for my son. They are pretty much of the opinion that the only one who can stop taking drugs is the person taking drugs. Which is an awful thing but true. The whole think is so sad and I really hope he chooses to get well.

Anyway I stuck to my no sugar, no booze in the midst of all this and while on a course away from home. There were times I was very tempted though. Especially to comfort eat. The university is amazing and such a friendly environment to the point where they had a tea trolley arrive mid morning and mid afternoon with a tea and scones or pastries. Pure torture!

Look how lovely these are!!

I stuck to my guns by when I arrived getting a Tesco delivery to meet me where I was staying. I’d brought a lunch box and took packed lunches every day. Then cooked in the evening. There have been two times I’ve eaten out yesterday and today. Yesterday I went to pret as they have quite plain salad boxes. I just didn’t add the dressing. Today I ordered a grilled chicken salad without croutons and dressing.

I haven’t managed to photograph everything etc, with the course and all the drama just sticking to no sugar no booze has been hard enough but I will try this week!

Day 11 – whine, whine, wine

I really want a large cold glass of dry white wine. I want it so much I can taste it in the back of my throat that delicious cool crispness. I don’t drink regularly or eat badly, but like a lot of people when life is tough I have the urge to comfort myself with nice things, it’s an almost primal urge. I had green tea instead.

I’m in the middle of a family dispute with my son, of course the irony of being on a mediation training course while in the middle of a family dispute is not lost on me.

Anyway onto today, the mediation course is really interesting although during some of the role playing practices I felt myself almost tearing up as I’m feeling so vulnerable. Playing at being in conflict while heartbroken and in conflict is rather weird.

Today’s food- just in words

Breakfast

Oats, mango, almond milk

Lunch

Bun with egg mayo, salad

Dinner

Potato waffles, 3 eggs, tinned peas

Raspberries, blueberries, pomegranate seeds creme fraiche