Embarrassing Moments, Goals, and Other Things

This is one of those posts where I start writing with no idea of what I will say. There are options. Do I talk about what I did yesterday? Well, that sounds exciting, doesn’t it? I had breakfast, did some yoga and meditation, read the news and played games on my computer. Went to post office to check the writing club’s PO box. Watched the rain come down (yay, we have rain!). Fixed a nice dinner (Guinness Roast Beef with vegetables over whole-grain noodles – it wasn’t a vegan night), ate too much food, and watched some TV. I did not, we will all notice, write a blog post.

Do I write about my plans for today? I’ll spare you.

See, this is why I don’t blog more. Life seems to be either an intense, hectic whirlwind (like the last several weeks have been), or it’s… well, see above. We all have days of utter boredom, don’t we? And frankly, I could use the down time. I’m honestly still recovering from our time spent caring for my husband’s father. I’m am very lucky that I’m able to have the time to decompress. Most people have to immediately go back to work.

I have done some useful things since coming home. It took three days to catch up on bookkeeping and filing. Two days to clean up the yard, which really needs more time, but – rain. I had health issues to address.

Hey, I haven’t told you about that, have I? How careless of me. It’s sort of a good story. Embarrassing as heck, though.

The day after my father-in-law died, I had one of those is it a heart attack? gas episodes. Yeah, it was really gas, but that was some pain. Crying on the floor, unable to move, ambulance ride to the ER kind of pain, hurting all over my body, high BP, things like that. Since women my age often have these symptoms during a heart attack, it’s really a good thing to get checked out. I hated the idea of going to the ER, but Himself was frantic.

They did all kinds of tests to rule out heart attack and then to find the gut problem. In the end, we brought it down to a perfect storm of stress (weeks of it, along with having a bad cold), too much processed food eaten on the run, four days of intense Ibuprofen use (due to a hurt back), too much food that included beans, too much caffeine (two large glasses of iced tea), and laying down immediately after eating.

So the pain eventually went away, two EKG’s proved my heart was fine, and x-ray and ultrasound showed no organ damage. But the blood tests – two of them… ah, that’s where things got worrisome. As in abnormally high liver enzymes.

Damn. My liver is going wonky.

I had another blood test when I got home, which showed lower, but still extremely high, enzymes. My doctor doesn’t appear to be very worried – just said to avoid alcohol and pain meds, and have another test in three months.

Okay.

You may have read that last line and not noticed, but I have to avoid alcoholI LOVE alcohol. I love the things you can do with alcohol in food and beverages. I have a glass of wine with dinner four times a week. Sometimes I swap out a wine for a margarita or a martini. The holidays are approaching and Himself has an awesome eggnog recipe, filled with rum and bourbon. I like the occasional glass of brandy or scotch. Beer with a hamburger (or a veggie burger).

Sigh. So I’m “avoiding” all of it. During the holidays. Because folks, I’m not fooling around where my liver is involved. The high enzymes can probably be traced to the same perfect storm that caused the gastritis. Alcohol probably wasn’t involved because I’d hardly had anything to drink for a few weeks. There wasn’t time. I did have a few glasses of wine post-viewing and post-funeral. We all did. That’s actually the last alcohol I’ve had.

I’ve also made a couple of decisions I hope I can keep.

  • I’m going to be more serious about the vegan diet. I couldn’t follow it very well in Oceanside because I didn’t have a lot of control over meals. I still don’t quite buy the idea that humans should never eat animal products, but I will try to limit it to 1 – 3 times a month.
  • I’m going lose more weight. Lots more. You may not remember that Himself and I started a partial fasting diet about a year ago by limiting food intake to about 600 calories three days a week. I lost 25 pounds doing that, but I’ve been stuck at about 125 pounds for several months now. I still try to follow the diet, but Himself doesn’t need to lose any more weight and he stopped fasting. On my own, I have very little willpower, so it’s been an epic fail lately. I need to get over this. I truly believe that my excess weight, which is mostly in my gut, makes ALL my physical ailments worse. Losing my gut (as much as genetics will allow) can only help.

I really have trouble sticking to this. I do understand that a temporary diet is not a successful way to keep weight off. I understand that I have to permanently reduce calories and permanently exercise (or at least move) more. I don’t expect to lose weight and then think I can start eating to my heart’s content again. I know I can’t. So I need to grow my willpower in order to both lose and maintain my weight. I’m okay, pretty much, on maintaining where I am, I just can’t seem to eat less. 

I know that 125 doesn’t seem like much. You’re all probably guffawing at me. But some of us are overweight at 125 pounds. I’m a little person. It’s like the average woman weighting 180 pounds. If I lose this weight, and stick to the mostly plant-based diet, I’m hoping that arthritis, restless legs, and peripheral neuropathy will all improve enough that I can stop or cut back on medication. That can only help my liver.

Maybe then I can have a glass of wine once in a while.

We all gotta have goals.

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2 thoughts on “Embarrassing Moments, Goals, and Other Things”

  1. Oy! Nothing like starting the holidays already stressed and cutting out favorite things you only get once a year. Still, in my best turn-that-bug-into-a-feature mode, you could give yourself the gift of time. Decompressing after stress – good or bad – isn’t doing nothing, it’s recovering. You could postpone those lovely eggnogs for the dreary days of January (when, let’s face it, we really need a little sparkle). Same with the vegan diet – call it getting back to your training routine, work it in as best as you can during the next two months, but really set the date in January, when the rest of the world is also doing the New Year’s resolution thing and you’ll have lots of people to share the stories.

  2. No alcohol…that is one that can be tough when it’s something you enjoy cooking with and having as a drink for dinner. But I’m sure you get that under wraps. Also glad that the end result of your physical ordeal was something not so heart-shattering. Good looking out by Himself to make sure you got the treatment and tests you needed to get a proper diagnosis.

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