Only Up

Thursday was supposed to be my getting out day. It didn’t work out at all. The reason will not surprise you at all.

I mean seriously, would you have done anything different? I didn’t make it past the living room floor! I did have to make a deal with myself – if Thursday wasn’t to be the day then I absolutely had to go today. No excuses. Of course the weather on Thursday was quite nice, and today was drizzly. That’s ok by me though. The park was virtually empty and everything was nice and clean and shiny. There was a lot of everything to see as it happens.

Mushroom season is in full swing! One thing I’m rather desperate to see is a red toadstool, but that’s going to take some active searching while I’m not focusing on my fitness. That’s probably not going to happen this season, because getting back into my fitness is the most important thing. It felt so good to be out!

The last time I walked in the park it took me about an hour because I kept stopping to take pictures, but I did the same route today (and clearly took plenty of pictures) and it took about 50 minutes. That’s because whenever I could, I RAN! I only ran on the level or uphill parts, and if my knee started to hurt I stopped, but it was so good! I got all rosy cheeked but the rain cooled me down again nicely. When there are less mushrooms to see I hope to get the time down to under 40 minutes, purely from a time-saving point of view. The quicker I get my route done, the more time I have left in the day for other things. Like drawing and painting!

I’m now up-to-date with #birdtober again, and I’m especially happy with the wren. It came out exactly as I wanted it to.

I’m enjoying it so much I’m going to paint as many birds as I can once the month is up.

That’s it for my news I think. Thanks for reading!

Hayley x

Counter-cursed

The curse of the Sunday night takeaway has been broken! It wasn’t easy, because Sunday night was also family film night. We’re working our way through the Studio Ghibli classics, and Spirited Away night also coincided with mum and brother’s monthly takeaway. I just tried not to think about it too much, and I got through it without too much bother. Even the smell of the pizza dough seemed less intoxicating than usual.

So with this victory in mind how did I get on at group on Monday? Well, I lost a rather wonderful 6.5 pounds! That’s it, that’s exactly what I needed. Now the ball is rolling again I know I can keep going.

My consultant is lovely, but I didn’t enjoy group all that much this week. I think it was a combination of just being really sleepy and wishing I was in bed, combined with the pungent smell of a fish curry. Yuk! We had a curry night in group, and even if I did trust any of the food (I overheard fish curry lady telling someone her dish was vegetarian) I wouldn’t have fancied it anyway. What I am looking forward to is mocktail night which is coming up next month. That could be interesting, especially as I’m off the sauce. No drinkies for me till Christmas Day!

I had planned to do more walking last week but I was so tired that it never came to fruition. I figured if I let myself get too tired, I’m more likely to go off plan, plus it’s good to let yourself have a decent catch up. I must get out this week though because it’s mushroom season and I want to find some good ones.

The trouble is, my sleep pattern is a little bit messed up. It’s mostly because of Newton! When I got in from work this morning, I should have gone straight to sleep. Instead I spent way too long playing with an energetic puppy. Not sensible! I should be sleeping now really, but I just couldn’t get off.

As ever I think it’s just a case if rebalancing again. I’m doing a more physical job at work tonight and I’m determined to get out for a walk tomorrow, so that should help me reset my pattern.

Yesterday a lot of time was taken up at the hair salon. About three hours actually, but it’s always good to catch up with the awesome dude who has been styling my hair on and off for the last seventeen years. Or thereabouts.

In recent times as you know I’ve struggled to locate my mojo, and I haven’t felt much like myself. However as myself has come back stronger than ever I felt it was time that the outside should match the inside.

I thought about getting my haircut once I’d lost a bit more weight. Then I thought… eff that!

This was me yesterday morning:

This was me yesterday afternoon:

Richard has mulleted me many times over the years. It’s something that really shouldn’t work, but I absolutely love it. Just like the mullet, I’m back!

In fact I’d say I’m more ‘me’ than ever right now. After my latest foray into the world of relationships, I really wondered why I allow myself to be treated badly. The usual suspects didn’t ring true – I don’t crave love or relationships (at least I don’t think I do, perhaps I should question that assumption), I’m really happy when I’m on my own, and I never go actively looking for partners. So I figure it’s not a case of just feeling like I’m not complete without a boyfriend.

But when I fall for someone, I ignore all the red flags and will fold myself in half trying to keep the person who is tearing me apart. I have a telephone assessment for counselling coming up later this month, but from what I can the gather the thing I’m mostly likely to be offered is CBT in order to cope with feelings of depression and anxiety in the future.

But I don’t want to cope. I WANT TO HEAL!

I’ve been asking myself if that’s even possible. Do people ‘get better’ or do they just learn to live with it? Is there something wrong with me? Can I be ‘fixed’? If I want more than CBT, what do I even ask for? Is a more in-depth treatment accessible to me? Do I deserve it? Am I depressed ‘enough’?

The answer popped up most unexpectedly, in the most unlikely of places – Instagram! I stumbled across a whole plethora of help and information after reading about dating advice from someone I follow for a completely different reason and it’s been a total game changer.

I thought I was weird, that others don’t have the same problems as me, but when it comes to love it seems I’m pretty much textbook. Everything I read is almost word-for-word my own experience, and what’s more, I’m learning what do to about it! I’ve never felt so sure that I can stop repeating past mistakes and that something/someone really good is out there waiting for me. I could actually share my life with someone in a really fun, healthy and special way, without destroying myself in the process. WHO KNEW?

Well, a lot of you knew. You tried to tell me, but I didn’t really understand, or if I did and happened to believe it, it didn’t think it could be true for me. I’m sure I’ll go into this more in future posts where I’ll share really valuable resources (I need to make a list and get all of the information in order) but for now let’s just say my mind is well and truly blown. If you are struggling with absolutely anything in life, although social media obviously isn’t a replacement for actual therapy, you can guarantee there’s an Insta-therapist who can point you in the right direction. In my case it simply helped me learn what to ask for. That’s a pretty good starting point.

In the meantime I’ve added a couple of paintings to my Birdtober collection, but I am now a couple of days behind. I intend to catch up tomorrow though and I’m ridiculously excited about fairy wrens. Watch this space.

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x

Life is Poo!

Life isn’t bad by any means, but over the last week or so life has become somewhat focused on poo – specifically whether Newton has done one, what consistency it was and where it was ‘deposited’. We have a Newton group chat so we can give various updates while my sister and her partner are at work, which has occasionally been used to share things such as a video of Newton being able to jump on the sofa for the first time. Mostly though, it’s just poop. That’s what life is now. It’s well worth it though, because his cuteness is reaching critical levels. I may actually explode.

Today, I feel good. Actually I feel fantastic, because I genuinely feel (with no having to force it) like I can and absolutely WILL hit my target. When I’ve tried to get myself back on plan for, ooh, the whole of this year, I’ve felt in the back of my mind that it was only temporary, that the cravings were just waiting in the background for the first signs of weakness. Talk about a self fulfilling prophecy.

This week I’ve got my patience back. I’ve relearned to accept that these things take time and maybe I’m not going to get huge losses like I’ve been used to in the past. I’m now willing to accept consistency. As long as I have a loss each week, I will be grateful for that, and little by little, a little will become a lot.

I’m entirely sure that this week there will be no Sunday takeaway, because I’m sick of being a slave to my cravings. I was doing fine until I got back into the habit of eating rubbish – I didn’t eat ice cream or pizza for months and months and wasn’t the slightest bit bothered. I can get back to that state of mind, and now the weather is getting distinctly chilly it’s the perfect time to do it. It’s way too cold for ice cream!

Over the last few days I’ve been immensely enjoying Newton’s company. His personality is coming out more and more each day, and he has me wrapped around his little finger. I got told off yesterday for sitting in his favourite spot on the sofa.

He actually barked at me because he wanted my seat!

Now we are in October, that also means it’s Inktober, which I dabbled with in 2017. You are supposed to do an ink drawing every day of the month, but I gave up after day 5.

This year I’m doing birdtober, and I doubt I’ll chuck it in this time around because I’m enjoying myself too much. I only found out about it on the 2nd but I caught up straight away.

Today’s offering is a little more rough and ready, but I’m getting better at being ok with that. Last night at work I had unexpected training, and since I smashed the theory part and finished quite a long time before anyone else, rather than just stare at the walls I sketched out an oriole on a bit of scrap paper. I gave him a little colour this evening.

Oh, I also smashed the practical with zero faults. It wasn’t hard but still, it’s nice to have a perfect little moment!

I also went into work early on Wednesday, for free and on purpose. Our Union rep, who is also in charge of lifelong learning, suggested getting a gardening group together. I’d love to learn more about gardening in order to improve our own garden, but don’t know where to start.

The big bosses have agreed that we can use any spare green areas on site and has also agreed to give us a small budget for tools and supplies.

Others in the group are day shift people I don’t know (yet) with some experienced gardeners to tell the rest of us what to do. We can do as little or as much as we like and I’m really looking forward to it. I’m currently encouraging the implementation of many bird feeders and boxes, and there’s a lovely lady I met who wants to come charity shop hopping with me. The Union rep told me we’d get on, and he wasn’t wrong!

Although life has been great I’ve been feeling especially sleepy this week, so I’ve spent most of today actually asleep. Who is this sensible person I’ve become? As a result though, I’m a bit behind and really should finish cooking my dinner.

Thanks for reading,

Hayley x