Well hopefully I’m back on track with the dieting. It certainly feels like an uphill struggle at the moment but I am sure that is all down to my attitude and weaknesses when it comes to food and drink. I am not overly fond of sweet potatoes for instance unless they are fried which is a bit of a drawback and so many recipes include these rather tasteless vegetables. I can of course leave them out or substitute something else but I often look at a recipe, see them in it and move on and end up doing something utterly unsuitable because I am cooking for three very different tastes.
But I am not giving up and am back to the swimming and hope to manage to fit in walking the dogs with the LSO at least once in the day this weekend.
The AP is keeping a low profile at the moment which is good in one way but rather worrying because from past performances we know she cannot sustain a pleasant exterior for too long. Her short term memory continues to fade but not where money is concerned which is quite amusing, she is obviously hanging onto that faculty as long as possible but everything else is out of the window and we are definitely living in echo valley. She continues though to irritate me with her assumptions that when something needs replacing in her rented property it cannot be the fact that the item in question is just old and worn out but it is always that the tenant has damaged it in some way. We have also witnessed the return of the ‘I know’ attitude but we are just ignoring that at the moment.
As I have said before, it is just a matter of time before the vinegary spleen rises up and we will be forced to say something. She continues to try to bully and dominate us every now and then but we cannot allow that to happen again. I am hugely weary of the whole situation but also have to accept that we can only do what we are doing and try to keep everything on an even keel. It is now over four years since we made the fateful decision to have the AP living with us, it is a decision we both regret. I try to not be bitter or dwell on the lost years but the LSO finds it much harder to deal with it all. Friends do find it difficult to understand but in most cases they lost their parents when they were much younger and before their mothers or fathers changed and change they do. There seems to be some kind of watershed that takes place after about 94 years. I do not recognise the person my mother is now; all refinements have been stripped away as she has aged and the brain begins to die leaving behind the more unpleasant sides to her personality.
All very sad.
It has finally arrived, Spring has landed with a truly incredible burst of sunshine and warmth typically just as the schools go back for the Summer term. After weeks and weeks of grey, wet and thoroughly depressing weather it is a real pleasure to wake up to clear blue skies. The land has also sprung into action with blossom bursting out all over and the fields are full of tractors and massive pieces of farming equipment sowing and planting at speed.
We are halfway through our break from the AP and the LSO and myself are enjoying our freedom despite the pressure put on us by the new boiler work. Although the diet is not exactly on hold it is a bit intermittent. As well as eating out we have found it difficult to deal with the lack of movement on the planned improvement. It has finally got underway beginning over a week late and stuttered along for the first few days as the builder fitted in other jobs that had also been held up by the bad weather as well as his dental appointments. It is just not true that doing this keeps the clients happy and we were beginning to get increasingly upset by the delays and the lack of action. I eat when stressed. I know it’s all a bit pathetic really but sadly true but I will get my act together again.
Hopefully the small building will be completed by the weekend and the new boiler and tanks should be in place and up and running by the end of next week. Well, that is in an ideal world which unfortunately is not inhabited by builders it would seem.
Never mind, at least for another two weeks we can still enjoy having our personal space back, eating what we enjoy and doing things spontaneously.
The sunshine? That’s just a bonus.
The long grey days this winter have been depressing and have done nothing to help the time to pass easily. I still have a deep sense of anxiety but a sunny day does a great deal to dispel some of the fog that lingers on the outskirts of my mind. I do feel that some positive thinking and taking some positive action would help to ease the angst but it’s finding the energy to stop being negative and basically shake off the torpor that has crept into my soul.
I am still very positive about the diet and although it is not a rapid loss, it is steady. My sleep patterns are slowly improving too which is a huge improvement. I enjoy the fact that the recipes I have found have been ‘family friendly’ and apart from a couple of times I haven’t felt the need to go down the ready made meal route. This has meant that no explanations have been necessary which in turn means no constant questions from the AP.
It’s interesting to note that as we are getting closer to the AP’s trip to bonny Scotland she becomes more imperious and words like ‘thank you’ begin to vanish and expressions such as ‘do this’, ‘can you’ and ‘put that’ become more prevalent. But this time I will not be provoked or harried and find that ignoring the situation or just refusing to jump to attention is a far better approach.
I just think the LSO and I need some time on our own, in our home and without the stream of appointments and demands from the AP. Just some space to do our ‘own thing’.
Fifteen days to go.
I have no idea why I feel so uncomfortable with myself. Yes, there are worries in the background but not things that should cause this sense of discomfort. I can only put it down to the fasting day and the fact I have a sore throat or could it just be a change in the weather affecting me. From feeling quite Spring-like it is once again heading towards freezing with the chance of snow looming.
The diet so far, is going well and in only nine days I have lost three and a half pounds and hopefully, tomorrow I should be lighter still. I have a long road to travel but I am finding this new 5:2 diet surprisingly easy and it has a real feel-good factor about it.
Even the AP’s continued refusal to remember she is away for a month from the 5th April is not irritating me. Nor is the ridiculous situation that arises whenever a perm is in the offing, causing me any grief. Perhaps I am just becoming more accepting of the situation and more immune to her carping. In fairness the AP has been a great deal pleasanter to have around but that could be because she is shut in her room much of the time ardently watching the snooker which fortunately for us is continuous now until she goes away.
Tomorrow is also Puppy Day when we collect little Lucie and it will be interesting to see Barney’s reaction to his new partner in crime; hopefully it will be a positive one. The puppy will be feeling a little lost to begin with but I am sure she will settle down pretty quickly.
Perhaps it’s all this change taking place that is affecting me, I have become unused to being so pro-active and busy planning things, not just doing the boring same old, same old. I have even been out and about in my car and ventured into a supermarket but that doesn’t mean I have given up on home deliveries I was merely helping out a friend who needed the pharmacy section!
But it’s all steps in the right direction.
Is this truly the start of a real transformation? I completed the first fast day and will do the second one tomorrow but today and yesterday I didn’t feel the urge to snack during the day. Is a miracle taking place?
I even find myself contemplating with enthusiasm salads, high protein meals plus vegetables, fruit and only a few carbs. I haven’t approached the knitting box yet but that will happen. We are getting a new puppy at the end of next week and the preparation is taking up a surprising amount of time. Perhaps all this is the reason for this apparent sea change.
There is no doubt that as the time to collect this sweet little Jack Russell approaches we are all smiling more, even the AP is looking forward to the new arrival but the organisation is a bit like the homecoming of a new baby, well that’s a bit of an exaggeration perhaps. It’s certainly not as expensive.
Bad enough though from organising a gate for the bottom of the stairs to new car boxes, a playpen, toys, pee-mats, heat pad for bed, tiny harness, collar and lead, Adaptil plug to keep us all calm to sundry other soft cuddly items; the list seems endless. The LSO is busy sorting the dog cupboard out which is groaning under the weight of adult dog food and now puppy food and a variety of sugar and fat free treats. The LSO may need colour coded bags for the different training treats when out walking although the new addition will not be trekking as far as the resident JR for a little while. It will certainly be interesting to see how our lovely even tempered ten year old Jack copes with this new arrival.
Anyway, all in all its an interesting time and just to make things better the sun shone today and what a difference it makes to everything. It has been a good time to start the diet.
Well, I have started the first fast day of the 5.2 diet today. It’s 9.44 am and so far so good except that I am full of liquid and no food! It feels like a long haul to lunchtime but I am writing this to keep occupied. Methinks I may be getting out my knitting to occupy my hands during the months to come.
Doing a Szechwan chicken tonight courtesy of the Hairy Dieters but lunch is still to be decided. Just realised it’s Shrove Tuesday so lunch will be waffles with warmed fresh berries, creme fraiche with yogurt and a smidge of maple syrup.
In between planning menus I am trying not to stress out as the AP’s one hundredth birthday approaches. Well approach may not be the right word as we still have twelve weeks to go but the AP keeps asking the same questions over and over again despite the fact that we have covered the same ground many times. She seems to think that all these intelligent, well travelled and well informed people who are coming to her birthday bash are incapable of making their own arrangements even though I have given them all information on places to stay.
Then at lunchtime today she announced that my cousin George and his wife who look after the AP twice a year are doing us a favour and getting her out of our hair. This ‘us’ is the equivalent of the royal ‘we’ but I did find it necessary to say that they are very generously giving the LSO and myself a break and for a short time, our personal space back. They also choose to do this.
These sudden statements are most revealing and an insight into how the AP thinks, it makes me realise once again that the she is totally self consumed and really doesn’t care about us but also resents the fact that there are those who do and like us enough to want to help; she did not learn anything from the straight talking last October. It is a sad situation to be in, looking after someone you thought loved you to only find out that you have been thoroughly used and abused. Oh well, as the LSO and I keep saying to each other, it is what it is and we will carry on.
Now for more water then a root through my knitting and wool box.