The cracks are appearing.

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……and that’s not just in the ground either. We are certainly baking in a heatwave and I really do find it too hot both during the day and then also during the night. This has meant restless sleep and long days feeling tired and definitely under the weather in every sense of the word.

I haven’t written a blog for a while, not because things are any better here but because I have been experimenting with a different diet. Much as I loved the 5:2 diet it didn’t love me and after the three vertigo attacks, the continual headaches, the high BP reading and the general feeling of being unwell, I decided to take my daughter’s advice and have a proper look at the Real Meal Revolution or Banting as it is often known. That was two weeks ago and I have managed to lose a magnificent seven pounds despite one of those weeks being an observation one. It took the whole of that week for me to understand the principle of the RMR and I still have much to learn. It is a high fat/low carb/moderate protein regime and the wide range of recipes and weekly meal plans available online as well as in the books make it a pleasure to follow. Yes, I have had carb withdrawal symptoms and because I have to also cater for the LSO and the AP I cannot clear all my cupboards of the carbs I can’t eat as recommended by the RMR. Today for instance I made a quiche for the AP for lunch and the smell of the pastry cooking was almost too much to resist but resist I did and I enjoyed my salmon and cucumber roll wrapped in lettuce with a charred pepper salad.

Needless to say the AP has no idea I am doing all this and will probably only notice when I have lost a lot more weight. She would be a pain if she did know anyway because she would be constantly asking how I am doing and wanting to eat the same meals which in truth she would dislike. Her ARMD works at least in my favour for this!

I do feel much better, my BP is slowly reducing with help from one very low dosage pill a day, my glucose readings are at an acceptable level although I am still Type 2 Diabetic but at least they are stable. It certainly all bodes well for the future when hopefully I can come off all medication. Today has been the first day for many weeks when I haven’t had a headache, well, so far anyway and I feel all in all, that my health is improving.

It was the LSO’s birthday recently and the family all came to stay for a night at the weekend causing a flurry of activity at this end. It was a lovely weekend but the AP didn’t enjoy it as much as we did because on this occasion she was not the centre of attention.

She continues to try to control us and we are continuing to keep her firmly in her place but it is exhausting and both the LSO and myself are weary to the bones of having to deal with her petulance, rudeness and ‘know it all’ attitude (and that comes from a point of really knowing nothing). She is constantly making up stories, getting most things utterly wrong these days when talking to others and comes over to visitors as being a dear, sweet old lady but the AP can manage that only in the short term.  There is no pretence with us. We see just a conniving, bullying and at times thoroughly unpleasant old lady. A fine example of her pretending to be so understanding and caring was when I inadvertently overheard her talking on the phone about how it is difficult for the LSO and I to get any proper holiday because of having the dogs and looking after her and also how much we do need a break. The dogs are the least of our problems! The AP was repeating my words said to her one evening when she was resisting having to go away and I pointed out to her that the LSO and I need some personal space and time together. She was almost word perfect on the telephone and yet cannot remember who was playing in the tennis an hour ago.  In some ways it makes the whole situation worse. We have always rather hoped her strange and often nasty ways are a result of her extreme age and perhaps a touch of senility. But I now realise how utterly cunning and conniving she has become. Thank goodness she will be heading up to Scotland towards the end of September for a month and the break cannot come soon enough for us. It could be a long eleven weeks!

 

Is it genetic.

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It’s back to the fat issue! Is there really a fat gene or do fat people just eat the wrong things? I do eat a sensible diet, well balanced generally but probably a little too heavy on the carbs but that is something that can be lessened. I don’t eat or drink huge quantities and the need to reduce carbs is to do with diabetes. Just how much of the fat problem is genetically inherited? It would be great if scientists could discover a magic pill to just  melt the fat away.

Yesterday evening the AP thought she was being really subtle by mentioning that she had been watching Tom Kerridge on the TV and was telling the LSO and myself how much weight he had lost and he has produced a book about it all, would I like it! For those who have read my previous blogs you will know that the subject of my weight is not a topic of discussion especially with the AP but in this case I was irritated but also slightly amused. Tom Kerridge probably lost a great deal of his weight by giving up a prodigious drinking habit. I am not in the habit of downing 15 pints a day although I do enjoy a couple of glasses of wine. The irritation factor is that despite asking her not to be so critical about my weight she still persists. If I felt it was a genuine concern about my health I really wouldn’t mind but I know it is all to do with vanity and other peoples perceptions of her. A fat daughter is not good for HER image. Unfortunately her constant ‘nibbing’ for want of a better word has done nothing for my self esteem and my general response when feeling down and frustrated by it all is to head in the direction of a nice comforting carb.

Also still on the same subject, all these dieting books are much the same and I have a cupboard full of them, The Hairy Dieters, Anthony Worral Thompson, Low Carb Cooking, Low Fat Recipes, books by Slimming World and WeightWatchers, the list is endless. That is not to say that these books aren’t useful because they are and they are great guides when meal planning. Interestingly they all have two things in common and that is the prevalence of punchy, spicy flavours and a variety of lovely crisp vegetables so once again we go full circle and are back to the problem that continually haunts me these days. How do I cook for us and also satisfy the AP and her love of bland, soft food smothered in sauces or gravy.

We have another fridge/freezer arriving next week to go in the utility room and the LSO has decided that one drawer will be dedicated to meals for the AP whether bought in or pre-prepared. Well, it’s a plan and sadly no magic pill for me, just diet and exercise.

An uphill struggle.

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The AP has returned and the dear relatives who have looked after her for a month have departed homewards and I feel so down. There are no words to explain this sense of utter despair that has overwhelmed me. As I prepared the dried fruit for my fourth Christmas cake I could have cried.

The AP has not returned in any way nicer it would seem, in her attitude towards the LSO and myself and has already started using the basilisk stare as if she hasn’t heard a word that is being said to her. When she doesn’t respond we explain again to be told with a screwed up face that she has heard everything. This is not easy. Her sweet little old lady pretence slipped at breakfast time in front of the family but a quick recovery was made although her attitude had been observed.

The minute they had gone she headed up to her room. I do not like what this woman has become and am at a loss to know how to deal with this situation. Somehow I must find the mental strength to rise above this terrible feeling of despair and gloom but how on earth do I do this. I have never been someone who wallows in self pity or enjoys being down and depressed. I have always felt that life is worth living and managed, despite difficult times in the past, to pull myself out of being miserable and have found something positive to hang on to.

This time I am really struggling.

I also wonder how much of this extreme emotion is because I have been told I am a Type 2 Diabetic. Maybe some of my reactions are down to the fact that I have just been put on medication to help control the condition as my attempts at dieting have made little difference to my blood sugar levels, in fact the very opposite. I have only been taking these pills for two days so I doubt they are doing much yet and I still have to endeavour to lose weight.

I guess part of the whole problem is the enormity of what I/we are dealing with but if someone else was saying all this to me what would be my reaction? Well, I know I would say two things and one would be to not look at the entire situation as a whole all the time, take small manageable steps in the right direction. Then the other piece of advice would be to take each day as it comes. There is no point in doom and gloom and misery is catching, of that there is no doubt. It is time to man up or in my case woman up and despite the uphill struggle, deal with everything, stop wallowing and follow my own advice.

I have just read through what I have written and actually feel slightly better. What is it about putting down feelings in words that is so cathartic?

 

 

 

 

Stress makes you fat.

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Ok, it is official that stress makes you fat and it’s worse if you are over sixty. I can definitely relate to that statement because despite my best efforts my body refuses to do what it is told or so it seems. I am not a happy dieter, I love to cook and I love eating out so I am probably my own worst enemy in truth.

Having been diagnosed Type 2 Diabetic I have made a huge effort to toe the dieting line but generally I hardly lose any weight unless I survive on a lettuce leaf for every meal. I know, that’s an exaggeration but it really does seem that way.  I tried a really low carb diet for a week and lost four pounds but the following week I reverted to a more mixed but sensible diet because we were on holiday and I put on three pounds. I do think the first part of a severe eating regime causes a large fluid loss and looking on the bright side at least I didn’t put on four pounds or more.

I am now restricting sugars which isn’t difficult as I don’t have a really sweet tooth and I am keeping carbs down by reducing the amount of bread, potatoes, rice and pasta I eat which is difficult as I am a carboholic. Hopefully I will see a difference in weight by the end of the week. I am aware that exercise is just as important and I do swim as much as I can but do need to walk more.  The LSO suggested getting the bicycle up and running and provided the photograph above which about says it all really. It’s certainly a reflection of how my body feels at the moment, in need of some attention.

The AP returns on Monday but I refuse to become stressed out about it. Somehow both myself and the LSO must survive all this and enjoy life as best we can. Being resentful brings only misery and that can become a habit too hard to break and I really do not want to go down that road. The LSO and I have always managed to laugh a lot which is such an important part of being well and staying healthy and we must not lose that facility no matter what happens. So how do we do this? Well, by a sheer determination to rise above this situation and to not be beaten into the ground.

I can hear the trumpets in the distance.

That must be a good sign.