Friday, August 31, 2012

Shut Up and Climb

I just caught up with Mandi at Darn Good Lemonade and Carol at Paw Paw Salad. Mandi talked about her love of rock climbing (yes!) and Carol posted a picture of a painting which she bought that is especially meaningful to her. It made me think of these pictures from a trip I took to Utah in 2002.

Not sure I can do this -- my first time rock climbing.
On my way up and figuring out my next move.
When I look at this picture, I think - if I can do this - I can ANYTHING!

Rock climbing in Snow Canyon

I did it!
This pictures remind me of what my life used to be like -- I want my life back.

Long Weekend, Long Post

Happy Labor Day Weekend to my friends here in the U.S.! We've earned an extra day off -- I am sure of that!

I am not sure where to start. I have a feeling this is going to be a VERY long post. Please bear with me.

First, I am feeling fine. I have absolutely no physical complaints except that I am FAT. Yes, FAT. I gained about 20 extra pounds while undergoing chemo last year. Those 20 lbs. piled on top of the 10 lbs. that I wanted to lose even before my diagnosis add up to me being about 30 lbs. overweight. It's not a pretty sight.

Then I had my hysterectomy and oopherectomy. I am in menopause thanks to the chemo and my surgery in April. My metabolism -- which has always managed to be pretty speedy on its own -- has now slammed into a brick wall.

I cannot lose a pound to save my life. And it just might be all about saving my life.

I know that carrying extra weight and bodyfat is not good for someone who had cancer. My cancer was estrogen-positive. Did you know that even after you have your ovaries removed, your body still manufactures and stores estrogen in your adipose (FAT) tissues? It's true.

So my main focus in life (besides my job and marriage) is to lose weight and gain muscle. Easier said than done.

One thing I am really learning about myself now that I have completed all my treatments is that my life is WAY out of balance. I really do not make time for myself. I love my job and tend to work a nice, full 9 hour day - many days I work more hours. I don't care -- I love what I do.

But when you work like I do, that leaves very little time for taking care of oneself.

I do not workout. I set my alarm for an hour before I normally get up thinking that I will get on the treadmill and walk but that never happens. I am just too tired thanks to the sleeping pill I am on due to menopause insomnia. So I roll over and hit the snooze and no calories are burned.

Then I go to work and sit behind a desk all day. I love what I do so much that I rarely take a lunch. Sometimes I will grab a bite to eat but usually end up eating it at my desk. And God forbid it is a day when I have a meeting during lunch. In comes the Southern "comfort" food -- the BBQ, the cornbread, the potatoes and chocolate cake. MYGOD. It is impossible for me to resist the good old Southern comfort food.

And even if I have a good day of eating, I get home and I am tired. I just want to unwind. So I open a bottle of wine and down two glasses without even thinking about it. But it does feel GOOD. I can relax, kick back and enjoy my evening (of doing nothing - no working out, no yoga, no sex).

So yes, I am feeling fine physically. But I obviously have a long way to go in the work/life balance department.

I won't even get into the emotional wreck I have been since having my hysterectomy. I hate using hormones as an excuse for bad behavior but I must admit that I feel like I have PMS every single day. If I am not overly sad and morose, I am angry, irritated and frustrated.

Those are not good emotions to have on daily basis. As a matter of fact, I am pretty sure that you can lose friends and possibly end up divorced if you keep those emotions going every day.

So yeah, life kinda sucks right now. And I feel guilty for saying it because I have been through the "worst." I have had the surgeries and chemo and radiation. Life should be a breeze right now.

Anyway - thanks to those of you who have checked in with me and left me comments. It's nice to know I am not alone in this weird "post-treatment" funk. I am sure it will get better. I just need to figure it out, I guess.

Friday, August 10, 2012

That Voice in Your Head Is Not the Real YOU!

I haven't been the best blogger lately. I have been too busy, too tired, in a funk, out of town... the list goes on and on. But I am back at it today and I am trying to figure out where to start.

I guess we should start with "the funk..."

Somehow, during the past six or eight weeks, I have had some very morbid thoughts creeping into my head. I have thought that perhaps I am not going to survive this experience. I have been almost resigned to the fact that my breast cancer is going to come back and I won't make it.

This is no way to live life. I knew that I needed an attitude adjustment but I just couldn't seem to do it on my own.

I finally started to pull out of my funk yesterday after I watched this episode on the Oprah Winfrey Network. My sister recommended it to me and it was a real life saver. (Thanks, P!) It is a conversation with author Michael Singer who talks about separating the voice in your head from the real you. What an eye opening conversation! If you are struggling with negative thoughts, constant worry or just need a little jolt of positivity, check out this episode.

I will keep this post brief... but more to come!