Sunday, January 10, 2010
A New Year
The New Year is always a time of hope and good intentions. 2009 was a good year, but one with great sadness. So I look forward to rejuvenation and a new start. And I'm hoping that I'm able to realize my intentions through action.
The "W" Word
Weight has been an issue for my whole life-- in one direction or the other. Over the course of many decades I've dealt with it through nearly every program on the planet, and not dealing with it at all.
I've been obsessive, I've been successful. I've been on track and then totally thrown by major stressors.
I'm faced with some milestones this year, and the very real threat of serious health problems, which I must manage or there will be major consequences.
I've made resolutions in the past, only to break them and feel really badly.
So this year, I'm keeping it simple--
1. Be aware by recording my food.
I think that if I can simply focus on writing everything down, the rest will come. I'll try to focus on simpler foods. I know what is healthy. I know what portions are. I know fat/protein/carb combinations. The awareness of what's actually going in the bouche will hopefully eliminate mindless eating, and keep me conscious of the decisions I'm making.
2. Increase activity with a goal of 30 minutes of anything on days I'm not working a shift.
Unrealistic goals have squashed me in the past. I've never enjoyed exercising, but I have had fun with the wii fit, and I like walking my daughter's dog (who doesn't live with us, but visits from time to time.) We have a very expensive and underused treadmill downstairs. (the dog really enjoyed it on days that were too cold for him (and me) to go for longer walks). I'm also very good at making excuses. I leave for work at 6 am and don't get home til 8:30 or 9 p.m. But this is only a few days a week, and I do a lot of walking at work. So by allowing myself to "not exercise" on those days, I'm eliminating an excuse. I'm not calling it exercise anymore. It's "activity."
The "B" Word
While writing this, I was looking for a graphic for the section above-- maybe a scale or something-- and it hit me like a ton of bricks as I looked through clip art-- There were, to me, many negative symbols-- the scales you stand on with numbers-- a symbol that has always seemed like judgment to me. (I read an article that stated many overweight women avoid going to the doctor for care because they fear standing on the scale.) There were the food measuring scales that have always represented limitation and restriction as I weighed and measured my food for years and years.
And there were many, many images of balance scales. And then it hit me-- Balance. That's really what I'm seeking. Balance-- between my work life and my home life. Between what I need to do and what I want to do. Balance that helps me put perspective on the negatives and discern truth. Balance that improves health and spirit and life. Balance that will take the edges off sadness and center me again.
The K Word
Knitting has always been very important to me-- as creative outlet, as relaxation, as focus, as centering, as meditation. I learned from Mom, and remember her patience and the time we spent together as she taught me.
The last project I worked on was the Hanami stole I made for Mom for my parents' 60th anniversary. She sent me the most lovely thank you. I'd been unable to pick up the needles since.
While I was home over the holidays, I helped Dad by going through boxes of her yarn and found many ufo's. Mom did a lot of charity knitting, including little hats for the babies I work with, scarves to give away and for charity raffles, sweaters for the "Knit for Kids" project, baby blankets for shelters, and helmet liners for our troops abroad. I found all of these, many of which needed finishing. I also found an almost empty Denise case-- all the parts were in UFOs.
I put myself to the task of finishing what was started, seaming sweaters, weaving in ends, and getting things ready to go to the destinations she had intended. It was so comforting-- I felt like Mom was with me as my hands finished what she started. In addition to accumulating a full set of Denises by completing projects, I sorted out several (!) boxes of yarn. I kept 2 lots of yarn- some natural wool she got in Ireland, and a dark sage green wool/mohair from Italy. I don't know what these will become, but they will be special.
Knitting has also served as an important social connection-- my LYS friends are dear to me, and I have missed them.
These gifts-- the opportunity to work on her projects, the set of needles, and the yarn, are what I see as Mom's way of getting me back into the knitting part of balance in my life-- the part that I haven't had heart for during the last 6 months, And I will reconnect with my friends.