Hello, there! This is Kermit THE Frog…Just kidding. It’s actually me. I’m just having an “It’s not easy bein’ green” moment. A Very. Long. Moment. But I hope you’re well and are in the swing of things now that it’s mid January. Woo hoo – it’s now 2015! Time has been passing and I’m trying to be happy about it. Here is a wonderfully encouraging thing that helps:
When we had Dan Uncle’s funeral in early December, his sister got on a plane right after finishing her own cancer treatment and flew around the world to attend. It was lovely to see Aunty D and Uncle P again. I remember Aunty D from when I was a wee thing, but I didn’t recall that I saw her earlier in the year before we went to Oregon. Apparently I don’t remember much from that time, but that’s another story. Aunty D spent some time observing me appraisingly from a distance and then we finally got to share a meal together with the whole family.
I did that Asian thing where we try to make each other eat things and I served her a shrimp dumpling from the plate on the lazy susan. I was like, Watch this, Aunty D, and deposited the morsel with surgical precision. Okay, that might be a bit of a stretch, but let the record show that I didn’t spill anything. (I did not attempt to help with the sauce.) Her eyes widened a bit, and she turned to me and said (in a tone that implied that the serving of the dumpling confirmed what she had been thinking,) Tell your coach I say you are very much improved.
Thanks, Aunty D! She had been watching my gait, how I navigated the crowds, and was able to play the piano. That was so encouraging for me, especially as I’ve struggled with the end of the year and those wash-out feelings. I told both of my Trainers and they were very encouraged, too. We’re on the right track.
Well, we’re on the right track, but we’ve hit a bit of a speed bump. One of my own making. So I’ve spent this time thinking about what needs to change and how I’m supposed to measure success differently. I’m recalibrating.
I’m starting with addressing how I approach food. I mentioned before that I have some serious psychological hang ups regarding eating. They stem from living in the hospital and having a PEG (food tube). Basically, I woke up and for a (long) while conceded NOTHING. I was like, this is the most ridiculous story I’ve ever heard, and if you think you can grab the other end of that tube and just pour stuff in, you’ve got another thing comin’. Mm hmm. I was a real treat as an inpatient, promise.
I force fed myself for a couple of weeks in order to reach my mandatory minimums. Meal time was horrific. Finally, I admitted that I couldn’t do it anymore during a weekly “Family Conference” meeting and my Doctor immediately made the nutritional supplements (drinks and pudding) disappear and relaxed my minimum requirement (i.e. I got in trouble if I ate less than 50% on my plate whereas it used to be 75%.) One of my nurses told me the general opinion did not look on this favorably, and one day they were all Tut-Tutting over my meal tray and my Doc was there and just said, She knows what she needs!! And that was the end of that.
I remembered this incident while lying on CMD’s acupuncture table one week and realized I needed something. So I started drinking Ensure (Active, High Protein, Low Sugar) in the morning and immediately felt SO much better.
I now have a subscription via Amazon Prime and a couple of cases show up magically on our doorstep. The only person who has voiced discontent about the Ensure thing is Tanpo. Last week at lunch he sat next to me saying, EAT! Don’t just move the chopsticks around. (He’s on to me.)
And then this happened at dinner:
Dad: Eat this. (Pointing to some meat on his plate.)
Me: No, thanks, Dad – I like to eat my meat at lunch so my digestive system can rest in the evening.
Dad: See? I’ll cut it really small and it’ll go down easy.
Yes, I’m a grown woman, and my father is cutting my meat. Thanks, Dad!
Actually, this is not an uncommon thing. Whenever we go to dinner with my dear cousins JE asks if she can cut my meat for me or makes sure NonyaJ is nearby to do it 😊. Thanks anyway, ladies – I can mostly get by on my own. I didn’t graduate from OT for nothin’.
So yeah, I’m in the middle of some serious adjustments over here. I’ve just been making this stuff up for a while and I got away with not eating at the beginning of 2014 bc my activity level was so much lower. But now things are different and I’ve felt the difference enough to know I need some professional guidance (Hi, Smurfette!). When I asked if he wanted to weigh in on what I tell my new doctor and Smurfette, Trainer D said I already know what I need to disclose but did throw this sentence in: [Maybe emphasize] your ability to sustain daily physical activity while decreasing stress through alimentation.
Am I the only one who needed to Google “alimentation”? At first I was hoping he was practicing his GRE vocabulary on me, but he said it was his Spanish brain typing.
Either way, I know where I need to start, and I’ll keep you posted. But in the meantime I wanted to share 3 really great things that happened recently. I’ll be posting them this week, and they are proof to me (despite my alimentation issues) that I’m getting better.