Slimming World Diaries – Week Two

Dear friends,

 

Thursday marked the end of my second week as a Slimming World member and I’ve learnt something very important. Always make sure you wear the same shoes for your weekly weigh in because it really does affect the scales if you don’t. I made the mistake of wearing steel toe capped boots and it added two pounds of weight! I won’t be making that mistake again in a hurry.

This week I lost one pound which is really good because it means that  I’m finally heading in the right direction by not gaining or maintaining weight each week. I’m wasn’t disappointed in my loss until I spoke to my group leader after group was over for the night. It wasn’t the most encouraging conversation I’ve had with anyone.

Essentially what she probably thought was very helpful advice that would help me to improve my weight loss numbers came across as more of a lecture and not encouraging in the slightest. Basically she looked over my food diary for the week and told me that I could lose even more weight every week if I doubled the amount of vegetables I eat at every meal. This is true and something that I could very easily do; but there is one very big reason why I probably won’t do that.

One of the main rules about Slimming World is that the only limitation is your appetite. I don’t have the biggest appetite in the world and that’s my biggest hurdle. I only eat two meals a day, always breakfast and dinner, because eating any more than that leaves me feeling sick. I sometimes snack on fruit or a packet of pop chips in between because I know that it will fill me up without actually filling me up. So, unless I want to only eat a plate of vegetables every evening the chances of me doubling my vegetable intake are really slim.

When I joined three weeks ago I had a very stubborn four pounds that I was determined to lose because it meant another stone lost. I decided that if I could lose that weight in the first four weeks I would keep going with Slimming World until I reached my target weight.

At the moment I’ve lost two and a half pounds in weight and I’m on week three which means that I’m pretty much where I want to be despite people telling me that I need to do more and that I’m eating vegetables wrong by mixing them into meals. (That’s my completely unsupportive Granddad’s opinion on what I’m doing to change my life.)

I mean some people are able to lose seven stone in less than a year, which is amazing and very motivational but not because I want to lose that much weight so quickly. I need to loose seven stone but I don’t want to do it so quickly that I end up with saggy skin which happens to a lot of people when they lose a large amount of weight in a short space of time.

I would love to lose more than that every week but right now I’m still adjusting to life as a former extreme binge eater, learning which fruit and vegetables I actually enjoy eating and getting used to having fruit as snacks and vegetables with every evening meal so the chances of me loosing more than a pound at the moment are slim to say the least.

Is there anything wrong with me wanting to lose a healthy amount of weight every week instead of intentionally losing close to a stone every week?

Love,

Gennie

Mistake

Mistake

quote-on-mental-health-28-healthyplace

 

Last night I made the mistake of thinking that someone would be able to help me with what I think is depression. I phoned my doctor’s office and was turned away for two reasons firstly, because of the Bank Holiday; the only way I’d be able to get an appointment would be to phone up on the day I wanted the appointment. And secondly, because the doctor’s office was three minutes away from closing for the weekend. I wasn’t asking to have an appointment that very minute, I just wanted to talk to someone who would know where I can get help because I want to know what is actually going on in my mind.

Because why would I want to spend the rest of my life wanting harm myself in some way? I’ve been depressed for about ten years without any help so what’s another eighty years without help? Yeah, I can see that ending really well.

I don’t want to have to rely on sleeping pills to get to sleep every single night. I don’t want to feel like I’m going to cry at any minute. I don’t want to hate myself. I don’t want to think about self-harming or killing myself. I don’t want to feel anger towards my family because of something I can’t control. I don’t want to think about how much better the world would be if I wasn’t in it anymore. I don’t want to isolate myself from my friends anymore.

I want to be able to feel normal for at least one day. Is that really too much to ask?

Jeopardize

Jeopardise — https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/jeopardize/

Dear friends,

I won’t lie to you, I’m not the easiest person to annoy or agitate. I’m the kid of person who will let things build up until my anger completely explodes onto one person. There are very few things in this world that instantly rile me up, probably because I don’t socialise enough to find situations in life that do annoy me.

That being said, I have found one programme on TV that annoys me every single time I watch it. In the UK the show is called Whitney Fat Girl Dancing. I try not to watch the show but it’s the kind of programme you love and hate at the same time.

I don’t have anything against Whitney for trying to do something about body shaming fat people; because it’s something that all overweight people experience at some point in their lives and something should be done about it. And I do like that she’s concerned about being happy and healthy for the rest of her life.

But what I really, really hate about this show and something that I don’t really have time for is her coming across like she’s full of excuses about doing something to lose the weight. She laughs off and gets defensive when people tell her that she needs to do something about her weight; which is normal for people who are in denial about how bad their health has become. I’ve been in those shoes.

Yes, she has lost 100lbs while on the show, which I completely commend her for because I do know how difficult it is to lose any kind of weight. Yes, I also understand that having PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome) doesn’t make it any easier for her.

She has her own TV show, dance class, and has millions of women, including myself, who love her because of how positive she is about her body image; because it seems like she doesn’t care about what other people think of her weight which is something I would love to say that I’m comfortable with.

But how much longer can a thirty-two year old woman keep using PCOS as an excuse to do nothing about her increasing weight? Why isn’t being pre-diabetic enough to scare her into keep loosing weight? When will she take responsibility for the fact that her being overweight is partly her fault and stop jeopardising her health?

Love,

Gennie

Slimming World Diaries – Week 1

Dear friends,

This week marks the end of my first week as a member of Slimming World and I’m very proud to tell you that I’ve lost 1.5lbs. Sure, it’s not what I expected but it’s a good number to start with and when it’s added to the amount of weight I’ve already lost it takes me up to a grand total of 61.5lbs of weight lost in the last four months. Given how badly I’ve done with weight loss in the past I am beyond proud of what I’ve achieved so far this year.

For the last few weeks my weight has been very stubborn about coming off; nothing I did would make the pounds shift. I needed more than working out in the gym and eating as healthily as I can to achieve my goal of being able to walk into any clothes shop and not feel embarrassed because they don’t have my size. Joining Slimming World is my last hope, I need this to work to be able to achieve my goal weight.

I drove to my first meeting with my belly full of butterflies. What if I was the youngest person there? What if I was the biggest person in the room? What if I’m the only new member joining that week? What if it was like Weight Watchers all over again? All of these unanswerable questions had been flooding my brain for most of the day; not having answers did nothing to calm my nerves. I hadn’t felt this nervous since my first day at college.

My first weigh in was okay, I didn’t feel depressed or angry about the number on the scales. I felt proud of myself because although I’m still not a healthy weight; I’m not the beyond overweight person I used to be, which, given my history with being weighed regularly, is a very big achievement.

The first full week of being on the Slimming World plan has been pretty good. I was surprised by what, how much and how often I can eat on the plan. No part of the plan makes me feel like I’m on a restrictive diet. I haven’t had to cut out my Minstrels, Refreshers or Mega Double Lollies and I can eat them as often as I want to without feeling guilty about it which is a big relief.

It hasn’t been easy to plan every single meal down to the last detail every week but it has made shopping a lot easier because I used to have a very bad habit of buying stuff that I know I won’t eat and will find in a few years at the bottom of the freezer. (Because that’s what freezers are made for, right?)

Hopefully the end result of my second week will be better than this week!

Love,

Gennie

Eyes

Eyes

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Eyes are the window to the soul. The meaning behind this quote is that when you look into someone’s eyes, like your partner’s, you are able to see their soul. We can see who they are as a person. To me this is a very romantic idea because I’d like to able to look into my future partners eyes and see who the real person behind their bravado is. On the other hand, like a window frame when you look out into the world through out eyes, we’re seeing with our souls but we are seeing the world through a framework, kind of like a window, that limits what can be seen.

In my family having blue eyes is more common than any other colour because we are descended from vikings who had blonde hair and blue eyes. But my Nan and I are the odd one’s out because we both have hazel (green) coloured eyes. In a way it makes me stand out amongst my friends and family especially because I have several bleeds in my eyes. Kind of like Madeline McCan’s eyes but more like flecks of colour. (I have these bleeds because of an accident I was involved in two years ago.)

It’s not something that anyone notices because I’m overweight but I love having green eyes because it’s a very unique and desirable eye colour to have. My green eyes are the only feature that I’m not insecure about because it’s the only thing about myself that I can’t do anything about unless I wanted to wear contact lenses that change your eye colour which is an idea that still confuses me because it’s very creepy and unnerving to have any other eye colour but green, brown or blue.

I mean who would want to have scarlet red eyes like Voldemort just because they can?

Love,

Gennie

Ghost

My response to the Daily Prompt Ghost

 

I’ve grown up believing in ghosts and spirits. I don’t believe in Halloween ghouls, ghosts and goblins because it seems very childish and immature; like believing in the Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus. I stopped believing in them when I was six and my older brother broke my heart when he told me that the Tooth Fairy and Santa aren’t real. (The old Peter Pan thing of saying I don’t believe in fairies kills fairies was all that really mattered at the time.)

As a child I bought several books full of ghost stories and I couldn’t get enough of them. I watched the Ghost Whisperer with my Mum and it only made me believe in ghosts and spirits even more. One of my favourite programmes was Ghost Hunting With; essentially a woman called Yvette Fielding takes groups of celebrities to haunted places and searches for ghosts. It’s a programme that I can never watch in bed because it leaves me spooked by any kind of noise I hear during the night when everyone else is asleep.

The house I call home hasn’t made it any easier for me not to believe in ghosts, because my home is haunted by spirits of the women who worked as housemaids in the Victorian times. Having friends come round when they know that your house is haunted is a very difficult thing to achieve. From the day I started high school none of my friends were willing to stay the night in a haunted house.

As an atheist I don’t believe there’s a heaven or hell or anything like that, but I do believe that our loved one’s spirits are still with us. I believe that my Mum and Nan’s spirits haven’t left my side and are still taking care of me when I need the most whether I know it or not. I don’t want to visit my Mum’s grave because remembering her spirit and knowing that she’s with me wherever I go makes it easier to deal with the grief. Sounds silly, but who doesn’t want their Mum to be their guardian angel?

Love,

Gennie

Carry

My response to the Daily Prompt Carry

 

Carry is a simple word that has a literal meaning and a figurative meaning. In the literal sense it means to lift something or someone up and move it to somewhere else. In the figurative sense it means supporting someone through a tough time in their lives. For example when a loved one dies some people’s emotional reaction is feeling that they have to carry the entire family through the pain of grief. They feel like they have to be the strong one for their family. keep-calm-and-carry-on

I’ve been that person. When my Nan passed away eight months after my Mum I felt like I had to be the strong one for two reasons. Firstly, I’m the only woman left in our small family. I’m outnumbered by two men and while I hate being in that position now; back then I didn’t mind it all that much. I wanted my Granddad to know that he didn’t need to worry about how I was dealing with the grief of loosing two motherly figures in my life.

Secondly, I felt like it was my fault because we weren’t in the safety of our own environment when it happened. We were on holiday in a caravan park at the time. It had been my idea to go away for my Mum’s birthday, and because of that I felt like her death which happened because of a diabetic seizure was a reaction to me asking if we could go on a family holiday for the first time since I was nine.

I know that it wasn’t my fault now but while I was stumbling blindly through the black cloud of depression it was all I knew. I couldn’t pull myself out of the negative thoughts of how everyone else was blaming me for her death. I self harmed because f how much blamed myself for causing my Granddad so much pain in such a small space of time. I hated myself for hurting my only fatherly figure that much.

It was easier for me to accept what the voices in my head were telling me than try to figure out why I felt this way about what had happened.

Love,

Gennie

Confused

My response to the Daily Prompt Confused

 

I grew up as a tomboy. (Not the tree climbing kind of tomboy, more the kind of tomboythe-more-i-think-the-more-confused-i-get-quote-1 who point blank refused to wear any kind of girly clothes. There were never any bows in my hair or flowers on my clothes.) My Mum once told me that as a toddler I would wet myself if she tried to force me to wear a dress or skirt of any kind. Being a tomboy is so ingrained in my DNA that even after I’ve lost all of the weight I want to loose I won’t be in any hurry to start wearing dresses, skirts, and frilly things that look ridiculous.

I’m quite happy being a tomboy and everyone else around me don’t really pay attention to what I’m wearing on a daily basis because there isn’t really that much of a noticeable difference between men’s and women’s clothes. I have a pixie hair cut and no one bats an eyelid over it. Most of the comments I get about my hair are how I shouldn’t grow my hair long because it wouldn’t suit me at all anymore.

The only person who has anything negative to say about me being a tomboy and wearing men’s clothes is unfortunately the one person who shouldn’t be judging me for what I wear is my brother. He’s of the opinion that I’m magically going to turn into a lesbian because I wear men’s clothes and have pixie hair.

Wearing men’s clothes has nothing to with what my sexuality might be; because I’m still figuring that out. But it has everything to do with what makes me feel comfortable and confident. I don’t know where this opinion comes from and all it does is confuse me; because what if I am a lesbian and he’s being homophobic? He’s only mentioned it to me a few times, every time I laugh it off but it doesn’t mean that the comments don’t hurt me.

The way he views the world confuses me to no end. He sees the world in black and white, there’s no grey in the middle in his world. Men should wear men’s clothes and women should wear women’s clothes; there shouldn’t be any mixing between the two. Anything in the middle of his black and white views is going to confuse him because it doesn’t make sense to him.

Love,

Gennie

Complicated

My response the Daily Prompt Complicated

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Complicated, an adjective with the definition of something involving many different and confusing aspects. Everything about the modern world is complicated, relationships, family life, work, and holidays. There is nothing straightforward about going anywhere anymore; where would the fun be in a straightforward world? Complicated is what we English people do best.

My family dynamic couldn’t be more complicated. My relationship with my brother is complicated and civil at best. My relationship with my biological father is straightforwardly complicated. My relationship with my Granddad is confusing to the outside world. My relationship with my Mum’s sister is complicated. My life is complicated and most of the time I wish it could be so much simpler.

My relationship with my biological father is complicated because I’ve never spent more than an hour in the same room as him. The first fourteen years of my life were spent with hearing a small number of stories about how he was a drug addict and didn’t treat my Mum the way she deserved to be treated. He remained being rarely mentioned and that was the way my Granddad liked it.

I didn’t consider meeting him or think about him until after my Mum passed away and he sent my brother and I a card which didn’t do anything to keep our already disrupted household stable in the slightest. My Granddad wanted to burn it before either of us had a chance to read it, whereas my Nan, who had a much less judgemental attitude towards my biological father, wanted us to meet him.

I wanted the first time I met my father to be something that every other girl in my school year had with their Dad’s. I wanted to be a Daddy’s girl. I wanted a fairytale reunion. I wanted to believe that he wasn’t the person my Grandparents portrayed him as. I was wrong; it was never ever going to be like that.

A few days later we met my biological father and his mother, who has lived in the same village as my primary school for as long as I’ve been alive, at Pizza Hut. I won’t lie or beat around the bush about how the meeting went because it was a complete waste of time. Neither my father or his mother acknowledged anything I told them about myself, their attention was focused on my brother and explaining everything from their perspective. Afterwards my biological father gave me a hug and we went our separate ways and I haven’t seen or heard from him since.

I recently found out from my Mum’s sister, who wants me to see him again and build a relationship with a former drug addict, that my father’s family don’t think that I am biologically related to him. The other side of my family know that my brother is his son, but apparently I might not be his daughter. But the only person who can tell me the truth isn’t here anymore. I wouldn’t blame my Mum in the slightest little bit if I wasn’t his; honestly, it would be a blessing.

My Mum’s sister and I don’t get a long at all; she’s very domineering and thinks that her opinion is the only one that matters in every single conceivable situation. I don’t like her at all. When we do talk over the phone she always brings the conversation round to the topic of my biological father, normally the conversation is about how I’m missing out on knowing my biological father’s sisters, and how difficult it would’ve been for him to come back into our lives after my Granddad told the drug addict that he needed to leave.

She keeps telling me that I’m dishonouring my Mum’s memory by not having a relationship with the man who hurt her, didn’t make her happy and made her feel afraid being in her parent’s home. Why would I want to have a relationship with my father or his family if I know how much I would be hurting my Mum in doing so? Surely, she’s the one dishonouring my Mum and her sister’s memory by talking to me about it?

I don’t need my biological father in my life when I know that I have an amazing man like my Granddad in my life. He’s the man who has raised me. He’s the man who has comforted me when I’ve cried. He’s the man who has loved me unconditionally as his daughter from the day I was born. He’s the man who I will always buy father’s day cards for.

 

Love,

Gennie

Obsessed

My response to the Daily Prompt: Obsessed

 

quote-Vanessa-Marcil-i-dont-get-this-whole-super-skinny-obsession-201147_1

Obsession, a noun with two definitions, firstly the state of being obsessed with someone or something, and secondly an idea or thought that continually preoccupies or intrudes on a person’s mind. As a child I remember being obsessed with all kinds of things (Pokemon, Tamagotchis, Neopets, Scoobies, Harry Potter), because as a child liking the enjoyment you get from something so much so that it is borderline obsessive is completely normal. It’s something that a child will grow out of because their interests change as their minds and personalities develop.

But when does that obsession cross the line and become something it shouldn’t have ever become? How far do you have to step across that line? When does healthy become dangerous?

The best and most dangerous example I can think of is the way some people view weight in the modern world. When I was younger being a size zero wasn’t as bigger deal as it is now, sure there were people who wanted to slim down to be sexy and feel good about themselves; but as far as I remember it wasn’t the most important thing in the world to have a 22 inch waist like Victoria Beckham’s. (Or maybe it was and I never really paid any attention to it until now?)

I understand that loosing weight for the right reasons is normal; because I am one of those people who is finally loosing the weight for myself. But what I don’t really understand is how something like weight loss starts off as a completely normal activity can become a very unhealthy and dangerous obsession. When does your goal weight become not good enough?

In the last year I have been loosing weight in what I think is the most healthy way for my body; and the more I’ve lost the more I’ve noticed the unhealthy obsessions and lengths that people my age are taking part in to lose weight around their waists. I think the 6359707676214865611091769868_a4-challenge-660x400worst one to happen this year came from China; essentially teenage girls were holding a piece of A4 paper vertically over their midriff to show off how thin they were and then it became something it shouldn’t have done. Teenage girls started using the width of the paper to determine how wide their waists should be. Apparently it was something that they challenged themselves to achieve the ‘A4 sized waist’ with the end result being the girls looking anorexic.

Why can’t beauty be defined as something that comes from within? Will it always be defined by what the label in a pair of trousers or a t-shirt says? Will we always need a scale to determine how healthy we are?

Love,

Gennie