2 years 11 days of our new reality

I miss my mom. 2 years and 11 days of not being able to talk to her, to visit her or even to argue with her. Yesterday was the worst day yet. She was on my mind at every turn. I guess it took me totally by surprise.

fairy lights in jar on shore at sunset
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Yesterday I was doing a “values”exercise. I was trying to determine what is important to me and why. Two of the questions that I needed to ask myself was: “What do I surround myself with in my personal space” and “What do I spend my energy on?”. My room is filled with books and puzzles and stationary and that is what I spend a lot of my time doing. Reading, writing and doing crossword puzzles, Sudoku, etc. I started thinking of how a love of puzzles was something that we shared. I can picture her sitting in her room with the Natal Witness puzzle page. She had her favourite puzzle. I can’t remember what it was called but it required you to make as many words as possible out of the 9 or so letters provided. My sister, her son and I definitely share a love of puzzles with her. In my sister and her son, it manifests as a love for picture puzzles while my mum and I enjoyed word and number puzzles.

I also got my affinity for accounting from her. She worked as a bookkeeper most of her life. I will never forget how she beamed with pride after our school awards ceremony. I received the 1st place award for accounting and it was mentioned that I had broken the school’s record for accounting in grade 8 (called std 6 back then). My mother was a very modest person and expected the same of us but that day, that day she threw caution to the wind and told everyone how “I got it from her”. I was so shocked and happy. I don’t think I have ever heard her take credit for anything since. On the weekend before she passed, it was the first time in a very long time that all the sisters were together with her. She was so thrilled to have us all together. I was saying to her that Alex most definitely got his love for soccer from her. You may never have seen her at a match but she always watched it on TV. When Alex was a baby and as he got older, he had no choice but to watch soccer and soapies whenever she looked after him. She refused to take the credit and insisted he was more interested in 7de Laan (a South African soapie).

What I definitely did not get from her was her organisational ability. She made sure that the house ran like clockwork. We never wanted for the basics, no matter how much or little money there was at any point in time. She was very intentional about how she used money. A skill I am desperately trying to teach myself now. She always made sure my car license was paid on time as my car was still registered in PMB and I live in Durban. We had a system. I had one of her debit orders come off my account and she stashed that cash for me in an envelope next to her TV. It was my Royal Show spending money every May and my Car license money in September. it was just one of the little ways that we connected. Let me tell you, my car license has not been paid on time since she has left us, much to my bank account’s distress. Being disorganised is a costly exercise I tell you. I might not have inherited that ability but my sister Carolyn, definitely inherited it from her.

The parking spot I plotting yesterday turned out to be taken by an Atos just like the one that she used to drive. I was so surprised that I almost said to Alex: “Look! Granny’s here”. I guess I have being feeling very disconnected from her of late. I would like to believe that all the little reminders of her that were placed before me in various ways yesterday, was her way of letting me know that she is still near even when it doesn’t feel like it.

When it comes right down to it, she will always be a part of each of us. When we look in the mirror, we see some element of her. My sisters and I, and I think all her grandchildren, have her chin and neck. We realised that night we were all together in the hospital that we all wear glasses like she did. 😁 Almost all her grandchildren inherited her talent for baking. We are all blessed with some element of her skills and personality that allowed each of us to connect with her in our own way while she was here and that we can use to connect with her now that she has passed on. I will take comfort in that.

I hope that you and your families continue to take precautions against the coronavirus. It’s a such a stealthy little bugger. Wash and sanitise your hands, wear your mask correctly, keep a safe following distance, and avoid going out as much as you can. Prevention is better than cure after all.

#Staysafe

January was a great month!

Can you believe that January is finally over! While it was definitely a long month, it was a great month for me (and I hope for you too). I started and maintained Intermittent Fasting in an effort to get this diabetes into remission and, hopefully, I will lose major weight along the way. I have also started being more disciplined and focussed on my goals and desires.

a greek salad
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Intermittent fasting…an update

My routine

It’s almost one month since I started. I started strong and expected a wobble when I got back to work halfway through the month. I must admit that I do miss breakfast. Much like smoking, I miss the ritual of it and not the actual eating of food. It was also something I did with my son in the morning and I could see that was he was getting a bit lonely in the mornings so now I make sure I have my coffee while he is eating so that he doesn’t eat alone. I am also up earlier during the week because of work so I feel hungrier sooner than I did when I was on leave. I usually end my fast at 12 and start between 6 and 7pm. I try not to eat after 7pm if I can avoid it. On those days when the hunger pangs are too great to bear and not even coffee or water is keeping them at bay, I eat at 11am. I just make sure that I have my last meal no later than 6pm. Snacking is still my challenge over weekends. During the week I have the meals and almost never snack in between.

The benefits thus far

So far so good. I think my body is starting to heal but we will have to have my doctor check that in July when I have my check-up. I am thrilled that my blood glucose levels have a lower average through the day. This week I saw my lowest morning readings in about 2 years. They still need to drop further so that I can stop my medication but that will take time and this is a war I will win. I have to admit, every time I am tempted to snack often, I just remind myself of the goal and I pick up a glass of water instead. They say that you have to have a clear purpose to give you the best chance at succeeding at a goal. Beating diabetes will not only benefit me but my son in the long run and so far. this is the main reason I have been able to stay on track. The other reason is the dream of walking into a clothing store and just picking stuff up off the rack that I know I will look good in. Putting on weight completely threw for a loop when it came to clothes shopping. Suddenly all my favourite styles and cuts just looked wrong on me. I can’t wait to go back to buying my favourite clothes again. As of this morning, I am 2.9kg lighter (Whoop whoop!) so the weight loss dream is still alive. I am most excited about my lower blood glucose levels though. My head is still clearer than it used to be. The inflammation is largely gone but as I mentioned in my last post, it still pops in if I eat too many carbs. I also have more energy. Not vast amounts but I have noticed that I am not as tired at the end of the day on the most days which is great. I hated being tired more often than not.

So what have I been eating????

In all honestly, I haven’t made too many drastic changes to my diet. I have cut out fried chips but will steal 2 or 3 from Alex when he has so as not to feel deprived. He doesn’t bother getting upset anymore and now just offers them to me…lol. I try to keep fast food down to twice a week and and when I do have it, I make sure I am done eating by 6pm. I just feel less guilty about it if I eat it early for some reason. My dinners tend to be a protein plus veggies or a salad. I try to keep carbs to the barest minimum. My lunches are similar. I will have a chicken wrap most often at work for lunch. It keeps me full for the rest of the day and my blood glucose levels are pretty good after 2 hours. My aim is to avoid spikes in my blood glucose levels after meals. I stay away from fruit as a general rule (I was never a fan anyway so this is not hard for me) and eggs are my saving grace when I don’t know what else to eat. A boiled egg salad always hits the spot and the taste buds are always happy with it as well. What changes did you make when you started IF?

Exercising Greater focus

The one thing I have decided to start up again, although I can’t possibly tell you why I stopped, is meditating. I suck at it but I feel good about trying to do it anyway. My brain is all over the place! I accidentally bought the Oprah and Deepak 21-day meditation entitled “The Energy of Attraction” almost 2 years ago. I was mortified as it was not cheap but I kept it as I figured it had a message I needed to hear. Listening to it now, with the last 18 months worth of life experience behind me, has helped me see things differently. By the way, the free 21-day meditation on health starts on the 3rd so go and sign up if you are interested. There is a link on my facebook page. (Lawd please don’t make me make the same mistake again cos my credit card cannot take the pressure!)

candle
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Other tips and tricks that are helping me stay focussed on my various goals

  • I have my vision board on my bedroom wall and on my phone. Alex is most fascinated by it and keeps asking why I this or that included. He says I believe in “a lot of things that most people don’t”. It used to bother him but he is starting to see the benefits in his own life so he is slowly coming around.
  • I set reminders on my phone with positive messages and affirmations to keep me focussed on what I want so that I don’t drift off into zeroing in on the things that I don’t want. It is just way to easy for me to get upset about the things around me that I don’t want instead of focussing on where my vision is. As Steve Harvey says” You simply cannot drive forward if you’re focussed on what’s happening in the rear view mirror.”
  • A lot of the non-fiction books I read are on my kindle app on my phone. I highlight the passages that resonate with me so that I can easily go back to them when I feel like I am drifting off course.
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Of course I have made all these changes with my the intention of changing my inner word so that my outer world will change. How long it will take for the outward changes to show will probably depend on the consistent implementation of those inner changes and how big my dreams are. I don’t expect to be a billionnaire overnight but it is not impossible to be one 15-20 years from now. The changes required to make it happen have to happen now as an example. I am so excited anyway because I know in my heart that everything I have ever prayed for and will still pray for in the future is on it’s way to me. Watch this space! It’s gonna be a “God’s gone and done it again” decade!

Lastly, welcome February, the month of Love 🙂 I can’t wait to see what miracles you bring me. Of course love is definitely welcome and a lot of spoiling. 😜 Hope you all get to celebrate love with someone special to you this month.

Bye for now.

Daily Quote: Carl Sandburg

“Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.“

Carl Sandburg

I have learnt through my own life and through watching others that following your passion, your purpose is time well spent. When we spend our time doing things that take us away from our passion/purpose because someone else has made us promises, especially involving making money, we delay our success and often find ourselves going in circles. When we stick to pursuing our passion/purpose in such away that it also benefits those around us, we blossom and success naturally follows. It takes a while and it doesn’t always come in the form that you expected but it always comes. You can’t help but attract good things to you because your are in such a good space yourself.

Don’t let others lure you away from your passion/purpose with promises of success/money. They are succeeding because that is their path. Your path is different. Trust your intuition. It’s God’s way of guiding you. Your path is lit by your passion/purpose. Spend your time following that. #dowhatyoulove

Hourglass and coins
Image: Canva

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