Sunday, January 18, 2009

And Here We Are Again....

Michael is having another recurrence of his breathing/weight gain/fever/weakness symptoms. Almost right on schedule, about every six weeks. Except that I'm not absolutely positive that this is the same thing all over again, because it comes on the tail of 10 days of a very strong antibiotic which might have interacted with his diabetes meds, and it's all a little different... so, very worrisome, unclear whether he should go to the hospital or not (he's a little better today, and the hospital so far has not done anything except monitor him, so we're leaning toward wait until tomorrow and see), and everything in life is on hold again.

And so I'm worried to death, and I wish that someone would sort this stuff out once and for all, and that he would get well and stay well, but what I really wanted to talk about today is how hard it is to take care of yourself when you're taking care of someone else.

I look at my lack of weight loss or fitness increase over the last year, and I get irritated with myself, and then I remember that most of what I've been doing for the last year is taking care of him. Or my mother, earlier. And it is just so difficult to focus on me when everyone else needs me to focus on them. I get some period of stability, and I start working on things, and I think about making plans to head back to the gym, and I start practicing new habits... and then everything falls apart, because it's easy to nibble on the cheese instead of eating properly when you're in a hurry. I don't "cheat" exactly... I hate that word... because I'm so used to eating in this particular way that it's not a nose dive into ice cream or something, but I eat too much and too often. And, surprise, I end up right back where I started.

Change requires application. Change requires doing things in a different way until they become habit. And when they become habit, it is not so easy to dislodge them when life unravels. The things I eat... food types and groups... are like this. Low carb is autopilot. But exercise and portion control are not, and neither are the thousand things that would help to make me feel better and less stressed.

I'm trying, though, in simple silly ways that seem to get derailed half the time. Yesterday I went to the store for a minute, and instead of going straight home, went to Starbucks for a coffee. Ordered a grande sugar free vanilla whole milk latté... waited a really long time, sitting in the drive through and noticing all the bird nests that you can see this time of year, with all the leaves gone... and they eventually arrived with a size smaller. Should have just taken that, but said so.... and the barrista came back remarkably quickly with a larger one. So I drove around to the parking lot and sat in "our" space... where we used to go to cool off and take a break when it was a little easier for Michael to get in and out of the car... had a sip of the coffee, realized that they'd just dumped more milk in the original coffee, decided I didn't need the carbs anyway and tossed it. Alternated between feeling smug and irritated that even when I try to do something simple to get a break, it tends to backfire!

Ah, well.... reset, start over again.

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