1
Apr
2017

The end of this coming week will mark 7 months since Mom died. In some ways it seems forever ago, in others, it seems like yesterday.

A few months before her final days, I left an extremely stressful position and took a college teaching position.  I have been enjoying it because even though teaching, grading and prepping can be a lot of work – trying to keep ahead of the semester, etc. –  I don’t find it to be terribly difficult.   I also have enough flexibility in my schedule that I can exercise more, AND, teaching is not sedentary for me.  I tend to walk back and forth in front of the white boards – a LOT!  I have been averaging two miles or about 5000 steps a day just teaching.  The new activity level has helped, and I have made a conscientious effort to exercise (walk) harder several times a week at the urging of my Cardiologist.  I have lost 12 pounds off my heaviest weight, and last week I hit a milestone that is important to me.  I now weigh the same as I did before Mom’s crisis and Stage IV cancer diagnosis almost 2 years ago, upturned all our lives.   I will not be complacent, however, as I still have a long way to go to get back into a reasonably healthy weight.

Spring is here. The sky is spectacularly beautiful.  I hear birds chirping.  I see little children eagerly anticipating the end of the school year – I also see it in my college seniors!!!

I feel happy. I feel content.  I am looking forward to my college freshman girlie coming home for the summer in a few weeks.

I am blessed.

7
Mar
2017

I have found it harder and harder to make time for my fun, little hobbies that I love.  One of them, photography, has really taken a backseat over the past few years.  For some reason, I believed that as my kids grew up and became less dependent on me, that it would somehow free up some time!

Spring break is coming up soon.  Maybe, I can dig out the old camera, charge her up and take a walking tour of my town and spark some ideas.  Perhaps, I just need to un-backseat the things I’ve shelved in the hopes that they’ll light a creative spark again.

6
Mar
2017

My back pain has been excruciating for the past three days, although it is beginning to abate.  Much of the time, I feel best if I don’t try to sit down, if I am standing and moving, it doesn’t hurt as badly. However, I find it difficult to grade papers in a standing stance.

At about 4pm this afternoon, I couldn’t tolerate it anymore, so I took a pain pill for it.  A real one – makes me a little loopy.   Then, I proceeded to write up my notes for class tomorrow.

When I realized at some point I had begun to number my pages in descending order, I called it quits.  I don’t think I want to even chance grading this stack of midterms, do I?

Tomorrow will be a new, more lucid, day, I hope!

 

4
Mar
2017

After my cardiologist yelled* at me, back in late November, about gaining instead of losing excess weight, I have ramped up my exercise.  I’ve worked up to the ability to walk three miles without feeling terrible afterward. In fact, I can walk a lot longer as evidenced by the 7.5 mile trek I took with my sister a couple of weekends ago.  When that little junket was complete, my feet hurt so badly in the evening, I thought I would never walk again. However, a new pair of walking shoes has remedied that issue.  When shoes wear out, you really do feel it.

Now, for the past couple of days, I’ve had a painful sensation in my lower back.  It is more pronounced when I am sitting than standing, so I suppose I need to keep moving.  But, it feels as if I jumped out of a high window, landed on my heels, and jarred my back.  I just wish it would go away, because I want to be rewarded for improving my health, not punished!  I suppose, I am just getting older and experiencing some wear and tear.

On the positive side, though, I have met my first goal of 5% weight loss.  I am losing pounds very, very slowly, may about 1/2 pound per week, but as long as it is consistent, I am happy with that.  I looked back at my history, and I am now only 2 pounds heavier than when my mother first received her cancer diagnosis that scrambled all of our world, greatly.  I think when I hit that benchmark, then I can look forward to the next goal of getting into one of my evening gowns.   I have three evening gowns that I absolutely love, each one size bigger than the previous!  So, if I can get back into those, one at a time, over the rest of this year, I’ll be ecstatic when the time comes to really wear one again.

Happy trails, y’all. Now that the weather is warmer, I will see you outside.

*Actually, he didn’t yell at me; he was fussing at me.  But, he’s from Georgia (Eastern European State, not Eastern Atlantic State), so he has this terrifying sounding accent.  “Zhou MUST NOT Gain Ze Weight!!!”  He can say “Good Morning,” and it sounds malicious. But, he is a very nice and professional man, or I wouldn’t continue to go to his practice.