I hate this

I’ve fallen out of all my good habits. It only took a couple of weeks to destroy several months’ work. I’m not exercising much at all and I’m eating crap. I feel like I’m stuck in a cycle of unhealthiness and depression. Whenever I try to start fresh, whether using Weight Watchers or something else, I find myself slipping up almost immediately.

I hate this.


Lately I have had a hard time maintaining healthy habits. I’ve been crushed by a need to lose more weight now, and that has locked me into a cycle of disappointment and bad choices. I tried to stay positive, but each day my weigh-in has made me more and more depressed. This last week, to avoid that feeling, I decided to only weigh in on Mondays…but I ended up making very poor food choices this week, including lots of chocolate and grease. I haven’t weighed in and I’m not looking forward to it.

I’ve decided that the only way to get out of this self-destructive pattern is a hard reboot. I need to just start over. I need to throw out the weight loss of 2008 as if it never happened, and start from zero. I need to eliminate the pressure of past success and focus on being healthy.

To that end, I am downloading an iPhone application called “Dietician”. I can enter my current weight, my goal weight, and what type of diet I want, and this application will generate recipes, a meal schedule, and shopping lists for me. Rather than feeling bad that I never have the time or motivation to create my own meal plan system, I can simply follow this application’s advice and start shopping and cooking smarter. Here’s a review of the app where you can get more information.

I am also going to start thinking about how to vary my workout routine more. For the past two weeks I’ve been trying to ride my bike every morning, but on days when it was too cold or I had muscle strain I ended up not doing anything. My plan now is to start working with a personal trainer at the Y and get a varied, targeted workout schedule set up.

I can’t just keep doing the same things, and I can’t let myself continue to be discouraged. It’s time for proaction. It’s time to reboot.

A day of recovery

I’m enjoying a quiet morning, waiting for the Advil to eliminate the pain of the neckache I developed in my sleep. It’s diminished a little, but boy does it ever hurt when I sneeze!

At around 11 I’m supposed to meet up with Brooke and Mari (and others?) at the Olive Garden, which will be nice. I hardly ever go there, since Sean isn’t big into Italian, but I really like it. Should be fun.

One thing I am really happy about right now is that Mom is coming to visit me. She has been so wonderful online and on the phone, but I really want to see her in person, and I can’t take any time off since I’ve already put my vacation days on the week of Christmas. So she’s going to come here, which is great because she hasn’t seen this apartment in person. She really hasn’t seen a whole lot of Augusta. Hopefully I will feel well enough to show her around all my favorite places.

Yesterday I could have spent a fair amount of time with Brooke, but my sleep schedule was messed up and I was depressed and I didn’t want to go anywhere, so I just stayed home and read/watched Detective Conan. I think I needed a day to just do nothing. I feel better today.

Brooke wants me to go to Columbia with her this afternoon to visit her brother’s family, which I may just do. Apparently there will be barbecue, yum.

A whiny ramble–feel free to skip

So, I’m pretty miserable.

Aside from being horribly depressed, I keep coughing, and my left foot is huge and swollen and purple from where I kept it crammed into a dress shoe all day. I also started having abdominal pain again on my way home (early; my boss said I could finish up remotely). This morning I coughed up snot for the first time in awhile; last night I forgot to Flonase, but I’m not sure if that’s related.

I had a bad dream right before I woke up this morning, in which Sean basically informed me that I existed to amuse him, and when I tried to leave, he threatened violence, so I headbutted him and then grabbed him hard in a very sensitive place. But as this was happening, dream-me thought that maybe this was all pretend, so I shouldn’t hurt him too badly.

Then I woke up.

When I told Sean about the pregnancy test last night I had already been asleep for awhile, and I woke up when I heard him settling in in the living room. He said the same thing AJ did: “Don’t get your hopes up.” And like I said before, I really thought I wasn’t. But apparently I did a lousy job.

The nurse said that false positives hardly ever happen; it’s usually false negatives. I looked up false positives online and it said they are usually due to taking fertility drug shots, which I have not done recently. I guess the test was just defective.

Pretty lame. Oh well, yet another bad memory to add to the pile. I’ve been thinking about writing a timeline of all the bad things that have happened in my life, but I’m pretty sure that would be counterproductive. Not to mention whiny.

I should be thankful I’m alive, and have such a great family, and a cute and sweet husband who loves me, and a job I enjoy, and enough money to be able to save and eat out and have fun.

It’s funny, I had decided recently that I was just going to assume I couldn’t have children, because I figured that would be easier. But I guess I never fully embraced that path, because I was so susceptible to the idea when the nurse (who apparently knew nothing of my situation) asked, “Do you think you might be pregnant?” It took a week or two, but then, like a moron, I looked into it.

And then, like a moron, I posted about stat labs on Twitter, and that made Mom wonder why I needed stat labs, and so I ended up telling her, and she was at the farm with Dad and Ben and Manda so they all found out, and so I called AJ because everyone else knew…and I originally wasn’t going to tell anyone until I’d had a blood test. I’d had one that morning but it turned out the lab couldn’t do them stat, so those results will actually be in tomorrow, and it was too late to get them done by the time I found out, so I had to wait and do them this morning. And I guess I just got upset and frustrated and nervous from all the waiting and ended up blowing it, and I got Mom’s hopes up.

Damn it.

When the nurse called to tell me, I didn’t want to talk to anyone, so I just sent Sean and Mom a text message about it. Mom called back and I may have been rude. I just tried not to think about it for as long as I could for the rest of the day. But of course, eventually it overwhelmed me, because I’m a stupid wuss, so here I am, sitting at home gushing in stream of consciousness on my blog when I should still be at work. That frustrates me too, because I’ve been sick so much lately, and I was just getting back to being the kind of employee I strive to be. And now this.

I think life likes to let me rise up before it kicks me back down. Maybe it’s more amusing that way. This time I feel like I was crouched on wobbly legs when it hit.

Whine, whine, whine. Let’s take a step back. What have we learned here? I was told years ago when I first went to an endocrinologist that my chances of being fertile were low, especially if I couldn’t have my own periods. I started out taking hormones, but after awhile I decided I was tired of pills and wanted to be normal, so I just stopped taking them. (Good job.) Five years later, I have a period out of the blue, which is likely a menopausal flushing of all the lining that had built up for those years. I take this as a sign that my body is curing itself, instead. My doctors tell me otherwise but I am apparently incapable of comprehension. I start back on hormones religiously and take pregnancy tests anytime I start to feel “weird”. They are all, of course, negative. I get frustrated. After my doctor leaves her practice, I let everything slide again. But after awhile I decide I want to get back on track with my health, so I find a new doctor. She tells me that the chances of someone who’s had chemotherapy regaining ovarian function after this long are practically zero. I feel like I can maybe move on. Then she adds, “But miracles do happen.” I have grown to hate this phrase because it gives me hope.

That brings us to now. I have weird symptoms where I get overly tired just walking from my office to my car. I have chest pains. I seem to not be breathing properly at night, and sometimes during the day. Flonase, saline spray, and elevating my head seems to help with sleeping, but does nothing for the weird day breathing. Eventually I started getting bloated in my legs and hips. I also occasionally experience abdominal pain, at one point so bad I threw up. I am often so hot that the only thing that helps is sticking my head and arms into the freezer.

Of course I think the hotness is a menopausal symptom, but I have put off starting my hormones because I thought I had a drug interaction one day when I threw up. I’m still not sure what happened there.

In discussing my various symptoms with my various doctors, the nurse at the endocrinologist’s office asks the fatal question, the question I’ve been asking myself. “That’s supposed to be impossible,” I say, keeping my voice level. “But I suppose I could check.” And eventually I do. And for some fucked up reason it says “Pregnant”.

Why would you do this to me? I mean really. What is the point?

Maybe the point is that I should just have a hysterectomy so I can stop worrying about it. (Or I could stop having sex, but I doubt Sean will get on board for that.)

I fail at life

Warning: Emo Alert Level 9.

Once again I’m reminded how I fail to measure up. Once again I’m reminded that no one can help me but me. Once again I feel powerless and insecure and depressed and afraid and gut-wrenchingly sad, and no one knows how to stop it.

Sitting around watching DVDs only helps me escape for a little while, but it’s all I’m apparently capable of doing.


I’m feeling depressed and tired. I don’t know if the depression is fed by the tiredness or vice versa or if they’re just coexisting phenomena.

Regardless, bleh.

I had some strange dreams last night. In the first one, I was really upset about how much weight I’ve gained, and I was thinking that I would never be able to lose it without surgery. But I didn’t know if I would ever be able to afford it. When I said this aloud, my mother immediately sliced open my belly and started cutting away parts of my organs. At this point I could see inside there, and it looked like how it looks when you cut fat away from chicken with kitchen scissors.

I was thinking, I know you were a nurse, and I know you witnessed this sort of procedure before, but do you really know what you’re doing? But I didn’t say it.

Then she was done, and I said, “This wasn’t an official surgery, so I won’t be covered if something goes wrong.” I must have been so traumatized by the thought that I could die that that part of the dream became a dream, and I was telling Mom about it.

“And so I thought to myself that I would never be able to lose the weight without that surgery,” I said.

“Well, duh,” Mom responded, and pulled out my flat metal spatula. She promptly split me open with it and did the surgery, and I watched it happen the exact same way.

This last bothered me so much that I woke up for real.

Somewhere in there I also dreamed that my workplace was on fire. It wasn’t my office as it is now; it was a narrower room. I ran into the smoke and started grabbing stuff.

“I don’t want to lose everything again,” I explained, coughing. I managed to save several toys–all toys that I used to have at the old apartment, that were of course lost in the fire. One was my Darkwing Duck bank, and one was my Sailor Moon figure.

It’s kind of funny; I have never obsessed about losing those toys.


I’ve been thinking about what I’ve accomplished in the past 365 days for a few weeks now, and the list seems rather small.

One big thing is getting a job that has been amazingly perfect for me. It was sheer luck; I happened to see the job opening, so I applied and got it. Initially I didn’t know what the job would really entail. I wasn’t sure I would like it, but I figured I could do it for awhile, and try to figure out what I did want to do in the meantime.

Over time I have taken ownership of the position and used my role to expand and improve the station’s website. I work with sales and promotions as well as news. I’ve learned so much about the television industry, and I’ve expanded my knowledge of what’s possible on the web. And there’s still so much to learn.

But working full time for the first time in years has really changed other aspects of my life. I get up in time to get ready for work, and I get home at night tired and unwilling to cook. I just watch anime or DVDs all night and then go to bed. In recent months I’ve even stopped packing my lunches, going out for fast food instead.

I was so much more active in 2005, before the fire. I went biking often. I think I only took my bike to the Canal once in 2006, and other than that I rode my bike twice around my neighborhood–once down to the Y, and once just back in the neighborhoods. Both times I ended up entirely too winded.

So I’ve deteriorated physically, and I haven’t really done anything else, either. I haven’t done more to improve my knowledge of Japanese. I haven’t read hardly anything. Pretty much all the learning I’ve done has been in the course of my job. I haven’t gone exploring–I’ve been wanting to see the dam, and Mystery Photo Guy has turned me on to another place to check out, but it seems all I do on the weekend is sit around. I’ve fallen into a rut; I do only what I need to do, and nothing more.

And it’s driving me crazy.

I think part of this has just been recovery time from the fire. I dealt with it and moved on, in general–I was able to function. But was I really living?

There were so many things I planned to do and then backed out of. Baking Christmas cookies. Going to Wes’ church for a Halloween mystery dinner. Having a party. And I still haven’t bought the lining Brooke needs to make the curtains she said she’d make for Sean and my bedroom.

Some of these can be attributed to procrastination and laziness, but I feel like there’s something more. Even when I feel totally motivated to accomplish something, I ultimately don’t do it.

I wonder: was I afraid to live, in 2006?

Ever since the fire, I have wondered what it taught me. I wondered if I was supposed to learn not to be so attached to material possessions. I wondered if I was supposed to give up on my obsessive-compulsive self-archiving.

Have I spent my time wondering this, in lieu of doing anything else?

Do I analyze myself too much? Was the lesson really to just get over it and live?

I feel like I’ve been trying to learn that one for years.

Ultimately, there are some things I want, and I didn’t make any progress on any of it in 2006.

I want to lose weight. But in 2006, I gained it.

I want to learn Japanese. But in 2006, I didn’t even crack a book. My “studying” consisted of occasionally trying to read katakana on websites, and watching anime.

I want to play the piano again. But in 2006, I didn’t even try to figure out how to get back into it.

I want to join a choir or chorus. But in 2006, I didn’t look for one.

I want to be more sociable. But in 2006, I avoided social occasions and really only spent time with Brooke–essentially clinging unfairly to someone who will be moving soon.

I want to cook dinner and pack lunches. But in 2006, I ate out for the majority of my meals.

I want to write blog posts–and hell, maybe even other things–that are interesting for people to read. But in 2006, every time I thought of writing something, I just felt tired…so usually I didn’t even bother to try.

In fact, pretty much everything in 2006 made me feel tired.

I remember being so happy when 2005 ended. I was so excited to leave the year of the fire behind me. But what did I do with the new year? Nothing.

“Why don’t you want anymore?” AJ asked. “Straight up. Is it because you just don’t like it, or are you afraid of what might happen?”

“I’m not afraid of anything happening,” I said. “I just don’t see the point.”

“Fair enough,” AJ said.

“There really isn’t a point,” Dan added.

Later, AJ said, “I really wonder what you’d be like drunk.”

“I know, you really want to know,” I said.

“It’s because you’re different–not in a bad way, but just different–normally. So what would you be like when you’re not normal?”

“Probably depressed,” I said.

“Depressed? Why? Do you feel depressed right now?”


“…okay, yeah, you’d probably be depressed. Or pissed.”

Happy New Year.

Unhappiness strikes again

Blogger keeps claiming that I can switch to Beta now, but when I go to do it it says I can’t. That’s what I get for having 2801 posts.

I don’t know how Beta is going to work with remote hosting, anyway.

I watched three Full Metal Panic! DVDs last night. I really enjoy the original series. It’s got just enough serious and just enough comedy.

At some point last night I was dreaming about FMP, though I can’t remember what the plot was, exactly. There was an explosion in the dream and I woke up, and my first thought was something like, “We can’t let anyone know this list of children’s names.” What list? I wondered as I staggered to the bathroom. A list of Whispered? (Maybe it was Santa’s Naughty and Nice list.)

I had a hard time getting to sleep last night. For some reason I just kept thinking about our old apartment and the fire and everything we lost. Whenever I do that I get upset and fret about what I might have been able to save if I had thought and acted more quickly. Really, if I had tried to save my computer or purse or anything in the office, I might not be here today. I need to just be happy that I survived. And even if I had managed to grab something, I wouldn’t have been able to save all the things I miss now, and I would just be fretting about them instead.

Then this morning when I went to the bathroom I was looking at our bed through the door and imagining myself crunching through fire rubble and finding just the metal parts of the frame, blackened and twisted.

I don’t know where all that came from. It’s been a year and a half.

My biggest source of depression lately is the slowly dawning realization that I will never live in Japan.

Also, I’m almost 30, and I’m nowhere near a stable household or career. I’m not really doing anything with my life. I do have a job I love and I am learning things there, but when I’m not at work all I do is watch shows on my computer. I still haven’t gotten to where I cook frequently, which means we eat out a lot, which is unhealthy and expensive. And I feel like if I want anything to be different, I’m going to have to do it, and no one will help me, and that’s just overwhelming.

It’s unfair to do this, because everyone’s situation is different, but I look at the people around me and am so jealous of their lives sometimes.

My mood swings

I’m pretty sure that my freakish moods lately are the result of being off the hormone. I remember having intense, violent anger like this back when I first went on hormone medication in 1998 or so. I will be meeting my endocrinologist on January 9, at which point I expect to be put back on some sort of maintenance hormone, which I will likely stay on permanently. I haven’t had a period in this interim, so it’s pretty clear to me that I will not be conceiving naturally. It’s time to move on and get my body adjusted so I can live a real life, instead of hanging in emotional limbo.

However, I feel that I have problems other than just the hormones/lack thereof. Even when I was on hormones I had fits of depression. Once I have my hormone balance straightened out, I am going to seek some sort of help. I’m tired of disliking myself, I’m tired of the disorganization in my life, I’m tired of never meeting my goals. Maybe it’s not something I can do on my own after all.


I didn’t do much for most of Monday. After I got up I sat around and watched TV for awhile, eventually deciding to watch Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. I also ate a lot: cereal, more cereal, Pop Tarts, and a bagel with cream cheese. I was in a bad mood when Sean got home around 3:30, so once Chamber of Secrets was over I left the house to go to the Japanese grocery store.

Which ended up being closed.

So I tried to find a new way home, and ended up on Gordon Highway heading downtown. So I went to the Greeneway and took some pictures.

They put a new fence up around the trail closest to the golf course and the Hammond’s Ferry entrance. Also, it is really starting to look like fall, despite the flowers.

It’s a lot longer when you don’t have a bike and have to walk. It was also pretty hot. I didn’t make it very far before I turned around and left.

After that I went to Outspokin’ to look for a new bike, but they were closed too. (Judging from the parking, everyone was out on a ride.)

Finally I headed back towards Martinez. I stopped at Payless to look for some nice boots, but they didn’t have anything I liked. So I ended up returning home empty-handed, save for the pictures.

I guess I was pouting too much, because Cheryl gave me a lecture about depression, and wouldn’t leave me alone about it. She did say that I needed to go see my mom, but I already knew that.

I was more than happy to get up early on Tuesday, pack, and run away to Kentucky.

I seem to have fallen into depression of late.

I’m avoiding things I feel like I should be doing, like grocery shopping, making meals, and working on my WordPress theme. This really only adds to my feelings of depression, but I can’t seem to muster the will to do any of those things. Maybe today I’ll finally get some groceries so I can cook for my husband again.

Instead, yesterday I started a new project, and that is to add all my pictures from my Japan trip in 2001 to smugmug. Now, if any of you have spent any time over there you’ll know that I already had many of them up (through Takayama). But I’d been selective about which to upload, and I’d resized them all to 800×600/600×800. Since smugmug gives me unlimited storage, this seems silly, in retrospect. So yesterday I started going back and replacing the smaller files with the full-sized ones (including some pictures that I hadn’t uploaded before), copying the captions over, adding to the captions, and adding “tags” to each photo. This is a big project, but I’m already through Yamagata. Only two galleries to go until I get to uncharted territory: Kyoto, Nara, Himeji, Hiroshima, and Yatsushiro. Then I’ll have to figure out how to organize the homestay pictures.

After that’s done, of course, I’ll want to upload the pictures from our honeymoon to Japan in 2003. And I’ll also want to go back and add tags to all my galleries…

You can see how this is a project that could wait until after I was done with my blog move, but for some reason I am really interested in finishing it all right now. I even thought that I would like to copy my notes from the Japan 2001 trip into my blog, because the pencil I wrote them with is starting to smear away. (Why would I write in pencil? Gah.)

Maybe I would rather do these things because they’re easier than building a theme for WordPress. :P I’m tempted to just use a pre-made theme, but to be honest I don’t like any of the ones that are available. Not that much, anyway. I want my own unique style.

So I’ll just suffer through with Blogger for awhile. (I think all the server problems are irritating me more and more lately because I know I can do something about it, and because I am the only cause of delay.) I just hope when I’m ready to export my posts, Blogger is able to republish my journal in the proper format without freezing :P

I had the majority of my calories yesterday at dinner. Over 1000 calories for a meatball sub and some baked Lay’s. I felt like I was starving all day, so I guess that was my “reward”. Fortunately, the three pound artificial weight gain from yesterday has gone down 1.5 pounds today. (Does that mean I actually gained 1.5 pounds? :P) For some reason, I’m finding my diet harder and harder each day. Maybe because I don’t have any groceries…

On faith

All fear of hell ever did for me was keep me from giving up Christianity.

The reason I didn’t do things like smoke, drink, have sex, sneak out of the house, etc. when I was younger was because I was too scared to–both of the danger of doing those things, and of the repercussions of getting caught. I hated punishment, of course, but I hated disappointing Mom and Dad more. My goal was to make them proud of me.

Of course, I wasn’t exactly pristine. I started getting weird ideas when I turned 15 and found Bulletin Board Services like The Night Watcher. In fact, the first time I considered sneaking out (but didn’t do it, of course), was because I wanted to go to a party hosted by a BBS friend, and I didn’t think Mom would go for it.

There were also private things that I was going through that made me truly hate myself. I don’t know why, but I never quite bought the absolution from all sins thing. Either that, or I was too prideful to accept it. I didn’t want to need to be forgiven. I thought I was a sucky Christian, and because I was unable to force myself to be worthy–or I was too lazy to do so, as I often thought–I was absolutely miserable. The whole thing about not having to be worthy, because “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God”, well, that just didn’t apply to me, because I was supposed to be better than that.

It was those things that started me down the road to losing my religion–and getting cancer, facing death, and surviving was what gave me the courage to actually discard it. Because, yes, for years I was forcing myself to “believe”, out of a fear of hell. There was a moment in the hospital when I had a fever of 105. I remembered Mom saying that you could die from a fever that high. As I lay there, closing my eyes against the dizziness, feeling my consciousness floating hazily around, I thought, “I could just go ahead and die.” And for the first time, it didn’t scare me.

I don’t think I ever actually stopped believing in God, though, because I hated him for years thereafter. My most frequent question was, “Why did he let me live?” At the time, I didn’t see the point. Not if I was going to be childless.

Sean was the one who pulled me out of my despair and gave me a reason to live. Seriously. He forced me to stop moping around, to embrace life, and I am so glad he did. I wouldn’t have any of the wonderful things I have now if I’d continued on like that.

So now I consider myself agnostic, because there might be a God and there might not, and I have no idea what the nature of that God is. I at once like and dislike the idea that “everything happens for a reason”. If there was a reason for me to have cancer and to become possibly sterile, I don’t know if I find that comforting. I can think of two huge “reasons”: so Dad would stop drinking, and so I could meet Sean. And those two things are great, and you’d think I could live with making a sacrifice for such wonderful things, but I’m selfish. Everyone who reads this journal knows how much I want kids.

Having cancer also gave me the time to learn web design, and kick-started my college career after a relapse. So these are also plusses. But in the face of never being a mommy, those things seem pretty pale.

If there is no reason for anything, on the other hand, then that puts the responsibility on me to add meaning to my life, and I’m scared that all I’ll do is drop the ball.

At any rate, I don’t think I can ever go back to Christianity. My self-destructive personality does not thrive under that religion. I don’t know that I will never go back to religion in general. The unitarian universalists, for example, are pretty interesting. Right now, however, I just feel like I want to let things “sink in” some more.

I’m so upset and unhappy right now.

Sean says that I tend to have periods of depression that eventually pass. I guess I’m in one of them now. I hate my job and the thought of going back in tomorrow makes me want to cry. The thought of not being able to find a new job does make me cry. I feel trapped and helpless, like I can’t do anything except commit to things I hate in order to have the money to make myself feel better by buying things and eating out.

Every time I try to start something up to better myself, I do really well at first, and then I just taper off until I’m doing nothing again. It was that way with FlyLady, it was that way with my workouts…my house isn’t a mess, but it’s not exactly stellar, and I have to force myself to even empty the dishwasher. Meanwhile, my stomach keeps growing and growing and growing. All clothes are uncomfortable. I keep thinking that I could be pregnant, which is impossible, and thinking about it being impossible makes me more unhappy. Even if I somehow did manage to be pregnant, we couldn’t afford to have a baby. We spend every bit of our paychecks and we have no savings.

But since it’s impossible for me to actually be pregnant, now I’m thinking that I must be having a false pregnancy, wherein my body, acting on cues from my subconscious which thinks about having a baby all the time, decides that, well, maybe there is a baby in there, and responds accordingly.

Mari says that stress causes weight gain in the stomach, so that could be it, too :P

Either way, I’m tired of it, tired tired tired tired tired. I want to scream, and I want to go to bed forever. I also want to kick my boss in the face.