Saturday, 23 February 2013

Getting old

I kind of went AWOL there, didn't I? Definitely partly because I haven't been focused. I've been up and down on the eating front, but, have managed to hover around the same number.

I think I'm just finding it hard to focus on the future when I feel like I'm waiting to be back to physical health. I know that's stupid and if anything, more reason to get losing weight so I don't feel like the last six weeks have been just me moping about my hand and overeating.

They took my splint off last Tuesday. Or at least, approved me to only wear it at night and when it's likely to get bumped into. And I started physio. Which involves bending my fingers and trying to make a fist over and over. It's frustrating because by the end of the day, I can make more of a fist than at the beginning, then the splint goes back on and in the morning I start all over :-( I just didn't realise what a long and laborious process it would be. I have another week of this before I even start anything more advance that's going to take me anywhere near being able to USE my hand. And god knows when I'll be able to drive again.

I weighed myself yesterday (earlier than my official weigh in date and also at around midday because I'd been out drinking the night before...) and the scales said I'd lost around 4lbs. I felt like that was unlikely, but, it gave me the boost I needed to get back on track and then I took my measurements and I'm about 6 inches down in total since the end of November. Slow progress, but, it was another boost to refocus me. Oh and I bought some new clothes and I feel like you can see a difference.

I am just a bit despondent at the moment. I'm getting wrinkles and sad about having missed out on "my youth" due to my weight. It's kind of hard to explain without getting into some long ramble about all the things I wish I'd done while I was young and slim (and how I squandered my brief periods of slimness not doing these things). But, I just feel sad that when I get to my goal weight, I'm sure I'll be fitter and more comfortable and enjoy buying clothes and all that stuff, but, it's not going to make me eighteen again. I do worry that I'm sabotaging myself because I don't want to acknowledge that losing weight can't fix everything and can't steal back my teens and early twenties. Sigh.

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Weigh In - Week 17

This week I've lost 1.8lbs, which I'm a bit annoyed about as I weighed myself in the middle of the week and I was another pound down from there and I've been exemplary all week. Still, I'm on the way and hopefully next week I'll be well clear of the 18 stone 10lbs mark that I seem to have been hovering around since before Christmas.

I ended up working a twelve hour day on Saturday with my broken hand still in a splint. I'm not going to say that the splint wasn't an added obstacle in an already high-pressure job (where I am constantly doubting myself). But, I kind of felt amazing at the end of it, exhausted and happy to sit down, but amazing. I was so proud of myself - I went out there with my game face on, I pretended that I wasn't at all worried about my hand, or in pain, or anything and while, by the end, my other hand was absolutely killing me from carrying all the weight I'd normally have on two and straining awkwardly to do right-handed things, I did believe in myself. It helped that my clients, their friends and families, were all a joy to be around and easy to photograph. It also felt great to do something normal - everything is so frustrating and slow without my main hand and going to do what I do for a living, returning to the comfort of holding (albeit awkwardly) my camera was just perfect. It reminded me I'm still useful and capable.

I've been glowing ever since really. When I came back from the hospital, still wearing the splint I thought I'd be rid of, I felt so defeated, teary, angry and overwhelmed by the prospect of letting all those clients down, the impact it might have on both my reputation and my bottom line. And then I picked myself up and decided I was only defeated if there was absolutely no way I could do my job. That's not something I'd have done a year ago...a year ago I doubt I'd have even been able to stop crying long enough to phone and cancel the bookings.

Work isn't everything, but, when you own a business I think your self-worth is irrevocably tied into its success. This time last year I was working in an underpaid "graduate" office job, I was just about to hand my notice in to become full-time self-employed. The job was soul-destroying, the people were horrifically unpleasant bullies, the management was inept, the commute was cramped and unreliable, the job itself was mind-numbingly dull (though if someone capable ran the business it might have been OK) and I was most definitely an outsider. I was over-qualified and under-appreciated - I bit back when "jokes" (thinly veiled insults) were levelled at me, I refused to stay late because someone else in the office held back work until I was getting my coat on, I was constantly belittled and mistreated. Some days I would have to walk around the corner to cry because I felt so powerless against the constant hostility. I would have left, but, I was running a business in every moment of free time and couldn't afford to waste that searching for a job I didn't intend to stay in. Even if they did nothing right, even up until the last day, where the owner shouted at me like a toddler as I walked out because he chose to do the handover five minutes before the end of business, rather than lunchtime like it was scheduled, the sense of coming alive I had that day was incredible - that really was an act of pure faith in myself and my ability to be successful, rather than playing it safe at the expense of my happiness.

Anyway, what I meant by this was - if I'd had this crash last year, I would have cancelled those bookings without even trying, the episode would have sent me spiralling into a depression and I'd have been sitting on the floor crying about how I should never have dreamed of doing my dream job. My job isn't who I am, but, running a successful business all alone has definitely left me feeling like a stronger person, like I'm a success in life. I've more than doubled my income in a year, my work makes people cry tears of joy, yesterday I got an email thanking me for being such a lovely presence... To go from thinking there must be something about me that makes people react so badly to me, to having people hire me because they like me after a twenty minute chat, well... It's amazing. I'm just happy and hopeful at the moment. Sometimes it's OK to be proud of your achievements.