She Let Go

I loved this…..it came from here: http://tooft.blogspot.co.uk/2012/06/she-let-go.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+crush-book+(%22Crush-Book%22)

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She let go.

Without a thought or a word, she let go.

She let go of the fear. She let go of the judgments. She let go of the confluence of opinions swarming around her head. She let go of the committee of indecision within her. She let go of all the ‘right’ reasons. Wholly and completely, without hesitation or worry, she just let go. She didn’t ask anyone for advice. She didn’t read a book on how to let go… She didn’t search the scriptures. She just let go.

She let go of all of the memories that held her back. She let go of all of the anxiety that kept her from moving forward. She let go of the planning and all of the calculations about how to do it just right. She didn’t promise to let go. She didn’t journal about it. She didn’t write the projected date in her Day-Timer. She made no public announcement and put no ad in the paper. She didn’t check the weather report or read her daily horoscope. She just let go.

She didn’t analyse whether she should let go. She didn’t call her friends to discuss the matter. She didn’t do a five-step Spiritual Mind Treatment. She didn’t call the prayer line. She didn’t utter one word. She just let go.

No one was around when it happened. There was no applause or congratulations. No one thanked her or praised her. No one noticed a thing. Like a leaf falling from a tree, she just let go.There was no effort. There was no struggle. It wasn’t good and it wasn’t bad. It was what it was, and it is just that.In the space of letting go, she let it all be.

A small smile came over her face. A light breeze blew through her. And the sun and the moon shone forevermore.

Happy New Year!

Yesterday’s Meals:

Porringer 1- 2 eggs, 2 rashers, 2 cup coffee with 4 tsp. double cream
Porringer 2- pot of tea, pot of pate
Porringer 3- glass of wine, kebab meat, swede, leek, curry sauce

Evening coffee- 2 cup coffee with 4 tsp. double cream, 3 humbugs, 2 chocolates
Later- pot of tea, 2 slices cheddar, 3 slices salami

With husband’s many days off, we have been slipping into staying up later, usually midnight and getting up around 7-8am.  As we eat dinner at 4-5pm, we do get hungry later.  I have continued to stay with my porringer and found that the bit of cheese and salami is plenty to satisfy those late night hours. 

I had planned on writing up a big 2012 review of all that affected my eating choices, going over it in minute detail, but here, today, on Hogmanay, I am not really wanting to do it.  I would much rather take care of today and let the past year and the new year be and become what it did or will.  I am putting on my Zen hat today.

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2012 was indeed a year I won’t soon forget. I lived in Hawaii, Colorado and Scotland.  I played with my grandchildren, swam in the Pacific ocean, walked my grandson to school every day in the tropical misty rain.  I re-joined husband in Colorado and together, we let go of 90% of all we owned and shipped the 10% to the UK.  We visited London and Stonehenge, drove up through Wales and the English country side to our new home in Scotland.  What an amazing adventure that was!  It was fun getting to know our new home, getting the chance to see Edinburgh and Lock Lomond before turning in the car rental.  Never did such an adventure ever seem possible to me, and here I am living it. 

Lately, I have been feeling a sense of peacefulness and calm.  I have not been overly reactive to the perpetual small binges I keep alive.  I have not reprimanded myself or allowed the new year diet hoopla get under my skin.  When I am calm, I am less reactive and less likely to over react and make rash decisions that are not going to solve the issue at hand.  I have felt the pull several times to begin the new year with watertight weight loss resolutions and then I smile and realize that what nonsense that all is.  Sounds noble, seems plausible and yet it has never been the true catalyst to change.  2012 brought a lot of changes for me, but I think starting the Pewter Porringer blog has helped me understand my disordered thoughts about myself, my eating and the path I really want to take to let wellbeing blossom and thrive.

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My few remaining not-so-optimal eating decisions are very easy to remedy without making it a major battle cry of reform.  There is no overhaul to accomplish, I do not need to start at square one, I am well on my way as it is.  I need to continue to practice the teachings of Buddha and allow myself to fully experience the here and now by being present in my own life.  The porringer continues to be my guide that keeps eating in balance.  For 2013, I want to drop all eating out of hand and eat exclusively from the porringer to see what that experience brings me.  I also want to let go of built up resentments, fears and stop the grumpy old woman from taking residence in my body, heart and mind.

There are a few celebratory foods for today planned.  I am making husband lamb chops for dinner and I am having steamed cod with melted butter.  With that, creamed spinach and he gets his beloved potatoes.  We have an extraordinary bottle of wine to go with it.  Later, closer to midnight, I will prepare a cheese and salami tray, husband will get ryvita and we will have an Irish coffee (with whisky) to go with it.   There are two small bars of dark chocolate and a box of 7 ice cream snickers bars.  Of that stuff, I do not know what I will have, because I have learned not to plan or make rules about food in advance, because it sets off ED like nothing else.  I keep my mind clear so that he hasn’t anything to say and I decide at the last minute what to have or not have, letting how I feel in that moment take care of itself.  It took me a very long time to trust myself in making decisions, I use to believe that if I did not have a plan in place I would fail.  What a joke that was, because all the planning in advance never kept me from bingeing if that is what ED got the upper hand in.  If ED knows I am resolute on not eating something, I can be damned sure he’ll find a way to change my mind!  Why give him that power?  Keep him guessing always works to MY advantage.

So Happy New Years to all of you!  Keep on dancing!

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Steady On

Friday’s Meals:
Porringer 1- 2 eggs, 2 rashers, 2 cups coffee with 4 tsp. double cream
Porringer 2- pot of tea, pot of pate
Porringer 3- glass of wine, 2 cumberlands, cabbage, carrot
Evening coffee- 2 cups coffee with 4 tsp. double cream
Tea: pot of tea, 3 slices salami, 2 slices cheddar

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This pate is fabulous! It has a minimal bit of cranberries pieces and flavoured with port. It is unusual, I know to eat a whole pot of pate, but it is low in carbohydrates and filling. Right now, with the holiday’s begging for bingeing, a concentrated food like this carries me a long time.

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Saturday’s Meals:
Porringer 1- 2 eggs, 2 rashers, 2 cups coffee with 4 tsp. double cream
Porringer 2- pot of tea, pot of pate
Porringer 3- glass of wine, 2 minced beef patties, peppers, onion, 2 roasted carrots
Evening coffee- 2 cups coffee with 4 tsp. double cream, 2 humbugs, 2 chocolates (humbugs are hard mint candy drops, chocolates are the size of a Hershey’s kiss each)
Tea: pot of tea, 3 slices salami, 2 slices cheddar

It’s been going well for me for a couple of days. ED nudges me occasionally but nothing that feels like a major battle brewing.  I am feeling outside the reach of ED’s grasp, calmly ignoring his pleas to indulge.  I slowly move through the end of the year’s festivities with small pleasures like a humbug or two, but find that the attraction they once held is fading.  I have had a opened bottle of whisky in the house since Christmas and feel no pull to indulge beyond the two shots I plan on having tomorrow night.  That has never happened before, so I know the wind is changing course.

I will probably write about the changes I made and the battles I fought in 2012 tomorrow, but today, I just want to concentrate on positive energy, the realization that choosing the porringer to eat from has definitely been the key for me to manage my eating in a more consistent way. 

In the midst of my New Years cleaning spree, I polished the silver and grabbed my porringer and rubbed it to a bright sheen. Wow, I thought, what a lovely bowl you are! What nourishment you provide! What peace of mind you soothe me with, knowing at at your fullest, you are never too much food. ED hasn’t a chance with you gleaming in all your bright ideals. The answer I have been looking for is all contained within your steadfast rim. 

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Fear Laced Binge

Yesterday’s Meals:

Porringer 1- 2 eggs, 2 rashers, 2 cup coffee with 4 tsp double cream
Binge- pot of tea, 3 plain rolls with butter and cheese, 1 full size bag of crisps
Porringer 2- glass of wine, beef and carrots, sauce

Evening coffee- 2 cup coffee with 4 tsp double cream, 2 mint humbugs (hard candy)

The binge yesterday was unexpected, meaning that I did not struggle with the thoughts beforehand, and I did not want to…but did.  Underlying emotion was probably resentment as husband is stepping up his campaign to get me to work because he highly resents having to work himself.  I refuse to tell him that I already bought a calendar to keep track of all the jobs I apply for so that he can see I am productive.  Because he does not know my intention of starting to look in the new year, he feels it necessary to talk around the subject by mentioning how much nicer it would be to have more income, or how we can’t afford something or like this morning, go on about how he cannot wait for retirement because he hates working.  I let him talk it out and then like a dutiful wife, I burst his bubble.

He droned on about how far away retirements is, how he’ll have to suffer another 11 years.  Out comes my pin, and I remind him just how short 11 years is and exactly how close to 70 he will be.  His face fell and shock overcame him as I continued to point out how these are the golden years, the years we can still function, have our health and in 11 years we may very well be wishing we were still in our 50’s and working.  His bubble busted, he admitted I was right.  Off to work he went a bit humbled.  But these feelings he has about work, I too share.  It is triggering me too.  The problem lies in that we both had circumstances in the last couple of years that allowed us to not work  for a short period while the other did, when both of us never had that concept or luxury before.  We both started work in our teens and NEVER had a period of unemployment.  So now that we have a taste of it, we certainly cling to the idea of retirement like it is some kind of golden ring almost within reach.

My own resentment about returning to work is causing me to have insecurities and puts me into a vulnerable place with bingeing.  I went for the usual food shopping and without so much as giving it a thought, picked up three rolls.  I did notice I had not desire for anything else, although ED was urging that I might as well make it a proper binge, I wasn’t really interested.  When I got home, I realized I had forgotten the wine, so went back and saw the crisps on sale and grabbed a bag of those.  Once again I thought, geez, I am here, I might as well get something sweet and it sounded awful and I didn’t.  I almost put the crisps back on the shelf.  This isn’t want I wanted at all.  I did not want to binge, but I did not want to sit with the feelings getting all stormy within me either.

But here I go again, drenching my gut with wheat and the expected result happened and I sit at the table this morning with my pin ready to burst husband’s bubbles but it is my own backside I really want to stick the pin in.  I am wallowing an whining in my own self pity and wasting time because the very thing he wants to lunge for is scaring the hell out of me.  I sat in the doctors office on Christmas Eve and was asked if I still had a womb.  This question was asked because of my age, no other reason.  It was one of those defining moments that make one so acutely aware that they can no longer get away with being thought of as an adult, now it has all crossed the line over into the old people’s court (people without usual body parts).  No so long ago, no doctor would have asked me that question.  But at my age, it is common to be wombless I suppose.  So between the fast foreword my husband wants and the fast back into the past I want to go, stuffing 3 rolls into my mouth to prevent screaming seemed the right thing to do. It wasn’t, of course.

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The crisps I ate.

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Three of these I ate (about the size of a hamburger roll).

And I also bought 5 pate’s as they were on sale:

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The ones I bought were the brussels cranberry and port, which is a lovely deep colour, unlike the photo above (which I grabbed off the net to show the brand and size).  My plan was to have one for lunch each day.  Remembering that I love low carb foods pushed me into considering how far away from what I want to do I have gotten.  Sometimes I feel like seaweed caught in the ocean tides, washing up on the shore and being pulled back into the sea, over and over again, endlessly hooked in the scheme of how life works whether I want it to or not.  Is it better to fight hard to get back to the deep sea or go with the flow and see what the beach has to offer?

Oh, and while I am calling this eating episode a binge, is it really?  It is not how I imagine normal eating to be, it is not extreme by past binge standards.  I usually gauge a binge as more of a behaviour than the actual amount eaten, but yesterday, I didn’t want it.  There wasn’t an urge…so was it a binge or a frustration spelled out in overeating?

I am pretty sure I can stop it today.  I want to do the major cleaning before the New Year tradition, so I will be busy enough to not think of eating, there is nothing in the cupboards that can call my name and husband will be off the next 5 days.  Hopefully he’ll stop the retirement/money talk so I don’t have to ride into the New Year on the guilty charges of not working.

Hoovering

Yesterday’s Meals:

Porringer 1- 2 eggs, 2 rashers, 2 cups coffee with 4 tsp double cream
Porringer 2- pot of tea, risengrod, butter
Porringer 3- 1 glass of wine, chicken, sausage, roasted root veggies

Evening coffee- 2 cups coffee with 4 tsp double cream, 4 chocolates

I was pretty ill all of yesterday.  At two in the morning I awoke and had trouble falling back asleep, but I did notice I felt hungry.  A rare sensation these days!  It was almost pleasant to feel hungry.  It was a welcomed feeling.  That meant my digestive track was on the mend.  And why was I hungry?  I remembered that I only had 3 porringers of food yesterday and what a wonderful difference that made.  I had wanted to get the grains out and worried about the rice, but it was one of those, lets not waste food already made and so I thought I would stay sick longer, but it must have been easier on the digestive track than wheat.  Wheat makes my insides turn inside out.  Still, even if it doesn’t bother me intestinally, it does jack up the blood sugar, so that is reason enough to leave it alone.  It is gone now.  I think I forgot to post a photo of risengrod on this blog:

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I didn’t have the Guinness with it yesterday, this photo is from Christmas Day.  It was what we had for lunch.  It’s short grained rice cooked in milk and sprinkled with cinnamon and a knob of butter added.

Husband gave me a new mobile phone for Christmas.  I never hope for anything romantic, that’s just not him.  No baubles or bangles, no perfume, no engraved rings or watches will ever be under the tree. In 9 years of marriage, I have not received one single flower.  I have received wonderful gifts and he is always generous with letting me purchase something I may have my eye on, but coming strictly from him, it will always be practical.

This year it was a mobile phone.  It’s also an insistent reminder that he wants to me go to work.  We have a home phone so there is no need for me to have a mobile unless I am working.  This morning he accidentally on purpose remarked about the jobs he saw online, wow, what a subtle hint that was.  And so it begins in earnest….I will have to actively job seek which I do not wish to do.  That depresses the hell out of me.  Resentment can be a huge trigger, so I will have to watch for ED to use this against me.  Still, I feel animosity towards my Christmas gift, wishing it had been something more, well, frivolous and feminine.  I suppose I should be grateful it wasn’t a frying pan.  I remember my father and I bought one for my mother and she cried when she opened it.  We were floored, thinking it would help her in the kitchen!  We saw her as a cook, cleaner and housewife.  Now I understand why she cried.  I will have to return to work and still keep house, cook and do laundry.  Why would I need a ring or perfume?  Silly me, I’d be happier with a Hoover!

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The poor mobile phone is getting the brunt of my insecurities.  Job hunting being obese is one thing, being obese AND 57 is another.  Having never worked in the UK and all of my past references are long gone, will be a black mark (they are big on current and local references here).  My career was in banking and accounting and I refuse to go back to it, I am burnt out.  I worked solidly from 1974 to 2009 (and April of 2011 to April 2012) and I am not relishing jumping back into the game at all.  I do not know the area well enough to find job interviews and I have yet to ride the bus on my own.  Here, you have to tell the bus driver where your stop is and he tells you how much it will cost.  I still have to look at the coins to read the amount on them.  So this is all intimidating.  Oh well.  No sense getting worked up about it just yet.  One thing at a time and right now, I need to concentrate on getting those grains out of my body.

Rich Foods?

When I was a little girl, I can remember when an older person would make the comment, ‘’I can’t eat that anymore, it’s too rich and doesn’t agree with me’’.  I remember pondering over that and wondering why anyone would think that about food.  Just what was ‘’rich’’ food anyways? Didn’t make sense to me until now.  Now, when I am 57 years old.

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I am so sick. UGH.  Christmas foods have torn up my entire digestive system.

Good Things About this year’s Christmas Foods:

  • I did not bake cookies or desserts.
  • I did not make side dishes.
  • I did not crave any whisky after the bottle was opened.  A first.
  • We chose small packages of sweets and treats and kept to one serving.
  • We did not eat seconds of anything at a meal.

Not Good Things About this year’s Christmas foods:

  • Husband felt ill from the sweets.
  • I felt ill from the grains.
  • Foods we use to love hurt us physically.

Husband and I had a long talk this morning.  It was not very easy to admit defeat for either of us.  Husband felt he ate too many sweets (he had bought wine gums and liquorice)  I was in major gastric distress this morning as the grains that I cannot digest built up to the critical point and exploded.  Both of us knew this would be the potential consequence and thoroughly believed that moderation was the key.  This year, we did not succumb to debauchery, bingeing or over eating.  Yet, the very nature of the foods chosen with care all conspired against us, and our bodies are suffering today as though we had been on a bender.  Aging is the pits.

We both said in eerie harmony:

‘’I can’t eat that anymore, it’s too rich and doesn’t agree with me’’.

Has this not happened in some form or fashion, every single year?  Have we not all made loads of promises to never eat what we know will not agree with us ever again?  I am admitted angry at our deliberate restraint this year and had the same exact result as though there had been no restraint.  This meant dealing with aging issues when we are not wanting to.  I am angry I need to have these thoughts of negativity so soon after Christmas.  I am feeling sick, angry, frustrated and urgently feel the need to get back my wellbeing.

I really hate this.

Our Christmas Meal

We kept our Christmas meal pretty simple this year and didn’t load up on side dishes or homemade desserts.  For one, I didn’t really want to invest in the pantry ingredients like sugar and flour and all the other stuff, and for second, neither of us wanted tons of sweet stuff on hand.  When we were in Glasgow yesterday, we picked up a mini tin of Danish cookies, some marzipan batons, and chocolates so that I could avoid all home baking and excess.

Dinner was a roast beef and root veggies.  I did not make the yorkshire pudding I originally had planned on.  Thankful that I didn’t. 

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Altogether the veggies were a leek, 1 yam, 1/2 swede, 2 turnips, 2 carrots and 3 potatoes.  The potatoes went to husband, I had some of the rest, but there is still some leftover.

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Veggies ready to add to the roast beef.  Stuffed with sausage mushroom caps.

I baked the roast in the cast iron dutch skillet for 1 hour (150c) and poured off the juices for the gravy.  I added the veggies and checked after another hour and it was all done!  I had expected another 30 minutes to an hour, so I was caught off guard with that and did not have time to bake the mushroom caps!  That will have to wait for tomorrow’s dinner of leftovers.

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The roast turned out great!  I had cut slits in all over the top and inserted garlic cloves, seasoned with rosemary, garlic, and a general seasoning mix. The juices made a fabulous deep rich sauce, I have to say one of my best attempts!  Ib dashed some wine in the sauce, so that may have made it bloom with those juices!

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The fork is a huge meat fork, the roast is quite large and did not shrink as much as I expected it would. Light pink in the middle (so tender!) and nicely brown around the edges. 

Christmas 2012 005 The wine was one of our favourites, bad photo because it is not hot pink, it is a deep burgundy colour.

039 Lagunilla Rioja Reserva.  So deep, rich and earthy.  80% tempranello, 20% granacha.  Aged 2 years in oak barrels.

Later, Ib made Irish coffee with:

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We had a few treats with the Irish coffee.

Much later, a final touch…..whisky and chocolate!

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Today I will be making risengrod the old fashioned way and we’ll have leftover beef and veggies, plus I want to try a traditional Christmas pudding:

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So nice that these things are so small….

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Just perfect for two people and not left with too much in leftovers.

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I realise that this is all image heavy and it is actually a copy from another blog I share with family, so it is all cheerful and meant to be light-hearted.

So I want to show what we ate, how we kept it minimal, how we wanted to have a nice Christmas together as our last three were ‘’situationally’’ separated.  Last year I was in Hawaii with my daughter, both years before that, I was home waiting for husband to come home and he got dispatched at the last minute and was away making deliveries.  It was important to us to celebrate several things together this Christmas, one of them being a really nice meal together since we are so sparse otherwise.

For us (as with most people) food is a source of sharing and celebration, but for us, it is getting more difficult to tolerate the foods we once enjoyed.  Both of us noticed this morning that the above grains and sugar wrecked havoc on how we feel.  I had only two shots of whisky (I had planned on more but just couldn’t), and had perfectly normal portions of treats, (actually on the small side) and yet my body seems to be bloated, a mass of fluid retention and my joints ache.  Husband says he also feels bloated and uncomfortable.  This was after many hours of walking yesterday and lots of fresh air.  The fatigue today is incredibly annoying and it seems at our age, these things are felt so much more than ever in the past.

oh, I forgot, we did share a fish and chips for lunch:

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One piece of fish each and the tray closest is mine, with the amount of chips I ate. (more starch and grains).

Today, I plan on at least tasting the Christmas pudding for our first year in the UK and I will have some of the risengrod, but other than that, I can feel that the grains and sugar must be taken back out of the diet, for even this much for Christmas is doing damage I cannot afford.

Oh, and for good news, I finally have health care and several appointments set up in January…so perhaps all will get a good evaluation and I can work on this weight and wellbeing thing with a better understanding of what I need to do.