Just let go

Last week we went to the lake in Squamish.  It was amazing… I swam and sunned and ate and laughed… really an amazing time.  And yet the one thing that has stuck out more than any of that is a moment that didn’t even happen.  There was a rope swing on the shore… way high up in the trees and I believe I declared as we were discussing the swing that there was no way on this earth I would ever partake in that activity.  No.  Nope.  Nu uh! 

I did picture myself doing it tho… I pictured climbing up to the top, grabbing on to the rope swing and in some feat of heroism, actually jumping off the platform and swinging out over the water.  And then swinging back, too frozen by fear to let go and smashing back into the platform… Once you jump, you just HAVE to let go of the rope… you have no choice… because not letting go of that rope means certain and epic injury. 

If you were holding a million dollars in your hands and someone said if you gave it up and trusted that they’d replace it with two million, would you do it?  What if you trusted the person with your life?  Would you give up the million and your control to momentarily have nothing before they provided for you and came through on their promise? 

I used to wonder what it sounded like when God spoke to you… is it a voice?  A feeling?  How do you know?  Maybe for everyone it’s different… I assume so.  I’ve realized that for me, it’s the sound of my own voice… but wise and impactful. It’s in my own head, saying the things I need to hear… I argue with it… It makes me cry… because that voice… that sounds like me but smarter and wiser and divinely blessed… that’s God.  And He’s telling me to let go…Let go of that which I know is holding me back from something better.  I need to let go of something… of someone.  

This voice in my head… this divine message from God… 

Just let go.  I promise I’ll give you something better to hold on to.

You can’t have what I want to give you while your hands are full.

Just let go… I promise it won’t hurt…

Just.  Let.  Go. 

I’m standing on the platform… arguing… saying I can’t.  Knowing I have to… It’s so obvious that what I’m holding on to is not right… not meant for me… not the plan… It’s so obvious… and yet, I’m standing on the platform, refusing to make the jump because the second you jump… the second you trust that the rope will hold you, you HAVE to let go… 

I’m moved to tears grateful that my God is patient.  Oh boy, am I ever.  I know that this is important… to let go of what I’m holding on to and trust that something better is in store for me.  My fear, keeping me on the platform… keeping me from letting go is that that better thing is still a ways off… and I’m so weary of being alone.  To be honest, I’m mostly alone now… Just to mix analogies… instead of being covered by a big thick and fluffy blanket to keep me warm… I’m holding on to a threadbare tatter of a blanket that is doing nothing for me but getting in the way of the big thick fluffy one.  I’m still as cold as if I had nothing… 

As I’m writing this… I can hear the Voice of God… in my own head… in my own voice… Stand up there for as long as you need to… hold on to that threadbare tatter for as long as you need to.  I’m patient… but you’ll eventually have to let go… you know you do.  And when you do, I promise there’s something better for you. 

I’m not a trusting person… I’ve known this about myself for a long time now… I used to be… I’d put my trust in anyone that even hinted around at it… but I’ve been burned here in this mortal world and it’s hampered my ability to trust at all… 

As I sit here… with tears in my eyes and the most giant lump of what can only be grief in my chest, these are the words repeating in my head… 

Just let go.  I promise I won’t let you fall. 

I’m going to have to find a way to trust that.  Soon.

How do you push back the fear, let go of your own control and trust?

Party Animal!

Well, my weekend plan worked out almost exactly the way I wanted it to.  

I didn’t get down to the fabric store or the button store so that’s still on my list…but it’s something that I really should do when the weather gets a little bit less nice… 

We did however get to Trader Joe’s on Friday night.  I picked up a few essentials (since Friday night is usually when this party animal goes to Costco!) and then we went to Target and I got a pair of long (incredibly difficult for tall people to find!) bootcut jeans that were on sale for $13.  They’re about ¼ size too small yet but I couldn’t pass up the sale and by the time it’s jeans weather again, they should fit perfectly.  I also bought a super cute Champion Layered Tank and then a couple plain technical tanks… Target has cheap awesome workout wear! 

On Saturday I did get my pedicure and enjoyed my time with my friend… lots of laughing as per usual and then I did some fruitless errands and went home and had a nap. 

On Sunday I got up at 6am and was out on the Seawall running by 645.  I decided the night before to go much earlier than 8am because I knew it would be too hot to only be starting at 8 and I actually wanted to go to church at 11 so the earlier start was better.  I had also decided to go all the way around the park, which is 6miles or 9.8km but then once I was out there and it was already scorching at 7am, I decided I would only run half way around and then turn around and run back because I started on the cool shaded side and the second half is where the sun lives… it would have been completely unbearable.  So I ran from the yacht club (which I know means nothing to you) all the way to the underside of the Lions Gate Bridge.  When I stopped to check my pedo, it turns out that is exactly 3 miles so I just turned around and ran back and voila!  The goal of six miles while still avoiding baking my body and brain in the sun!  I ended up running the first three miles at 32m 17s, which is pretty much right on pace with the 2.5 mile runs I’ve been taking in my neighborhood.  Then I walked (very very slowly… I was just so out of juice!) the fourth mile… and then got cranky because it was taking too long and I realized that I didn’t get up at the crack of dawn on a weekend to take a leisurely walk… so I ran the last two miles back and came in with a 2nd half time of 39m 51s… which means that I must have run the last two miles faster … anyway, however you work it out, I need better timing equipment and I finished a 6 mile run (with a mile of walking) in under 1:15, which was fine with me! 

After my run I went and got a coffee at my friend’s café, came home and made breakfast and then took a post shower nap.  When I got up I decided to go to the mall and spend a Lululemon gift card I’d found and see about getting a watch battery fixed.  As I was driving home that’s when the whole weekend sort of went to hell and I drove over some accident debris and ended up with two flat tires… flat beyond repair… the tires on my car are the original ones from when it was made seven years ago so they’re bald, dried out and have cracks in the sidewalls… the tire guy said even if they could patch the holes, it fails their standard for putting a car on the road so my only option is to now purchase four new tires for a car I’m not all that interested in keeping… That about pushed me right over the edge of the stress cliff  and I decided that the best thing to do about it was to ignore for now… so ignore I am! 

Other than that, I guess no news is good news… the weather remains beautiful and in celebration of it tonight, I will paint my fingernails a completely obnoxiously bright coral color and go to bed early!  Because that’s what party animals do!

A Weekend Plan

The last time I checked in, I was covered in a rash from my coffee routine… it took less than four days of no preservative for the rash to clear up entirely… I’m much happier now and will be incredibly diligent in the future to make sure that crap never makes it into my diet again!

And if I thought that a bit of food grade preservative was bad, just imagine what happened to me when I had to take 2000mg (yes… not a typo… TWO THOUSAND mg) of a prescription…in one dose… nothing good!  I was hesitant to take it in the first place and when the doctor put the pill bottle in my hand, I swear I could feel it burning a hole… not putting crap into your body on a daily basis means that when you have to take a foreign substance like a prescription, it does a number on your mental health.  Not to mention that I know that most prescription pills are full of gluten and other disgusting filler products… No wonder I felt like crap almost straight away!

I did finally, a few hours later convince myself to take it and I think I got every stinking side effect that was listed on the internet plus all the ones from consuming the ‘filler’.  That was three days ago and it’s still in there, messing things up.  I have a ripping headache, everything tastes metallic, I can’t sleep, my eyes hurt, I’m exhausted and my digestion is… for lack of a better, altho ironic word, crap.  Or a lack of crap.  It sucks.

All this being said, I’m not feeling very awesome and I foresee maybe not feeling super great this weekend… I can’t just sleep all day both days because that doesn’t make me feel better and as mentioned, I can’t really sleep anyway.  So I’ve devised a plan to keep myself relaxed and occupied this weekend… 

Tonight after work Sam and I are going to the USA… I have nothing really special I need but I can get my eggs/produce there instead of Costco for the week and it’ll be a fun trip… 

On Saturday morning I am going to get up at a reasonable hour (read around 8ish), make myself a nice breakfast and then go get a pedicure with a friend.  Then I’m going to make my way downtown to see if I can find some nice fabric to make a couple ‘dressier’ headbands because I’ve discovered that I like the style of soft wide headbands on me… and THEN I’m going to go to Button Button and find a nice button to strategically place over the moth hole in my favorite alpaca scarf that I knit last year.

If I can find some nice fabric, then I’ll be making headbands and I might finally sew up my replacement skirt if I go to the trouble to drag the sewing machine out… in there somewhere I’m going to go and lay out for a while to try and even out my tan. 

On Sunday I am going to go for a run on the seawall.  It will be lovely and cool at 8am and the seawall is pretty much flat as a pancake so that’ll be quite nice as opposed to when I normally run uphill for the first half and downhill for the second half. I might spend a tiny bit of time on Saturday buying a new pair of runners and then break them in on Sunday morning… I’m wondering if I can get away with buying runners that don’t necessarily fit my orthotics since I don’t have knee problems anymore thanks to Whole30. 

Anyway, I’m going to keep nice and busy this weekend and get some stuff done and feel good about being alive and living in a beautiful city during a spell of beautiful weather.

Thanks for Nothing!

So lately I’ve been enjoying a morning iced Americano from Whole Foods.  It’s a nice ritual that I have with a friend I work with… I come to work about 90 min before her, I get my morning stuff done and then she arrives and we walk over to the café together, have a little visit and get our coffees.  The reason I started going back to coffee was because I discovered that Whole Foods has coconut milk that doesn’t have any sugar in it.  My iced coffee with coconut milk in it sometimes just made my morning!  It’s tasty and creamy and a nice distraction.

Back up about a month and a half… that’s when I started partaking in the above, which my friend and I refer to as ‘Coffee Walkies’.  It was about that time that I started wearing my jewellery again because as I’ve lost weight, some of it has started fitting again.  I used to be allergic to nickel in jewellery so the stuff I have that is starting to fit again is all either stainless steel or sterling silver.  I was so excited to be able to wear my old favorite watch and a bracelet again that I wore them every day.  Then all of a sudden I got a bit of a rash on my wrist that was reminiscent of my old allergy. Knowing that the change in my diet means I’m no longer allergic, I figured maybe I got a little sweaty under my watch and that’s what it was from… I stopped wearing my watch and bracelet but the rash stayed… got bigger and really really itchy… it’s been weeks since I’ve worn my watch and bracelet and the rash continues. 

Then when I gave blood two weeks ago my sister ripped my Band-Aid off for me and the spot where the tape was developed into a similar rash… that still hasn’t gone away.

About a week ago I noticed some weird bumps on my forearm… they were itchy but didn’t seem to grow into a rash… and then last weekend I went completely off the Paleo wagon and ate and drank some stuff that was, for lack of a better word, garbage.  My dermatitis on my hands came back, I got a huge rash on the inside of my other elbow, and the rash on my wrist and blood donation spot got worse.  Thinking it was from partaking in some questionable ‘food’ choices, I am now on day three of eating Whole30 with nothing that isn’t prepared by me, in my kitchen.  I know there’s Whole30 food out there in restaurants but I figured I should just give my body a break and not take any chances.  Well, three days in to clean eating, my rash is still all over my arms and wrist, my dermatitis on my hands is not really getting any better and then it occurred to me.

The only common denominator in the last month and a half is the coffee and coconut milk.  So I checked the ingredients on the box online this morning (with my lovely iced coffee sitting on my desk).  Contains Carrageenan.  Well eff me!  Carrageenan is one of the preservatives specifically disallowed on Whole30 because of its inflammatory properties. So I googled ‘Carrageenan’ and ‘rash’ and lo and behold, one of the side effects of an allergic reaction to Carrageenan is skin rash and hives.  

My poor body has been trying to tell me for almost two months that something I’m putting in it is not welcome.  There is no other reason why these rashes won’t get better.  I haven’t gone more than two days without putting this poison in my system in almost two months, so my wonderful coffee with coconut milk is going to have to go away.  Maybe it’s the coconut milk and it’s poisonous ingredients.  Maybe it’s the acidity of the coffee that I’m not used to.  Either way, it stands to reason that cutting out that morning ritual for a couple weeks is a good investment in hopefully helping my skin clear back up. 

In case you’re curious about Carrageenan, here’s some additional information: 

A shopping list of food products containing and then not containing Carrageenan  

Other domestic non-food uses (from Wiki)

Fire fighting foam: thickener to cause foam to become sticky

Shampoo and cosmetic creams: thickener

Air freshener gels

Marbling: the ancient art of paper and fabric marbling uses a carrageenan mixture on which to float paints or inks; the paper or fabric is then laid on it, absorbing the colours

Shoe polish: gel to increase viscosity

Biotechnology: gel to immobilize cells/enzymes

Pharmaceuticals: used as an inactive excipient in pills/tablets

Pet food

Personal lubricants

Now, why WOULDN’T you want to eat something in your food that they also use in FIRE FIGHTING FOAM!  Seriously!