A new beginning

A new beginning

If you have been following my blog or my facebook community Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis in Australia you may be aware that over the many years I have tried numerous forms of exercise to maintain my health and support my joint mobility. Until now everything I have tried has failed after some time. I struggle with managing my fatigue and my lack of energy often lets me down.

What I mean is I have already spent my spoons on getting up, getting dressed, going to work, working, doing housework, looking after my pets and so on. Where am I going to find the energy for effective exercise? I questioned myself repeatedly and often gave up because to be honest life got in the way of exercise. There was always something more important. There was always another priority. My health always came last. Slowly over the last year that I haven’t been writing I gained some weight. About 8kg to be exact. This extra weight was seriously beginning to affect my self esteem, my mood was always low, my back was always having a flare and I was drowning in fatigue and self pity. I was emotionally eating because to be honest food was the only thing that was making me feel good. It is so easy to get into a never ending downward spiral.

I decided last year in November I really needed to get back to a exercise regime and get my life and health back on track. Eating healthy I always found easy once I focused my thoughts but exercise is where I have always struggled. I knew I needed help.

I had seen a couple of trainers who all gave me the one size fits all routine. This never suited me because of mobility issues not all exercise types help me. Some of them have even aggravated my PSA. I used to see a rehabilitation trainer at a gym I went to a few years ago and thought I would see if he could help me to kick start my exercise routine. I called him and I was surprised he remembered me and my issues with Psoriatic arthritis. I went in for a consult in November and haven’t looked back. I am learning many things about my body and myself and building a good relationship with exercise.

Stay tuned for more on my journey.

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Cyber bullying, how people can be so cruel, but why? 

Cyber bullying, how people can be so cruel, but why? 

When someone attacks you through the window of their computer or phone and has a real go at you for no apparent reason it really has an impact on your mindset. It is easy to be a cyber bully because no one can see you and you can even use a fake name to attack someone. You can instantly feel better about yourself from the pleasure you got from hurting someone. You can easily deny it was you because “that’s not my name”, “I’m not that kind of person”, you can pretend to be someone else to the world but the reality is that you prey on the insecurities of your victim and you get real joy out of saying every mean thing you can think of to them without any consequence. 

But there is a consequence 

The consequence is how it effects the mental health of the person you are attacking. You don’t know how they might already be feeling when your venoumous words spread through the persons body like an ever consuming poison. You don’t know they might already be at breaking point when your words took that brokenness and pushed it over the edge. You don’t know how the darkness can overcome all the light in that persons life. The truth is you don’t know what real harm your words can do. 

I have over the last year experienced this myself. In February last year in my Facebook messenger was a message request that abused me for keeping in touch with my exs brothers, for calling them my brothers, for being so pathetic that I have broken relationships, how ugly a person I am, all the things that are wrong with me, how I have no life and nothing better to do then bother my exs family it went on and on. I blocked this person and was really upset as to where they got many of their inaccurate information from. Yes I had my exs brothers on my Facebook but only ever wished them happy birthday and they did the same and no one thought anymore of it. We had many mutual friends and as far as I knew it wasn’t an issue with anyone. If I was pathetic for keeping in touch with them, they were rightly just as “pathetic” for keeping in touch with me. I messaged them and apologised if I caused any drama in their family and thought that was the end of that. I was really hurt and upset because I hadn’t done anything to cop that much abuse from anyone specially someone I had never met or heard of and I certainly hadn’t done anything wrong. Also my exs relationship was over 9 years ago at the time of the abuse. So why now? Why all the rage? I failed to understand and eventually forgot about it. 

Then last year in July I got more messages from a fake name saying how ugly I was. Again I was really hurt and didn’t understand who this person was and why they were targeting me. I felt really insecure and hurt that someone I don’t know would go through the trouble to make a fake profile and contact me. At this point I didn’t know that both these incidents were related. 

Last night I got another message from a different name saying how ugly I was and it used the same words that the message in July to insult me, that’s what made me realise it’s the same person. They also pointed out that I was an ugly Fijian and why anyone would want to be married to me because of how ugly I was. This was really hurtful. I was already not feeling great about myself over the last few months and this really brought me back down. It hit me hard, it repeated in my head. Sadly it has been the same person who has been responsible for all of these messages. 

What does the bully gain? 

That is what I asked myself. Why after so long when I have long forgotten about these people and my relationship with them and moved forward with my life, why am I being harassed about it? What is this person getting from going through the trouble to create fake profiles just to message me abuse? Does it make them feel better in their relationship or about their appearance and insecurities? The bully here is suffering some sort of issue which is affecting their mindset and causing them some aggrevation and they need to project it onto someone to feel better?  Well that is how I feel. They are the one suffering a mental illness that needs to be addressed before it becomes something even more dangerous. 

So who needs the real help?

Well I do feel really hurt but the bully is obviously also experiencing something to have that sort of an outrage to someone they don’t even know. They must be suffering their own insecurities. I’m not trying to validate what this person has done because I am very hurt by it. I am just trying to understand what they have to gain. The issue here is one of mental illness for the the victim and bully. Does the bully even know they need help and support? I would say in most cases the answer is no. I will talk to my family and friends and get other support for how I am feeling. I will use this blog as an outlet and start to forget and feel better and if it continues I will get the police involved. But the bully is doing this secretly under the disguise of someone else, how will they get help? Even if someone confronts them they will deny it was them. What if the problem keeps festering inside and it goes beyond cyber bullying? Can something be done to treat this bully today so it doesn’t ruin their own or anyone else’s future? Does the bully have the potential to go over the edge and do something to harm others? There might be potential. 

Maybe I am being extreme but you never know what is going on in the mind of another person and what it can take to push that person beyond breaking point. For both the victim and the bully. If we treated our bully’s there might be a lot less victims? It really makes me wonder. 

On the road to overcoming  my struggles 

On the road to overcoming  my struggles 

I made a decision that I don’t  want to feel the way I have been lately and needed to do something to break out of this low mood and lack of motivation with life. 

I thought about what things I can start doing now to help me change my state of mind. To reenergise me and start making me feel positive and alive. Doing things that will help me feel like I’m a doing something meaningful. I decided to go back to some old things that I enjoyed doing with my family such as doing outdoor activities. So every weekend my husband and I are going to do just that. Last Saturday we packed a picnic and took ourselves and our puppy to the beach. 


We spent the whole day playing with our puppy, relaxing, soaking in some sun and I felt really great at the end of the day. But the next morning I had the same lack of motivation. So I have to keep this up and hopefully how I feel will improve in time. 

I also decided to try some new things and with the help of some friends and family have the current list of things I’m going to start doing. 

1. Learn a language 

2. Learn to dance 

3. Learn to play guitar 

4. Write a book about my cat

5. Learn a martial art 

6. Join a social club 

7. Be comfortable in my own skin – I had already started this one from the beginning of the year, more on this later. 

8. Try surfing 

9. Visit new places in Australia 

10. Do a counselling course and volunteer at lifeline  

The plan is to add more to this list but this is what I have for now. Here is hoping for feeling better and learning some new skills. 

What has happened to me? 

What has happened to me? 

Lately I find myself wondering around just getting by in life. Doing the same things day in day out, working a job that is totally rubbish, with a not so great manager who has no clue how to manage people or be innovative. I moved away from my family four and half years ago and spend a lot of my time by myself. The last year has taken its toll on me and I feel I’m at a point where I can’t see why I should keep being positive. My job is pretty isolating I’m either seeing clients or working from home with the supervision of my cat Romeo. The job gives me no mental stimulation and I have been doing it for the last year. I can’t complain, I get paid pretty well, have a work car and a car space in the city and barely do any hard work. But I am complaining!

Why? Because it’s not enough for me to just get by doing nothing with myself and not achieving anything. I feel like I have wasted a year and a half of my life. I feel like my life has no purpose and I’m just wasting away. 

Lately I have been really negative, I am hardly able to even get out of bed because I don’t see the point or purpose in getting up. What am I going to do with my day? Nothing is the answer. How it became like this sneaked up on me without even realising, funny how that happens isn’t it. Before I knew it I was sitting there crying to my husband at what little purpose my life has, how I only interact with someone else maybe 3 hours a day. How I have achieved nothing in my life. How I don’t know how to make it better, how I can not get out of bed each morning. I just can’t see how I can get out of this. 
I tell myself maybe I am becoming depressed as a result of always having to fight for things this far in my life. Maybe my fight is all gone? But surely there is more to life then just working, cooking, cleaning, paying bills, going on holiday once a year? Surely this can’t be it? Can it? I’m sure I am here for a greater purpose? Or maybe I’m not!! What have I become? Who do I want to even be? The answer is that I don’t know. But what I do know is this can’t be it. There has to be more. 

Kicking my own butt and getting myself healthy again 

Kicking my own butt and getting myself healthy again 

It’s fair to say the last 3 months or so my health and fitness have fallen off the bandwagon. I have been eating all those things I know I shouldn’t. I have been indulging. Ice cream, chocolates, cake, cheese, pizza, processed foods, even gluten. I normally have so much self control and just didn’t see where my eating habits were starting to take me. I also didn’t know why I was eating all of this. 

I was comfort eating

I have since March bought a new house, had drama through the land we were buying titling, organising a move and everything that went with it. Then the new house had a lot of drama that came with it, electricity and plumbing problems. Also, I have been having a lot of stress at work and my Psoriasis was flaring and I felt like I was drowning. I resorted to food for comfort. I can now understand that when everything seems to be going wrong how good food can make you feel and how it becomes a drug and you just want to keep eating those bad things. You keep going back for more, you tell yourself no more but you just keep going back, specially to sugar. It begins to take over your life and it’s and an endless cycle. 

You tell yourself you won’t eat this rubbish anymore, then you look at yourself and you don’t see that great body and you feel miserable. How do you feel better? By eating more of the fatty food that got you there in the first place. 

It’s a vicious cycle and something I didn’t want to continue or become a life long problem. I have always been slim and currently is the most I have weighed. Although it’s a 7kg weight gain over 3 months, it’s not something I want to look back at in 2 years and be a 50kg weight gain. I want to end the bad habits before they become part of who I am. 

I did some research and I found the Ashley Condon 21 day challenge. I’m starting that from today. I am making up my own diet but I am following her exercise plan with a couple of au situations. Here is he full 21 Day program

I will be blogging my journey along the way, I know it’s not going to be easy but I am determined to be a better me, physically and emotionally. 

Gluten – friend or foe?

Gluten – friend or foe?

  About a week and a half ago my doctor declared that I needed to do a test to see if I was gluten intolerant. After telling her I don’t eat gluten anyways because it is bad for inflammation, she told me I had to start eating a significant amount of gluten every day for a month until I did the test. I have been strict with my gluten consumption for over a year now and haven’t had anything with gluten in it. I was curious to see what would happen to my body when I start eating large quantities of gluten again. 

At first I got a little carried away thinking of the things I would eat that I haven’t been able to. The first thing I ate was a glazed doughnut from Krispy Kreme. That was the only gluten I had eaten that day, I didn’t feel any reaction as such but my belly looked like I was 6 months pregnant. 

The next two days I struggled to get the right amount of gluten into myself. After substituting for so long it was hard to think about what to eat. I had noodles, bread, wraps and soy sauce! But found it really hard to get equivalent of three pieces of bread into myself each day. The task seemed impossible!! (To me anyways, my colleagues were not sure why I was finding it difficult). 

It was only after about four days into the gluten diet  that I started getting a headache, constant feeling like I’m always hungry but at the same time feeling full and like vomitting. I also started to get more neck and knee pain. I felt that my hands were feeling weak.  I felt exhausted and that I wanted to sleep all the time. At first I thought it was only that day, but I have been feeling this way now everyday.  It has almost been two weeks of having gluten everyday and I don’t know if I can do it for another 2-3 weeks. I have also gained weight. I’m not surprised considering how heavy my stomach feels immediately after eating something with gluten in it. 

For me eating gluten is not worth the effects I am having as a result. I just feel lousy and depressed, yet hungry and full and just feel hungover everyday with a constant headache that won’t go away no matter what I do. I can’t seem to think so clearly. I don’t feel like this is something I can do for another three weeks. It is pretty obvious from my reactions that I might not have coeliac disease but I do have a gluten sensitivity to some degree. 

Gluten is definitely not a friend of mine. 

Fruit and nut delights

Fruit and nut delights

  

My banana, raspberry and walnut muffins. 

This is a newly created sugar, dairy, and gluten free. I was lucky it turned out on my first attempt. I used my stand mixer to mix my ingredients. 

This made 12 cupcake size and 4 large muffin size muffins. 

Ingredients 

1/3 cup raw honey 

1/3 cup good mild flavoured olive oil 

3 free range eggs, at room temperature 

1 1/2 cups rice flour, sifted

1 tablespoon baking powder

1/3 cup sultanas

2 large ripe bananas,mashed 

1/2 cup walnuts, slightly broken 

1/2 cup frozen raspberries 

1 tablespoon vanilla essence 

Method

1. Whisk oil and honey together until creamy. 

2. Add eggs and continue beating until light and fluffy – I set this on an electric mixer for 10 minutes. 

3. Add the sifted flour, baking powder and almond meal and mix until just combined.

4. Add the walnuts, vanilla, sultanas and raspberries and gently fold through. 

5. Scoop the mix into greased cupcake trays.

6. Bake for approx 15 minutes at 160 degrees celcius, baking time may differ depending on your oven and size of your trays. 

Check with a skewer and remove when the skewer comes out clean and if you lightly press on the top it has a little spring. 

Allow to cool and enjoy.