We have all heard the saying “this is the first day of the rest of your life”, and it is so true. Every new day gives us the opportunity to start afresh, to erase or correct the mistakes we made the previous day and open a clean page to our future.
Human beings have such wonderful qualities, we can chose to open ourselves to all that is going on around us or we can be private and self contained. I tend to be the open book kind of person as anyone who reads my ramblings will know. I speak from my heart and say things that may not always be what people want to hear but that is the way I am.
I have opened my heart about the turmoil that I have experienced over the past weeks and I can’t believe how many people have responded to me and encouraged me. I realize that many people do not find plain speaking comfortable but because I am open, many of you have responded to me by sharing their own, similar experiences. I thank all of you so much for being so supportive.
When your personal world is shaken up and you feel the foundation of your little world crumbling, it is very easy to think that you are the only one who can possible feel so broken, so sad, so ugly and worthless, but this is a really self centered view of the world. Once I got back my ability to be rational and think clearly, I realized how many people go through their own personal disasters and come through it just fine.
I am on the wait list for a knee replacement so, in June, I decided to make a change in my eating habits and lose some weight before my surgery. I opted to try the low carb “Keto” diet and I have found it very easy to stick to. It is not really a diet but a whole new way of looking at meal planning.
The object is to reduce carbohydrate consumption and on first reading up on this it sounds weird. I have been a vegetarian for over twenty years and have always eaten lots of fruit and veggies. I also eat fish, cheese, eggs, nuts and beans for protein and loved oatmeal and whole grains as a daily part of my diet. Bad news most grains are a no-no as are full of carbs, even worse, much reduced consumption of fruit as it turns to sugar. Good fats and lots of protein are encouraged as are low in carbs, not terrific news for a vegetarian!
However, I decided to give it a try. I used to have a toasted English muffin, peanut butter and a banana for breakfast, but one banana is equal to a whole day’s recommended carb consumption so, this was off the list. The recommended two eggs, without toast for breakfast was not appealing to me. I do like coffee so my breakfast consists of two big cups of coffee with butter and a little heavy cream, unbelievable to think this is healthy, but it works. The butter and cream certainly fill me up and give me lots of energy and contain no carbs whatsoever. The richer the milk, the less carbs are in it so skim milk is high but whipping cream has no carbs at all.
Lunch is either home made veggie soup, a cheese omelet or a salad with nuts and tuna or egg salad. Dinner is usually some sort of veggie lasagne (with zucchini noodles) or fish and veggies or shepherd’s pie made with mashed cauliflower, instead of potatoes, and a soy based meat replacement. Evening snack, a handful of nuts. A very different way of eating but I am never hungry, I have so much more energy, my arthritic knee is feeling so much better and…I have lost forty five pounds in four and a half months. I hope to reach my goal weight by Christmas.
My doctor is pleased with my progress. I am not recommending this meal plan to everyone, as each one of us has different needs, but just saying that it has worked for me.
After the bottom fell out of my little world, I had felt ugly and unwanted but, once the dust settled and I started to heal, I realized that I needed a new image to make myself feel good again. I bought new clothes in much smaller sizes, I no longer needed the larger ladies section, I could wear jeans again. I bought new underwear that made me feel good about myself, not that I intend to be showing it to anyone, but knowing that I looked good underneath put a spring in my step. Funny the things that give us confidence but sometimes necessary to boost our ego.
My life is definitely not over, it has changed and will continue to change but, thanks to so many wonderful friends, both old and very new, I know that this is a new page for me to write on, I can and will, create a different story as I go forward.
A few weeks ago, I truly thought my life was over, I was blinded by grief and could see no future. With the grace of God, the help of four wonderful daughters and support of friends and the community I know that my life is just beginning again. Today is the first day of the rest of my life and I intend to make the most of it.