ozeri
-4.7lbs
+8.3lbs since Jan 15 2014 Weigh In
379.4lbs

Apologies for the lateness of the post. I know that it’s still Monday on both sides of the Atlantic (not over on the Far East, though, and in the middle of the continent, etc. Sorry, guys! Y’all are too far in the future for me to keep up!) at least for another 22 minutes here, so I’ve got some time.

I was going to post earlier, but then my weird personal brand of OCD caught up with me, and I had to start sorting out my bling™.

See, I bought some plastic crystals for on prototypes of seasonal cards, and for on the cheaper ones, while the more expensive ones will have actual Swarovski crystals on them. Unfortunately, what I did was I bought two packs of 1,000, mixed colours.

FATGIRLslim | In Which Tracy Has Minor OCD Problems...
Bottom right: Tomorrow, I have to sort the large size. Because I’m a sucker for punishment and searing back pain.

So that’s what’s been keeping me.

At least it’s also been keeping me from eating! It’s good when you find something that keeps you from eating everything, and wanting to eat everything, in the household.

Yay for remembering that I love making stuff. How the hell I managed to gain so much weight in college is a complete and utter mystery. I spent most of my time completely distracted from food by my class projects, slaving away by working by hand, or on my computer. How did I ever manage to eat and drink myself to 400+lbs?!

God knows.

But I’m glad that the above weigh in shows that I know where I was going wrong, in that I was, indeed, apparently just eating all the wrong stuff (read: everything in the house), and stopped that for the last week, while still allowing myself one or two wee things – I got Mum and Dad to pick me up a bar of tablet from Aldi when they got the shopping, because Aldi stock the best tablet ever, omg, and a pudding that Mum bought to go with dinner at the weekend.

Hopefully that’ll be able to continue, and I’ll get back on the right track again.

Only time will tell, I suppose!

I was contacted not too long ago, to be featured on a Sports Direct post about what we most hate about keeping fit.

I love everyone else’s reasons! Laundry’s a huge vexation of mine, too, and it seems that other people also have that problem, hah!

But my problem doesn’t stem from laundry. My problem stems from being disabled.

I’ve only recently taken to calling myself disabled, although it’s something that I should’ve done a long, long time ago. “Just” being in chronic pain (for more than ten years!) should be cause enough for anyone to call themselves disabled. But being a little backwards in the whole disablism thing, I always sort of thought that, unless you used a wheelchair or were able to get a blue badge for your car or, y’know, were disabled, then you weren’t disabled.

That was until I actually became disabled and had to apply for Employment and Support Allowance, one of the Social Welfare benefits in the UK. That’ll learn ya what society (but not Government) deems disability to be.

Mental health problems. Invisible disabilities.

I’ve been disabled for ten years and extremely unaware of it!

So how does this relate to the above mentioned Sports Direct post? Well, the thing I hate most about keeping fit is just this: I’m disabled. Keeping fit depends on one thing, and one thing alone.

What am I capable of doing today?

In Which Tracy Talks About Keeping Fit

FATGIRLslim | Walk ALL The Distances
Last year’s approach to keeping fit.

There have been times when I’ve had to cancel my gym membership due to the fact that my physical condition has just drastically decreased, for no reason whatsoever. One day I’ve been fine, and the next day it’s been a case of, “Oh. Oh, crap, I don’t think I can walk right now without being in completely, number 10 agonising pain even while fully medicated.”

There have been the times, of course, when I’ve felt wonderful and I’ve managed to sustain months – I think I even managed two years? – of exercise without incident, and then suddenly, again, my body’s turned around and told me that I’m doing too much and to slow down.

The most important thing to do, if you’re keeping fit when you’re disabled, is to listen to your body. If you’re exercising when it’s hurting, then you’re going to keep on hurting, and might end up even worse. I know that for a fact. I’ve been there and done that. That’s what not losing weight also does to you, or regaining a crapload of weight does to you. It hurts your body.

If your body is saying, “No, please, let me rest,” then don’t keep hurting it. It needs the rest. It knows best! It’s evolved for this. If you were a hunter and you were out on a hunt and your back/leg/knee/muscle suddenly gave out, you’d be so much chow for the big beasty you’d been chasing, instead of the other way around.

I know that probably a lot of people think that continuing to exercise is the best thing for you, but I’ve had far too many experts (doctors, specialists, nurses) tell me otherwise. I have it drilled into my head. It’s on the back of my eyelids.

If you’re sore, and you want to work out, there’s still stuff you can do at home, if you absolutely have to. Depending on what your disability is, find a way to work with it. Take a walk during the advert break of the TV shows you’ve been forced to watch while you recover. Do some arm curls with a couple of 1 litre bottles of water. (They weigh approx 32oz/1lb each!) Do step-ups in your hallway, if you can’t get outside. If you’re able.

Make use of your surroundings. Make use of your body, as much as is safe for you to do so. Just don’t overdo it!

The point is:

I know it sucks.

I want to be back to four Spin classes a week, plus my two Zumba classes, my Aqua fit, working out after Zumba and Spin, and walking to and from the gym, but it’s not feasible right now, because my disability is too bad.

I’m working to fix it so that I can get back to that level (hah!) of “fitness”, with the help of a physiotherapist.

But right now, I just have to kind of deal with the fact that I can’t work out, or keep fit, as much as I’d like to.

FATGIRLslim | Weigh-In Time! Weight Watchers Scales
±0lbs
+13lbs since Jan 15 2014
384.1lbs

Sorry, guys. First week back on weekly weigh ins, and I couldn’t provide anything better than staying alive the same.

I’m more hopeful about next week, however. I’ve got my new Amazing Overnight Oats to get me started right in the morning, although I’m going to kick myself if I decide to do Paleo or keto any time soon, haha!

(Which I may.)

I got an appointment for physiotherapy today.

And I don’t mean that in a sense of, “I got an appointment today for a few week’s time.”

I mean it in a sense of, “I got a phone call today at five minutes past one, for an appointment with a physiotherapist at two.”

Which is weird, because usually, when it comes to me, and appointments, and the NHS, I either get completely forgotten about, or it just takes months. That’s only two weeks! TWO WEEKS, YOU GUYS.

And my physio doctor (are they actually doctors? Nurses? I don’t rightly know. He’s just gonna be my physio doctor – although Dad’s just said, “No, they’re physios. Don’t call them doctors, don’t call them nurses. They’re PHYSIOS. If anything, they’re SPECIALISTS.”) is an absolute nutcase. He’s brilliant. He’s a big chrome-domed black man (and dear GOD if that’s not PC or whatever, please let me know because what other term can I use? Please also let me know. He’s not an African-American, because he’s not African. He’s from London.) called Andrew. And he’s slightly insane.

That suits me perfectly. It means I don’t need to worry about coming off as a total weirdo, because when I made a reference to The Rocky Horror Picture Show, he knew what I meant – and then went ahead and told me how he’d actually met Richard O’Brien at a RHPS drive-in in London some years ago. Colour me extremely jealous right now, please.

What it boiled down to today was while I exhibit two or three symptoms of aforementioned cauda equina syndrome (depending on whether you count the chronic and sometimes debilitating pain as a symptom of cauda equina symptom), he thinks it looks more likely that what I’m suffering from is a degenerative postural spinal something or other.

Basically, my core muscles are bollocksed, my back muscles are sick of taking the strain, and it’s entirely possible that my spine is or isn’t crumbling, because nobody’s ever actually referred me for a goddamn scan.

(The last time I was sent for an x-ray to see why I was in constant, agonising pain, I was turned away because the lady who was doing the x-rays that day said that I was “a lady of a certain age”, and they didn’t give back x-rays to “ladies of a certain age”, which almost certainly means childbearing age, which means fuck y’all if you’re between 14 and 50 and you have something wrong with your spine, apparently.)

I had some physio tests done and for the moment, I’ve got some exercises to do at home and an appointment to come back in next week, with hopes that my spine will be properly re-aligned by this time next month.

Let’s just say that I’m crossing my fingers and toes, but chickens, baskets, etc. I’ve been this size for a good long time, now, and I know it’ll take a long time to undo two decades of damage.

I don’t know about you, but usually, when I say I’m making some cereal, that means I’m getting a bowl out of the cupboard, emptying some of whatever cereal I’ve got lying around into said bowl, adding milk and a spoon, and eating it without much interest or thought whatsoever while I’m doing something else.

Mum’s been buying this lovely fruit muesli stuff from Aldi, of late, that’s got oats and fruit in it, and no extra added sugar, and it’s delicious, but I’m not too keen on whatever oats they’ve used – too husk-y for my liking.

So this week, I almost literally made cereal.

As in, I bought a whole heap of separate ingredients, and mixed them all together into a bunch of wonderfulness.

FATGIRLslim | In Which Tracy Makes Breakfast Cereal

This included:

  • 2kg of oats
  • 500g of pinhead oat meal
  • 250g of “Omega Sprinkle” – a mix of hulled pumpkin, sunflower and sesame seeds, with linseed and golden linseed
  • 500g of banana chips fried in coconut oil
  • (I think) 120g of flaked almonds
  • 500g of “Fruit Surprise” – which included dates and pineapple and papaya and raisins, although some have been “sugar infused”
  • 500g of currants

It was SO MUCH STUFF that even Mum’s giant mixing bowl wasn’t enough to contain it all, so I actually had to resort to using her cake holder lid, inverted. Hey, it worked!

FATGIRLslim | In Which Tracy Makes Breakfast Cereal

Then it was a case of mixing it all in – the best bit, because I got to stick my hands in and scoop big mounds of it up and over itself. I felt like I was on a weird cookery show at that point. Except that I’m pretty sure Masterchef would never stoop so low as to have their contestants making stuff in upturned cake holder lids.

But seriously. Once I’d gotten it all mixed in, it actually really looked like breakfast cereal. Like the breakfast cereal Mum had been eating? Kind of. The Aldi stuff has specific flavours (duh) like “Berries and Cherries” and “Tropical”. Mine’s just more of an, “These are the dried fruits I like, and also what was included in the Holland & Barrett penny sale” kind of a thing.

I really wanted to include the dried chopped pineapple because ZOMG DRIED CHOPPED/CHIPPED PINEAPPLE, but it was £5 a bag. So no pineapple. Same goes for papaya. The only papaya that’s included was what’s in the fruit surprise bag.

Damn. I do love me some papaya.

But it worked out quite nicely. I bought some breakfast cereal keeper tubs in ASDA, because where the hell am I going to keep 5/6kg of homemade cereal otherwise? Even that wasn’t apparently enough. There was a little bit leftover that I had to put into one of Mum’s pasta/rice jars.

FATGIRLslim | In Which Tracy Makes Breakfast Cereal

I’ve been really enjoying it. I’ve been filling up half a mug at night, then covering it with milk. Come morning, all I need to do is add a wee bit more milk just to hydrate it further. :) Because there’s more fruit than you’d get in a supermarket cereal (perhaps for a good reason, haha!) you don’t need any extra sugar.

Total cost was also fine, coming it at around £20. I can go through breakfast cereal like nobody’s business, too, eating 100g a morning, but this stuff is filling as hell.

Hopefully it’ll help me, with that whole breaking-fast thing, and give me a good start to the day.

FATGIRLslim | Weigh-In Time! Weight Watchers Scales
+5lbs
+13lbs since Jan 15 2014
384.1lbs

Not that I expect anyone to actually notice these kinds of things, because it’s the kind of thing I do for me, and me alone, but if you check out the weigh-in above: the actual picture of the scale changes from time-to-time. It actually reflects which scale I’m using at the time. (I haven’t done this right from the start of the blog, but it’s been happening since at LEAST 2011, I think.)

It’s changed from the start of the month, because of two things:

  • I’m going back to weekly weigh-ins.

Given the fact that I’m not doing at all well with this whole monthly weigh-in thing, I’ve decided to go back to weekly weigh-ins, so that I can keep a closer eye on my weight.  It means I won’t go a month without damage I’ve done.  I’m hoping it’ll also mean I keep myself more accountable, and won’t just, y’know.  Continue on like I have been this past wee while.

  • I can’t use the Ozeri on a carpeted floor. :(

 

I mentioned it in the review I did of the Ozeri bathroom scales: they don’t do so well on carpeted floors, and the carpet in my bedroom isn’t that thick, but it does come with underlay, which means that the Ozeri weighs me in at… ooh. About 192lbs. Which I’d take on any other day of the month, but let’s get real, haha!

I sort of realised, after a week and a half, that my reaction to an almost 9lb weight gain shouldn’t be, “that’s not too bad”, but, “OH CRAP.”

Maybe if I’m more horrified by my weight gains over 2lb, instead of nonchalant about them, I’ll be more inclined to actually stop eating crap every other day.

I know that we don’t eat that much rubbish, but it must be more than we think it is.

It must also be time to start tracking my food again, since I don’t “think” I’m eating as much as I am, eh?

C’mon, Trace. You know how to do this!

In Which Tracy Talks About Head Cysts, Infections, BEING IN A FUCKTON OF PAIN And Medication

Three years or so ago, I noticed this annoying little lump on the back of my head. I forgot about it for about six months when my brush touched something that struck a lightning-bolt of pain down my neck, and I reached up and touched a little lump of squishy excruciating pain.

I didn’t know what it was, but I took a guess at a pimple. A plook. A zit.

I was gentle around that area for about a week, and eventually forgot about it again.

Whenever it was that I shaved my head this time, it came back to my notice, because I accidentally cut it with what I assume was a wee sharp plastic bit of the clippers. I went to Dr. David, and I told him that it had been there for “about three years or something”. He said it wasn’t a spot; it was a pilar (scalp) cyst, probably caused by the years of hair-dyeing. It didn’t have a head and it wasn’t inflamed or anything, despite the tiny cut. (Luckily, I was in seeing him for something else, and that wasn’t all I was seeing him about!)

The other week – a week or two ago? – I was getting really annoyed with it. I’d had it for three goddamned years already, and I’d been through how many courses of antibiotics? Surely it should have gone away? Now, being A) an artist and B) an idiot, I have scalpels to hand in my bedroom, and fresh blades. (Non-sterile but surgical. Clean. FRESH, JUST-OUT-OF-THE-PACK.)

I did what any idiot suffering from a manic attack would do! I found the wee bump, pressed it in so I could feel where the reservoir of crap was, and slid my scalpel in. Admittedly, it took me a few attempts to get the point of my scalpel into it properly, but then again, trained nurses sometimes take a couple of attempts to get a needle into a vein, so. I’m not gonna complain.

I HEARD IT when it happened.

I also felt it, because it kind of immediately started flowing down the back of my head. It was disgusting.

I ended up having to mop it up with tissues and then had to wait until it had scabbed over so that I could go shower.

A few days after, I popped it, and some white gunk came out.

Then I couldn’t stop picking at the scab because it was itchy as hell.

I couldn’t stop.

So I ended up with an infected wound on my head… that then expanded into an abscess beside it, too, because apparently the agony of the infected hair follicle wasn’t bad enough.

We’d decided, yesterday, to take me to the A&E if my head was no better today. So yesterday afternoon, what does my body decide to do to add to this nightmare?

It decides that yesterday is the perfect time to have one of my Back Attacks.

On a scale of 1-11 on Hyperbole And A Half’s New Pain Scale, I was a straight 9, not including my head.

I’m talking constant pain in my left hip. The complete inability to straighten my leg without my hip screaming in agony. A shooting wave of pain that comes and goes and is a FUCKING 11 and sometimes includes MUSCLE SPASMS because THE PAIN ON ITS OWN IS NOT BAD ENOUGH.

For the first time in what I think is over a year, I actually had to take my Methocarbamol, the muscle relaxant/anti-spasmodic. Excellent for helping relax the muscles.

The pain?

Yeah, let’s talk about the pain, and how the painkillers I’m on aren’t doing anything. Or, let’s talk about how I’m on so many painkillers that the doctors won’t give me any more AND I’M STILL IN PAIN.

Do you want to know how much medication I’m on? Do you?

FATGIRLslim | In Which Cauda Equina Syndrome Is Mentioned

Nine tablets in the morning, when you include the multi-vitamin I take. 4 at lunchtime. 8 at bedtime.

And that’s not including the Methocarbamol or the Almotriptan, which are only taken when I need them. It’s also not including any ad-hoc Ibuprofen which I probably shouldn’t taken but sometimes I have a headache that I just can’t deal with and Ibuprofen is the easiest answer, or that time that I was on an anti-fungal pill for a year and a half. Or any times I’ve been on prednisone or antibiotics.

AND I AM STILL IN PAIN.

In Which Cauda Equina Syndrome Is Mentioned

So yeah, we ended up in the A&E department today, Dad and I, sitting side-by-side on The World’s Most Uncomfortable Plastic Chairs EVER™. You know the ones. The ones where they dig into your ass fat if you have the audacity to be larger than a size 12.

Just exactly what I didn’t need when I have pain running down the nerves in my hip. Guess where the outwardly-curved sides of the chair pushed into. I dare you.

It took them about an hour and a half to call us, by which time I swear they’d called everyone who’d come in before and after us. Dad and I were sitting reading stuff on our tablets (I was reading a book for a review; he was reading Game of Thrones), and there was a woman who was texting someone on her phone. With the sound turned up. You’re not even supposed to have your phone turned on, in the hospital, let alone turned on, turned up, and texting people with the keysounds on.

Since I’d sat through an hour and a half of listening to other peoples’ phones going off while I swear my family are the only people decent enough to turn ours off completely, or at least turn them to SILENT (not vibrate), I turned around and said to the room, “Whoever’s playing the game or whatever it is, could you please turn the sound off?”

It’s not like I was rude or anything. I’m sitting in the fucking A&E. I sounded exhausted, because I fucking WAS.

The lady proceeded to tell me how she wouldn’t turn the phone off/down/whatever. That she wasn’t actually playing a game. And that she was going to actually do whatever she could to annoy me more, now that she knew how easily annoyed I was.

I could have punched her.

Luckily, Dad had to go out at that point, since he was sitting beside me hissing, “TRACY SHUT UP. SHUT UP. JUST SHUT UP,” through his teeth at me, and I think he had to either phone someone or take a call or do something (I honestly don’t know, he just said he was going outside for a minute WHICH IS SUSPICIOUS BY THE WAY, DAD. IF YOU WERE SMOKING I WILL HANG YOU UP BY THE BALLS AND LET THE CATS EAT YOU.) and then the nurse called me through.

The Doctor I spoke to was suspiciously handsome. And he had a good, firm handshake. I let him see my head, first, and explained what had happened. Outcome? Antibiotics and, “I don’t know what kind of artist you are, but that was a mess of a masterpiece! But please don’t do it again. Don’t touch it, don’t squeeze it, don’t rub it. And the big red lump is an abscess.”

To be honest, I expected to have a part of my head shaved, anaesthetised and cut open, drained and stitched back up again. Considering that I’m still in pain with it right now… I think I’d have preferred that.

Then we started talking about the other thing. The pain thing.

I explained my symptoms. He asked me questions about my health, with regards urinary and poop functioning, and whether or not I’ve gone numb between the legs or if I’ve had a change in sexual function of late.

Apparently, the back pain and the fact that I have difficulty with the whole having-to-go-right-away-or-I’ll-wet-myself when I need to pee aspect of things (hello, TMI, my old friend, how are you?) along with the fact that I’m getting pins and needles down my leg are pointing to Cauda Equina Syndrome.

I can’t, and don’t have the mental capacity right now, to explain it properly, beyond, “it means damage to a bunch of spinal nerves called the Cauda Equina ["horse's tail"]“.

What does that mean?

It means, if it’s true, that I’m probably pretty much destined for major and life-threatening back surgery in the future.

When the Doctor said that, I almost had a breakdown, for two reasons.

One:

Oh Jesus Christ Almighty, BACK SURGERY. How the FUCK do I recover from BACK SURGERY?! I’m fat and huge and I live upstairs and there are 26 stairs to get to my bedroom and OH JESUS CHRIST.

But also:

OH MY GOD IF I GOT BACK SURGERY MAYBE THE PAIN WOULD GO AWAY.

Today, however, the most he could do was apologise, because he couldn’t even give me painkillers, because of the amount of medication that I’m already on. He did offer to admit me to hospital for the afternoon to hook me up to a Morphine drip, but admitted that, considering I’m already on Morphine, it probably wouldn’t make much of a difference.

In Which There’s A Bit Of A Light At The End Of The Tunnel

He asked me if I went to the gym (not right now; I had to give it up due to money issues, but I’m planning to rejoin soon); how I’m trying to lose weight (cutting way down on portion sizes, with my Mum to help, but I have an eating disorder that means portion sizes don’t particularly mean anything when you eat 8 meals a day); and if I’m attending Physiotherapy.

No, I said. I did call for a referral to physio, about two years ago, but when they listened to my symptoms, they said “it wasn’t bad enough to actually get an appointment for physio. What’s your email address? We’ll send you a link to a website where you can get some exercises you can do at home that will help you.”

(Not a word of a lie. That’s pretty much what they said. Not an exact quote, but that’s what they said.)

The Doctor picked up that slip of paper with my medications written on it, and thrust it into the air.

“THIS. THIS ‘ISN’T BAD ENOUGH’?”

I was so busy crying that I could hardly reply, “Right? I know.”

So he’s getting me a referral for physio.

Which, as we discussed, isn’t going to do a huge deal to help me. It might help a little, but it obviously won’t solve all of my problems.

He also told me that I’m not just allowed to sit around and do nothing about all of this. I have to fight for the treatment I need. He said I should have an MRI and a CAT scan, as a minimum, but the hospital won’t hand the permission out for these unless they know for sure that you already have CES, because they don’t want to have wasted the money otherwise.

(Sidenote: this is one reason why Scottish Independence is so important. Funding to the NHS is being cut so harshly that things like this are happening. I was turned down for bariatric surgery because I didn’t have diabetes or high blood pressure, despite the fact that I weigh 28 stones. With Independence, the Scottish NHS could allocate its full funds as it sees fit, not just how it can afford. #voteyes #indyref #yesscotland etc *GRUMP*)

And shock, horror.

What it all boils down to is the 380lb elephant in the room.

Losing weight won’t guarantee me a pain-free life. The pain might not, and probably won’t, magically disappear if I lose all the weight tomorrow. Especially not if it’s a spinal thing, or a neurological thing. If it’s a skeletal thing, the bones need to mend.

Basically, what it all boils down to, is that I’ve eaten myself to the point that my body is collapsing. I’ve tried to convince myself for years that I’m not disabled.

I think this is my body’s way of trying to convince me otherwise, so that maybe I’ll finally start taking care of it.

ozeri
+8.1lbs
+8lbs since Jan 15 2014
379.1lbs

Do you know what I’m not doing right now, despite the above weigh-in?

I’m not panicking. I’m not freaking out.

Yes, I gained just over half a stone.

I gained over half a stone in two months, in which I didn’t weigh myself regularly, check out calories, or, in much of the case of June, eat properly.

I’ve had worse weigh-ins over the span of a three-week holiday (or close to it).

Admittedly, it means that I’m landing pretty damn close to that 380lbs mark that I really don’t want to be close to – it’s one of the benchmarks of, “OH SHIT I’M REALLY LOSING IT,” that I’ve made to gauge how badly my weight gain is (the other being 400lbs, which is, “OH FUCKING HELL I’M DYING AND I’M DEAD WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED THAT I’M BACK HERE WHAT DID I DO DID I EAT AN ELEPHANT AND THEN IMMEDIATELY STEP ON THE SCALES?!”) while I’m aiming for the 350lbs mark. When I get to 350lbs, I aim for 300lbs and try not to go above 350lbs, or it starts all over again, etc.

But right now, I’m not particularly worried, because, as I said, I’ve had worse weigh-ins after a holiday. Once everything’s completely settled down – I still have a crapload of stuff to actually get sorted out re: house, stuff, money, STUFF STUFF STUFF – I’ll hopefully not only be able to get back to the gym for Actual Exercise, as well as going for my wee walks down to the woods when it’s good weather, but I should be able to look into going Keto for a while before transferring to a modified Paleo diet, because I really can’t mentally do full Paleo. I’m not sure how I’ll modify it. I’ll need to do some research and see how other people have modified it.

For instance, I know that Paleo Parents have posted photos on their Instagram feed showing “non-Paleo” foods on their dinner table! *GASP*

The idea had honestly never occurred to me when I first heard of Paleo, to be honest. I thought it was the Paleoway or the highway.

So that’s what I’ll be aiming for, once I’m settled enough to think about it. Hopefully before the end of August. :) I’d love to see a weight loss for next month, but I won’t freak out if I don’t.

I can’t believe it’s the end of July already; tomorrow’s August 1. I can still remember it being the middle of January, with me freezing my bollocks off in my flat under three layers of clothing, wandering around with my socks and boots on indoors.

Now, it’s past the middle of the year (holy god, it’s PAST THE MIDDLE OF THE YEAR, YOU GUYS!, and I mostly forgot about it, but did, at least, take the time to go outside and dig my toes into the grass and feel the sun on my skin. Which is something I wouldn’t have been able to do if I’d been in my flat at the time.

Interesting note: I was born March 22, my little sister was born February 1, and Mum was born December 26. They’re all pretty close to significant dates in the Pagan/Wiccan calendar (Ostara, Imbolc, and Yule) and Dad was born on July 21, which is the exact middle of the year (despite Midsummer/Litha being celebrated the month before), and my big brother-in-law was born July 31, which is the day before Lammas/Lughnasadh. Only my big sister (May 18 – too far away from Beltane to count) and little brother-in-law (July 17 – fair-to-middlingly close to the middle of the year, but since Dad’s already there…).

Hopefully at my weigh-in tomorrow, I’ll have lost something or at least stayed roughly the same weight. I’ve actually been eating food, instead of gorging myself on crap in place of meals, so my energy’s a little better, if nothing else. I’m still exhausted – and needing to phone up for the results of those blood tests, but since I didn’t get a call back saying, “YO TRACY THERE IS SOMETHING SERIOUSLY WRONG LIKE AN ALIEN BACTERIUM IN YOUR BLOOD,” I’m going to assume that everything is A-OK. Otherwise I would have gotten a call from the GP surgery.

In Which Tracy’s Looking Forward To August

Why “looking forward to August”?

Well, hopefully, if it ever stops raining, now that the insane heat has gone away, I’m gonna start going for my wee walks again. The raspberries should have flowered already, and maybe fruited. I hope. I know that they did some pruning over the winter, and I hope that the raspberry plants weren’t some of the pruned plants, because that’d be a pain in the butt.

I could always look out for the brambles again, in late August. Maybe make home-made bramble jam?

(I still wish that Great Granny had passed down her fruit wine recipe. My Great Granny made this amazing fruit wine, with stuff picked from her own back garden. Spices and herbs and fruit and it TASTES LIKE CHRISTMAS.)

But anyway: the wee woods are closer from here, but it’s more of a hike because I need to get down and around and WALK UP HILLS TO GET BACK. More calories burned?

I might, if I have the money, rejoin the gym. I know, I know. It always – obviously – comes down to money. I need to budget, etc. Double check. But I miss my swimming and dancing and spinning and I miss my goddamn weights.

I miss sweating.

So yes, I’m looking forward to August.

Hopefully, this’ll be that beginning I was looking for.

I’m ashamed to admit it: I hardly ever look at my naked or semi-naked body in the mirror. It’s either dark, or I’ve got a towel around me when I’m naked.

I still hate the way I look, although I’ve accepted that I’m the only person who can change it. Nobody else can do that for me (although having a great support group certainly helps!) and it’s going to be a long, hard struggle.

So, this morning while I was rooting around in my pigsty trying to find something cool enough to wear in this insane humidity, I happened to glance over at the vanity mirror while I was sitting on my computer chair.

FATGIRLslim | In Which Tracy Is Ashamed

Somehow, I look even worse when I’m sitting down. Yesterday, I happened to look down at my hands when I was typing something for the first time in forever, and, because I have a glass desk, I also noticed that my stomach under the desk is squished flat up to the top of the underneath of the desk.

But it never occurred to me that it’d look like this.

This is how I look to the outside world, when I’m sitting on a bus or sitting in a restaurant or a bench, or if I have to sit down on the ground to wait for something if I can’t stand up any longer.

This is how I will look to potential workmates, if I don’t lose weight in the time between now and getting a new job.

This is how I look to friends and family and everyone else.

I’m ashamed and disgusted – ashamed that I don’t look in the mirror more often, because maybe if I did, I wouldn’t have gotten to this stage; disgusted, because I let myself get to this stage, of a gelatinous mound of flesh with old bones creaking and me, stuck inside it.

The annoying thing is that I know how to fix it. I’ve known how to fix it, since Mum and I started going to Weight Watchers together – Trish was an amazing leader, and the Core plan really worked! – but I can’t seem to keep it together. I don’t know what it’s going to take to get it back together and keep it together, but I’m going to have to damn well try, because the idea of rolling around to get something off of my bed or out my yarn box or something and seeing that body in the mirror (I almost typed and seeing that in the mirror and then realised I’d be doing exactly what all those other people had done, and de-humanising me. Admittedly, I’m almost separating myself from my body, but… I kind of feel like it’s not my body. That’s not who I am; not what I am. If that makes sense.) would just break me to a point where I couldn’t be fixed.

So where do I start?

I’m not entirely sure.

But I’ve heard that the beginning’s a pretty good place.

I’m not sure how widespread the knowledge is, but it’s Glasgow’s turn to host the Commonwealth Games. You’d think it wouldn’t particularly affect me, given that I don’t, you know, live in Glasgow.

You’d think.

To be honest, I’d forgotten that the opening ceremony was tonight. When I thought about today, I thought: “I have a doctor’s appointment today at 2.10pm. I better leave the house at around 1.15pm so I don’t miss it, because I have to remember to include the extra ten minutes from Hillhouse to Burnbank now.

I wasn’t thinking, “When I’m finished in town, I’m going to have to wait for 75 minutes for a taxi to get home.”

See, I had that appointment with Dr. David to discuss two things: one, that my left arm continues to go numb, and only my pinky and ring finger are affected by it. My wrist, elbow and shoulder are sore, as is the back of my neck.

(Apparently there’s nothing to be done for this. It could be something to do with a nerve, but it’s usually a tablet-thing, and I’m already on two tablets that should take care of it… which means that really SHOULDN’T be feeling anything at all! And yet I am. Thanks, body! *sarcasm*)

Second, that I’m still constantly exhausted. Before, I was sleeping for 14 hours a day, depressed, etc, eating terribly. Now that my sleep schedule’s sorted out (I’m sleeping from anywhere between 11pm-1am – 9am-11am, usually 9 hours-ish, as dictated by the sleep cycle alarm on my phone) I’m still exhausted. My diet’s much better now that I’m eating Mum’s cooking for dinner – as in, I’m actually eating dinner! – and I’m still taking all of my tablets.

I’m talking full-on exhaustion, though. Not like, “I’m tired because of my tablets’ side-effects,” tired. I’m talking full-on exhaustion, depression, don’t want to get up and do anything because my muscles are too tired and my soul’s too tired kind of exhaustion.

So blood work’s getting done.

Headed into town and wandered through on down to ASDA to get myself more fruit than should be legal, bottles of soda (probably not helping ANY of my health problems; need to quit, don’t need to tell me this) and something for lunch.

Now, let me switch into present tense:

In Which Tracy Hates The Glasgow Commonwealth Games

I get out of ASDA at 5pm. “It’ll be 20 minutes,” the lady on the phone says. 20 minutes is… iffy. It’s easier because I’ve got my backpack on and it sort of redistributes everything and it’s kind of heavy and makes my posture better so my back doesn’t hurt as much. I tell her it’s fine.

20 minutes comes and goes. A guy who called the same company as me ten minutes AFTER me has already been picked up. It’s now 35 minutes since I called. I call them back. “Hi, I’m just calling to make sure that the car’s still coming to pick me up. Webster at ASDA.”

“Oh yeah, yeah. He’ll just be a few minutes, he’s just on his way.”

I take this to mean that the taxi will be arriving in a few minutes. As one does.

25 minutes later, and after having a conversation with a woman who has phoned another company and has been waiting 30 minutes, my car still hasn’t arrived. I call them back.

“Hi, I called 25 minutes ago. Webster at ASDA. Are you sure there’s a car coming for me? I first called about an hour ago…”

“Oh. Oh, yeah, he’s just dropping off at Hillhouse, and then we’re sending someone out for you.”

I actually hung up without saying anything, because… what? WE’RE SENDING SOMEONE OUT FOR YOU? You mean to say THERE HASN’T BEEN SOMEONE COMING FOR ME THIS WHOLE TIME LIKE YOU’VE BEEN TELLING ME?

By this point in time, I’ve got shooting pain down my right leg from my hip. My feet are on fire. My hip’s throbbing. The pain in the ball of my left foot is excruciating.

“It’s probably because of the games,” the other lady says. “The lady on the phone said they’ve got more traffic because of the games starting tonight.”

I curse sport and all sporting events up and down the length and breadth of the known world.

I’ve now been waiting for one hour and fifteen minutes, when finally the text comes through that my driver is coming around the roundabout to come into ASDA. At no point in time did I get an apology from the woman on the phone for having to wait for so long.

I wish the other lady best wishes while waiting for her taxi, that it comes soon.

While I’m in the taxi, the driver asks me if I’m going to watch the opening ceremony tonight.

GlasgowCommonwealthGamesLogo

I snorted. “God, no. I’m going home and dunking my feet into a bucket of ice water after waiting for an hour and a quarter in one place. I might watch a movie with a bucket of popcorn. Or read a book. Or slit my wrists. Anything but watch that crap.”

He laughed, and said he’d be watching as much of it as he could.

Personally, I couldn’t care less. And it’s not because of this isolated incident. And it’s not because I’m fat.

It’s because, while I appreciate that events like this draw in crowds – like the World Cup did in Brazil, and the Olympics in London, and Wimbledon, etc – I just don’t like them. They’re sponsored by fucking fast foods and sweets, and sodas of all things. I saw Barrs advertising tonight, which is a soft drinks manufacturer, focused on the Games tonight. Like the things that were sponsoring/advertising/focusing their advertising on the Olympics when that was happening… it’s not appropriate. It bugs the hell out of me.

Not to mention the fact that there’s a huge disruption to the people in the area (and, apparently, the surrounding area, even as far out as this – probably due to people going to see the bloody things and employers not getting enough cover, as Dad rightly pointed out a second ago) and the cost of it – *scream*

I am not a fan of sport. I don’t see why sportsmen are lauded above engineers and scientists and writers. I understand that it’s a huge discipline and requires training and stuff and jesus, please insert words here that describe all the rigorous workouts and stuff here because my brain’s gone blank, but y’all know what I mean! But I’m not a fan. Do it for personal pleasure, if you must, but you don’t see huge stadia being erected when it’s time to duke it out for the Man Booker, do you?

Oy.

Anyway.

Basically, all this comes down to is this:

Dear Glasgow Commonwealth Games 2014,

FATGIRLslim | In Which Tracy Hates The Glasgow Commonwealth Games