Just before Christmas we went shopping for a coat . I’ve been having lustful thoughts about the fake fur jackets that are all the rage this year. It channels my inner slut most beautifully. Over the last year and only with the help of a 12 step programme, I have lost 117 lbs taking me from over 315 to a relatively slender 198. Although I still have some way to go to be at a healthy body weight, it appears actually within the realm of possibility. I am starting to like what I see in the mirror. Shopping for clothes is becoming a joy rather than a traumatic exercise. For a while I didn’t buy much. As the weight dropped off clothes got looser and I moved through the sizes in my wardrobe, in the loft and hidden in drawers. Now I am finally having to buy new. Sometimes I hit the charity shops where recently I have acquired some bargains along with a sense of excitement.
But today was special. The coat was going to be my Christmas present from my nearest and dearest. I tried a couple on. I landed on a gorgeous silky mink brown and was thrilled when I put it on. First I went straight for the Large. XXL was the biggest size. It was, well, roomy. I picked up the medium. I was a bit nervous. I didn’t want to try something that was too small, I’ve had too many experiences of feeling humiliated and hot and bothered in dressing rooms. It fitted. I had to try it on twice to be sure.
This feels like a miracle.
When you lose a lot of weight it’s hard to trust the process. It feels quite dangerous to believe that you will stay this slim.
Only one day at a time will see me through.
This was Mum’s 87th Birthday in July last year. We had a tea party, balloons and cake and sparkling wine. This picture is Mum with her four precious grandsons, the light of her life. Their hands reaching out to her and hers holding on just say ‘Love”. Mum died peacefully two weeks later.
Feeling a bit down this morning but the sun was out and the dog and I needed walking so we set off for the lake. I am doing Race for Life this year which is a 5k for Cancer Research. I am doing it in honour of friends who are in treatment right now, and friends who have lost the battle. And in memory of my dad who had prostate cancer but died in 2006 pretty much from old age thanks to treatment.
The route for the run/walk is round the lake with some extra bits added to make it up to the full amount. This is the half way point round the lake. Conveniently there is a little cafe where you can sit and watch the herons swoop across looking for a fishy snack. It also has a doggy diner ( water) and a skinny cappucino. I realise these benefits won’t be part of the 5k but I am in training.
The second half of the walk takes you through the woods. On our way we saw:
and something mysterious in the treetops.
The goslings followed daddy goose into the water, one, two, three, four ….
Time to get going with the veggie garden again. I do confess to being a woman of fits and starts with gardening ( well, with everything, if I’m honest). The ‘earlies’ I bought a couple of months ago with every intention of planting have turned wrinkly and a bit mouldy in the bag so I am thinking they would probably not be the best start for a healthy crop. But the main crop potatoes are sprouted nicely and I have planted them out today in two massive pots on the patio along with 2 lots of onions and 2 courgette plants. This year I have planted the courgettes one to a pot as I hadn’t realised just how big those things grow last time. We didn’t have much of a crop last season and even though what we had was fabulous I think with more space they will crop more. That’s the theory anyway.
I also bought 3 big new pots in the sale section at the garden centre, 2 courgette plants, 3 bags of multi-purpose compost and a bag of farmyard manure. Saves you money this growing your own vegetables don’tcha know? ‘The Help” ie Son 3 brought the haevy stuff in from the car whilst I did the artistic planting-y bit. And will obviously take all the credit.
Tomorrow I am going to plant some bulbs the kids gave me for Mother’s Day ( here in the UK that was in March). It is a ‘purple selection’ so I think they will match my handbag and shoes perfectlly. I did a bit of desultory weeding. The type that means grabbing big handfuls of last years cabbage and yanking it out of the ground by the roots. I didn’t attemt to tackle the forest of attractive dandelions that need serious digging. I had a Scarlett O’Hara moment about them.
The really good thing about being in the garden though is it is a very mindful experience. I do struggle with being as ‘here and now’ as I would like to be. Too much of my life has always been spent in fantasising and planning which is all very well if you are writing a book or carrying out a great design plan, but for day to day peace of mind there is nothing like just being in the moment and accepting it as it is. Someone said to me ‘Grateful people stay sober”. Whatever your drug of choice, gratitude has a sure fire way of putting addiction firmly in it’s place.
Today I am glad of a reminder from the garden that I am glad to be here and now.
Last summer the apple tree in our garden was laden with blossom and then with fruit so much that the branches reached to the ground with the weight. I love the pink amd white and hot summer days when sitting under the tree is cool and shady. An ideal place to read a book, gaze up at the sky through the leaves or fall asleep on a Sunday afternoon. I took so many pictures, but this one reminds me of the dazy, lazy feeling of summer.
The path leads up and up through woodland, spring flowers and shades of green
At the Eagles Nest with the valley below. The sense of achievement is wonderful. 6 months ago the climb would have been beyond me. There is both a sort of shame and a new pride in this.
Can we do it? Yes, we can!! 365 Steps, just one step at a time. One step for every day of the year. There was something quite profound for us in this climb, it seemed to mark a turning point of hope and a little helping of confidence and faith
- There are 365 steps up to the Wye Valley pathway from the road that leads from Tintern Abbey. Can we do it?
Half way up and a pause for breath and photo opportunities.
The view starts to open out and the River Wye snakes away through the valley below