Saturday, July 31, 2010

Quotes I Like

"Content makes poor men rich;
discontent makes rich men poor."

-Benjamin Franklin

Thursday, July 29, 2010

What About Jeffrey?

On the drive home today a song came on the radio that reminded me of someone. The song was "Paradise City" by Guns N' Roses, and the someone was a little kid named Jeffrey.

From 1986 until 1990 I lived in a tiny two bedroom house in an older neighborhood. Next door lived an old lady I knew as Ms. Miller. Ms. Miller had no teeth and wore a duster every day of her life. Ms. Miller had let her white trash grandson Billy, his white trash wife, and their tribe of naked children move into her house a few years before I came to the neighborhood. There was a '72 Chevy on cinder blocks in the gravel driveway. There was an old couch on their front porch. The grandson was an angry guy, and was always yelling at someone. He yelled at the kids, he yelled at his wife...alot, and he even yelled at his grandmother. One day, Billy blasted out the front door, onto the front porch screaming, "F&%k you, Granny!!!". Another time Billy and his wife were fighting in the front yard when Billy hopped on his old motorcycle and sped off down the street. He didn't get too far before he realized he'd forgotten something, so he came back up to the house and yelled from the street at his wife to fetch the forgotten item for him, which she promptly did. The wife was a big girl, and while she was making the trek from the house to the street to deliver it to him, Billy screamed "RUN, DON'T WADDLE!!!". Yes, Billy was a piece of work. I had to hold my tongue on more than one occasion and I often fantasized about punching him in the stomach.

But there was one good thing that came from living next door to that train wreck for four years, and that was Billy's little boy Jeffrey. Jeffrey was about two years old when I first moved to that neighborhood. He ran around in the yard all day wearing his diaper and some cowboy boots. He had beautiful blonde hair which was usually buzzed off, and he was always dirty. But Jeffrey was one of the sweetest little boys you'd ever want to meet, and I often thought of kidnapping him to get him away from his wretched father. I have a few memories of little Jeffrey, but my favorite happened when he was about five years old. One day I was sitting outside and Jeffrey was running around with his little toy guitar. He was strumming and playing, and striking Elvis-like poses. Pretty quickly, he noticed I was watching and began to put on a little show for me. Jeffrey walked up to the chain link fence that separated us, strummed his guitar and recited this line, more like he was reading a poem than singing a song, "Take me down to the Paradise City, where the grass is green and the girls are purty!" Afterward, he smiled a big, teethy grin which he held for several seconds and then took a bow.

That's the last memory I have of little Jeffrey. But to this day, every time I hear that song I think of him and that cheesy grin and I have to smile. I'm smiling right now.

I wonder whatever happened to the little fellow. By now he'd be about 26 years old. I don't have a lot of hope that he had much of a chance with an asshole for a father and a sheepish abuse victim of a mother, but maybe, just maybe he's out there driving around in the now refurbished Chevy, touring the country as the lead singer in a GNR cover band, smiling that wonderful smile, shouting "Good Night, Des Moines!! We love you!!"

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Thanks, Dr. Eve

If you've ever been to counseling, you'll know what I'm talking about. You walk out of the session with the realization that what happened during that hour will stick with you for a long time; maybe forever. Well, I had one of those sessions today.

There's no way I can really write what happened. It was an awakening in my mind. But I believe we've done some good here today.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Best of Luck, Leake Family!!!

A friend of mine (age 47) just sent me an email and told me that he has been to four doctor visits so far this week, plus a trip to a vascular surgeon and constant monitoring of his blood pressure which seems to be looming at around 188/150, even on medication. He's the latest in a string of my friends who are at high risk for stroke or heart attack directly related to dangerously high blood pressure.

Heredity and stress levels play a small role in that, but for the most part we can thank our wonderful American Diet. This is a guy who is constantly updating his Facebook status and at least three times a week he says something about Taco Bell, Wendy's, McDonalds, or Starbucks.

I'm pissed off about this, faithful readers. We are slaves to Cheap and Convenient. But here's an interesting article about a family on an interesting mission. I applaud them; I don't think I could do it.

No Goldfish. No Froot Loops. No store-bought ketchup or Chick-fil-A runs. Those are some of the new rules that one North Carolina family has instituted as it goes cold turkey on a whole foods diet for 100 days.

And despite the increased food bill and the major overhaul of their cooking habits, the Leake family seems pretty pleased with the results.

"It's pay now, or pay later in health care costs," Jason Leake told the Charlotte Observer.

Lisa Leake, a mother of two, was inspired to make the drastic change after reading Michael Pollan's In Defense of Food. She told the Observer she was horrified to learn what she was feeding her children.

So out went the refined sugars, refined grains, deep-fried foods and fast foods. Ideally everything has five ingredients or fewer.

Lisa launched her own blog, 100 Days of Real Food, to chronicle the family's ups and downs with the new diet (sample posts: "Day 9: The Donut Incident" and "Day 60: P.F. Chang's and the Gum Controversy").

The site also offers "10 Reasons to Cut Out Processed Food," and "Real Food Defined (AKA 'The Rules')." Lisa's reason numero uno:

Processed foods are an illusion, often appearing to be healthy (with claims like low fat, low carb, vitamin fortified, no trans fat, contains omega-3s, etc.) when these foods are in fact the very thing making a lot of Americans unhealthy, sick, and fat.

And the Leakes also encourage readers to pledge to try switching their own families over to a whole foods diet for 10 days to give it a try.

While the family has seen plenty of health benefits as a result of their switch, according to the Observer, they will loosen the rules a bit when the 100 days are over. Jason, for example, is craving deep-dish pizza.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Six Week Challenge - Week Two

I had a pretty good week. Not as good as the first week, but pretty good.

I had a three pound weight loss this week which gives me a two week total of seven pounds. I'm pretty happy with that. It seemed like I was more hungry this week than last. I blame that on lack of preparation. It is a lot of work to eat right. This requires shopping, planning, and making sure you have the right foods in the right portions with you before you leave for work. It also requires careful tracking of everything you put in your mouth. It pays off, but it is indeed a lot of work. I slacked a little bit this week and it showed. Today I'm treating myself to a homemade sweet treat and some champagne in honor of my Summer Brunch with Scarlett. I have all week to burn it off!

Slacked off a little here too. I did manage to break out the Shake Weight this week, but only did it once. I think I'm going to take it to work and perform the six minute workout during break. Walking on the treadmill dropped to four times this week. I became rather sick yesterday afternoon and just couldn't bring myself to get on there. I believe my husband and I have both had a little virus, and it's wiped us out. The interesting part about that is, I retreated to the couch, and he played volleyball three nights in a row this week.

Mental Health
Once again; didn't do as well in this category as last week. I allowed some crazy thinking this week and I had a tremendous amount of anxiety. My ears rang most of the week, and they are ringing right now. Usually when this occurs I have anxiety just charging through me. I don't feel that extreme today, but they are still ringing.

Still feeling pretty strong against temptations. Last night the kids asked to go out for Blizzards. Thinking it might make me feel better to get out, I drove them to DQ. I ordered one for each of them and for my husband. I didn't touch any of them. Friday night when we had pizza, I really wanted some. I was still rather full from lunch so I allowed myself one small piece. It really soothed my craving and I walked away after that. I was hungry by bedtime though.

So obviously this week wasn't as great as Week One, but I'll take the three pounds and be happy. Today starts a new week and I'm charged to see where it will take me.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

What If....?

About three years ago I got hooked on watching house flipping shows, which were quite the rage at the time. I became absolutely convinced I could sucessfully flip a house. This coincided with some major events at work that changed the way we would operate from now on. I became very sad about my future career opportunities and started feeling as if I had nothing to look forward to. I decided the answer to all my problems was to become a house flipper.

Now in case you aren't familiar with the term house flipping, it means to buy a home for a very low price, usually a foreclosure, then bring in a crew of workers to clean it up, renovate and modernize it, and quickly sell it for profit. Some people make quite a comfortable living doing this. The more I studied the business, the more I became convinced I could do it.

So in 2007, Kitty and I went to the county auction one day, and I bought my first flip on my lunch hour. I went into the venture stating that if I broke even, or if I at least did not lose my shirt, I'd be happy. The house went on the market and my first open house occurred in April, 2008....the day my mother died. Fortunately for me, The Amazing Kitty put on her real estate hat and pulled off the open house for me, and got an offer! It wasn't as much as I'd hoped, but Mom's death meant that I had a lot of unexpected things to deal with and the economy was just starting to unravel, so I took the offer and felt lucky to get it. I walked away feeling good about the whole experience.

Well, the recession has peaked, and the economy is starting to look up again. I'm starting to feel the urge to try again. I learned so much during the first flip that I really feel I can do it now. Like when you cook a new dish for the first time, and think "next time I can make that even better".

But more importantly...if I don't do it.....I think I'll always regret it. I never want to think I had a dream once, but I didn't believe in myself enough to try. I'd be happier trying again and failing, than looking back one day when I'm retiring at age seventy-something, getting my gold watch from the company, and thinking "What if?".

Well, I'm here to tell you. "What if" isn't going to cut it for me. "What if" is starting to turn me grey inside.

So, to my support team who gave creative advice, encouraged me, and held my hand through the first flip... prepare yourselves.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Lord Girl, You're Skinny!

Last night I finally opened up the Shake Weight and watched the instructional video. Then, I watched it again and actually performed the work out. I like the contraption. I doubt it will give me Angela Bassett arms, but I'm willing to give it a try.

The thing I found strange, was that the girl on the instructional video was so incredibly skinny! True, she appears to have toned arms, but it's almost as if she's completely fat-free, and you are seeing skin stretched over muscle. She has no shape at all. No butt, no hips, no boobs, no curves. When I'm watching someone else work out, I want to feel inspired. But this girl just makes me feel a little disturbed.

I'm sure Angela Bassett doesn't use the Shake Weight, but it would have been swell if she could have been the spokesperson. She'll always be my inspiration for bad ass arms.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Oooooh, What A Lucky Man....He Was

My neighbor Mike is a lucky guy. Nice house, beautiful wife. He has a great job--goes out of town alot, even business trips out of the country. He just bought a brand new car that gleams as he proudly drives it into the garage. He and his wife just had a great birthday party for their beautiful one year old daughter. Yes, my neighbor Mike is a lucky guy.

A few weeks ago, Mike celebrated his 40th birthday. Then, this past Thursday night, Mike had a heart attack.

Mike's going to be fine. This attack was mild. So mild, he almost left the parking lot at the hospital and drove to the drug store for some antacids....but luckily, he did not. A scan showed his arteries were 95% blocked and they said if he'd ignored this attack, and passed it off as indigestion, that he would have likely had a massive one in the very near future. Maybe even next week when he flew to London. Apparently the cabin pressure on the plane may have triggered it. They placed a stint in his clogged artery and told him to take it easy for a couple of weeks. Mike was very lucky.

This makes me think of two things. One: We've been given one body. Take care of it. Eat right and get regular exercise. Two: Don't ever ignore the warning signs of a heart attack. Know the warning signs and don't be too stubborn or too busy to seek medical help.

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading killer of women in America, accounting for over one-third of all deaths. That's more than the combined death rates from breast, ovarian, and cervical cancers.

Heart Attack Warnings Can Be Subtle
Studies on cardiac events in women reveal that many women may experience prodromal -- or early -- symptoms of cardiac distress in the days, weeks, or even months leading up to a heart attack. Unfortunately, many of these signs may be dismissed as nothing out of the ordinary -- by both women and their doctors. The most common early warning signs include:

Unusual fatigue -- Fatigue is a common complaint and one that may indicate that you're simply missing out on sleep, fighting a virus, overextending yourself, or experiencing a side effect to medication. But unusual or extreme fatigue may also be a warning sign of heart disease. In one study, more than 70% of the women surveyed experienced marked fatigue in the days or weeks prior to their heart attacks.

Sleep disturbances -- Although it's not unusual to feel tired due to a lack of sleep or a particularly demanding week or month, you should take special notice of any unusual or prolonged disturbance in your sleep patterns. A recent study revealed that almost half of the women who had recently suffered a heart attack also experienced sleep disturbances in the days or weeks leading up to their attacks.

Shortness of breath during normal daily activities, indigestion, and anxiety may also be early warning signs of cardiac distress in women.

So how do you know if your symptoms are serious? Getting into the habit of noting your typical aches and pains and your normal reactions to foods and activities may help you recognize when something is truly amiss. Also, remember that if you have risk factors for heart disease, you should be especially vigilant about monitoring how you feel. If you experience worrisome or unusual changes in your energy level, comfort, or sleep habits, you should discuss your concerns with your healthcare provider, particularly if you have heart disease risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, diabetes, a smoking habit, or a sedentary lifestyle.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Six Week Challenge - Week One

I have one week under my belt now, and I believe it was a success. Here's my personal tally:

I lost 4 pounds. I was pretty strict with my eating plan, and I do believe I managed to stay within my calorie limitations each day this week. Using the Biggest Loser tool, I kept close track of all my calories, fat, protein, carbs, and sodium. It's work, and you have to plan and track, but I was never hungry. I ate lean meats, fish, and shrimp. I ate fruits and vegetables every day. I fit in lots of whole grains, and skim milk. For my sweet tooth, I worked in half of a dark chocolate bar, and a couple of times I had low fat vanilla ice cream. I drank water every day, and tried to drink iced tea whenever I could instead of diet soda. I believe I had five diet sodas in seven days.

I'm back on the treadmill! I made it back on 5 of the 7 days. The first night I really wanted to bail after the first 15 minutes, and I almost gave myself permission, but then I regrouped and managed to finish 30 minutes, and even included two sprints. I never did pick up the Shake Weight. I'll start on that this week.

Mental Health:
It never fails that when I'm focusing on myself and taking care of myself, I get along better with my husband. I worked hard on letting my "Wise Self" do the thinking and the talking this week, and she didn't have too much trouble asking the other "Selves" to step aside.

Some of the things I was worried about, did indeed happen. One of our customers brought in two packages of cookies, and not one but FOUR kuchens from a local bakery, so there were temptations staring me in the face all day every day while I was at work. One day when the temptation got really great I indulged in two spoonfuls of the butter kuchen. Quenched my craving and I moved on.

For the coming week I'm a little anxious, because I know week two of weight loss is usually much less successful that week one. I know I need to fill out that calorie log every single day (even though I hate it). I have to keep exercising, and this week I need to add some strength training in with my cardio. I've got to keep allowing Wise Self to be in charge, and since some PMS is thrown in this week, I've got to be extra strong against food temptations; particularly chocolate!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Another Reason To Buy Local

Did you know that a package of mass produced hamburger can contain meat from dozens, maybe even hundreds of different animals?

Buy your meat from a local farmer. Usually, they process one animal at a time, so you can rest assured that all the meat in your burger came from the same cow.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

I'm Going To Have To Ask You To Leave

Whenever I make a comment to Dr. Eve about something I did or said that I felt uncomfortable with, she always asks me which part of me did or said it. Was it my "Wise Self" or was it my "Child Self"?

I've said many times that my Dad can make me feel six years old with one sentence. Obviously my Child Self is taking over when that happens. But Dad's not the only one. I've learned that my Child Self comes out a lot with certain people, and it almost never comes out with others. My Child Self would do anything to avoid conflict. At my age, my Child Self makes me feel really bad about myself.

I believe most women are made up of lots of "selves". Not just Child Self and Wise Self, but Jealous Self, Aggressive Self, Nurturing Self, and so on. That's all well and good at times. There are times when one needs to be a little aggressive or nurturing, but there are times when we don't. And if aggressive or nurturing, or childishness or any other trait comes out when it shouldn't, we exhibit unhealthy patterns and unhealthy behaviors. That's why we often have the same argument with the same person over and over and over again. We get to a certain point, then we dive into those old familiar roles we know so well. Maybe those roles worked for us at one point in time, but maybe right now they do not.

Dr. Eve wants me to ask my Child Self to step aside. I don't need her right now. My Wise Self is going to be the one to do the asking. I'm curious to see how that goes.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Six Week Challenge

Every week on "Losing It" with Jillian Michaels, I watch Jillian set goals for a family, leave them, come back 6-8 weeks later, and see the results, which are usually pretty astonishing. These people are not at the Biggest Loser ranch, they are at home, following the diet and exercise regimin found on Each week I think, "If those people can do it, so can I", yet the next week I'm still sitting on the couch, one or two pounds heavier than last week, eating ice cream, feeling depressed, and getting nowhere.

I'm sick and tired of having my "muchness" gone away, and I believe I'm finally ready to get back in the zone. I'm ashamed to admit, that of the 14 pounds I lost over the winter, I've gained back 9. I'm ready for the return of My Healthy Mind, My Healthy Body.

So beginning tomorrow, and for the next six weeks, I'm embarking on a personal mission. I want to prove to myself that I DO have control over what I put in my mouth. I DO have the ability to get back on the treadmill, and most importantly, I CAN get over this depression, and I CAN get my muchness back. This is something I've been planning for a couple of weeks, and at first I was going to keep it to myself, just in case I failed. But I decided that was a silly notion.

Now I don't expect to lose 40 pounds like the people on the show, but I'm am curious to see just how far I can push myself, and what I can acheive in six weeks; not just in weight loss, but in returning to a healthier place. Of course, I'll be documenting my progress right here in Detach.

So here's My Plan:
I'm already a member of The Biggest Loser club, and I'm going to stick with their program. It's easy for me to follow and there are a lot of delicious food choices. My primary exercise will be the treadmill. I'm shooting for 5-6 times a week, 30 minutes each time. I will walk at 3-4 miles per hour and incorporate two one minute sprints during each walk. For strengthening, I will use my new Shake Weight, and will do crunches on my exercise ball. I will limit myself to no more than one diet soda per day, and will be drinking iced tea and water instead. I plan to limit my alcohol intake to a maximum of two drinks per week, with the exception of an upcoming Summer Brunch I have planned with Scarlett.

Right now I'm stoked and I feel like nothing will stop me. Realistically, I'm worried about three things. One: Stress, both at work and at home, makes me want to eat something comforting. Going through with eating something comforting makes me want to say "Eff it all". I can't let that happen. When I feel stressed I am going to try to exercise instead of eat. Two: The weekends. I'm used to eating pizza on Friday night. At 400 calories a slice, I have to eliminate that. The weekends are a rough time for me as far as being disciplined, and can often turn into a free for all where I start thinking "I'll start over on Monday". Three: Being taken off guard. Someone brings Krispy Kreme doughnuts to work, or someone rings the doorbell with a plate of homemade dessert while I'm feeling weak. Right now, as I begin this challenge to myself, those are my three biggest fears, and the areas where I need to be the most cautious.

This is a great test for a codependent person. To try and prove that when I feel I can't control anything, there's one thing I DO have control over....myself. It will be interesting to see if I can pull it off.

Wish me luck!!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

You Used To Be Much More "Muchier"

I love Johnny Depp. I especially love him when he teams up with Tim Burton and his enchanting wife, Helena Bonham Carter. The result is usually dark and artistic, and there are always lots of beautiful faces to entertain me. I rarely go to the theater anymore so usually I'm a few months behind everyone else in watching films, as I wait for them to appear on DVD. So last night I finally got to watch their collaboration "Alice In Wonderland". It didn't disappoint.

There were several catchy lines and memorable phrases used in the film. I especially liked the line about Alice losing her "muchness". In fact, I believe I've lost my own "muchness", and I intend to get it back. But the phrase that stood out the most for me was a motto of Alice and her father. It was a phrase that was used a few times in the film and I love it. I think I'll use it as my motto for awhile.

"I try to believe in as many as six impossible things before breakfast".

Yes, I like that. I'll use it in an attempt to regain my "muchness". Indeed.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Back To Reality

After the Mammoth Cave tour, my husband and son wanted to camp overnight. I'm not a camper and it was way too hot, but I have to say, their camp was kind of appealing once it was all set up. My husband has done quite a bit of it and has it down to a science. In no time at all their camp was quite comfy. But as I said, I'm no camper, so my daughter and I loaded back into the car and made the trek to Madison's house for a girl's night in air conditioned comfort.

Once again, another relaxing evening with no stress. I didn't have that constant feeling that I should be cleaning something, or doing something else. Madison was a very gracious host, and I appreciate her letting us spend the evening there. My daughter seemed to enjoy herself too. In all honesty, I think she needed the break as much as I did.

So now we're back home and it's back to reality. Back to work on Monday, and believe it or not, time to start a little "Back to School" planning.

One of my homework assignments from Dr. Eve was to look back through my journal and print out some of the entries that I thought were important. I did that this morning. Several of them stuck out in my mind and I think I picked some really good ones. Another thing that stands out is my discontentment with my job. Make no mistake; things are much better than they were a year ago when I was so stressed I was having migraines, but I'm still not happy there. Work is still stressful and just not fulfilling to me anymore. I don't have the answers for that one. I need the money so I can't just quit, but I have to wonder if there isn't something else out there that would make me feel like I'm making a difference, or maybe just make me feel like I'm not wasting my time. Three years ago I was convinced that flipping houses was the answer. With the economy beginning to turn around, I'm not so sure I shouldn't explore that option again. I've got some experience under my belt now, and I feel like I could do it.

Who knows what will happen? I sure don't.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

I Want To Feel Like That Some More

My family and I just had a small, two day outing. We drove to Mammoth Cave National Park, KY and did a two hour cave tour. It was physically exhilarating, and by the time I came out of the cave my legs were a little shaky. It was a great two hour adventure; there were more than 500 stairs on the tour. Afterwards, we boarded a shuttle back to our car. It was very hot, over 100 degrees if you factor in heat index, and there was no air conditioning on the bus. The windows were open and my hair was blowing everywhere. It was a little quiet on the bus as everyone was tired, but during that ride, a thought occurred to me. I turned to my husband who was in the seat next to me and said "This is the least stressed I've felt in weeks".

I'm trying to figure out exactly what caused that moment of peace for me. Maybe it was being away from work. Maybe it was the fact that my cell phone was silent, as it had no service for most of the day. Maybe it was because no one was arguing or fighting, and no one was asking me to do anything, or be anywhere. Or, here's one for ya...maybe it was the fact that I'd just had a pretty intense, two hour work out?

Either way, I'm going to try to recapture that feeling in the days to come. I'm going to talk to Dr. Eve about it, and I'm going to make some changes.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

You Can't Get Rid of That!

The other night, I was looking at some old photos with my neighbor. He showed me a bunch of photos of himself as a child, and several of his mother. I got out an old album and shared some photos too, then my husband dug through a drawer and produced a stack himself. But when we mentioned something about my friend's wife having any photos, she told me something very sad. She had no photos whatsoever of herself as a baby, child, or growing up. She had no photos of her parents as young people. She had nothing. This occurred from a series of events I won't get in to, but I thought it was very sad.

Then, a day or so later I was chatting with a coworker who was talking about a fire they had several years ago. They lost basically everything. So I was thinking to myself how terrible it would be to lose those old photos, or old trinkets that remind your of your childhood. I was thinking I'd be very sad without a few select items in my life.

Some people have elaborate collections of things. My husband seems to become more and more into collecting things. To me, his collections often look like junk, but to him everything is meticulously cataloged and he knows where to find each piece. He collects a lot of things I enjoy, like pins and glasses, but he also collects stacks and stacks of papers, programs, magazines, and other things I don't enjoy looking at. Maybe this is part of his compulsive behavior? I'm not really sure.

So fast forward to last night, when I happened to catch a television program that talked about being obsessed with material things. Not just "fond" of certain things, but truly obsessed with them. Of course I was very interested, and had to watch!!

It's human nature for people to form intimate bonds with other people. But some people find it very hard to do that, and they somehow attach themselves to "things". The less they are able to connect with other people, the more they connect with things. Some people associate items with memories or feelings. If they've lost a person who was dear to them, they often obsess over items that they may associate with that person. For some people, like the poor bloak last night, the clutter eventually takes over their lives.

I guess collecting "stuff" is like anything else. Fun and healthy to a point, but not so great in excess.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Take Off Your Damn Blinders, America!!!

Well...I finally sat down and watched "Food, Inc" last night, in it's entirety. I don't know what to say except "WOW". Now I know why the farmers are holding showings of it at their churches. Now I know why someone gave a copy to everyone they know as a Christmas gift. Now I know why it won an Oscar for Best Documentary. It's unbelievable. And I'm not just talking about the way animals are treated, or the way the meat is processed. This is much, much, MUCH bigger than that. This is about the way our government is supporting huge meat companies. Many high profile politicians are serving on the boards at these companies. It's about the way farmers are being strong-armed into going against what they believe, or go out of business. It's about our government allowing private companies to own patents to crops!!!! Can you imagine the implications of that??? That was probably the scariest part of the entire film for me. That decision is now impacting countries all over the world.

This film made me afraid for the article I recently wrote about the "big pork company". So afraid, I went back to that article and removed the name of the company so it can't be located by search engines. You see, our government allows food producers to sue people if they speak out against what's going on. They did it to Oprah when she spoke up a few years ago about Mad Cow Disease and commercially produced ground beef. They do it to individuals, even if they know they can't win, just to send a message.

I don't know what else to say except the American public is walking around with blinders on, and it's frightening. We are supporting and encouraging this to get worse and worse because we have no clue where our food is coming from or what's in it. We don't care as long as it's Cheap and Convenient. But I'll tell you right now....we'd better start caring.

Our government is famous for implementing programs that start out with good intentions, and then go terribly wrong. That's exactly what has happened in this case.

This film made me appreciate my farmer friends that much more. I applaud the farmers that were brave enough to risk everything by speaking up about what's happening to them. Some of their stories broke my heart. Particularly the elderly farmer who's life-long friends got scared from the pressure and turned him in for "not complying".

I urge you to take an hour and a half to watch this film, then make up your own mind. The good news is, there's something we can do about it. We can send a message if we stop buying commercially produced meats. We absolutely MUST support our local farmers, and when we buy in the grocery store or at Walmart, buy organic.

On a related note, there was quite a bit of information in this documentary about Walmart, and I have to say it changed the way I feel about the store, at least a little bit. They are quite concerned about their image, and actually have the buying power to do some good by standing up against what's going on with our government and our farmers. They really do seem to be trying to get us out from underneath this trap we've allowed ourselves to be in.

So trust me on this one. Please watch the film, spread the word, and do your part.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

The Doctor Is IN

Wow, nearly a week without posting anything. Work was insanely busy, but hopefully we've made it to the climax of the travel season and things will gradually get better!

I think my mind has been on "lock down" for awhile now, I haven't been inspired to write much. I'm on vacation for the next few days, so maybe I'll come up with something.

I got to meet the (new) Dr. Eve this week and really liked her. I'm anxious to begin working with her. She's asked me to go back to my blog and pick out a few entries that were meaningful. I look forward to the task. Also have a book I'm supposed to pick up and begin reading.

During our opening session, she was asking about my life, my family, etc, and I was rambling incessantly, on and on about everything, when she asked me about my mother. I immediately began to cry, which tells me I still have a lot of grief to deal with. In fact, there's a number of unresolved issues in my life that I'm going to revisit yet again. Seems like no matter how far I think I've come, the same shit keeps lurking in my head, resurfacing to cause me grief. I'm not quite sure how to close the door on them; how to find closure, and leave them behind once and for all, but I'm going to give it a try.

I'm also still searching for the inspiration to get back on track with my body. I'm still eating healthy foods, but seem to be supplementing that food with sugar and alcohol, more and more. And I have no inspiration to get back on the treadmill. I really, really want to dig deep and find that inspiration soon. I never felt better than when I was eating healthy and getting daily exercise. Plain and simple, I've got to find happiness within myself, and I know it.