Batteries

‘It’s all about batteries…’ my friend said.

She checked her rear view mirror, indicated, overtook the car in front and after doing so merged back into the left hand lane.

I looked at the sky.

It was starting to rain and there were spots of water on the windscreen.

Batteries… Right… Not sure where she’s going with this…

‘When you’re down and you find that one area of your life has flat batteries you can draw on other areas that have fully charged ones.’

Ok…

‘They keep you going.’ She said.

I nodded.

‘Uh-huh.’ I replied.

‘…but the problem is that if you have flat ones in other areas too then there’s no power anywhere and that’s when you start to feel run down.’

Hmmm…

Maybe she had a point…

‘You may have a point.’ I said.

We were on our way to the Peak District – but if I’m honest at the time it didn’t really matter we were headed.

It turned out to be a fantastic day for walking – and while drizzly weather was a mixed bag at times it was mostly warm and breezy – meaning that the scenery could be experienced in its natural state (damp, cloudy and dramatic).

IMG_7171

As delightful as the day in the countryside turned out to be (for me at least) it was pretty immaterial – because although we both love the outdoors we go on our road trips for another reason entirely.

We’d been looking forward to the day out because it meant that we could get some completely uninterrupted twalking time in.

It’s rare that there’s a moment of silence when my friend and I go away for the day together – and I often find insight is never far away as we chat.

I really needed it.

I’ve had a lot on my mind lately and the truth is that I’ve largely been hibernating in my personal life for a few weeks.

It wasn’t until this weekend that I chose to admit to myself that my behaviour has been out of character (for ‘new Dave’ at least) and took steps to address it.

Whilst withdrawing a bit hasn’t stopped me doing exercise and going about my life I know that deep down I’ve not been myself.

I’ve desperately wanted to shy away from groups of people (even those that that I know well) consciously restricted some activities or one to one interactions, found myself playing video games for the first time in many many months, bingeing on Netflix and YouTube and (possibly worst of all) making frivolous purchases of things I don’t really need to cheer myself up.

Then of course there’s eating.

Once more I’ve struggled to find an off switch – and no matter how much walking you do, if you eat huge amounts of (even healthy) food you’ll put weight on.

I know I certainly did – and at the moment I’m once again trying the best I can to turn around a crappy result on my home scales before I return to the ones at Slimming World on Saturday.

This is the second time in three weeks that I’ve found myself trying to turn things around and it’s a new phenomenon that I could really do without.

Maintenance came easy to begin with – but it isn’t at the moment.

Maybe a few months ago when I hadn’t experienced the very public success that came out of the blue in the Man of the Year competition I might have felt differently – but now all I can think about is not only a personal failure, but letting other people down too.

To underline this even the Slimming World app is a stark reminder that I can’t log onto the website to look for recipes without being reminded of it.

So – although my silence over the last week has been for multiple reasons other than this I guess I have to admit (once again) that I don’t have all the answers in life and that despite trying to be a role model that champions continuous attendance – last week I couldn’t face going to group.

The whole week before last Saturday was definitely off plan and I really couldn’t bring myself to face the music.

That’s not to say I ordered a pizza or stopped off at the kebab shop – nor did I buy or consume any alcohol or demolish several tubs of Haagen Daas.

Almost no crap passed my lips.

In my diminished frame of mind I was still eminently capable of emptying my kitchen cupboard, fridge and freezer though.

All of them are now largely bare thanks to a concerted effort last week to soothe an imaginary vacuum inside me, created by emotion.

Unsurprisingly it proved to be absolutely impossible to fill up with food and frivolous purchases or Netflix.

Furthermore the realisation that two and a half years into my Slimming World journey I still have the capacity for epic self sabotage frightened the hell out of me and at the time it pushed my mood even further down than it was before.

However – I know I’m being cryptic.

I apologise.

There’s a real tension between my social media life ( where I’m intent on being absolutely honest about how I feel – which is very important to me) and being open about why I feel that way – because while I’ve chosen for much of my day to day experience to be very public there are some things that just can’t be – leaving me in a situation that’s difficult to reconcile when I write.

So for the moment this is as honest as it gets.

I’m out of target at the moment.

This is my current weight and a few days ago it was a few pounds more.

I might have won a competition – but in common with the vast majority of other people that read my blog – I falter and stumble just like everyone else.

The main difference between who I used to be though vs who I am now is that while for a brief period I may be filled with hopelessness and doubt I know that I can change things in a positive way for myself when I decide to lift my head because I’ve done it already.

It doesn’t matter how many times I stumble because that is not the measure of me or anyone else in life.

The test is how quickly you can recognise problems, how quickly you seek help and how hard you try to fix them.

I’ve seen this time and time again in social media feeds from other Slimming World members and just like some people look at me for inspiration I too look for it in them.

It’s never far away – and I find it in both from fellow members and close friends.

So – some of my batteries may be depleted internet, but you can be assured that I’ve taken all the necessary steps that I feel are needed in my life to kick start their re-charge cycles.

Normal service will hopefully be resumed soon.

Davey

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17 comments

  1. Dave,

    Sending you love, positive thoughts and a spare battery to try and boost you. Whatever you are feeling it’s completely normal, moods fluctuate and sometimes you feel down, we all do! You will get through this and if you need to talk please let me know xx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Even your honesty is inspirational! What you have written about bring at target and maintaining is so true. You are totally in control of yourself. Sending you a huge hug. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I have missed you Dave, welcome back. I was saying to a Peter you have been very quiet and I hoped you were ok. I’m sorry to hear you have been struggling. We all do from time to time and that’s why as target members we are only required to weigh every 8 weeks. Personally I have been going along monthly as I feel I want some closer monitoring but not so much that it puts too much pressure on me if I relax a little. Keeping entirely to the straight and narrow long term is a challenge. Given how far you have come, and the way you honestly portray your journey, I’m sure you can turn things round.

    You have not let anyone down unlike ‘The Inflatable Boy ‘ in Les Barker’s poem. You can listen to it here : https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=L7gJD02fKYc . I hope it raises a smile. Les was at the Wickham Folk Festival we went to recently. We found his poems amusing. There are quite a few videos of him on YouTube reading them. Another poem of his I like is ‘Guide Cats for the blind’ . Keep going Dave despite this blip you are doing brilliantly x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks very much Janet x

      I may be absent from time to time but I can’t imagine ever being gone.

      Sometimes writing a blog when I want to disappear into complete obscurity makes me question why I do it – but it’s precisely why I started.

      Although doing so may be difficult it’s also become ‘my process’ and without it things don’t work very well.

      Like

  4. When I first came here Davey the message you taught me was about the danger of setting a finite short term goal because, when I’d reached them before I struggled with the what next. It was about adopting life style changes that I could carry on whatever the daily, weekly or monthly outcome. I can see why man of the year, brilliant as it is, can throw that mindset out of kilter and you’re doing so well, rolling with that rollercoaster to get back to the life as you now want it. This too shall pass, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Just sending you as much encouragement and positivity as I possibly can, Davey. I SO understand these battles, the ups-and-downs, the times when you just want to retreat from the world. I really hope you’ll soon be firing on all cylinders again.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi Davey,

    Don’t beat yourself up so much about not quite being in target on some days. As far as I can see even if your weight was 14 st 5 or 6 lbs on the day you weighed above ….. that weight is still below where your original target was (14.8).

    And …… being philosophical even if your weight had been higher than that a few days previously ….. let’s say you had had a bad week and been back up to 14 st 11 lbs– that figure would *still* be within target range of your original set target.

    I think when you get to goal you might have to stop thinking quite so rigidly + start to become slightly more relaxed (without being stupid).

    The human body naturally fluctuates up and down anyway.

    Why beat yourself up for not having attended your usual SW group last Saturday…… when it is only free if you are at target on that precise time on that precise day ……. surely most target members would only turn up once a month or once every 8 weeks when they *are* in target + want to keep their membership up to date.

    Part of the attraction of the slimming world “target members weigh for free” deal is the *flexibility* it allows.

    Who would *choose* to go and pay when a few pounds out of target knowing that a few days later you could be back in target and able to weigh for free again ?

    Like

  7. Oh and by the way I’ve been having a crap August as well. Lots of stuff going on in the background with work and living accommodation not going quite right …… has been messing with my head and ability to stay focused.

    I’ve been above 17 stone since I enthusiastically posted a pic of my scales showing 17.0 on 27 July. I’ve been up and down– but mainly up (above 17.0).

    I’m not even at target yet — Im still in the weight loss phase ….. but due to the life problems (wgich might involve a new job + location move in September) ….. I’m trying not to beat myself up and just adapt my plans + revise my timescale goals when these bumps in the road pop up.

    For me I’ve got a few strategies for “off plan” weeks. One of my strategies is that when my food intake isn’t SW friendly and Wouldnt fit within the food optimising / syns rules…… what I do is use My Fitness Pal and track calories instead.

    On days (or weeks) when I know I will be SW “off plan” I track calories + set myself a 2,000 cals a day limit to try and “keep a lid on things” ….. you know to make sure that my “off plan” food choices don’t spiral totally out of control.

    Last week my weight was 17.5 and this week it’s back down to 17.2 …… so August has been a bit of a weird month for me as well and I haven’t made any progress (yet) on hitting those 16 stone something…… numbers.

    So? It will take a bit longer + my route will not be the super speed highway. But I’m not getting too stressed about that — I know what is going on in the other areas of my life + it’s a bit more important to sort out work + accommodation things first. **

    ** But not at the expense of totally forgetting about SW completely / not at the expense of giving up…… only at the expense of being a bit more relaxed about it + allowing for a more circuitous route and a longer timeframe.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s never easy is it? Sigh. You’re right about not being so rigid and weighing in every week though – but it’s not like you pay if you’re overweight one week. As a target member you have a ‘grace week’ where if you’re out of range you get a week to sort it out – which I’ve never allowed myself.

      I may well switch to a two week weigh in however until I get to my 12 months at target. Then after that maybe monthly.

      We’ll see!

      Like

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