Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Food is the symptom, not the problem.

I'd always wondered how people could go months in between blog posts, now I know. Life Happens.

It was easy to blog regularly over in the US, because I didn't have much of a life. I was pretty much isolated 95% of the time. So, in order to have some sort of social contact, I'd blog, Skype, or ring my family/friends. My codependence didn't help either; God, I was SO needy/interfering/controlling, because that's ALL I had. Add in the unmedicated MS, uncontrolled Sleep Apnea, and a young baby and farrrk, no wonder I nearly had a nervous breakdown.

Part of what's brought home how isolated Alaskaboy, Kiddlywink and I had become is the different ways our little family has changed, individually and as a whole, since moving to Australia.

As a whole we're happier because there's direct support and social interaction.
Kiddlywink has done nothing but blossom. Which makes me both thankful and glad that we didn't wait any longer to move.
Alaskaboy and I are struggling. Both as a couple and individually. And there are SO very many reasons for this. Not in any particular order of significance, but here's a few; having to actually spend time interacting with each other as well as having a local social network, new job, financial worries, job unhappiness, trying to make new friends, an infirm grandmother at our place four days a week, living with parents, having enough for a deposit on a house but not enough income for everyday finances, doing therapy to sort out our issues both current and from the past--which Alaskaboy has never had to do before because it was all MY issues that we dealt with over there, and the list goes on.

BUT! The thing is, this is life. This is what the journey is all about. Living in the real world, not isolated in a tiny apartment with no social life, and one half of the couple away from the house up to 16 hours, 5-6 days a week. In some ways it's like we're newlywed all over again, but without the rose-coloured glasses of a new relationship to add some false sparkle to it all.

Just over three months ago I got even more fed up with the cooking situation than I had been last time I posted. We're started doing the CSA box, which we're still doing, but I was continuing to do 98% of the cooking. I finally put my foot down and said, "I know we can't afford it, but we'll have to find the money because I can't do this anymore!" So, among the other not negotiable expenses such as day care, bills etc we also have Lite'N'Easy deliveries for me and a weekly therapy session where we alternate between couple and individual therapy. Both very expensive but sanity and relationship savers.

Now, the thing about Lite'N'Easy is that I thought I'd be on this calorie controlled program, where they deliver the weekly food allowance, already precooked, to my door, and all my problems would be magically solved.....Yes, I'm pausing to allow the laughter to die away....The first three weeks were awesome, the weight dropped off, even with eating extra during PMS, then Life Happened Again! Nan went from level 1 assisted care to High Level Care. Basically she's wheelchair bound now with the ability to stand for short periods while we transfer her from her chair to another chair or bed. Add in several flesh wounds on her lower limbs from falls/accidents, a couple of UTIs and all the other stuff that goes with anxiety attacks, slight dementia and it was like there was a newborn in the house. But not the kind you can soothe by holding. The kind that has all the stubbornness of a 91 year old woman who's beaten, among other things, Legionnaire's Disease, a bleeding ulcer, fractured pelvis, and skin cancer. (All within the past 15 years!)

So, once again we're mostly housebound. There must be two of us with her at all times, it takes three to get her up into the momvan that's most often at home, and thus we're all feeling the pinch of being in close quarters.

For me, it's also like seeing one of me very own personal nightmares, right in front of my face, four days a week.

So..lately the lite'n'easy hasn't been as successful as it could have been, for me. On the other hand, Mum, Dad, Alaskaboy and Nanna also order a months worth of dinners to have in the freezer. That has increased their health considerably, as we were ordering take away meals at least twice a week through sheer fatigue.Where it has been helpful for me is to realise simply how little food is a problem for me. It's all about my emotions and my coping mechanisms. When I'm [insert negative emotion here] I eat. Journalling, therapy and actually talking about my issues with people, and listening to theirs--listening without advising--is making a difference.

Good news is, the therapy is helping. Without it, I'm pretty certain Alaskaboy and I would have been divorced already. As it stands, we're currently learning how to be a regular couple; Warts and All. And it's HARD! It's worth it though. I'm rediscovering the man I married. Not the ignoring, passive aggressive jerk he'd become. He's reacquainting himself with the woman he married. Rather than the critical, codependent I'd become. Funny how our crap bounced off each other perfectly until we were whizzing our way around a downward crap spiral. Now we're dealing with the past and trying to build a better present and future.

So, I'm hoping now that we're starting to learn to juggle having a real life, that I'll be able to get back to writing on here more often than I have been. I miss blogging. I don't miss the isolation that allowed me to be online nearly 24/7, but I do miss my online friends. I also am learning to have healthy relationships with my real life peeps. Just because they don't call as often as I'd like them to, doesn't mean they're ignoring me. Just because I don't call them as often as they'd gotten used to me calling, doesn't mean I'm ignoring them. I'm now LIKE them. I actually have a full, regular life that entails stuff/people/work etc.

Speaking of which, enough time on here! I'm off to have a picnic lunch, on the lawn, with Kiddlywink.