I’m learning to walk again, I believe I’ve waited long enough

Spent most of the night wasting time online, reading other blogs and smoking. I never sleep well the night after I leave S’s house; I miss having his arms around me when I fall asleep. I know, soft isn’t it? I’ve never liked sleeping in the same bed as somebody else – I move around a lot, kick, flail, get too hot then too cold – but sleeping with S has never been the problem it always has in the past. He just has to put his arm over my chest and dig his nose into my back, and I’m calm. I sleep like a baby.

In contrast, most of today has been spent catching up on the sleep I missed last night. I did manage to get out for a walk (admittedly, I was forced to go because tobacco supplies were running dangerously low), wander down the embankment near the marshes and actually get out on my own for once. It’s been a long time since I felt able to go for any real kind of walk, but the sun (it’s been another hot, unseasonal day) buoys me up significantly.

I paid for it, of course. Aching legs and a headache. I used to walk miles every day without thinking about it; now all I can manage is a trip to the shops. Sometimes, that’s a really depressing thought.

I’ve never been particularly into fitness, but in my childhood I ran around a lot. In my teens, I walked constantly, wandering for hours. Early twenties, I’d make myself go out every single day for long walks along the sea front. I love the freedom of being outdoors, which is strange considering my agoraphobia; you’d think I’d hate the wide-open spaces and being able to see right across the sea. I don’t though; it’s only people I can’t stand. On my own, I’m in my element. I miss having that freedom now, and feel almost cheated that it’s been taken away from me by chronic pain and fatigue. I want to try walking again – today’s attempt could have gone much worse – but I’m worried by my limitations. I still don’t know when to stop, how to conserve energy for the rest of the day.

Sometimes I worry this is all I’ll ever be able to do. That my strength is gone.

I still don’t have the guts to weigh myself. I should have done it two weeks ago, but I’ve been putting it off in case I somehow weigh more or haven’t lost anything. I’ve been controlling the binges quite well, and I’ve stopped eating in the middle of the night, and along with loosely following the Slimfast diet I think I may have lost a couple of pounds but I just don’t dare go step on those scales in case it sets off a series of events I can’t control.

 

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50 Comments

  1. totally and truly understand 100% sometimes it feels losing weight is the only thing i can effectively “do”. Giving that up is hard, because all thats waiting is chronic pain and nothingness.
    I send you understanding and hope youll still keep fighting. x

  2. Maybe you could not worry as much about what you’ll be able to do next time, and concentrate on what you did today. I think a walk by yourself is amazing — I respect you for having the guts to do it at all! See if you can cut yourself just a little slack. If you can do that little walk three times a week, you’ll feel better, but only if you make up your mind not to punish yourself for days when you can’t walk, or belittle whatever you have been able to do. Congratulations on your walk — grounds for celebration! With lots of love.

  3. Scales. They’re the most depressing mechanism to mankind.

    I would love to live near the seaside! It must be beautiful! I could sit on the beach ALL day and just lay there listening to the waves. It’s very soothing for me for some reason. Water is my element I guess.

    Take it steps. Walk a little more each time. And walk when you feel like it. No ones taking notes or jotting down how far or how long. That’s your freedom…

    Obviously S gives you security. That’s a great feeling. I love the relationship you two have, really! It’s so honest!

    • Oh, living by the sea isn’t half as romantic as it sounds. Our water is, for want of a better description, manky; full of sewage and sand dredged up. The tides rarely come in, and when the tide is out, you can’t even see water, just dirty sand and grass. We’re supposed to be a ‘classic seaside resort’, but don’t let the adverts fool you.

      It is nice being able to get so close to the sea, though. Often at night you can smell the salt in the air, and it’s so comforting. I’d hate to live inland.

  4. I used to love taking long, rambling walks as well. It’s difficult to exercise and stay active, when it’s so easy to overdo it and pay for it later. Is swimming an option for you? Please remember you are so much more important than a number on a scale.

    Thanks for linking my blog. I appreciate your thoughts and look forward to hearing more of them.

  5. Walking for me is terribly difficult. I can relate to this post very much. I was the same and walk every where. Now, I be scared to try to walk to far or I’ll end up in pain. Physical therapy is not an option because my body is so stiff that they can’t move it and the muscle relaxers do nothing.
    But, I think that if you get out and walk a little each day, you can build up your tolerance. I did it before. Back when my walking wasn’t as bad. Now, being allergic to the sun, if I want to take a walk, it has to be before the sun gets too bright. Anyway, baby steps is the best way to me. Walk a little, than a little more. I’m doing stairs a little now too.

  6. One of my favorite songs, love the FOO Fighters. I stay away from the scales. I’m just happy to fit into my clothes. Once they start getting tight I know I have a problem. I have done a total 360, from eating nothing and throwing up everything to just eating, eating, eating. I know what’s going to happen next and I’m worried. I need to learn moderation. I love walking though, and the outdoors, yet I never walk and I am hardly outdoors!

    Do what you can and be thankful that you can do what you do! Enjoy your small victories and accomplishments.

      • Not silly at all. It is easy to eat well in theory. But then you get the midnight munchies, or for some reason, random urges to binge, and well theory takes a nose dive into a bag of chips. I ate half a can of Pringles and about 6 oreos the other night, in one sitting. Not vomiting was the biggest success I have had recently. Im going to the grocery store tonight with the intentions of buying lots of spinach and fruit…

  7. There is always a start, its really good that you went out n walked to the shop. considering the fact that you loved to walk and to feel that feeling of freedom, dont be too worried, just walk even if its just ten minutes a day, eventually you will pick up the pace. and slowly but your body will start to restore energy for the entire day. its always good to be a little independent. Just enjoy your day and try to keep stress out of your sight. :)
    All the best and have a great day :)

  8. Don’t weigh yourself! What if for some crazy reason your like retaining water or something and you haven’t lost. If you’re like me you’ll take it as HUGE failure. I go by what I can/can’t fit into before I weigh. Then even if I haven’t lost weight, hey! I can still fit into these smaller pants so it must be the scale! :)
    Mandi

  9. Scales! Yuck! I have to go on the scale when I visit the nutritionist. I actually had to cancel my last appointment because I was in the hospital, but I should really call in and reschedule.

    If you want to get back to walking, walking to and from the shops is a great way to start. The more you do that, the easier it will be to walk longer distances. I have a bum knee and I can walk about 3 1/2 miles without pain. I used to be able to walk about 10 1/2. (Yes, I know this because I took part in a charity walk.) It just takes time.

    I hope that wasn’t discouraging or invalidating. I feel your pain too.

    • It’s not invalidating, at all, and thank you. I figure I’m almost going to have to train myself; it’s hard accepting that something which used to come naturally is now difficult, and I suppose I want to run before I can walk. I have no patience.

      Eugh, scales are evil. I’m glad I don’t have a nutritionist anymore (okay, I went to one appointment then gave up) so it’s not forced on me.

  10. I totally understand your apprehension re: the scales. Knife-edge much? ;-) I reckon perhaps you should continue to ignore them. Maybe concentrate more on how you feel physically and emotionally, and how your clothes are fitting, feeling & looking, and only think about the scales again when you like what you fit into? Just a suggestion, of course, no obligation to take this on board (although personally I reckon all scales should be banned just because they often cause more problems than they solve).

  11. Avoid the scales! Why subject yourself to something that right now you may not be able to cope with? Like others have said, you will know if/when you are losing weight. If you are able to continue to control the binges & keep up the excercising (doing whatever you are able), then you will begin to notice the difference by how your clothes feel, not by what the scales tell you. You’ll be fine! I have faith! xo

  12. “I did manage to get out for a walk (admittedly, I was forced to go because tobacco supplies were running dangerously low).” ~ as always, you somehow manage the humor! ;-)

    Is it your Fibromyalgia that stops you from walking? I didn’t know you had trouble with that! I am so sorry. I can’t walk either, ten minutes tops.

    One thing that really struck me was your comment about your Agoraphobia. I also don’t really like being around people, but give me the plain outdoors, nothing but Mother Nature, and I’m fine. I really wonder how often Agoraphobia and a preference for being a hermit (not necessarily inside, but just by yourself) is common to BPD! I keep seeing this repeatedly.

    • I think it’s the fibro; I can only assume it is, anyway. My legs and feet start to burn (the only way I can describe it) after a few minutes, pains shoot down my back and my hips start to crunch and grate. Mmm, nice! I can usually manage to walk around town if I’m doing the food shopping, but pay for it afterwards with cramps. It’s only really happened in the past year or so; hopefully the rheumatology appointment will give me some clues as to what’s going on, because I’d HATE to be like this forever. Ten minutes seems to be my limit too. Sucks, doesn’t it?

      I’d say it’s pretty common to be a hermit, at least from what I’ve read from others with BPD. I quite like it in a way, but get cabin fever very quickly and need to be outdoors or I become depressed. Give me a field with some trees and nobody around for miles, and I’d be quite happy!

      • That’s exactly what I experience! Do your thigh muscles go into spasms? Do you ever get a pins and needles sensation: thighs, feet?

        My doctor was thinking my pain was from Spinal Stenosis and Degenerative Disc Disease, among other things, but yesterday my physical therapist discharged me saying that she could not treat me anymore because something more is definitely going on. Back to the drawing board.

        Well anyway, I SOoooo sympathize with you. I miss walking, too. And taking pictures. I have to use a cane now almost all the time.

        So you noticed that, too? Hmm, interesting. Yes, I agree, and me I don’t need that much indoor space, it’s the outside space I require. I used to live on 150 acres. Pure heaven. Now my backyard is a postage stamp. It IS depressing, agreed.

        I like it that way, too. Ok, so I’m not nuts, it’s not my imagination! :-)

        Sometimes I really don’t believe in personality “disorders.” I think x amount of people have certain traits in common and because we don’t get on in the world like we’re told to we are labeled as “disordered.”

        XO

        • The way I look at it… a disorder only has to be a problem if it impacts on your life in a really negative way. Otherwise, it’s too easy to be labelled because you’re a bit different. Sometimes, it feels like we all have to act in a certain way or society just doesn’t want to know. If you have that magic label, it makes it easier for them to accept that you’re not like them. Labels… they tend to be for other people’s benefit, I find.

          Yeah, I get pins and needles in my feet and legs a lot. Hands, too. My thigh muscles don’t spasm, but my calves do.

          Do you have anyone to go to now you’re not seeing a physio? Or do you have to sort something out yourself? It’s so frustrating when you know something’s not right but nobody seems able to work out what it is. This sounds awful, but sometimes I wish I had something which was easily diagnosed and had an obvious reason. That way, I’d know if there was treatment available. Right now, I’m in limbo and it’s so disheartening.

          150 acres sounds amazing! Our garden is quite small, but it’s enough. I’m dreading moving into a flat; I’ll hate not having a garden.

          x

          • I agree with your thoughts on labels. And negative is subjective, isn’t it? I don’t find being a hermit “negative” at all. :-)

            Oh, yeah, forgot about my hands. Not as much as legs and feet though. Someone suggested to me recently it could be Fibro. Well, at my next appt. I will ask her to look more deeply into this.

            Yes, it is disheartening. For example, I don’t know if I can finish school OR NOT. Well, I can’t work at all, so waiting for Supplemental Security Income, which I guess is like welfare, but it puts you in a box that I don’t want to be in. I don’t want to be told I can’t do things to help myself! That’s ridiculous. “You are sick, therefore you can’t do anything but look at a wall.” C’mon!

            I would agree. Any garden is better than no garden. I love to garden. It’s kept me sane many days. Is there a way you could container garden with lights, indoors? Just a thought.

            • Exactly! I don’t see a problem with being an introvert, or wanting to be on my own, if it makes me happy.

              I’d guess that SSI is similar to disability living allowance here; which I get, along with Incapacity benefit. I get what you mean about not wanting to be in a box; I sometimes want to scream about how I’m not in this situation by choice and I’m not as useless as the government think. Still, sometimes those boxes are all that’s keeping us afloat, financially.

              I don’t actually like gardening itself, just being outside! I do plan to grow some herbs and maybe chilis in the flat though.

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