Tag Archives: Daily prompt

Losing my habit

Many moons ago I was studying for my higher school certificate (HSC for the Aussies, final school exams that give you your marks to get into University for everyone else 🙂 ), I had always had issues with exam anxiety. It wasn’t that I didn’t study or didn’t try, I just got in there and somehow convinced myself things were trick questions or they wanted more than what was on there or had blanks. It was a bad time. My grandmother was also very ill and going through cancer treatments.

One day I went to visit my grandmother with my Mum and the doctor chose that day to tell us that she would not be getting better. I blocked up all my reactions and when we left the hospital I kept striding towards the car until my Mum yelled for me to stop. I sat down on a short wall and started crying. My Mum had her cigarettes sitting next to her and I just took one and lit it. That was the day I first started smoking.

I was a pretty considerate smoker I believe. I stood away from people and crowds when smoking. I held the cigarette away from myself and blew the smoke away from myself to reduce the amount the smell stuck to me. I would also eat a mint, wash my hands and give a spritz of perfume after a smoke and like any decent person I binned my butts.

Because my hubby, siblings and mother smoke I have always found it very difficult to quit or cut down. I would also use smoking as an appetite suppressant and didn’t feel I could quit and lose weight at the same time and because I was always trying to lose weight I never really quit.

I always thought I would quit when I got pregnant. For many years of trying I didn’t think of quitting. Then when we found out how much IVF was going to cost us I decided I didn’t want anything risking it not working and I just completely quit on February 15 this year. One day I smoked the next day I just stopped, that evening I was sitting at a table whilst my Mum and Hubby enjoyed a smoke and a cuppa together and it was hard, but I didn’t smoke.

I have now not smoked for 155 days.

I am so very proud of myself. It was not easy. It was in fact very hard to break a habit I had for over a decade. I feel I am healthier for it. I used to always get bronchitis in winter, I have not (touch wood) had anything awful so far this winter (although I also had the flu vaccine for the first time this year). Whilst all my colleagues have been falling around me I have marched on with sometimes mild flu symptoms. I have been an asthma sufferer for years and since quitting I have not had one attack. Not one use of my inhaler. That is incredible to me.

Between quitting smoking and the IVF meds I did put on about 8kgs (my IVF doctor was not pleased) and my eating was just out of control because I was using food to fill the smoking hole. Last week I signed up with weight watchers to help get my eating back on track. In the first week I lost 2.4kgs so I feel like this was definitely a good move.

I knew going in that quitting smoking would be a long road. I was prepared to put on weight and wait for my body to get used to being without cigarettes before attempting to lose it and now I am ready to build a new lifestyle that does not include smoking.

It was a massive part of my life. My husband who generally succeeds at everything he does lasted half a day. I am not mad at him for this because I know how difficult it is. I believe in him and know he will get there.

I have had difficulty because I used to use a smoke as a time of stress relief. Suddenly removing that from my life I believe had a bigger impact than the cravings. To deal I replaced it with watching Netflix and eating chocolate basically everyday. As a chocoholic I must admit I loved this, but my fat jeans did not. They no longer fit 😦 It also did not solve the problem because I was avoiding de-stressing by submerging myself in another world. It was all still there when I turned the TV off at night.

After our fresh transfer for IVF failed I went into a dark hole. I knew I needed to make changes to help my mental health and help me heal from this devastating result. So we took a break from IVF to allow my body to balance out all the hormones and we vowed to stop having timed intercourse for a couple of months (anyone who has had to do this knows what it does to your relationship and we have been trying to conceive for 4.5 years now) and I decided to make some changes.

So what has this loss of habit brought me?:

I no longer have asthma symptoms, I can breathe easier, I don’t get sick as often and if I do I get over it pretty quickly.

My decision to change my lifestyle began 155 days ago when I quit smoking. I knew I was in for a long journey, but so far it has totally been worth it. I have been going to Pilates for 3 weeks and love it. Yesterday I added in some treadmill work before Pilates which my body was not used to, but was very good to me. Pilates has also helped my headspace. I plan to increase the number of times I do it a week because I feel that this could provide me with the de-stress I have been craving. Long soaks in the bath have also helped with this and finding ways to spoil myself a little that has nothing to do with food or smoking has helped with the de-stress too.

The combination of quitting smoking and having a break from IVF has hubby and I connecting like newlyweds, we are coming up on 9 years together and 5 years married and I can with confidence say that our relationship is everything  have always hoped for in a marriage.

Whilst I put on weight initially I am now losing it slowly in a healthy way and filling my body with awesome nutrition to support the beautiful embryo we have frozen just waiting for transfer.

Making the decision to lose this habit has had many positive impacts in my life. It was one of the bigger challenges I have faced in life and I am proud of myself for overcoming it.

 

Response to the discover topic The Things We Leave Behind

 

 

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It’s okay to be me

This post was inspired by WordPress’ Daily Prompt ‘It Builds Character’.

I have already accidentally deleted this entire post twice because of strange things that the new interface does. I am unimpressed to say the least. So I will now write this in Word and copy paste 🙂

When I think back on characters that have had an effect on me, there is one in particular which stands out as being integral to the person I have become.

When I was young (prepubescent young), I was already aware that I was different from most of the other girls in the class. Whilst they were obsessed with ‘The Baby Sitters Club’ and ‘Sweet Valley High’ (both of which I read and enjoyed, but mainly they just gave me numbers for the read-a-thon each year) I was off reading ‘Matilda’ and authors like R.L Stine (not the Goosebumps books, the advanced stuff) and Tamora Pierce. I had great access to YA novels because my Mum was a Teacher Librarian at a High School.

Other girls my age wanted to play makeovers and weddings and I wanted to ride bikes and run through the bush. The girls I knew made games of imagining their weddings to a member of the Backstreet Boys or Hanson whilst I danced about the house singing to the score of ‘The Pirates of Penzance’.

Jo March from ‘Little Women’ was a trailblazer, in a time where it wasn’t proper for women to run through the woods, traipse about through brooks without shoes, yell out to or play with boys or write epic novels she did it all and everyone who mattered accepted her and loved her for who she was. Everything about this girl/woman appealed to me. It would be fair to say that as a young girl my biggest dream was to grow up to be Jo March. She was a hero to me. To this day she remains one of my favourite literary characters. In fact Jo March is probably the reason I have the guts to write online.

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Jo also appealed to me because of her love of the written word and her strength of character and independence. You have probably noticed from my reviews of my books for 52 Books in 52 Weeks that I have a thing for strong female characters that shuck the norm and stereotypes. I still believe that this love of certain qualities in this character made me try to develop those characteristics in myself. As soon as I was old enough to work (14) I got an after school job. This made me feel amazing because I didn’t have to ask my mother to buy me things like deodorant and tampons (you have no idea how amazing it was as a 14 year old to not rely on someone else for your tampon stash!), this was my first step to real independence and I liked it. I saved my money from my job and when I graduated I paid my own way on a holiday with my friends, that is a pretty huge thing for an 18 year old to be able to do. Then when I was 19 I moved interstate to the desert, yup I moved to Ayers Rock, it was arid, hot, confronting and I was pretty innocent at the time (I hardened up quick though – read more about that here), I had no safety net there. I knew no one. It was the bravest and most awesome thing I think I have done. It was an amazing experience and I am so glad I did it to this day!

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I believe I have a lot to thank Jo March for. I have previously written about my love of both the book and movie and after reading back over this post I realise how big an impact my love of this character has had on me. As far as role models go I am pretty proud that she has been and continues to be mine.

 


Oh the horror… the horror!!!

A brief recount of numerous times I have been freaked out by movies 🙂

When I was a little girl (around 9 or 10) I stupidly convinced my babysitter that I was allowed to watch Stephen King’s It, at the time I loved all books by R. L. Stine and all things horror and it never occurred to me that perhaps this was the reason that I had night terrors (yes I was a moron haha).

Needless to say it terrified me and ever since I have hated clowns, I have never watched that movie again, but now I wonder whether me today would have any problem with it. It is a wonder that I became a Librarian when I think back on the blood balloons scene.

I probably shouldn’t even mention when my brothers and I convinced another babysitter we could watch jaws and then were scared to go to the toilet or have a bath for two weeks. My littlest brother was terrified of water for a year, to be fair he was 7 years old at the time.

And Village of the Damned, holy crap! Village of the Damned is scary to a (then) 14 year old, my brothers and I loved Superman and Look Who’s Talking so we figured a movie with Christopher Reeve and Kirstie Alley in it would be stellar – nope, nope, nope. It was freaky and these crazy children were running around making people give themselves autopsies while they were still alive… eff that for a joke. Really I was the oldest, I feel like I led my brothers astray somewhat 🙂

A couple of years ago I had a movie night with a friend, she had picked Saw number something or other, I had never seen any of the Saw movies so figured what the hell it can’t be worse than Norbit (the first movie we watched). So she turns it on… Some dude is strung up with rings through numerous parts of his body (including his jaw) and if he wants to live he has to pull himself off the rings tearing through muscle, ligament, flesh and (in the case of his jaw) bone to break free.

[I posted the above because there is no way in hell that I was posting a video of that scene and I am going to see Queen ft Adam Lambert in a month so am devouring all the Queen I can 🙂 ]

I got through two, maybe three rings and that was it, I declared, “I’m out!” grabbed the popcorn bowl and walked out. She asked me what was wrong and I said there was no way I was going to watch people mutilate themselves or be mutilated. Ugh *shudders* never again Saw movies, never again. 

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Meanwhile, have you guys seen Drag me to Hell? There are some jumpy bits in it and all and the story was pretty decent for a supernatural thriller/horror, but more than anything I got the serious icks from it! Just saying you guys, if you don’t want to see formaldehyde pouring out of a very dead person’s mouth onto a very alive person then skip this film. Decent acting though! 

Daily Prompt Can’t watch this

 


Achievement Hunter Let’s Plays – Hilarity for all

In response to The Daily Posts – Roaring Laughter, the first thing I could think of was the Let’s Play videos that Husby and I watch together.

I am somewhat addicted to watching the Achievement Hunter Let’s Play channel. I enjoy playing games, but in no way should I be considered a gamer, regardless of this I LOVE watching this channel. Why? Well because I am pretty much guaranteed an awesome belly chortle at some point during the video. These guys are very talented, somewhat professional 😉 and totally hilarious!

My most recent favourite was the Jeopardy videos, yes there are two and I chuckled and snorted my way through both of them. Two different groups played the game each time (other team members were in the background), I don’t want to spoiler the parts I laughed so hard I cried at, but the one in the first video had to do with the Panda question and the second videos tears also related back to the Panda question in the first video. 

Here’s Part 1

Here’s Part 2

 


Bum vs. Bottom

So I picked my (almost 3 year old) nephew up from preschool the other day, this is not an overly often occurrence, but it is close to home and he loves when I do so sometimes I pick him up on the way home from work and let him once again show me everything about his school. This day I decided to do it because it had been a long ass day and I could really use some Hendrix sized hugs, turns out I picked the right day. I come in the door and hear him bellow out my name and see a streak of toddler as he comes tearing across the room and flings himself into my arms. After a freaking amaze balls hug I put him down and he pulls me over to the fish tank chattering on about the fish and the shark (toy) and the fish flowers (tank plants) etc.. Here’s the interesting thing about my nephew, he was slow to learn to talk, but now he loves talking to anyone who will listen… at home; apparently at school he doesn’t say much of anything and when he does he gives one word answers, it’s something we are working on at home and with the teachers and we think it is either a shy or confidence thing. Well… not this day… His teacher came up to me as he was dragging me around the room showing me different things and asked to speak to me. She said that Hendrix had spoken a whole sentence with her extremely clearly today, “that’s fantastic” I said, his teacher looked uncomfortable Teacher – “Um yes it is, and we are so glad that he is starting to feel comfortable talking around us here at school so we don’t want to discourage that, but the sentence he said wasn’t the best thing he could have chosen” uh-oh Me – “Oh, okay, what did he say?” Teacher – “We were sitting on the floor and I was playing with some coloured balls with him and I put one behind my back and said to him ‘where is the red ball?’ He pointed at my back and I brought it back out and said, ‘you’re right, here it is!’ He then put the green ball behind his back and I asked him where the green ball was and he pointed and said, ‘up Hendrix bum’, he then pulled it out from behind his back with a smile and exclaimed ‘here it is’”

Apparently green ball went caving  http://clubpenguin.wikia.com/

Apparently green ball went caving
http://clubpenguin.wikia.com/

Me – Simultaneously horrified and trying desperately not to laugh “Oh my god, I am so sorry I don’t know where he got that from” Teacher – “Look I think it was done really innocently, I don’t think he even meant it as rude because there was no cheekiness in it. The thing is that we don’t encourage the use of the word ‘bum’ at school anyway so…” Me – “I’ll talk to his parents” Out of the mouths of babes… Between my two brothers I have 2 nieces and 2 nephews, both parent pairs have brought them up referring to their bum as a bum rather than a bottom. I was always brought up to say bottom, but my Mum and Nan were all about the young lady manners. I do not feel that the word ‘Bum’ is rude and it is an acceptable term in Australia for bottom which is considered more English, where do you stand on the Bum vs. Bottom debate?

I have no problem with a good bum :) http://www.panmacmillan.com.au/

I have no problem with a good bum 🙂
http://www.panmacmillan.com.au/

...but some just prefer Bottom Original pic from http://cheerybeggar.wordpress.com/2012/10/12/the-wisdom-ofnick-bottom/

…but some just prefer Bottom
Original pic from http://cheerybeggar.wordpress.com/2012/10/12/the-wisdom-ofnick-bottom/

                         

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please also feel free to share when your tots mouths have landed you in hot or embarrassing water 🙂

Roaring laughter daily prompt


“Man! I Feel Like A Tooheys!”

* Parody of “Man! I feel like a Woman!” by Shania Twain.

behance.net

I’m going out tonight-I’m feelin’ alright
Gonna let my gut hang out
Gonna make some noise-really raise my voice
Yeah, I’m gonna scream and shout
No inhibitions-make no conditions
Get a little outta line
I ain’t gonna act politically correct
I only wanna have a good time

The best thing about being a young man
Is our ability to drink a little more and…

Oh, oh, oh, go totally crazy-need myself a lady
Large cars, lotsa bars
Oh, oh, oh, really go wild-yeah, dressin’ without style
Oh, oh, oh, get in the action-what the hell’s attraction
Grease in my hair-don’t really care
Oh, oh, oh, I wanna be free-yeah, to feel the way I feel
Man! I feel like a Tooheys!

When I need a break, I’ll BBQ a steak
And watch the footy on the TV
You guys know the bliss
Standing to take a… ooh give that a miss
Baby don’t you know that I’m free.

The best thing about being a young man
Is our ability to drink a little more and..

Oh, oh, oh, go totally crazy-need myself a lady
Large cars, lotsa bars
Oh, oh, oh, really go wild-yeah, dressin’ without style
Oh, oh, oh, get in the action-what the hell’s attraction
Grease in my hair-don’t really care
Oh, oh, oh, I wanna be free-yeah, to feel the way I feel
Man! I feel like a Tooheys!

The best thing about being a young man
Is our ability to drink a little more
(more, more)

Oh, oh, oh, go totally crazy-need myself a lady
Large cars, lotsa bars
Oh, oh, oh, really go wild-yeah, dressin’ without style
Oh, oh, oh, get in the action-what the hell’s attraction
Grease in my hair-don’t really care
Oh, oh, oh, I wanna be free-yeah, to feel the way I feel
Man! I feel like a Tooheys!

I get totally crazy
Can you drink it
Oh, Oh, Yeah, Yeah
I feel like a Tooheys

*Response to the WordPress writing challenge


Thank you Mr. T.

Queen Latifah:
And the winner of the 2014 Grammy for Best New Artist goes to… CatT.

The audience goes wild and my music fills the theatre as I throw my arms around my Hubby for a massive smooch and then make my way to the stage. Naturally I pause along the way to high five Adam Lambert and pound fists with Dan Reynolds. I make it to the stage and by some miracle do not stage a re-enactment of Jennifer Lawrence’s Oscar fall, I embrace and pay homage to the amazing Queen Latifah and accept my amazing award. I turn to the mic and clear my throat whilst trying to subtlety wipe away tears of joy.

Oh Jen, you fall so gracefully :)

Oh Jen, you fall so gracefully 🙂

Me:
Wow! Thank you. This moment… means more than I could ever convey in one acceptance speech.

I came here tonight fully prepared to bow down to any one of the amazing and talented nominees as they won this title; don’t worry I am not suggesting you need to bow to me. The thing is, no matter how hard we push and work and pour sweat, blood and tears into our work, at no point will you ever sit there and go… yeah, I got this in the bag… come at me Grammy. As one of the nominees for this award tonight I found myself in such esteemed company and I wish to thank each one of you for the amazing contributions you make to this industry.

I must also thank Universal Music Australia for taking a chance on an unknown artist from South-West Sydney, for believing in me, for hearing me and my music and helping me translate who I am for all the world to hear. Thank you for fine tuning me because God knows I needed it.  

To my fans, without you there is no way I could be here. Thank you for sharing this journey with me and for seeing something in my music that you love. I hope you continue to be touched by my music and I will do all that I can to keep this train going.

Mum & Dad… thank you for letting me play music too loud and for not yelling at me when I then sung over my too loud music with my even louder voice. Thank you for inspiring me creatively. Mum, thank you for always being my editor and grammar Nazi, you are my guiding light.

Mr. T. … Thank you for being who you are, thank you for being my soul mate and for keeping me laughing for the past seven years. Thank you for encouraging me to sing and not being afraid to tell me when I was flat, thank you for letting me listen to any genre I want and for letting me play Adam Lambert’s music in the car really loud… thank you for learning the words so you could sing along too 🙂 Thank you for missing me singing around the house when I go away, thank you for missing it so much you learned every Adele song so you could sing them to stop yourself being lonely without me. Thank you for loving me, thank you for being my best friend and always being there, thank you for your support. I know you are happy sitting down there right now… really happy, because we are married… and being married means half of this award is yours. Congratulations on your Grammy baby 🙂

Thank you all.

 Inspired by the Daily Prompt