Today’s Happy Note: Blogging from the NYPL. How did I not know this place was beautiful. In general, I adore libraries. I have always been drawn to their calm, quiet, but also quirky and smart nature.
That said, the fact that I’m blogging from here means no internet at the apartment yet…but I do have a very nice new colleague who is coming to help me tomorrow! If that doesn’t work, I might cry. 😦
Onto healthier things!
I have always considered hobbies and passions a major part of a healthy lifestyle. For many people, hobbies keep them active (dancing, walking, swimming, playing with friends). My favorite active hobbies are climbing trees (although I’m afraid I’ll get in trouble if I do that in city parks), swimming, walking with friends, and exploring new places in any way possible. I think yoga, strength, and running are more passions for me. Whatever. What I wanted to say is that I have other hobbies too! Writing, drawing, taking pictures, blogging, planting things, baking, collecting bird pins, studying birds and trees, and READING. Seeing as I’m in a library right now, I’m going to talk about that last one.
Hobbies keep me healthy because they keep me sane. No amount of running or working out or eating delicious healthy things can be perfect. They help keep me sane, calm, and focused, but I need other things that aren’t as explicitly related to my health. Things that are pure fun. I think words and pages and lyricism is fun. So I’m going to do a little feature for the summer called “Caronae’s Shelf.” Every week, I’ll tell you what’s on my metaphorical shelf! I would love to hear what you guys are reading too. We can have a mini virtual book club! Sometimes I might share thoughts, sometimes not. If you don’t like books, I’d love to ehar about anything else you like to do that keeps you happy, healthy, and sane!
Week of 05/23:
1. Women, Food, and God (by Geneen Roth): Interesting. I recommend it. It isn’t necessarily the most straightforward book (there is no precise plan of action), but that’s kind of the point. I feel like I absorbed a lot of things that made me question my relationship with food and God, and that’s definitely a good thing. I believe in questioning ourselves and our beliefs. It helps us grow.
2. 50 Ways To Soothe Yourself Without Food (by Susan Albers)
My response to this just turned into my Therapy Thoughts for the week…
So far this has been really wonderful. It is geared toward emotional and stress eaters, which I sometimes am, but the tips and discussions are helpful to anyone who is often anxious and unsettled. I had no idea, but as I was reading, I realized I have virtually no ways of soothing myself . I didn’t realize that other people did! I want to talk to my therapist about this. I think part of the problem yesterday (I ended up sobbing and feeling unresolved and angry) was that I felt overwhelmed going into the session, and as I began feeling and talking about (reluctantly) some painful things, I had no way of soothing myself. Isn’t that a beautiful word? Just the sound “soothing” makes me feel calmer. I think that going forward, therapy will be easier if I actively work to soother myself when I start feeling or talking about difficult things. I actually am glad that yesterday seemed to go so badly and that I borrowed this book from my therapist because it led me to this realization. My therapist has always told me to “be” with my feelings and I always felt like “well, I am!” But it was never comfortable. Then she would tell me not to judge myself and to just relax, but it never clicked. Now it’s clicked and it feels so liberating. I was always wildly upset when feeling painful things, which, since that was most of the time (both in therapy and in my life), meant that I was often deeply uncomfortable and unsettled. Sometimes just focusing on my breathing or holding my baby duck Leland or naming different things that I sense around me (“I see pollen on those yellow flowers”, “I feel how soft my sheets are on the bare skin of my back”) makes me feel soothed and calmer. When I feel calmer, I can deal with things and, eventually, be okay talking about them. This sounds so simple but it has, apparently, taken me over a year of therapy (eight months with my current therapist) to figure it out!
The biggest thing I got out of yesterday was how upset I feel when I feel lonely. That’s the place where the upset-ness was coming from. It brings me back to feeling like no one wants to play with me, and that is one of the worst feelings in the world. People do want to play with me though! My friends, my sister, my new co-workers at the non-profit (who I really like, by the way), blog friends. There are plenty of people to play with. I know this, and when I do find myself alone, I need not worry so much. People do like me.
3. Unaccustomed Earth (by Jhumpa Lahiri): excited about this; haven’t read any good short stories or fiction in a while.
That’s this week’s edition of “Caronae’s Shelf”. What’s on your shelf?
I did another simple five miler this morning. This time with ten minutes of abs thrown into the middle (done in some very itchy grass in CP that was in need of some serious mowing). I felt sluggish again. It wasn’t painful, but it was slow and groggy. I don’t know why I feel this way on my runs lately. I’ll probably run again tomorrow and then do something else on Friday. I need the running blues to go away. I like running!
I have been craving ice and frozen fruit so badly this week. I cannot stop. I had sorbet and frozen mango for dinner last night and about two more servings of frozen fruit (berries and mango) with breakfast today. I seriously crave it. Like, when I think about ice, I begin to salivate like other people would over cookies. I want to chew the ice and the frozen fruit. And yes, I know it’s bad for my teeth. I asked my dad what this might mean (I suspected it represents some sort of nutrient deficiency) and he said that a lot of women with iron-deficient based pica crave ice to chew on. I think maybe I should get my blood tested. Has this happened to any of you? I have not had a lot of red meat at all lately. Usually I have it once a week. I told my dad that I eat my weight in spinach and other iron-rich dark green leafy veggies daily and he told me something interesting: many times, plant-based iron is barely absorbed by our bodies or not absorbed at all. This is very scary and I did not know that at all! He is an extremely good doctor who is not biased against vegetarians or vegans at all. Have you guys ever heard this? Do you get your iron levels checked?
I had a seven hour meeting this afternoon/evening. No joke. Seven hours of presentations and materials and dialogue. It was important stuff though!
I wasn’t sure what food would be served so I BYOV — brought my own veggies! This was a good idea as there wasn’t much produce. I feel better when I eat plenty of fresh produce and I don’t feel weird bringing my own at this point. That giant container of carrot and asparagus lasted me through lunch and dinner!
Snack was this bar and half a small chocolate chip cookie.
They actually had really high quality pizza for dinner with fresh, yummy sauce. Yes, I hate tomatoes. And yes, I like pizza sauce (and ketchup). Do not ask me why. I was hangry and had another slice.
I might have more frozen fruit and/or a brownie for dessert.
Because I don’t have Internet at the apartment and, well, I mostly have to do work at work, I haven’t been reading or commenting very much. I promise I still love you all and will catch up as soon as the Internet is fixed!
I miss you all already! What’s happening in your life?