Flowers on a picnic table

Flowers on a table; an empty table. These beautiful multicoloured roses use sitting there all alone. Of all the stories these lonely flowers could tell, is it a tale of loneliness, one that’s forgotten or sorrowful? Is it a reminder of love lost or one that’s departed? Of all the things in places, why here? Why at the beach on an overcast Saturday morning…

That is something that I cannot answer, nor could anybody else; unless the owner arrives to collect these forgotten beauties. Or perhaps a new owner arrives to state their claim…who knows. It’s like when they say ‘if a tree falls alone in the forrest would it make a sound, or because there is no one there to hear it, is there only silence?’ Could these flowers stay there forever? Perhaps, but unlikely. There would be someone at some stage come along and pick them up and most likely dispose of them in the nearby rubbish bin.
Although cut and purposely arranged in wrapped plastic, they are but disposable, whether now or in three days; or perhaps they will last a week? At some stage they will wither away, dry up and unfortunately become but a memory on this earth. Like almost all things in this life, death is but a given. Somethings may still ‘exist’ but all will eventually leave this world, but that is neither here nor there, is it? It’s not something to dread. It’s not something to worry about, at least for now. 

It’s complicated thought, that if grasped appropriately, grounds you to the now and forces you to make the choice to live fully and die trying, or live a half life; a cursed life…okay so I ‘borrowed’ that last part from Harry Potter…shoot me. What I am saying is there is no right or wrong answer. There are only but choices that we make on our own accord.

These flowers for instance, someone else made the decision for them and now they are sitting abandoned on a cold aluminium picnic table on the esplanade of a seaside town, doomed to carry out the rest of their futile existence alone. It was not their choice, however they do not have a brain; unlike me, a person and a brain (I hope) I do have.

Here I am sitting down at the beach, overlooking the slow crashing of waves and listening to the gentle rumble of the sea, caught up in the all the potential explanations as to why these flowers are here and what they mean, but that is my choice. As it what I write and who gets to see it.

Life is all about choice and now that I accept that, and beginning to truely understand that word…choice…I only hope my life will be able to lived the way in which I want to live it; not because of other people’s choices, decisions or lack thereof. I am but a vessel for my brain to have adventures in. I at least have to make it worthwhile, don’t I?

Stay awesome 😉

The Girl in the Green Shoes (or rather brown “thongs” being at the beach…be sure to google the Australian definition of thongs, like the ones you wear on your feet)

Liebster Award

award

“The Liebster award is a chance to get to know fellow bloggers! I’ve been asked the following questions and then it will be my turn to nominate others and ask them some questions of my own.”

This is my first award on WordPress! I am excited would be an understatement…I’m ecstatic! I’d like to thank *clears throat into microphone* I am 1 in 10 for kindly nominating me for this award. When I started this blog it was originally set to private and I am glad I convinced myself to go public. Its people like the lovely  I am 1 in 10 who make me want to write publicly and (to my surprise) on a global scale. It’s amazing to think that I am here my little rural/coastal town on the east coast of Australia writing for me and that my posts are being read all around the world. I love following posts from people in similar stages of life/health with similar interests/hobbies all over the world.

I may not have many followers (yet…here’s hoping) but those of you who have been kind enough to follow, like, comment and support me in this new world of blogging, I will be forever grateful. The writing community here has helped me be more confident in my writing and within myself. I have always wanted to write but was always scared of what people would think, which I why I chose to stay anonymous on here. I have gained confidence here that I am pretty sure shows in my day to day life. I have struggled with health issues and being overweight since my teens and it finally feels like I am getting somewhere and I owe alot of that to the WordPress community.

I hope to continue to write about my life, topics near and dear to me and maybe even one day some fiction…so stay tuned and find out!

So in accepting the Liebster award, I have to answer a few questions from my fellow blogger  I am 1 in 10 , so here we go…!

1. When you created you blog, did you have a vision or inspiration on the direction your wanted your blog to go?

I had been wanting to write for years before I finally got the guts to actually do it. I had always wanted to write about life, well my life to be more specific. I wanted to be able to express what I was feeling without feeling judged by people who know me. I wanted to indulge in my creative side that I hadn’t seen since I was young. I had envisioned writing about the day-to-day struggle of a twenty-something lass and what my life had to offer anyone who actually took the time to read it. Although sometimes I can be vague in my posts, I feel that I am actually revealing more by not using names of people, places and specifics as such. I think because I am writing not only from the heart, but my head. I hope to continue writing about my life, my battle with weight loss and anxiety but also some fun topics like movies and tv series and maybe even one day some fiction…but we will see.

2. If you woke up tomorrow with no fear, what would you do first?

I think I would pack a bag, get in my car and drive to a random destination. Or even more adventurous, get on a plane and spontaneously pick a destination and just explore. I am the type of person who plans (and thinks) way too much. So just to let go and do something unexpected without fear would be amazingly liberating

3.What’s your greatest achievement to date?

Now this is a hard one…it is probably graduating university. In 2010, I graduated university with a Bachelor of Business (Management) with a minor in Logistics and Operations. I had to pick the most broad subject there is, that can essentially point you in any direction in the business world. I used to see this negatively, like in a way that I gave myself too many options and that I didn’t know where I wanted to go and what I wanted to be. When I think back, I actually think it suited me down to a tee and allowed me to understand just how much what I studied is relevant to my life, how I think and react in certain situations. With a background in Business I have ventured into different industries (customer service, retail, banking, transport and logistics and most recently, security) and am starting to get closer to my niche. I have slowly started to climb up the ranks with each new industry and each new job. I hope one day to own my own business, but just have not figured out what that is yet…but I will…one day

4. Do you need to see things before you believe them?

Not necessarily. Literally… yes I do, because I am as blind as a bat and can only see a foot in front of me without my glasses, but figuratively not so much. I have a wild imagination and believe it is the key to keeping you sane in today’s crazy world. There is nothing wrong in believing in the impossible, the impracticable, the magical and the wonderful. I wouldn’t say I am religious but to some extent you do have to have a little faith. For all we know Santa, unicorns and aliens could really exist. The possibilities are endless when it comes to your imagination and there is absolutely….NOTHING…wrong with that!

5. Do you have any questions you are scared to ask yourself?

I suppose a few come to mind…Why do you do this to yourself, why can’t you put on a brave face and pretend to be okay once in a while and why do you know deep down you can do this, but f@#k it up EVERY TIME… They are questions I have trying to work on and inevitably give myself answers and resolutions to, but for the moment its work-in-progress.

6.  If you could send a message to the entire world, what would you say in 30 seconds?

Stop…look around…see the world for what it really is…a bunch of people, animals, plants and “things” living in one place. Stop giving into greed and hate, learn to live, laugh and love. We are not only destroying others, we are destroying the world we live in and ultimately ourselves. If you do have to fight, do it for a BLOODY good reason, not just because. We only have one life and make the most of it. You cannot fail if you try and try again

7. When did you last push the boundaries of your comfort zone?

I suppose when I took this job just over a year ago. Back then I knew I would be officially managing people (men) who could be the same age if not older in an industry I knew nothing about. I took a lower salary to get out of my stressful job at the time. I took a big risk going into the unknown and in a way I guess I still am…taking the risk that is. Every day I am a little less out of my comfort zone. I learn a little more, I become a little more confident in telling people what to do and dealing with that horrible word…c.o.n.f.r.o.n.t.a.t.i.on.

So now I get to pass this on….and the Liebster Award nominees are:

Nick’s Notions

Life and Other Disasters

Young & Twenty

Hideaway Girl

If Mermaids Wore Suspenders

Life…At Any Size

Now here are my questions for the nominees…

  1. What is the most “you” thing about you?
  2. If you could travel anywhere, where would you go?
  3. What is the best piece of advice you would give your teenaged/adult self?
  4. What would you do to “Pay it Forward”?
  5. Do you think you could survive the apocalypse?
  6. Coke or Pepsi?
  7. You ultimate night in would be?
  8. What do you feel you are missing in your life?
  9. Is there are certain smell or taste that brings back memories?
  10. What would you most like to blog about, but haven’t got around to yet?

If you accept this award, answer my questions, tag some fellow bloggers you enjoy following and submit some questions of your own.

Thank you for all your support and reading my blog

Stay awesome 😉

The Girl in the Green Shoes

For no apparent reason

**WARNING: What started out as a short (ish) post has turned into quite a long glimpse into my life, so consider yourself warned. I don’t want to scare you off, but just be prepare for some “deep” reading**

This post will probably sound disjointed and all over the place but I need to just type…For no apparent reason I feel like “this”. **SPOILER ALERT** I used to be a solely negative person, with low self esteem and didn’t like who I was. I have been working hard to change that and move forward with my life but sometimes I just feel like “this”. It is hard to explain what “this” feeling is but I know these days it will not last for long and that’s because I am working on it… I really am trying to work on it.

Sometimes there is a trigger to “this” feeling (a fight with my fiance, not enough sleep or a tough day at work) and sometimes (like now) there is no trigger, just me and my thoughts. These thoughts make me feel worthless and alone. These thoughts make me question who I am and who I want to be. Right now, I don’t want to be “this” person. I want to be the new-and-improved version of me, or at least the work-in-progress version. The version that is trying hard to leave the past in the past and move forward with her life.

Okay so let’s point out the elephant in the room…come on, you can say it…yes you can…okay…ANXIETY. There I said it. This blog was supposed to be an avenue for me to stay positive and be happy, but unfortunately tonight it has taken a detour. I’m not ashamed of my anxiety, it’s just something I have to deal with and some days are harder than others. Today is one of those days.

I suppose for this to make any sense, I guess I should start at the beginning…let’s rewind to 2004. I was 15. High School is not a fun age for anyone, let alone an easy one. I had a minor meltdown in the doctors office, more than once. The first time was because of my skin. You know oily, pimply, teen aged skin. It didn’t have acne but it wasn’t exactly something that you can look in the mirror and be happy with, so I went to the doctor. Now back then, doctors used to prescribe a particular contraceptive pill to reverse the effects of oily/pimply skin, especially when it wasn’t limited to your face. Back, shoulders, arms included, so I guess you get the picture. I think within a year I was back in the doctors office, this time balling my eyes out and unable to successfully string a sentence together let alone two words. This time I was prescribed a mild anti-depressant, you know to cope with the struggles of being a teenager, or so I thought.

The years that went by after that seemed like a blur. I didn’t feel anything. I felt numb to emotions. I felt like a shell of a person. I didn’t seem real to me. It wasn’t until 2010 after finishing Uni, graduating and getting my first full time job did I start to want to feel again. To be an actual person, not just an image in the mirror, an image in my head. I was still on medication by this point but was in discussions with my doctor (a different one from when I was in High School) to lessen the dose so I could ween myself off and become pill-free. That’s when I met my fiance (well he wasn’t my fiance back then, but I’m not ready to give him a name yet) and so began my transition to being pill-free. To be honest, I think we met at the right time in our lives. We had both recently broken up with our significant others and both starting to try and move forward. I guess you could say we were both broken when we met and then started to mend each others pieces so we could become whole again, together. With his help, I gradually weened myself off the anti-depressants and started to really live again… or at least be the opposite of numb for a couple of years.

The year 2014, age 25. So the story continues, and another trip to the doctor, this time I was crying for a completely different reason. I remember waking up with a stiff neck which wasn’t entirely unusual, so I didn’t think anything of it until I was at work a few hours later. I was sitting at my desk and started to worry as my neck got stiffer and stiffer and generally more painful. It wasn’t just my neck either, my back too. By this point I could no longer stay at work so I drove myself home (yes stupid I know, but what’s done is done) and booked the next available doctors appointment (I think the following day). I’m pretty sure my Mum ended up taking me as I could hardly move or really walk/sit.

After much unavoidable prodding, poking and x-rays to confirm, I was diagnosed with Osteoarthritis…at 25! It’s not unheard of and is rare in someone so young but there I was 25 in the body of a 60 year old. Well didn’t that just boost my confidence. The doctor described the locking up of my neck and back as an “episode”. I was given some strong anti-inflammatories to take during these episodes and if I was going to be doing something strenuous on my body. It took a bit of wrapping my head around it but nowadays its just normal to me.

So Osteoarthritis at 25 mixed with a high-stress job/working environment is an explosion waiting to happen. It took nearly two years for the self-combustion meltdown to happen, but it did and boy it wasn’t pretty. It was an epic meltdown and I nearly ended up in hospital, but thankfully my family were there to support me and get me the help I really needed. Another doctors visit (believe me I am sick of them too…no pun intended) and this time it was back to the original doctor who prescribed me with the pill for my skin and the anti-depressants for my mood. The doctor I was seeing went on a kind of sabbatical and didn’t return until last year. And what do you know, I was prescribed another round of medication, this time for anxiety. I was in no state to go to work, and the transition with this medication made me physically sick for the first week of taking it as they were quite strong and my body was not used to it. I took two weeks stress leave and started to officially look for alternative employment. Thankfully it didn’t take me long (like a week before the interview and another 2 weeks for the offer to come through).

I returned to work and after a week of being back I handed in my resignation. The company I used to work for didn’t really value me an an employee. The company structure changed alot in the five and a bit years that I worked there and in their eyes the way to save money was to not hire additional staff where it was clearly needed. As a result this job almost cost me my sanity. When I left I found out that my position was not replaced and it took not one or two remaining employees to fill my position but…wait for it….FIVE people. I always knew I was expected to do the work of two, maybe three people and I did pretty well. I was good at my job, but you cannot expect someone to continually ask for help and never get any and expect them to stay. I never understood the work/life balance when I worked there because I didn’t have one.

Anyways this leads up to the last 12 months and boy was it eventful. So here goes nothing (never a dull moment for Miss Green Shoes is it…?). So after giving my month’s notice (it was because of my contract I had to wait so long) I finished work on the Friday and started my new position in a completely different industry on the Monday…the week before Christmas. I had thought long and hard about taking this position. It was less money and a higher role in a family business. I would be running my own department, something I had not done in an official capacity before, but I made the sacrifice for my health, finances and hopefully my career/future. So I was doing pretty well over the next 5 maybe 6 months, but I noticed I had put on 10kg since starting my knew job. I didn’t think much of it at the time as ever since I was about 15 I had struggled with my weight. Up down up down. The weight factor didn’t really help my self esteem it only fueled it, but I neglected to notice it (much anyway) nor did I actively try to do anything about it.

No only did I notice I had packed on weight (it was only 2 years ago I had lost 20kg wasn’t it??) but my mood wasn’t any better. I had a short fuse, some anger management issues, I was grumpy, didn’t sleep to well and generally not a great delight to be around. My body felt unpredictable and I couldn’t help the feeling that there was something wrong with me. So what did I do? You guessed it, went back to the doctor (again same one who prescribed the pill for my skin, anti-depressants and anti-anxiety meds). I was sent for so many tests it wasn’t funny. After numerous blood tests and ultrasounds the doctor diagnosed me with Poly Cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). For those of you who don’t know, its a disorder that affects your weight, hormones and sometimes the ability to have children.

So here I was 26, with my worst fears come true, the fact there was a reason I was overweight and a very real possibility I was not going to be able to bare my own children. This scared the hell out of me. Of everything I ever wanted to be was a mother and a wife and now one of those dreams may never come true. I was devastated. Blow after blow, my life was just…shit…there is no other word for it. After everything I had been through, it was almost enough to shake me into oblivion. I tried to lose weight but it seemed almost impossible, I was always hungry, never full. When I tried not to eat I got sick.

This went on for a few more months until my mother had done her own research into PCOS. She had looked into specialist treatments and doctors in the top of their field and finally she came across an Endocrinologist in Brisbane. She was determined to get me there even if she had to beat down the door herself and beg. That’s when I found out my doctor (remember the sabbatical one?) returned. She was always a great doctor, so helpful and pleasant to deal with. She really cared about her patients and knew what she was talking about. So I gathered my intel and made a big list of everything I could think of that was wrong with me (like as in related to my diagnosis) along with a note that said “get a referral to this Endocrinologist and don’t leave with out it”. So I sat in her office, rattled off everything that had happened since I last saw her (25..osteoarthritis) and practically demanded she give me a referral to the specialist in Brisbane. She was only too happy to help. She did however send me for more blood tests, gee I hate blood tests and needles….uuuuggghhhhh.

So after going to the Endocrinologist in Brisbane (about 5 hours from where I live) twice and a bunch of blood tests, glucose tests and ultrasounds I was given a diagnosis…..I had been MISDIAGNOSED with PCOS…Yep you heard it…misdiagnosed. I was gobsmacked, how can someone get something so wrong? After the final test results came back and a thorough investigation into my medical history here is what she said. Basically the contraceptive pill I was prescribed for my skin in my teens and the anti-depressants/anti-anxiety meds had had an extreme reaction to my body. It allowed me to put on copious amounts of weight in the last 12 years, triggered the depression (although depression does run in my family) and was the cause of my extreme hormonal problems. If I thought I was gobsmacked at misdiagnosis, you should have seen me then. There were not enough words to describe what I was feeling and the thoughts that were going through my head. This one conversation with the specialist made a large portion of my life make sense. I would have never have put two and two together and come up with that. I am so grateful to her, she literally helped change my life.

I went off the contraceptive pill to try and normalise my hormones, which after nearly 12 months I seem pretty “normal” now. I went back to my doctor and changed my anxiety medication to a more “weight-neutral” alternative (seems to be working for now). With the change in medication, I actually sleep better now, I am less hungry and don’t overeat as much, and I can actually lose weight if I stick to my diet and exercise (which at the moment I can’t do as I am still in a moonboot from my little tumble one month ago). Previously when I had tried to lose weight through diet and exercise, my weight would swing like a pendulum and eventually would all come back on no matter how hard I tried.

I’m not completely out of the woods with the having children thing, my last tests did not show I was producing any eggs (it isn’t uncommon after being on the pill for so long), so I have more tests in June to find out. I am trying to stay positive and whatever will be will be, it will just have to be something I have to live with either way. At the moment I am still happily taking my “weight-neutral” anxiety meds and finally I have started to lose a small amount of size and weight (yay for me…finally). Compared to where I was, I am much happier but I still have my moments, except they don’t last as long as they once did.

Sometimes my anxiety takes hold and I could be living in the “dark” for a day or an hour, but give me time and I snap out of it soon enough. Before, I was in a constant state of darkness, couldn’t see a way out and felt like I was drowning in my own self pity. With medication, counseling and a new job (well I have been there now for just over  12 months, so not exactly “new”) I am finally starting to actually be happy with my life and myself as a person.

Funny thing about anxiety, when you talk about it, it gets easier, you understand it more than when you say nothing and let it eat you up inside. At the start of this post (about 2 hours ago) I was angry, upset, broken and generally not liking the person I am, now after bearing my soul to the blogging community (if anyone actually reads this) and more so myself, after physically typing and reading what comes out of my head, I am feeling much better. In state of content.

So thanks for letting me get real with you all and I suppose real with myself. I hope there will be less negative/anxious posts in the future and more positive ones. A chapter in my life closed last year and this year was all about the new me. That’s why I am here, blogging, trying something new. I have taken a good stab at it and I really hope I continue with this blogging thing.

A piece of advice I will leave you with, I suppose more targeted to those suffering from anxiety, depression, weight issues and general unhappiness, don’t let it consume you. You are not your anxiety and there is always a way forward, you just have to believe in yourself and if you can’t, find someone who can make you believe.

Please feel free to comment or email me at the_girl_in_the_green_shoes@yahoo.com for any anxiety/weightloss questions/comments or generally anything you want to talk about. I would love to hear from you guys

So until next time…

Stay awesome 😉

The Girl in the Green Shoes