Monday, December 23, 2019

About Me Monday + Inspire Me Monday + Inner Champion Workbook Chapter 8: Try New Things

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

Something new I want to learn about or try:
I discovered the vegan recipe book by Chef Allyn Raifstanger through the Online Book Club. I have been wanting to start incorporating more vegetarian meals into my meal plans for years. I would never be able to be a vegan. I like cheese and omelets too much. It is also unlikely that I will ever be completely vegetarian. However, I would like to eventually eat more plant-based than meat-based meals.

I can cook, but the truth is, I'm a lazy cook without a lot of patience. Also, most vegan recipes leave me flat when it comes to flavor and hungry an hour later.

The person who reviewed this recipe book via Online Book Club tried some of the recipes. When she said that the "chicken" recipe she tried tasted like chicken and the author wasn't preachy about health or veganism, I knew I needed to give the book a look. I don't abide preachiness, and I don't need anyone triggering my abusive partner ED (Eating Disorder) to resurface.

My plan:
I am going to write down the ingredients I need and try the recipes in the book. I am also going to try the Every Plate delivery service. The ingredients come in the box with enough for two people and I don't have to go shopping for them. As I told you, I'm lazy. However, not all of it is laziness. I do have real problems with fatigue.

Every Plate is a lot less expensive than other boxed meal plans, making it a good option for families on a budget, which is pretty much everyone these days!

A routine or habit that I need to change:
My all-or-nothing thinking. My worst habit is to immediately tell myself how something will NOT work, and it always spirals into telling myself what a garbage excuse for a human being I am.

How I will replace the negative routine or habit with a positive one:
I don't know if I ever will entirely. However, I have to continue combating this thinking by telling my lousy inner critic to take a long walk off a short pier with raw steaks tied to them into a lake of hungry sharks and offering counter-points to her negative arguments.

This isn't the same as jumping into a potentially life-altering situation feet first without examining the potential repercussions. It simply means not telling myself that I'm trash for considering something in the first place.

How will this change make me a stronger and happier person?
Getting the Inner Jackwagon to shut up more often than not would help give me the confidence to make potentially positive changes. Believing in myself a little more couldn't hurt.

Also, regardless of what the rest of you may feel about reincarnation, it's something I consider to be a possibility. I don't want to drag all this negativity about myself into another lifetime! Talk about hauling around a psychic ball and chain.

Like the tattoo on my left outer calf says, born to lose, live to win. Thank you, Lemmy!

Before anyone decides that this is an appropriate moment to pop off about how much you hate tattoos, allow me to shut that nonsense down before it starts. I'm not forcing you to get a tattoo. This is my leg upon which I voluntarily got a tattoo that has personal meaning for me. I was 51 years old when I got this tattoo, thus, well and away old enough to decide whether such a thing was appropriate FOR ME.

You are welcome to not like or want tattoos. You are not welcome to tell me what I should or shouldn't like or want.

Seriously, I've had people start railing about their dislike of tattoos on a post where I was sharing a picture of a tattoo I had done in honor of a person who was terminally ill and who has since passed on. It was my first tattoo, and I was (and still am) quite proud of it. The person who felt it necessary to display their rudeness was, no doubt, trying to show everyone how stainless and pure they were by not having any of those icky tattoos. From my standpoint, they only managed to show their backside. Don't be that person.

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Good Stuff For Monday: Win Free Vanilla and More

Disclosure: I am an independent affiliate for Watkins Products

This post originated on the Good Stuff from Grover blog. However, I am sharing it with some of my other sites in case the opportunity may appeal to readers there as well.

Howdy, Grover Gang! It's the Ornery Old Lady here with a great giveaway and opportunity for my U.S. and Canadian readers, with apologies to my readers in other countries.

Every month, Watkins Products gives away $100 worth of extracts and spices. Wouldn't it be wonderful to win a free bottle of vanilla?

Watkins Products have been around since 1868. Choose from high-quality spices and extracts for cooking, grooming and home remedies made with pure and natural ingredients, and household products without harsh chemicals. These products are never tested on animals.

Unlike some home businesses which have monthly sales quotas and cost an exorbitant amount to join, Watkins consultants pay only $29.95 per year for access to the training website and their own page. You don't even have to recruit anyone or sell anything ever if you don't want to. You can simply use the membership to purchase products for your household at a reduced cost. This opportunity is only open to residents of the United States and Canada.

Happy Holidays from Cie the Ornery Old Lady and the entire crew at the Grover Hotel.

Monday, December 16, 2019

About Me Monday + Inner Champion Workbook: Chapter 2: Changes

Disclosure: If readers purchase a copy of this book through the preview link above, I earn a small commission from Amazon.

Greetings, fellow Crazy Creatives, and others. Today I am continuing my shared journey with the Inner Champion Workbook, which is an adjunct to the above autobiography by bodybuilder Lauren Powers. As I said in yesterday's post, this is a book that came as a complete surprise. I kept putting it to the bottom of my list of books for review because I thought it was a workout book. It isn't.

Today's chapter addresses changes. Let's get to it!

"Whether we’ve embraced it or not, we’ve all faced changes in our lives. In this chapter, identify some of the changes that you’ve experienced in your life. First, think of a change that happened to you that was out of your control. Then, think of a change that you actively made. How have these changes altered your journey? How can they be seen as contributing positively to your identity?"

Change that I made:
I no longer work for anyone else. I am not an employee or contractor. I am strictly a freelancer.

The reason I made the change:
Mostly out of necessity. My physical health took a few critical hits, and then I ended up moving to a remote location which is 50 miles from the nearest city. I do not have the strength or stamina to make 100-mile round trips to a job several times a week. I no longer have the strength to work the types of physically demanding night shift jobs that defined me for many years. Most clerical jobs are on the day shift, and I become severely depressed working day shifts because of my lifelong difficulty regulating my sleep. 

The impact it had on my life:
I am more stable emotionally, although I worry about my low income. However, I am not allowed to make more than $1100 a month or I lose Medicaid. Isn't that the stupidest thing you ever heard of? People outside of the United States often express their shock about our health care system. As someone who has been a victim of this system for a lifetime, I'm not shocked by it but remain appalled. A for-profit health care system exists to help nobody except for institutions gouging the ill and infirm.

Change that happened to me:
In 2017, my life changed forever. I was fired from my job after falling into a very deep sleep while sitting with a patient on the night shift. It is my contention that I had a TIA (transient ischemic attack). I was very sick with a severe respiratory infection that I had contracted from this patient. The coordinator insisted that I go to the job anyway, reasoning that I could not reinfect the patient because I had contracted the infection from him. The coordinator also used guilt, stating that "the family really needs you." 

A bit of further background to this story. My diabetes was becoming worse at this point. I wasn't yet using insulin but knew the day was coming soon when I would have to. I was working 60 hour weeks. I was afraid to say anything to my coordinator because he kept telling me that they were going to replace the primary nurse on the case with me since she had lupus and this meant that she called off sick a fair amount to manage her condition. So I kept my own health issues to myself, fearing that I would lose work if the company realized that my health was infirm.

After being fired from this job I picked up more shifts with a company where I was working one night once a month with a patient I'd worked with previously. I lost $4 per hour but ended up being able to go back to full time fairly quickly. However, this patient's condition declined, and he ended up in the hospital. The agency never got me another job.

I went to work delivering food for Uber Eats. I was actually losing money doing this job. I found work with a company called GoPuff, which is a subsidiary of GrubHub, delivering groceries. The onsite managers were great but GrubHub does not give a flying fuck about either its employees or its contractors. 

Many nights, one manager was left in the warehouse running around like a chicken with her head cut off to pack the orders while the other two managers switched over to driving. The drivers were given ridiculously large numbers of orders and GrubHub customer service couldn't be arsed to call the customers and tell them about the delays. The customers were always angry and took it out on the drivers. 

As many of the deliveries were in downtown Denver, I often had to park several blocks from the location and carry heavy loads, sometimes up several flights of stairs in buildings with no elevator. On one occasion, I almost fell through the rotting boards on a porch. 

I started noticing tingling and numbness in the fingers on my left hand but ignored it. The tingling progressed to mild and then moderate pain running from shoulder to fingertips and then transitioned to pain so severe that I was having trouble sitting up for more than about 45 minutes before I had to lie on the arm to try and numb it. I ended up quitting the job. I had to wait for two weeks before Medicaid kicked back in. The pain was so severe that I considered committing suicide. I may well have done so if not for the fact that I knew I would be able to get physical therapy once Medicaid kicked back in. That was my only hope.

Fortunately, physical therapy helped greatly. My arm went from being in constant severe pain to being in moderate pain with some bouts of severe pain. It progressed to being in mild pain with bouts of moderate pain and then, to my joy, to feeling like a lump of clay with bouts of mild pain. 

Unfortunately, Medicaid only pays for 12 sessions of physical therapy for any given issue. My arm remained in the "lump of clay" mode for about a year. It has since progressed to low-grade numbness and tingling, which is where it will probably remain for the rest of my life. I have to be careful about lifting too much with this arm.

Once I was able to return to work, I delivered food for Cluster Truck, a delivery-only restaurant, from December 2017 until June 2019, when I found the wonderful Grover Hotel and my son decided that this building was our best hope for having a place to live for life. As I said, Grover is 50 miles from anywhere, which is why I made the decision that given my health issues, it was best to work from home rather than attempting to find a position working for someone who would be flexible regarding my health issues.

The impact it had on my life:
For the most part, I really like what I do. I wish I could have/would have made this decision sooner. I have always hated working for other people. In spite of the fact that I liked the patients I cared for, I was extremely burned out on health care, and my body was badly compromised from years of neglecting to take care of myself while devoting myself to caring for others as well as from the health issues which are due to faults in my DNA, i.e., my trash fire endocrine system.

One positive aspect or life lesson from the event:
I have been able to get adequate rest for the first time in something on the order of 40 years. I was always the "I'll sleep when I'm dead" kind of person. I often don't sleep well at night, and even though I'm a night owl, the night shift will mess your body up. I was always in a fog. 

I never respected my body and always told myself to shut up and quit whining. While I don't think I will ever be able to "love" myself (that concept is completely foreign to me) I have learned to respect myself and to be better about not letting people walk all over me.

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Read and Review Books with Authors XP, Booksprout, and Online Book Club

Ornery Owl 
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If you like reading and think you can write a worthwhile review, you can get free books and in some cases get paid for doing so. Here are three of the places where I find the books that I review.

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New reviewers do a few reviews without pay. As you earn credit, you start being offered paid reviews. Online Book Club is currently my main source of income.

~Cie the Ornery Old Lady~