Friday Foibles

It is a time when there is so much to write about but so many things hold one back-have you ever experienced that ? Doubts, should I put it all down or should I ruminate over them in my mind?

First there are reports of rapes and more rapes and atrocities against women. All over, repeatedly. What can women do ? What should we do ? Should we look the other way ?

Then there is a girl and her sister who want to come to our house to work as our own helper man has gone on his annual vacation. She has a day job at our university and wants to make a little money on the side by working at houses. I would have liked to have her but she would only come with another woman. They work together. For me, it was rather difficult – being the shy, withdrawn person that I am to have one too many people at home. But we did it- I relented and they came.

It was great to have someone ( though two) clean the house for me. I never can do it right-mopping the floor would leave water all around that I would slip on myself. Sometimes I leave my footprints on freshly mopped floors and have to do it over. So I was glad to have help but as they were new- I needed to be with them to show them the ropes. So half of my weekend day was expended in this supervisory role(:)). After they were done, I dropped them at a mall where they could get a cab to their work camp.

The house is clean but I think I will be doing the house myself again- that is feasible and workable.

My daughter has learnt a new dance move and she was showing it to me so I joined in. She woke up after 14 hours of sleep – she had come to the mall to drop the two girls yesterday and she got food from the Cheesecake factory- after eating which( perhaps??) she got a migraine, from which she recovered at 10 am today( Saturday)- a nice long nap or sleep she had.

Husband’s sugar is almost under control and without any medications- he is adapting with the lifestyle- no carbs at all- at least none that I could identify. But he took two days of the hypertensive medication which has Thiazide in it and so his blood sugar was a little higher than when it was without any medication. Thiazides are known to affect the liver and cause increased blood sugars. The blood sugars were still in normal range. He planned to get his fasting insulin and hs-C-reactive protein levels done today to confirm hyperinsulinemia and inflammation of the liver but he didn’t make it to the laboratory this morning. Early in the morning on Saturday, his car went to get the annual road worthiness check up and it failed the test- he had bumped the side of it parking in our shed- so that failed the car. Now he needs to get it fixed before the car can go the test again. So one car is out of service again as it has no third party insurance until it passes the test.

Otherwise, today is Saturday and the woman who helps with the cooking is there, preparing healthy meals for us for today- when today I will be fasting and my husband can add one carbohydrate to one meal today- the other meals continue as before( protein 25gms and two cups of above  the ground veggies). It is day 9 today and apart from a few complaints yesterday, he has done well on this diet. Am bent on getting him to a normal lifestyle with no medications if possible.

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Thoughts for Tuesday

I have been wanting to share inspiration from the book I am reading now for a while. It is a book that is available in many book stores and many would have read it and been inspired by it over the decades since it was first written. It is ” How to win friends and influence people” by Dale Carnegie.

Yesterday at work, we had an issue. As we vet reports for our funding agency, we need to look through the report to see if things are done correctly. Technically we don’t or can’t understand the report so no one bothers to read it through those technical sections but we go through the personnel and expenditure to see if all of those sections are filled in. In the personnel section, they report all the researchers who worked on the project since the last report and account for their work. Some of our investigators, the people to whom the grant agency gave the money to conduct research, have a habit of bringing professors and academicians from universities from around the world, into positions like post docs, or research assistants or other such for a few months at a time. They are paid off the project in this capacity, though they contribute to the project as investigators.  Yesterday the grant agency found out that in some cases people were reported as investigators and the very same people were reported as post docs or research assistants in other reports- they questioned my supervisor about this discrepancy.

As I left office yesterday, my supervisor still hadn’t returned from her emergency meeting with the Research head because she needed to provide an answer to the grant agency and she feels her head is on the block now. Today we will all meet to see how to report to the grant agency in a way that does not jeopardize the fund and the project.

One of the first things  is to ask us who work as coordinators about why we didn’t look more carefully to see if people were in dual roles- one as investigator and the other as researcher. There might be some  passing the blame around during today’s meeting.

I have been reading this first chapter of the book and the first principle mentioned is “don’t criticize, condemn or complain”- all three words are applicable to me. I am trying to apply it during our meeting today. A person of true strong character is one who ” has the self-control enough to be forgiving”. Whining, complaining and condemning are easy to do. Self-control over words is the most difficult of things to do.

 

” I will speak no ill of no man and speak all the good I know of everybody”- the book quotes this from Benjamin Franklin.

” A great man shows his greatness by the way he treats little men”, the book quotes Carlyle.

” God himself does not propose to judge man till the end of days- why should you and I ?” Dr. Samuel Johnson

Slow Sunday

It is a slow Sunday again. I am up at 2 am probably because of my diet which makes me very active, very early.

Carbohydrate intolerance and insulin resistance- two words commonly thrown around these days. Research seems to show that almost all of the metabolic diseases are attributable to insulin resistance probably stemming from deposition of fat in the liver and cycles of highs and lows through years of consuming more sugars/starches than necessary. High blood pressure, edema around ankles, blood sugars, gout, fatty liver, gall stones, insulin resistance are all supposedly related to this.

Last week, my husband had high blood sugars( post prandial above 200 mg/dL),which led to a minor panic situation here. He agreed to go zero carb too to see if that would help . So starting two days back, the two of us are on the low carb diet. Day 1 was tough as it involved 24 hour fast. For most of us who have never fasted, completely giving up food is unthinkable. It was the same for him. I have done it before, so I fasted with him. Probably because I have more to lose than him and probably because I have done it before, it was a lot easier for me than him. At hour 18, he almost gave up as he was seeing stars, had a headache and felt horrible. At this time, he broke his fast and indulged in some cheese and olives. Then he continued for the rest of the 6 hours and called it an almost 24- hour fast.

Day 2 was four meals of only vegetables. This was a difficult proposition- most of our bodies are conditioned to automatically reach out for sugars and something starchy throughout the day. Fruits, even healthy ones, were out. The better half confessed that he had been snacking through the day even while at work When food is found all around you, what does one do when he is hungry ? Eat. And that is what he had been doing.

Day 2 helped him and me realize that though he often said, he hadn’t eaten anything since our hearty breakfast, in actuality he was eating sugars. Day 2 cleared successfully for both him and me.

Day 3- today we can add protein back to the diet. For two meals, lets see how it goes.

Gratitude

Monday is the day set apart for being grateful. Honestly this morning I am not finding many things to be grateful about but let me try. Let me see what makes me grouchy first this morning.

  1. Grateful for the Air Conditioning in the house for without it and the power supply we would not be able to live in arid conditions. Thank you.
  2. For family that has returned safe after more than a week of busy travel and activity.
  3. For the Thai boys who got rescued last night from the cave and for the remaining 8 boys who are still alive.
  4. For the cool wind that brought cooler weather in some parts of the world and did not bring harm.
  5. Oh, now that I am counting, there seem to be so many. For a friend who is busy at work but still writing and I know she is well somewhere.
  6. For the guts to face up to someone I needed to forgive.
  7. For sleep and hunger that plague me through the day. There are many people who do not feel these basic instincts of life. I am often not grateful for my hunger for food and cravings for crunchy stuff. I am grateful that I seem to have gotten over my sugar cravings.
  8. For a sister who works hard at work and at home with her children and her ill health. She has been looking after my husband and children every time they visited her city over the past two months.
  9. For the woman at the visa counter because she set me off on an alternate path of life, one that I never thought I would be going on this July. For new times and new experiences.
  10. For a spare car that in spite of my car being silent and still in the garage works well and takes me in comfort to work.
  11. For the chapel service that went well last night – that elder daughter sang in the choir for- it was her first experience singing in a choir and for appreciation. For the younger daughter who was kept safe through weeks of travel back and forth to the home country and the church service she attended here yesterday.
  12. For peaceful times at home and the cats outside. For peaceful neighbors who live their lives quietly. For a neighbour girl who put on 5 kilos of weight after a battle with extreme starvation. It made me happy to see her almost like her old self yesterday. I hope she gains her body image back- is that the correct way of putting it ?
  13. For the monthly times for both my girls. I have come to appreciate this with their lives as they have often missed these cycles in their lives but this year, seems to have brought regularity in their rhythms.
  14. For the change in mood from when I started this post, that I don’t want to write what was bothering me at the beginning of this writing.

Thank you for this day and for the challenges this day will bring.

Five minute Friday- Restore

IMG-20180529-WA0012Fridays are the weekends here. A time to restore and rejuvenate the hard work of the week. As far as physical labor goes, work is not at all exhausting but working here at a desk job is so exhausting mentally and the drive back and forth from work is worth any amount of restoration.

Our apartment at home recently underwent a restoration project. It is about 16 years old, no work done on or in it ever since we have owned it. The walls were crackling, paint peeling off, cupboards had termites and powdery stuff coming off in corners of rooms. There was a tree dog infestation at one time too.Everything was restored for a good expense.

Roads outside my villa are being restored now. I wonder how restoration work can go on in such heat. Who can work in the hot scorching sun ? But people are working and restoring our road.

A daughter of my neighbor was admitted in hospital as she had stopped eating – completely . Her parents feared the worst and got her admitted to hospital. Their worst fears had come true. She was kept in hospital for feeding and she is on the road to restoration.

My mother has undergone two major surgeries on her body this last year. She has huge scars on her body. With prayer and care, she has been restoring herself. She was a timid woman before this incident in her life. She always feared the worst. She says her worst fears came true with the multiple cancers she had. She concludes that one’s worst fears come true if one keeps on and on thinking about something and hoping that that fear will not come to pass. Just like positive thoughts bring up more positivity, negative thoughts breed ill health is her contention. She is working on restoring her mind with positive outcomes.

Restoration is a process of healing. Why did we allow ourselves to go so far off from where we should be ? Why do we need healing and restoration ?