Taking stock

Once every so often one needs to quiet oneself. Tuck yourself in a solitude spot and reflect on where and who one is in one’s life.

This is something I sometimes do. Every few years, I take stock of my life. I am someone who always strive to improve my life. I also someone who plans for the future. I have dreams and goals I still want to achieve. Yes, even at my age, I have dreams. I know life can throw curve ball, so I usually have different plans, or pathways if you like, to reach my desired goal: Plan A, plan B, et cetera.

solitude

For the most part, I like who I am as a person. I am a nice guy. I try to treat others well and I would never intentionally hurt someone. I am not perfect, but I try to be a good man. I do strive to improve myself. I read a lot. I try to learn from my mistakes and I try to adhere to the motto “Be nice to others.”

I also wish to be a professional writer. To this end, I have been writing for a dozen years, or so. I have taken a grammar refresher course and other creative writing courses. I maintain this blog where I attempt to write often and I attempt to keep the topics as interesting as I am able; however, I write what I write. To be honest here, I write for me and I hope it reflects with my readers most of the time. I figured that if I worried about the subjects my readers would like, well, I would never write. There is no disrespect meant here dear reader, but it is the truth of the matter. This thing called, “Writing,” while enjoyable is a tricky craft. I don’t wish to get writer’s block, or to form some kind of phobia.

I hope I inspire you the reader. I tend to write about life. Although we all have different lives, we are all human beings travelling on our journey. We share some of the same dreams and desires, we share some of the same fears and hopes. None of us is perfect, but we can always strive to improve. I hope I have inspired you to strive to be the best one can be.
—Robert Confiant 19 November 2018

Little changes and lifetime habits

I was out with my partner last night to catch the play Beautiful: The Carole King Musical at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre. We walked, mainly uphill, from the SkyTrain station to the theatre (Something that nearly did me in – energy wise). This morning, I decided to do something about it.

Beautiful The Carole King Musical - June 2015 Playbill with Rainbow Pride Logo

For me, diets and dieting do not work. They never have. I lose weight for awhile and then slowly gain most, if not all, the weight back. I figured there has to be another way. I have decided to try a new way. It will be slower, but I think it could be more lasting. I haven’t gain weight, but I haven’t lost any either and this is imperative at this point in my life.

health-and-fitness

I am going to make a lifestyle change. I will start off small with little changes. Dependent on what study one reads, a habit can take anywhere from 66 days to 2541 days to become established. How much better would it be if one just made it a lifestyle change?

I have cut back on my drinking. As anyone who knows me knows, I love my beer. To be honest, I would have one or two a day after work and more if the day was stressful, and I would drink minimum a six pack on the weekends. All that changed this week. I haven’t had any. Frankly, it been a long time coming. Consciously or sub-consciously, I realized that my health was struggling; not so much the weight thing, but the walking part. I am out of shape. Last night, we the “Eureka” moment – the final nail in the coffin that I could no longer deny.

A few weeks ago, I switched to light beer and I cut back. I just decided one day that if I wanted to drink beer, then that is what I had to do. In-fact, I haven’t had one all week this week, so that is something. I don’t miss it.

The next phase will be more difficult, but I will need to do it. Incorporate more greens in my diet. I don’t mind fruit and some vegetables, but I really do not care for salads. My partner, unfortunately for me, feels the same about salads as I do. Sure, I eat them if I eat out at a restaurant sometimes, but if I buy the stuff and try to eat it at home, then most of it goes into the waste can. Salads are not the only difficult part. I need to get back into moving more. I am finding this difficult. My knees and hips are shot. I don’t notice it as much in the summer months, but in these fall and winter months. I am feeling more pain with my arthritis at this time of year. I have decided that since I cannot yet walk uphill without great difficulty. I can walk downhill okay. I may not start at a fast pace and I may not do so every day at first, but I can start.

Every morning, pretty much, I end up waiting 5 to 10 minutes for a shuttle bus to take me to the nearest SkyTrain station. This is the time that I could walk to the station. It may take me longer at first, but eventually I would be able to walk it that amount of time, so I will. I am promising myself that I will do so at least twice a week and then build up from there once it gets easier. It is not much, but it is definitely a start. At least, it is better than no walking.

Little changes.

—Robert Confiant 17 November 2018


1.      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Habit, Habit.

It is going to be one of those winters

I haven’t done much of what I should be doing I should be writing. I claim to be a writer, but I haven’t done much writing lately. I been doing a lot of YouTube and some reading (there is that at least – reading), so it hasn’t been a total waste of time.

VanRain

I am not too sure why I am in this rut, but I definitely in a lethargic mood. I don’t seem to want to do too much other than surf the net. Pathetic really when one thinks about the amount of time being unproductive. I can’t blame the work load either since before today I have been off for four days. Perhaps it’s because I still have a bit of congestion and I feel not a 100%. It still feels like an excuse though. I know I will go home and other than cook, I won’t do much else. Actually if truth be told, I just want to sleep. I think it’s the time change.

Last evening, time felt off by an hour off. I kept thinking that the clock was wrong. Every hour on the hour felt later than the clock was showing. I dislike that it gets darker earlier. Is not quite “Dark when you go to work, and dark when you go home from work,” but it is close.

I find the late fall and winter months very trying. We’ve been generally lucky with the weather thus far, but I know the rain season is near. I guess it could be worst. The weather and time change shouldn’t bother me, but I think this year might be the exception – these get to me every five years, or so – this year is that year.

I will get through it. I always manage. I just won’t be my “happy” self. I may be more of an isolationist and a little bluer. It happens. I have the SAD light at work. I think I will start using it; that will help me.

Here I am plodding onward.
—Robert Confiant 14 November 2018

I feel like crap

 

frustrationI feel like crap, but I went into work anyway. I figured its Friday, so I might as well drag my ass into work. This being shorthanded thing is getting tiresome. And, it looks like they won’t be hiring anytime soon (In the New Year maybe). Oh well, I took the first week off in January.

I plan on sleeping most of the day tomorrow to shake it off. It’s nothing serious. It’s just a touch of congestion. Terra will like it. She will end up sleeping with me on the bed rather than her usual haunts: her box, the footstool, or my other half’s computer chair.

I hope to feel up to working on another chapter. I am still trying to balance the reading and writing tasks with my everyday life. I’ve already beat my Goodreads goal of this year. I will have to boost my goal to 40 books next year, but I may reach that goal this year. If I do, then I will make it.my goal to read, or reread 52 books next year.

Other than these, not much is new. It’s the same old routine. I don’t have an exciting life. It’s pretty routine (Work, eat, sleep with reading, writing and some socializing thrown in).

Well, back to my reading. I am reading “This is Kind of an Epic Love Story,” by Kheryn Callender, so far, so good.
—Robert Confiant 2 November 2018

I’ve been quiet

Lounge

I’ve been quiet for want of a better word… On reflection though, perhaps the word ‘quiet’ sums things up rightly.

I did nothing this past weekend. I hadn’t felt like it. I just wanted to cocoon. Don’t get me wrong – I am not depressed. I just wanted to be alone. I am still in a reflective mood. The only thing making me leave the condo is work and work has been very trying this week with the work load picking up and the department being shorthanded (It always gets busy this time of year). So at the end of the work day, all I want to do is go home and have a beer.

I have been reading a lot. I should be writing, but my heart is not into it. Well, at least reading is sort of related with it being the other component of writing. This is where I find myself: Me wanting to hide out and chillaxing.

I guess some times we all need some alone time. I am off on vacation for two weeks starting next week. For you Americans, it is our Thanksgiving on Monday. I will cook the feast. It will kick off a much needed break.
—Robert Confiant 3 October 2018

The insidious nature of depression

I am in a good place right now, but a few friends are struggling. Depression is an insidious mental illness.

Mental health continuum-mobile

I say, “Insidious,” because, for those of us who don’t have chronic depression due to a chemical imbalance, it creeps up on you, or you go to bed and wake up depressed. For me this is not always apparent at first that I am depressed, it can take me up to a week sometimes before I realize that I am depressed. I isolate myself, I drink and eat more, I stop doing activities that I usually enjoy like reading or writing, I am tired all the time and just want to sleep.

We all get sad sometimes, so that is why I say, “It can take a while before I realize that I am depressed.” Depression is more that feeling sad; although, most people don’t know this. They tell you, “Get over it,” or “Snap out of it,” or the condescending, “Just think of being ‘happy’,” as if positive thinking alone is the magical cure. Now don’t get me wrong, I am not judging these people; they mean well. They just don’t fully understand what depression is.

My depressed states are rare and no longer intense as they once were. Before, my depression stemmed from a lack of self-confidence and a strong sense of hopelessness. I no longer feel this way.

My bouts of depression are a result of Seasonal Affect Disorder. I bought a lamp for this, which helps, but not completely. Fortunately, I have coping mechanisms that work to help me out of depression. I talk with someone (and not necessarily a professional), I go out and socialize (just small outings, nothing big), I control my drinking (alcohol is a depressant), and I try to keep positive (I usually do, but I try not to dwell on the fact that I am depressed).

I am not too sure why I chose this topic to write about. I think it was because I know is people who are currently struggling. I just wanted to share my experiences to help those who have never experienced depression to understand.

To those suffering right now know that you are loved. Please seek help if you require it. Virtual hugs.
—Robert Confiant 20 September 2018

A day in the life of

I am not quite awake yet. I think it’s “another coffee,” kind of day. I am commuting to work on public transit.

It’s coming on to the fall season. It is getting dark in the evenings and pitch black when the alarm goes off in the morning. It’s also cooler now. I took down the screen I taped up in the living-room to keep the cat from falling out while the window was open (the window opens outward with a gap of four inches) with nothing below it. I also placed candles and other knickknacks in front of the window to keep her away (It worked).

Fall, the season is different here in the Vancouver area. While some trees change colour and drop their leaves, many other trees remain green. It also rains in late Fall and Winter months, but the Farmer’s Almanac is calling for a colder winter across the continent, so it’s going to be a “wait and see,” kind of year. I don’t do well with snow. I cannot walk in the snow anymore, so I am hoping not.

I do walk better than I ever had thanks to my Dantrolene prescription. I tried exercising again, but then my hips, knees and back hurt. Even with just the cooler weather, I feel aches in my knees and hips. It’s a no win all around. Sometimes, I hate getting older. I wish they had known about the drug a lot sooner, then a least there might have been less impact damage to my hips and knees. Oh well, bothering to be done about it…

So, it’s just a bus ride into work. It’s the same old routine of going to work. This is what comes to mind. This is what I write. A bit boring I know. It’s just another ordinary day in the life of “me”.
—Robert Confiant 19 September 2018