The Dueling Dutch Woman

The Adventures of a Middle Aged Dutch Woman

Archive for walks

An intruder…

I think I detect the presence of an intruder. One I’m not happy with at all. I think it is the ‘Black Dog’ come to make my life a little more miserable. I noticed him first yesterday afternoon when I tried to write a post and found that I couldn’t do it. Try as I might. After that unsuccessful attempt, I walked my own dog and I felt the “Black Dog’ on my heels, following me wherever I went.

I tried to ignore him at first, but realized that was futile and that is was best to recognize his presence. It’s best to face him head on and to not furtively try to escape him. With that realization came a feeling of relief because I felt that I knew my enemy and that I was familiar with the situation. I know what to do. I’ve handled this before.

I feel a huge amount of tiredness and I have an ‘oh, I don’t care attitude,’  but I mustn’t let that get the overhand, of course. I will mollycoddle myself to some extent and be extra kind to myself and go out of my way to do extra nice things that will make me feel good. Everything does seem an effort, though, and I am going to have a hard time fulfilling some of my duties.

I crave chocolate sandwiches and wish I had some real chocolate sprinkles in the cupboard. I have bread in the freezer. That’s something I ought not to do, however. It would be foolish to give into that craving, no matter how comforting it would be. I guess that’s what I want, real comforting food.

What I want more than anything is to be safe and that means being inside the apartment and not going anywhere. It also means that I want to sleep a lot, but that’s not possible because after a while you’ve slept all you can. There’s only a certain amount of that you can do. I do still like being up in the middle of the night, although it’s not the same cheerful experience that is usually is. It’s still of some comfort to me, though.

But I refuse to dwell only on the negative and must find something positive to write about.

Yesterday it actually rained. Several times the heavens opened up and the rain came falling straight down from them. Each time I thought I would have to start building an ark and then just as suddenly the rain stopped and the sun came out again.

Well, I’m sorry, that’s just about as positive as I can get right now. I keep having visions of different kinds of foods in my head that are all unobtainable to me.  I guess that when I get depressed, I think about food a lot.  I not only think about it, I want to eat it too. What I need now is a car and a 24 hour supermarket.

I just ate a bowl of vanilla pudding and that took care of the worst cravings.  My stomach is full now.

I don’t seem to be boiling over with enthusiasm. Everything is on the back burner. I would love to be more lively and a little bit more animated. Instead I feel like a big dull lump. I’m just about as unmovable.

I suppose I will give this another try tomorrow and see how I feel then. Maybe a good night’s rest will help.






Stalking the night…

The first thing I did when I got up tonight, was make myself a wonderful pot of freshly brewed coffee instead of drinking that old heated up in the microwave stuff. That was just about the kindest thing I could have done for myself. I’m enjoying a cup of it now and very nice it tastes too. I thought, why short change myself with bad tasting coffee when with a little more effort I can have the real thing? Sometimes I forget to treat myself with the kindness I deserve. That everybody deserves, so I hope you all treat yourselves well at every opportunity.

When I went on the bathroom scale yesterday morning, I discovered that I had lost another kilo. This leaves me 3.5 kilos short of my latest goal. I’ve already reached two goals and this is my third one. I may set a new goal after I reach this one, it depends on how easily I lose the weight. No doubt I will lose more weight quickly when I cut down on my medicines soon. This particular one is well known for weight gain, so I’m expecting to lose weight as I decrease it. That’s not the reason why I’m cutting down, but it’s a nice benefit of it.

I’m becoming my old skinny self again, someone I haven’t been in a number of years. It’s a great relief to be getting my old body back. Well, of course, it’s been ravaged by time and middle age. It’s not quite the body I used to have. I will need to have some surgery done on my stomach to get rid of excess skin. That’s where most of the weight gain was. I had an apple shape. All of me is skinny now except not quite there in that area.

I had a nice day yesterday, although I didn’t do anything special. I walked the dog a number of times and watched sports on television. I’m becoming a real sports addict and watch a number of them. I even watch field hockey, which I used to think was boring. I do enjoy the tennis at Roland Garros and can watch it for hours if they are good matches. I like to watch Federer play. He’s poetry in motion.

I didn’t get around to reading my book as the animals decided to take up a lot of my time every moment that I sat down in my armchair. There was always one climbing on my lap wanting to be petted. I suppose yesterday was animal bonding day. That’s what Sundays must be for. Every time I gave them a kind look, it was reason for them to come get attention from me.

We all did take a nap in the afternoon and I woke up very groggy and had to be resuscitated with coffee and cigarettes and then a refreshing walk with Tyke, followed by dinner and lots of cold milk for my never ending thirst. I had my pajamas and bathrobe on before I remembered to take out the trash. I watched a quiz show on television and got a lot of the answers right and felt superior. It’s probably different when you actually stand there in front of the cameras and have to give the answers.

I’m not especially looking forward to today. The personal helper and the domestic help will be here. I’m not too thrilled about it. It will be nice to have a clean apartment, but I’m not looking forward to the company. The personal helper wants to micro manage me to pieces and I have to put a halt to it. I will do that today. The domestic help wants to sit and visit too much and I will have to put an end to that also. I do want to be in charge of my own life and my own day and time.

Tomorrow will be a much better day. My time will be my own and I have no appointments, except that the Exfactor is going to be here to do the groceries. You have no idea how much I appreciate my freedom. I need lots of breathing space and room to move around in. Other people can make me feel trapped, especially if I feel they need to be entertained and amused and kept busy.

I’ve got to go back to bed now and get a couple of hours more sleep before the personal helper gets here. I do want to be coherent before she shows up, so I have to set my alarm clock.

I hope you’ll all have a nice day.



>I say the glass is half full, darn it…


After having been in a pessimistic and foul mood for more than 24 hours, I decided yesterday afternoon to take matters into my own hands and to will myself to be optimistic and good natured again. I couldn’t stand the mood I was in and I could see that it was only hurting me and hindering my process at becoming a healthy and sane woman. That’s not what I wanted out of life. I didn’t want to be bitter and  p*ssed off angry. It just didn’t become me and I felt highly uncomfortable with it.
I decided to make my peace with my psychiatrist (the person I was most angry with) and to find out exactly how he wanted me to use the new sleeping pills along with the old ones. I wrote him a long and friendly email asking that question for one and soon afterwards I got an answer from him. He explained how he wanted me to use the sleeping pills and it was all very clear to me down the the minutest detail and it sounded reasonable to me. I never had understood that and had not gotten it clear from the beginning. I had been too busy being angry and p*ssed off.
It’s a policy that I can live with and I’ve agreed to give it an honest try, so last night I took the new sleeping pills along with the old ones and had a decent night’s sleep. I really slept until I was done sleeping and I made sure of that by staying in bed as long as possible. I’m training myself to be a good sleeper. That’s the whole purpose behind this exercise. Anyway…
I watched a very good episode of Inspector Linley last night. It was the one in which the new Helen died, which I thought  was incredibly sad because I liked her and it came so unexpected. I liked her much better than the old Helen and thought she was a real improvement. I had envisioned her being part of the series for a long time.
Now that I’m up and running, I’m going to take the dog for a long walk this morning. He does so enjoy them and it seems to take the rambunctiousness out of him. He is a young dog, after all, and needs his diversions. There’s nothing better to him than exploring new territory and peeing against new trees and bushes. Or at least, seldom used trees and bushes. It’s going to be another bright and beautiful day today and, although it’s still cold outside now, it will be nice to be out there. I’ll have to wear my scarf, though.
I’m expecting the Exfactor for coffee. He did the groceries earlier this week, bless his heart. I was almost out of everything, especially the milk. It’s sad to look in the refrigerator at the end of a week after the shopping has been done. There’s almost nothing in there and the cupboards are bare too. The Exfactor can only carry a week’s worth of groceries on the bike and even that takes a lot of juggling and careful packing away in the bags. And well inflated tires for all the weight he carries. Which reminds me that I have to pump up my rear tire, it’s a little low. I’m a star at pumping up tires, right!
I have to do chores today. I didn’t do a thing yesterday, recuperating as I was from my bad mood. There’s always some reason not to get your act together. 
Have a good day.

>A reason for being late…


I emailed my psychiatrist yesterday and told him that the new sleeping pills had not worked at all. That, as a matter of fact, I had been up for nights without any sleep at all, and that I had gone back to using my old sleeping pills which allowed me some sleep anyway. 
He called me in the afternoon and said that he had never heard of these pills not working at all and that the cause had to be  that I had stopped using my old sleeping pills so abruptly. He suggested that I try using my old sleeping pills along with the new sleeping pills last night and that he would call me today to see what had happened. If I had slept at all. 
My old sleeping pills are the kind that help you fall asleep, but don’t keep you asleep, that’s why I always woke up after a few hours. The new sleeping pills are really to help you sleep through the whole night. So last night I took them both not expecting very much.
Much to my surprise I slept almost nine hours. I couldn’t believe my luck. That’s the longest I have slept in I don’t know how long. It’s been forever. I don’t even remember when the last time was that I slept such a long time. Needless to say, I felt great. I was only a little bit groggy when I got up and one cup of coffee took care of that.
Now I only wish to sleep like this every night and I hope it is possible. I hope my psychiatrist lets me use this combination of pills always. 
I look forward to the day now, knowing that I won’t have to go back to bed to get the sleep that I didn’t get during the night. I woke up at a civilized hour. I went to bed early last night because I had not gotten enough sleep the night before. All day yesterday I didn’t take a nap. This normally would have messed up my sleep schedule something awful, but now I’ve had the proper amount of sleep and I can plan a normal day. 
I have to go see my SPN this morning and after that the Exfactor will be here to do the groceries. I’ve already started a grocery list as I thought of items I absolutely needed and should not forget. They are not things I get every week so they are not things I automatically think of when I sit down to make a list when the Exfactor is here. Thank goodness there’s a white board in the kitchen to help me remember. It does pay to be a little bit organized. 
I wasn’t planning on seeing my SPN this week, but made a last minute appointment anyway with the way things were going. My mood was all over the place and I was in danger of becoming quite hypo-manic. As it is I did some dumb things anyway, but more about that some other time. When I’m not embarrassed. 
I will get the show on the road and take Tyke for a walk. The sky is blue and the sun is shining, but it’s still quite cold outside. It’s been freezing last night. 
Have a happy day.

>No rest for me…


I was already in bed asleep, but then a dog started to bark nearby and every time it barked, Tyke answered it. I can’t have that, of course, and I tried to get Tyke to stop barking, but to no avail. He would only stop if I got up.
So now I’m sitting here with my sleepy head guarding over Tyke who has gone to sleep by my feet. Every once in a while he lifts his head very alertly and listens for the barking dog. He tries to bark, but I stop him. Imagine if I was trying to be asleep in bed right now. It would be a disaster. 
To try and stay awake, I have made some coffee, but I really don’t want to be awake right now. I’m awake under protest.  All because of that darn dog. I am yawning and the tears are rolling down my cheeks, but the coffee ought to take care of that quickly. 
I may as well make the best of it and make myself comfortable and write something good. Or at least make an attempt to. I can’t guarantee that I’ll be able to in this state, although the coffee is perking me up a bit. 
I had a very uninteresting day and spent a lot of it sleeping. I did walk Tyke a couple of times and even made it to the tobacco shop where I also bought a chocolate bar. I thought it was about time that I had something sinful. The chocolate made me feel very full and very good. I know there’s a natural feel good chemical in it that works especially well for women. That’s why women have such a thing for chocolates. I could eat a whole box of bonbons right now and it’s a good thing that I don’t have one handy. 
The tobacco shop had been closed the last time the Exfactor had gone grocery shopping, so he had bought me an inferior pack of tobacco at the supermarket. I made do with it, but it wasn’t the same as smoking my regular tobacco. Today I bought two packs of it and made cigarettes with it and boy, was that ever a different experience. I didn’t realize that I liked my regular tobacco so much. The other cigarettes were like inhaling air in comparison. They took care of my nicotine need, but that was about it. The cigarettes I have now are like smoking Gauloises as compared to Marlboro’s. They pack a real punch. I mean, if you’re going to smoke at all… I never understood those women that smoke menthol cigarettes called Belinda. 
I took a nap in the afternoon as has become a habit now and I take it in my bed because that’s much more comfortable than the sofa. Tyke can get on the bed with me much easier than he can get on the sofa. I also don’t wake up with a sore knee which is still bothering me if I don’t have it in the right position. I’ve found out that lying on my back is the best way to sleep and if I fall asleep like that, I wake up like that too. I don’t move around much in my sleep. It’s the kindest way to lie down for my knee because I have both my legs stretched. There’s still room for Tyke to lie down too. 
I wasn’t too depressed today, but that may have been because it was Saturday and a day of no stress. The same will count for tomorrow. The only things I have to do tomorrow is change my bed and do the dishes. Oh yes, and put out the trash. I forgot to do that last week because the trash men came here on Saturday instead of Monday because of the holidays. That had escaped my attention. 
I do like the weekends and would like for them to last longer like they did a week ago. The only drawback is that the stores are closed for such a long time. The cafes are open and if you wanted to go downtown and sit on a terrace in the nice weather, it would be a fun way to spend the time. Let’s face it, though, chances are that I will not do that because I will find excuses not to go. It will be too involved and unless somebody physically comes and gets me, I won’t go. I find the bike ride down there too bothersome. I’m glad I make it to my SPN’s office. 
That dog is still barking and I still can’t go back to bed. I’m wide awake now and not about to go anywhere. I will have to find ways to amuse myself. Tyke is very alert and looking around the window shade. I think he’s trying to figure out where that dog is. He’s looking into the dark night. 
I’ve got to find some other things to do now. I think I’ve made this epistle long enough. I’ve got to drink a tall glass of lemonade to quench my thirst and put ice cubes in it to make it extra cold. I wish my refrigerator had a built in ice cube maker, but that is too much of a luxury. It wouldn’t fit in my kitchen. I’m so deprived of luxuries. I don’t take anything for granted. 
Have a good night.

>The sense of medicines…


Because I had not been feeling my old self lately, I asked my psychiatrist today if I could increase my anti-depressants. I told him the reasons why and he said it was okay with him if I felt that I couldn’t wait a few days to see if it would improve. I thought about that, but realized that I didn’t want to continue feeling the way I was. I felt like I was fighting an uphill battle and that I was going down hill.

What bothered me especially was the over analyzing of my thoughts that I was doing continuously and still want to do, although now that I realize that I’m depressed, I try not to do this anymore. I don’t give it the legitimacy that it had before. I was picking every word and deed and thought apart until nothing was left whole and unexamined, but because I looked at it through dark and negative  colored glasses, nothing looked right and I couldn’t get a clear picture. 

Like I said, I try not to over analyze my thoughts anymore and I’m waiting for the medication to do its job. I have faith in it, just like I believe in not using it when it’s not necessary. At the same time, I’m not going to take myself so seriously. I’m going to leave my thoughts alone and not pick them apart. I will treat myself like an ailing person who has to get better.

That doesn’t mean I’m out of the woods yet. I feel major discomfort creeping up on me as I write this. My mood is morose. I have deep and dark thoughts and unpleasant memories popping up their head.  Scenarios that are unwanted and uncalled for enter my head and are played out and they are painful. They make my toes curl in my boots. It’s best to keep myself occupied.

One way I did that today was to watch the continuous news about the devastation in Japan from the earthquake and the tsunami. I guess my troubles pale in the face of that. It’s always good to keep a sane perspective on things, though you must not neglect your own problems because other people in the world are having worse ones.  You’d never get around to taking care of yourself that way.

I have to walk Tyke, he is waiting impatiently. He has just eaten his dinner.

Have a good night.


>What a life…


The first thing that I do when I wake up in the morning, is turn on the computer. God forbid that I should be alone with my own thoughts which this morning are especially foul. But since everything is temporary, I have to assume that these will also improve and that I will be feeling right as rain in no time at all. To that end, I have just taken my medicines and am drinking my second cup of coffee. If they are going to help at all, I should see improvement in a short amount of time.
It’s terrible to wake up in a bad mood. To feel so grumpy that you don’t even like yourself anymore. That you are your own worst enemy. When you feel like pummeling yourself in the head and going back to bed to crawl under the covers and not come out again. Of course, you know a situation like that can’t go on and that you need to change it, but it has to be within your means. You have to have the methods to do something about it. I have coffee and medicines, but what does an ordinary person have? A cup of tea and lots of goodwill? 
I do have goodwill too, I guess. I have to reach inside myself and pull it out and apply it to myself because there’s nobody else around to do it. It’s a one woman operation, although I guess when you’re surrounded by other people it still comes down to you. You still have to rescue yourself from your own negative thoughts, even if you are showered with kindness and love. Unless you believe you deserve them, they’re not going to do you much good. Or does a little bit of kindness go a long way? We are social animals, after all, and get our strokes from other people.
Thank goodness that today is Friday again. The last day of the workweek and the beginning of the weekend. The domestic help will finally be here again after quite an absence because of the holidays and there is much work for her to do. I will have to do the preparatory chores before she gets here, but after she leaves it will properly be the weekend and I can celebrate that. Why is that such a big deal to me? I should be used to it by now. Every weekend is a breather in the week. A big time out.
I will start the day by taking Tyke out for a walk. The fresh air will do wonders. It ought to wake me up like nothing else will, although I wish it was a walk along a beach by the sea. Don’t you wish you could pick your scenery? 
Have a good day.