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Wednesday, 31 October 2012

My inner fat chick is struggling to come out... Weight loss journey cont

"You are worth more than this (that), so act like it..." ~ The Biggest Loser. 

Those real true words have hit me smack, bang in the gut. It is time to stop eating crap. Yes, I am worth more than the slice of cake I just stuffed into my mouth, or the pralines and cream ice-cream I had yesterday. This is stuff I don't need or even miss - so why am I shovelling it down my throat?

I realise there's a fat girl inside of me just sneakily waiting to come out. She is totally tired of this 'trying to lose weight' thing. It just seems soooo long and never ending. Oh, please, she begs, please just let me go back to my old habits; let me eat lashings of yam pottage, acres of snowy rice, forkfuls of pasta, mouthfuls of puff-puff (an African doughnut like snack) and mountains of sweet soft white luscious hard -dough bread.

But but, I have come to realise that I honestly care a lot less about food than I thought before I began this weight-loss journey. My greatest craving these days is for cucumbers and tomatoes (crazy huh). I am eating silly unhealthy stuff, not because I crave the food, but because I am comfort eating. Comfort eating is my biggest issue, my greatest fight, the bug-bear that refuses to leave me or that I refuse to let go of.

My absolute favourite meal these days, is a dinner comprising 2 toasted bagels, 1 filled with a slice of ham and slices of tomatoes and cucumbers, (no mayo or any dressing), and the 2nd bagel, spread with olive oil spread (instead of butter) and honey. A side bowl of a cold whole cucumber (sliced up), and 2 tomatoes, and about 10 - 12 brazil nuts, a cup of green tea flavoured with apple and pear, and I am a very happy camper.

However, once I begin to go down the comfort eating route, I want carbs. Carbs, carbs, carbs, and loads of carbs! *sigh*

I have had so much going on around me - things have been pretty 'hairy' with work, my bank account's been laughing mockingly at me, my insomnia has been making itself pretty known, my car's packed up - ahhhhh, name it, it's all been happening all at once. So what does comfort eater mee do?? Yeah, you guess right - I turn straight to food. But those are excuses, right? I know what the issues are and food doesn't resolve any issues..... It just ultimately makes em worse!!

Arrrrrrrghhhhhhhhhh!!!!!! (That's me pulling out my hair! LOL)

It is time to stop this craziness. I know one of my biggest discouragements is because my weight refuses to go under 60kg. I want to be between 55 - 57kg. But the lowest I've hit is 61kg earlier this year. When I first hit that weight, after being extremely excited, I got discouraged because I couldn't seem to lose any weight after that.  I began to comfort-eat until I went back up to 67kg. I did lose those 6kg, but after life threw a ton of stuff at me, I began comfort eating again and was also so busy that I was eating a lot of take-out food (which we all know is usually cooked extremely unhealthily). Before you know it, the scales are currently saying 66kg. I am tired & fed-up. It's like getting to my goal weight will never ever happen.

I need to keep reminding myself that going down from 96kg to 61 - 67kgs is great and I have to stop beating myself up over the head for not being able to get down to 55kg - 57kg (yet).

Dear LORD, help me get my head straight. I need YOU so much.

Ahhhhhh well, I am trying to get myself centred by pasting up and looking at a few pics - The first two pics are of me in July and August 2012 this year (A coupla months back). The 3rd, 4th and 5th pics are me at my very heaviest back in April 2009.

Like I keep reminding myself, this weight-loss journey is a marathon and not a sprint. I am staying on this journey, this race, for the long-term, no matter how times I might slip, stumble or fall. 


   July 2012 (On my way to Ikea - 62kg or 136.4kg)

August 2012 (Summer Barbeque - 62kg or 136.4kg)


April 2009 (Dressed for brother's wedding - 211.2lbs or 96kg)  (side view of the same pic) 

                        April 2009 (Thought I looked okay on the day until I saw this pic - wanted to cry)




Friday, 26 October 2012


We all wear masks (sometimes). 

We wear different masks with different people, and at different times to hide or camouflage the parts of ourselves we believe are inadequate or ugly. Sometimes mask-wearing is a defence mechanism, sometimes it is a social mechanism. Some masks have become such a part of us, we are no longer even aware when that particular mask is donned or what our 'true face' looks like.

Some of us wear masks of happiness while being desperately unhappy or miserable; we wear masks of courage while being deathly afraid; don masks of outgoing vibrancy while being painfully shy; sometimes masks of pride to hide the chip on the shoulder; some yank on masks of niceness to hide the nastiness lurking beneath. 

Stroll through that mental mask boutique that has set up store in your mind, and you'll see there are a 1001 different masks, all waiting to be chosen and donned for the right occasion, for anyone who chooses to hide their real self behind em.

However, what is truly sad is when we still continue to hide behind our masks with those we love. We are terrified that if they see how ugly and flawed we are (or we think we are), they'll stop loving us or respecting us. However, the truth that fear stops us recognising, is that those who really love us, see us exactly as we are but have chosen to love us all the same. It is only when we finally screw up enough courage to drop all the mask(s) in their presence, that we will really begin to see ourselves & learn to work on our flaws. Looking at ourselves through eyes of love helps us see the true beauty we possess that we need to embrace.

Mask-wearing is a choice. It is up to us to begin to discard the masks and see our true selves.

Drop your mask(s) today.


Coming Home

I've been listening to P Diddy's 'Coming Home' again (tis one of my top 100 songs) and it's made me reflect on what 'home' means - (well, to me at least).

Home is where the heart is. Home is where the love is. Home is where you are always accepted. Home is where you are always celebrated. Home is where your successes are lauded and your failures are soothed. Home is where you are a mega-star just because you are you. Home is where you are totally special not because of what you do, or how much you earn, or what you contribute - but simply because you are seen as supa-dupa special. Home is where you are constantly forgiven. Home is where you are not afraid to argue because it won't lead to a break-up. Home is where you never fight dirty - ever. Home is where you hate arguing. Home is where you are praised, encouraged, lifted-up and challenged to reach for greater heights. Home is where you don't have to talk, don't have to be funny, don't have to entertain, don't have to wear a mask - home is where you can be the real you and still be loved and understood.

Home is where you get a smile just for waking up in the morning, a hug just because you are so wanted, and a passionate kiss just because you are always sexy. Home is where you never fear you'll hear the heart-breaking words 'I don't love you anymore'. Home is where your soul is at rest, where you find and can draw from a never-ending well of peace.

Home is that special place in the heart of another person who loves you totally, passionately, deeply.

You cannot 'try' to be somebody's home. You cannot force or push anyone into making you their home. You are either home or you are not. All you can do, when you've found your 'home', is make it a beautiful wonderful home for the one who has chosen to make you their home in return.

'Coming Home' is one of the best things ever. So I say, welcome home.

And again I say, welcome home...


Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Can Men and Women be 'Just Friends' ?

Read this article earlier. Whatcha think? Can men and women really and truly be 'just friends'? Or is one person in the friendship always left wanting more? Anyone have any thoughts?? ;-)

By Adrian F. Ward | Scientific American – Tue, Oct 23, 2012

Can heterosexual men and women ever be “just friends”? Few other questions have provoked debates as intense, family dinners as awkward, literature as lurid, or movies as memorable. Still, the question remains unanswered. Daily experience suggests that non-romantic friendships between males and females are not only possible, but common—men and women live, work, and play side-by-side, and generally seem to be able to avoid spontaneously sleeping together. However, the possibility remains that this apparently platonic coexistence is merely a façade, an elaborate dance covering up countless sexual impulses bubbling just beneath the surface.
New research suggests that there may be some truth to this possibility—that we may think we’re capable of being “just friends” with members of the opposite sex, but the opportunity (or perceived opportunity) for “romance” is often lurking just around the corner, waiting to pounce at the most inopportune moment.
In order to investigate the viability of truly platonic opposite-sex friendships—a topic that has been explored more on the silver screen than in the science lab—researchers brought 88 pairs of undergraduate opposite-sex friends into…a science lab.  Privacy was paramount—for example, imagine the fallout if two friends learned that one—and only one—had unspoken romantic feelings for the other throughout their relationship.  In order to ensure honest responses, the researchers not only followed standard protocols regarding anonymity and confidentiality, but also required both friends to agree—verbally, and in front of each other—to refrain from discussing the study, even after they had left the testing facility. These friendship pairs were then separated, and each member of each pair was asked a series of questions related to his or her romantic feelings (or lack thereof) toward the friend with whom they were taking the study.
The results suggest large gender differences in how men and women experience opposite-sex friendships. Men were much more attracted to their female friends than vice versa. Men were also more likely than women to think that their opposite-sex friends were attracted to them—a clearly misguided belief. In fact, men’s estimates of how attractive they were to their female friends had virtually nothing to do with how these women actually felt, and almost everything to do with how the men themselves felt—basically, males assumed that any romantic attraction they experienced was mutual, and were blind to the actual level of romantic interest felt by their female friends. Women, too, were blind to the mindset of their opposite-sex friends; because females generally were not attracted to their male friends, they assumed that this lack of attraction was mutual. As a result, men consistently overestimated the level of attraction felt by their female friends and women consistentlyunderestimated the level of attraction felt by their male friends.
Men were also more willing to act on this mistakenly perceived mutual attraction. Both men and women were equally attracted to romantically involved opposite-sex friends and those who were single; “hot” friends were hot and “not” friends were not, regardless of their relationship status.  However, men and women differed in the extent to which they saw attached friends as potential romantic partners.  Although men were equally as likely to desire “romantic dates” with “taken” friends as with single ones, women were sensitive to their male friends’ relationship status and uninterested in pursuing those who were already involved with someone else.
These results suggest that men, relative to women, have a particularly hard time being “just friends.” What makes these results particularly interesting is that they were found within particularfriendships (remember, each participant was only asked about the specific, platonic, friend with whom they entered the lab). This is not just a bit of confirmation for stereotypes about sex-hungry males and naïve females; it is direct proof that two people can experience the exact same relationship in radically different ways. Men seem to see myriad opportunities for romance in their supposedly platonic opposite-sex friendships. The women in these friendships, however, seem to have a completely different orientation—one that is actually platonic.
To the outside observer, it seems clear that these vastly different views about the potential for romance in opposite-sex friendships could cause serious complications—and people within opposite-sex relationships agree. In a follow-up study, 249 adults (many of whom were married) were asked to list the positive and negative aspects of being friends with a specific member of the opposite sex. Variables related to romantic attraction (e.g., “our relationship could lead to romantic feelings”) were five times more likely to be listed as negative aspects of the friendship than as positive ones. However, the differences between men and women appeared here as well. Males were significantly more likely than females to list romantic attraction as a benefit of opposite-sex friendships, and this discrepancy increased as men aged—males on the younger end of the spectrum were four times more likely than females to report romantic attraction as a benefit of opposite-sex friendships, whereas those on the older end of the spectrum were ten times more likely to do the same.
Taken together, these studies suggest that men and women have vastly different views of what it means to be “just friends”—and that these differing views have the potential to lead to trouble. Although women seem to be genuine in their belief that opposite-sex friendships are platonic, men seem unable to turn off their desire for something more. And even though both genders agree overall that attraction between platonic friends is more negative than positive, males are less likely than females to hold this view.
So, can men and women be “just friends?” If we all thought like women, almost certainly.  But if we all thought like men, we’d probably be facing a serious overpopulation crisis.
Are you a scientist who specializes in neuroscience, cognitive science, or psychology? And have you read a recent peer-reviewed paper that you would like to write about? Please send suggestions to Mind Matters editor Gareth Cook, a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist at the Boston Globe. He can be reached at garethideas AT or Twitter @garethideas.
Follow Scientific American on Twitter @SciAm and @SciamBlogs. Visit for the latest in science, health and technology news.
© 2012 All rights reserved.

A lil peek within - Runaway

Just a few thoughts and songs sloshing about in my head....

“Today we say goodbye to everything that was familiar, to everything that was comfortable. We are moving on. But just because we are leaving and it hurts (doesn't mean it's over). There are some people who are so much a part of us, they’ll be with us no matter what. They are our solid ground. Our North Star. And the small clear voices in our hearts that will be with us, always” ~ Castle.

"Home is the place you return to after being battered and bruised. Home is the welcome you cannot get anywhere else. Home is where you are always loved. Tis time to return home..." ~ Bucky

Sooooo, for some of the songs slipping & sliding about:

Andrew Belle - In My Veins 

Totally love this. It captures the way another person can sink so deeply into you and become such a part of your existence, it is almost impossible to yank 'em out. "Oh, you’re in my veins... And I cannot get you out... Everything will change, nothing goes as planned... Everything will break. People say goodbye in their own special way... Nothing stays the same..."

Take That - Patience

This is just so real and probably speaks/has spoken to everyone at one time or the other. Who hasn't been here; 'I can love you but just give me a lil time to get over my past. So, will you please kindly just have a lil patience .... *giggle*. "I know you wanna be my salvation... The one that I can always depend... It's complicated but understand me... Just try and have a little patience..."

Slow Moving Millie - Please, Please, Please, Let Me Get What I Want 

I love this song - it gripped me my heart the very first time I heard it but it makes me cry. It is just so plantive and so melancholy. "So, for once in my life, let me get what I want. Lord knows it would be the first time..."

Fergie featuring Sean Kingston - Big Girls Don't Cry remix

Sean Kingston takes a pedestrian song from Fergie and lifts it to an interesting level - So is it true that big girls don't cry??? *wry smile*

Sixpence None The Richer - Don't Dream It's Over

Always loved this song. "You'll never see the end of the road while you're travelling with me ... Now I'm walking again to the beat of a drum and I'm counting the steps to the door of your heart ..." Such beautiful words...

The Corrs - Runaway

One of my favourite songs ever. It resonates with me on so many levels - "Say it's true, there's nothing like me and you,  Not alone, tell me you feel it too,  And I would runaway with you. Cause I'm never gonna stop falling in love with you...". The song and I have a cute history - first the song spoke 'love', then 'pain', but now tis a slow careful 'beginning'... ;-) 

Sixpence None The Richer - Kiss Me

This song always makes me smile. It's so cute and sweet and innocent. It speaks to me of that very first kiss and love at its most innocent... "Oh, kiss me beneath the milky twilight... Lead me out on the moonlit floor... Lift you open hand... Strike up the band, and make the fireflies dance..."

Adele - Promise This

Adele turned this into an awesome song. "So empty... In the space between... And you came in... Turned the lights on... Spread your wings, cover me...Though I'm walking through the shadows... You are with me... And you comfort me... Promise this, if I die before I wake up..." A promise can be for a day, a lifetime, a long forever or an endless eternity ... 

So that is it - my head, my thoughts, a lil peek within. xx

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

The eye of the storm

I love driving.

When I passed my driving test, conscious that I had no-one to ask questions of or drive around with, I took the 'Pass Plus' - a few extra optional lessons taking a new driver through 'advanced' driving conditions. Soooooo, motorway driving, night time driving and driving in the rain are conditions that are covered. All these are however not meant to be covered on the same day. 
The 3rd of the 6 scheduled lessons covers motorway driving. 

Sooooo, the day for the 3rd lesson arrives bright and sunny and I am excited at the thought of being on a motorway. Driving with instructor unto 50mph motorway, I am fine until the road speed limit increases to 70mph. Okay, still fine with this, I move up to the new speed limit, then huge trucks begin whizzing by and the force makes the car rock. Gripping the steering wheel, I try to relax, tell my heart to stop racing when someone cuts across me, and I manage not to cuss my instructor when he motions me out of the 'slow' lane, into the middle lane! I still don't cuss him out when he motions me to overtake another car. A few miles of this, I actually stop flinching when trucks shoot by, begin to smile smugly thinking I am getting the hang of this, when suddenly the heavens open and heavy rain begins to pelt down.

Now, I can barely see 5 metres in front of me, trucks are still zooming past doing 80mph, and I am convinced 'I am coming home, coming home. Tell the Lord I'm coming home'. (Apologies to P Diddy for mangling his words).. Despite every nerve screaming otherwise, I am able (barely!) to stop myself swerving off the road, heading for the hard shoulder and turning off the engine and having an emotional breakdown! Creeping forward, trying to peer through the rain obscuring the windscreen, and the wipers which cannot keep up, reminding GOD desperately 'dat I get pikin for house', I attempt to calm down. But it gets worse! The rain becomes a storm! Thunder rumbles, lightning flashes, rain sleets down, and I am barely stopping myself SCREAMING!!

Then in typical UK fashion, it becomes pitch dark! A thunderstorm, heavy rain, a windscreen I cannot see out of, the noise of the wipers driving me crazy, a motorway full of impatient cars and now thick darkness??? This was more than a baptism of fire!

When we finally got my shaky, sweat-laden self back home after this waking nightmare, my instructor said nonchalantly, 'That went well and guess what? We also covered night-time driving and driving in adverse weather conditions. Okay next lesson, we'll do driving down narrow country roads.' I could have killed him on the spot!

A week after this stormy baptism, I found myself having to go to Gatwick to pick someone up. So there I am on the motorway by myself less than 2 weeks after passing my main driving test. (The Pass Plus is not a driving test). 5.30am in the morning, it was dark, raining, and extremely foggy, there were horrible road works, I could barely see 5 metres ahead, heavy trucks were whizzing by me, my daft car kept jerking to the left, I didn't know how to get there and was attempting to navigate my way with a map, but despite these less than ideal conditions, my heart was totally at peace. Fear was gone.

What that horrible 'Pass Plus' day did for me was it made me 'fearless' on the road. I still don't like particularly like driving in heavy rain or snow but it doesn't scare me in anyway. However, I do love driving very very much (I can't park well to save my life but that's a different story!! LOL). As for motorways? I love em and the ability to drive very fast on them! And I totally adore night time driving. To relax, I'll go for a long drive at night - whizzing down a dark motorway, air-conditioner blowing, music pumping, is a feeling of total happiness!

Sometimes, GOD will put us (or allow us to go) through testing trying conditions to make us stronger. During the period we are going through the storm, our teeth chatter, our knuckles whiten, and our hearts race. We see death and disaster around every corner - however, there's one thing to remember. The instructor is sitting right by you, ready to take over if you run into trouble or conditions you cannot cope with. And once you've come through that test and conquered that storm, that situation ceases to faze you. You'll fearlessly stride through similar conditions later. Faith has arisen and grown, GOD is trusted more. 


Saturday, 13 October 2012

Bob Marley - True love

A poet, a philosopher, arguably the greatest reggae artist ever, I smiled when I came across this write-up on 'True love' by Bob Marley. I love and agree with every word. Now I know again why his 'Is this love that I'm feeling' is in my top 20 songs....

Hope y'all enjoy the words of the philosopher musical genius... xx  


“Only once in your life, I truly believe, you find someone who can completely turn your world around. You tell them things that you’ve never shared with another soul and they absorb everything you say and actually want to hear more. You share hopes for the future, dreams that will never come true, goals that were never achieved and the many disappointments life has thrown at you. When something wonderful happens, you can’t wait to tell them about it, knowing they will share in your excitement. They are not embarrassed to cry with you when you are hurting or laugh with you when you make a fool of yourself. Never do they hurt your feelings or make you feel like you are not good enough, but rather they build you up and show you the things about yourself that make you special and even beautiful. 

There is never any pressure, jealousy or competition but only a quiet calmness when they are around. You can be yourself and not worry about what they will think of you because they love you for who you are. The things that seem insignificant to most people such as a note, song or walk become invaluable treasures kept safe in your heart to cherish forever. Memories of your childhood come back and are so clear and vivid it’s like being young again. Colours seem brighter and more brilliant. Laughter seems part of daily life where before it was infrequent or didn’t exist at all. A phone call or two during the day helps to get you through a long day’s work and always brings a smile to your face. In their presence, there’s no need for continuous conversation, but you find you’re quite content in just having them nearby. Things that never interested you before become fascinating because you know they are important to this person who is so special to you. 

You think of this person on every occasion and in everything you do. Simple things bring them to mind like a pale blue sky, gentle wind or even a storm cloud on the horizon. You open your heart knowing that there’s a chance it may be broken one day and in opening your heart, you experience a love and joy that you never dreamed possible. You find that being vulnerable is the only way to allow your heart to feel true pleasure that’s so real it scares you. You find strength in knowing you have a true friend and possibly a soul mate who will remain loyal to the end. Life seems completely different, exciting and worthwhile. Your only hope and security is in knowing that they are a part of your life.”