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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Eating Through Travel, Trauma, Tragedy and Triumph Part Three

Hello little lovely's!

It was mid-March and I returned from Grande Prairie to Calgary 10 pounds heavier then I was when I left, but still 25 pounds lighter than I was when I started my dietary rehab back in November of 2011.  There I was -  trying to figure out how I could manage to fullfill my upcoming obligations while travelling and trying to maintain my girlish figure. Okay, okay. Not girlish, at least not yet. Little did I know...

...that travelling long distance, providing physical and emotional support to relatives, attending conventions, weddings and an unexpected funeral all within six weeks of one another, were not conducive to my rehabilitation from the demon drug, food. And on top of it all, I had allotted myself one last venture in an attempt to dump my bridal inventory before I set it all afire with one final lash of my tongue; all at least 37 paces from my product as I didn't want my eyebrows blown off from the possible raging inferno of tulle and sequins. (I'm laughing inside).

I spent a month planning my routes and calculating my time to ensure  a way out to assist Jan during her surgery, as I had the same operation three years earlier and didn't have the help I needed. I injured myself badly and wasn't about to let that happen to anyone else. I wasn't trying to play the heroine, I just refused to take no for an answer. So with the help of my friends who were to stay in my apartment while I was gone, I finalized my departure date for Victoria, BC. April 27.

After driving 18 hours from Calgary to Victoria, I was physically spent. That was not a worry or problem to me because I was "home" again and could enjoy a rest. Jan was in good spirits since returning from Mexico where she received alternative treatment for her cancer. She still required surgery and I was there to assist her through the recovery process.

My dietary success while there was less than moderate, and that's a stretch - in my pants!!! Despite eating a nearly organic diet, I continued to stress eat. On my menu was potato chips, ice cream, Spitz and even chocolate and I don't even like chocolate. We ate out a few times at an amazing burger joint called Big Wheel Burger, mainly because they serve organic meat, gluten free buns and vegetarian options. Best damn burgers I have ever had in my life! Please keep in mind that this food was eaten over a period of six weeks! Nuff said.
Our Order
The classic Big Wheel Burger... freaking amazing!

And then there was Chili Fries

The Veggie Burger (with chili fries! hahaha)

Must have beer!

Jan's surgery was a success and her recovery was very rapid, a reason to rejoice. The weekend of her discharge from the hospital, her son became a first time father to a gorgeous baby girl named Aaliyah (pronounced Ah-lay-ah) and Jan became a grandmother for the third time. Of course a new life is a cause for great happiness. Rejoice again! I believe in celebrating not only my accomplishments, but also those of my loved ones, no matter how huge or teensy. Every hill we climb is a great success to me and I am the self designated cheer leader of my family. The trauma part of my travels was nearing an end and I thought I would be able to go back to my regularly scheduled program of weight loss. However, not long after Aaliyah became a citizen of the world, a major bend in the road presented itself. Jan's father died suddenly. For me, no matter where, when or who it is, death is always sudden. The "tragedy" part of this trip was now rearing it's ugly head. *See Footnote 

I gave Jan as much space as I could in a one bedroom apartment, but somehow being together through this time allowed for us to mourn together and sustain one another through our shared grief. Of course, I ate through everything. I put down my Magnum ice cream bar long enough to assist with the long distant phone calls to family, funeral arrangements, reminiscing over old photos, bawling fests and bouts of laughter. Jan had to fight every breath to maintain a positive sense of balance in order to physically recuperate from major surgery and yet allow her mind to accept her father's death and offer comfort and solace to herself. There was only one thing on the menu of her life at that moment, a double helping of intense healing.

While Jan was making the necessary preparations for her dad's funeral, etc, I was internalizing all of my emotions and burying them deep down in order to manage the long distance phone calls to my co-piggie Irene to discuss Lane's wedding plans. Venus and menus, music and decorating, everything! More celebration was on the horizon and I could feel myself growing a third chin just thinking about the work that lay ahead. Um, yeah. Eating is work.

Despite having to expect more major events, both happy and sad, they did not make me lose focus on the more important things. Both Jan and I were able to attend all three days of our bible convention. We were refreshed, encouraged and built up. We were able to plug along with much hope and a renewed sense of positive purpose for each of our distinct journeys. SUCCESS!

I left Victoria the day after the convention. I also left behind my wedding inventory, knowing that I would return a few weeks later to finalize my sales. It had been six weeks since Jan's surgery and everything was on schedule going click, click, click. I spent that  night driving, reflecting and contemplating. I cried, I laughed, I talked to myself and sang out loud at the top of my lungs! It felt sooo good! I rolled into Irene's driveway at 11:30pm at only to find her and Lane standing in the driveway. This was odd, even for them. "What are you doing," I asked. "Oh," she said, "Tara, George, Kelly, Eli, Izzy, Aaron, Tiffany and the baby are on there way! Lane is moving our vehicles to make room for the Fifth wheel."


Please wait for tomorrow's entry to read about eating through triumph!

Good night my monkey's!

(While this new hairpin turn in the road may have put a temporary kink in Jan's recovery, I was suffering again from my heart condition (pericardial effusion)  and landed in the emergency room of the RJH. Not cool. What was cool, was that the doctor was incredible! Within a week I was set up to see a specialist at VGH to discuss my treatment options, which by the way are being set in motion TOMORROW as I go to see my new doctor here in Calgary.) 
Leaving the hospital

Read Tomorrow's Blog HERE! Eating Through the 4 T's Part Four

Read Yesterday's Blog Here! Eating Through Travel, Trauma, Tragedy and Triumph Part Two

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