Just a quick update to say that the new blog has gone live and a new photo of me (128 pounds lighter!).
Just wanted to check in with you all. I have now lost 124 pounds!
I am very close to passing my driving test. I should be completed by mid-October.
The 20th of September is the 5th anniversary of my fathers death and the day I sit my driving theory test.
My therapy is now monthly and no longer weekly or fortnightly. I have learned so much and progressed so quickly. I am glad I was able to share so much of it with all of you.
I started a new job 3 weeks ago and it is going very well. Good chance I will be made permanent and the money is good.
I have been on a date which went well but sadly there was no spark between us. There are many other guys out there and chatting to them all is fun. I am optimistic.
Finally with regards to the future of this blog I am still ironing out what I want to do next. Some small gems of ideas are around. As promised I will be sure to inform you all when I know what the final plan is.
Until next time…be good to each other!
I feel as though I owe you all an explanation for my absence.
When I started this blog I did so knowing that I was in a really bad place in my life. My relationship had ended, I was jobless, morbidly obese and frankly on occasions suicidal.
2014 was going to be my year of salvation (hopefully) and this blog would chart that.
Through weekly therapy sessions (sometimes twice weekly) I shared with you all my current pain and the pain of my upbringing. As the weeks and months went by I found myself becoming more and more honest with you all.
In amongst all of that we shared restaurant reviews, movie reviews, product reviews, quotes and interesting websites.
I took photos of the places I went and shared them for you all to enjoy. You always responded with likes and shares.
Last week when I went to therapy it was decided that we would reduce the sessions to fortnightly. In the meantime my romantic life has come on leaps and bounds. I have possibilities ahead of me that I never dreamed possible. I owe it all to my therapist and for the first time I can admit, myself.
In news that hopefully will please you all even more I have now lost 114 pounds in weight. I have shared my photos with the world on forums and my social media.
The whole point of writing this post is to tell you that, sadly, this blog must come to an end. It is no longer about being Here Still. I am more than here I am alive and loving life. I want to launch a new blog with more insight into weight loss and exercise. I will still continue to get on my soap box and I will always share photos with you all.
Keep your eyes on this blog for more news and until then…here is me in my old clothes over 8 stone lighter!
Respect, love & gratitude,
The moment I realised I wanted to, had to, do it was about this time last year. It was a complete fluke. A basic problem became a full emergency. Vomiting blood, ECG’s, intravenous antibiotics and uncontrollable shivering at 5am.
As we rushed to A&E all sorts went through my mind. I had had a bladder infection earlier in the week but the antibiotics had started working, though, the day before there was blood again in my urine. What could be wrong?
The hospital was only a mile away. I was panicking. I had never felt this way before and could not stop shaking. My teeth rattled in my mouth. My partner at the time was very good. He took control and helped me dress.
I’d made the mistake of taking a warm shower to try and warm up. The Nurse looked at me disapprovingly when I said this. I was rushed past waiting queues of people on a trolley to an area of the hospital that was right under an air conditioning unit. My temperature was dangerously high.
The infection was in my blood.
These outdated ideas about gender need correcting if we are ever going to really solve a lot of the problems in society. One couple decided to raise their child genderless. They didn’t tell their family or even the school what gender the child was. The child was never given any gender biased signals from the parents. It played with whatever toys it wanted to play with. They referred only to the child as “the infant”. They did of course use the name, which was Sasha. The child was a boy. The mother made the following comments when questioned about her decision:
“I wanted to avoid all that stereotyping,” she said. “Stereotypes seem fundamentally stupid. Why would you want to slot people into boxes?”
“I don’t think I’d do it if I thought it was going to make him unhappy, but at the moment he’s not really bothered either way,” she said. “All I want to do is make people think a bit.”
Personally I’m a little bit disappointed that I was beaten to being the first to raise a child this way. I absolutely would want to do this for my child. Especially in the first few years that are so important. Society will eventually try and make us conform in one way or another because that is exactly what it does. Those that resist by dressing as they choose or behaving as they choose are derided. I’m even guilty of doing this when the reality is I don’t care. People can behave however they want within the laws of the country that they are in (and even sometimes break them depending on where they live).
The child will grow and have little regard for what it “must” look like. Maybe it will never look in the mirror and feel less than what it really is like so many of us do. Perhaps it won’t seek the impossible form that eludes most of us. As we lie our way through Instagram photos, with filters and tweaks (or the one of the many hundreds of apps on the App stores designed to enhance your selfies) trying to show the best, most fun version of ourselves to others did we never stop and think about what that says to everyone else? If you keep raising the bar ever higher there is an argument for the case that eventually nobody will be able to meet it.
In a society that sees so little merit in individualism or non-conformity is it any wonder that cosmetic surgery and body dimorphic behavior is on the rise now even amongst men? When we flick through the celebrity magazines and judge those who seek surgery are we not culpable for these actions they are forced to take? To what end will this pursuit of conformity lead us? Is it just really the case that one day we will all be designer babies?
Amazingly I can still bring this back to the world of comics. In the far off planet of Krypton there have been no natural births for hundreds of years. Everyone is born with a predefined role. Only those skills for those roles are acceptable. Those in power are stubborn and those who seek power are ruthless. You are not encouraged to be different. They finally destroyed their planet and everyone on it. It is a lesson that we must learn before we go too far.
We dress girls in pink and boys in blue. When girls show an interest in dolls we buy them prams and things with fake long hair to style. A boy gets trains, cars and Lego to build things. What we never stop to ask ourselves is this; does every boy like the same things? Does every girl? When she is 3 and her favourite colour is pink are we vindicated?, or, just failing to see that if pink was all she was ever surrounded by then of course it would be her favourite colour?
This has long been a bugbear of mine. Before I go any further some of you will throw out that easy line that gets trotted out by parents; do you have children? No I don’t have children but you don’t have to have children to feel something that may be in the best interests of another person. Otherwise we would never form any relationships in the first place. As I am continually reminded there is no manual for having kids, so just accept that we are all winging it.
Don’t also assume that because I am a man that I think women have gotten off lightly. I don’t. They are still disrespected in many workplaces that are not considered for them. The number of female board directors is pitiful. They are pushed into childcare and beauty courses because those are “appropriate” things for them to do. There is a huge expectation by some parents on their daughters to give them grandchild and this can lead to many women sacrificing a career (there is of course an argument there for helping women back into work that have children). They are often dismissed as “emotional” when they have genuine concerns about problems in their lives.
As a comic book fan I see a lot of irregularity in that world. Women are often drawn (by men) with large breasts. If they are not doing anything particularly sexy they are still given them. There was a huge fuss two years ago over a drawing of Catwoman in both a physically impossible pose and being drawn very sexually. Have we never stopped to wonder why Superman is dressed head to toe with just his head, hands visible when Wonder Woman has her chest, arms and legs out?
I’ve sat in my place of work and heard mothers tell their little boys that of course they behaved this way or that way because they are “a man”. Am I the only person who can see how harmful that is? On the one hand the child will associate perceived negative traits with being a man (not healthy) and on the other he will blame perhaps some of his own genuine character flaws on just “being a man” and never seek help. Statistics show that men are far less likely to seek help and enter therapy than women. I can’t help but feel a big part of that comes from the assumption that men should not speak about feelings.
Why do we never stop and think to ourselves; “what are we doing”? We still frown upon promiscuous girls in a way that we don’t for boys. In the media a woman who sleeps around is labelled badly but a man gets much more favourable words used for him. I would take “love rat” over many of the names attributed to women in those situations. Whenever a woman sells her story with a footballer she is immediately derided. A man chats about it in his book and nobody says a word. It is repeatedly the case that the women in these affairs often come out worse off than the men even if she was single and the man was married.