Body & Soul, Mental Health

Addressing One Of My Biggest Flaws

There is three months left of this year and I want to make the most of it. I think I speak for everyone when I say 2019 has royally sucked on the most part. This probably would be a great moment to list some of the shitty stuff that has happened this year but honestly, I’m in an okay mood so why spoil it? Quite frankly, if I somehow get through this year without falling apart, I would consider it an achievement and pat myself on the back. But this isn’t the point of this blog. Yes, this blog actually has a point. Instead of focusing on all the shitty moments that made 2019 absolutely terrible and reflecting on that long ass list I made of stuff that I wanted to achieve that I know is quite frankly impossible…I want to take this moment to plan these next three months. Holy shit, that’s a really bad sentence. I apologize. I promise I’m an author? Buy my eBook? Anyway, in classic Cassy fashion, I digress. I plan to completely ignore all my failed plans and goals up to this point and instead make a realistic list of shit I want to do these next three months. Some of this shit I want to keep under the wraps because why tell you exactly what blogs to expect and then shoot myself in the foot when I no longer feel like writing about it? Also, take a shot every time I say shit.

Disclaimer: Cassandra is in no way, shape or form condoning the misuse of alcohol. It’s a joke. Also, I trust your responsible enough not to drown your liver on my say so. Thank you for coming to my TED talk.

Let’s talk about my personal goals for these next three months.

  • I want to complete one fitness program. This could either be a yoga-based routine or a strengthening workout routine similar to BBG (Bikini Body Guide by Kayla Itsines).
  • I want to complete two challenges and as I will most likely share this on my blog, I won’t go into too much detail. One of the challenges is everyday for a week while the other is for two weeks.
  • I want to complete another one-month food experiment (the first experiment being the fasting once a week). I will have to think quite a bit and decide which of my possible experiments would be the best fit. I really don’t want to overwhelm myself.
  • I want to complete all three remaining Immigrations tests that I have been postponing literally this entire year.
  • I want to start with a new first draft story and finally start work on my next eBook. It’s ‘Chocolate Chip Cookies And Pink Nails’ just in case you were wondering. I’ve been dying to take the feedback I’ve received and give this story my all. The transformation a story goes through after that initial first draft into the final copy is so exciting.

It might seem like a lot but honestly – it’s just five things and if I’m smart about it, it won’t be too much to handle. I can still have those barely leave the bed days. I can’t go into too much detail about my plans for the blog but I can say that my personal goal is to return back to my normal update schedule where there is a blog every Monday and a new blog every second Friday. So far with the entire month of October planned out, it’s quite doable. Speaking of blogs, I hinted in my awkward return that there will be collab with other bloggers and the return of my Sims 4 remaking meals series. This is all true. I’m going to attempt to collab once a month but seriously don’t hold your breath. Finding a blogger I connect with isn’t as easy as I thought it would be but saying that, trust that the people who I do decide to collab with is people whose content I truly enjoy. Fuck, I can’t write blogs anymore. The Sims 4 blog series and the review blog series that I never quite finished will start again but this time it will be a little more spaced out. Just for the next few months until I can get a moment to work ahead. Once I’ve gotten ahead, we can return to the normal every three weeks. For now, the two will trade. We will start with a new Sims 4 meal (hamburger cake) and then three weeks later we will have a review. Three weeks after that we will have another Sims 4 meal and finally just before the year end, we will have one more review. I know it isn’t ideal but your girl has a lot of things she is working on and well I’m only one person and quite frankly, I need to rest. I personally think the key to success and fulfilling your goals is to pick and choose a small handful, put all of your focus towards them and once you’ve completed those few, you can choose the next few and focus on that. Fuck, my writing is bad. You will have to excuse me, I’m out of practice. What I’m trying to say is instead of focusing on my 101 ideas I have for my website which includes projects and one-month challenges, I’m going to choose just five. I will then give myself an x amount of time (in this case I gave myself three months) to complete those 5 tasks. I guess I could discuss these five tasks?

  • Return to my normal update schedule.
  • Restart both of my blog series.
  • Collab with another blogger(s).
  • Launch one of my projects.
  • Write. This one has three subcategories. I want to work on a new first draft (the one I will share on here every second Sunday). I want to start work on my next eBook and finally I want to write one of the five extra chapters for my eBook that launched in June. Yes, you’re experiencing déjà vu. I so desperately want to get back to writing, it’s on both of my lists.

Looking at this blog, I feel a mixture of emotions. I’m 60% excited, I’m 30% overwhelmed and I’m 10% stressed. I wouldn’t say it’s a bad stress but it’s more like I don’t want to disappoint myself? I don’t want to quit on myself. I want to complete my goals and end this shitty year on a happy note? But at the same time, I know that life can really derail plans and I’m scared? If I’m not making any sense to you, well join the club. I genuinely confuse myself 90% of the time. I barely understand what’s going through my head but writing always helps so uhmm hello? Sorry for this mess? On a good note, it feels good to address one of my biggest flaws and attempt to combat it a little. In case you haven’t noticed, I get overwhelmed incredibly easily. My problem is that I want to complete 101 tasks all in one go which is quite frankly impossible. Trust me, I’ve tried. And when I can’t, I derail. Baby steps, hey?

I’m going to wrap this one up, mainly because it’s pure chaos at this point and my husband should be home any moment now. I just want to take this moment to thank you all for sticking around while I was offline. It feels good to be back and I can’t wait to connect with you all again.

Thank you so much for reading and I will see you in a click!

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#pcos, Body & Soul, Body Love, Story Time

I Have PCOS

This is probably one of the hardest blog posts I’m ever going to write. It’s something so very close to my heart and talking about it makes me feel vulnerable. This entire experience rocked my entire world and I’ve been an emotional wreck. The timing wasn’t the best either as I just found out my grandmother’s cancer is back and this time around there is just nothing they can do for her. It broke my heart especially when it dawned on me that I won’t ever see her again. I can’t go down to South Africa to say my goodbyes.

So how do I start? I’m trying my utmost best not to cry here but the tears are definitely going to roll pretty soon. This is an emotional subject to write. Somewhere, wait let me get the date and post, 8th of February, I publicly mentioned that I was diagnosed a hormone syndrome that was the culprit behind my weight gain, mood swings and acne. By that point I was sitting on the news for quite awhile. Wrapping my head around it wasn’t completely easy. When I started to learn more about it, well let’s just say I cried a lot. It’s been difficult.

I guess I should just say it. I have PCOS. Yeah. I said it. Some of you might be wondering what the hell is PCOS and why are you making such a big deal out of it? Fret not I have four books (I haven’t finished reading them all) that I cried while reading and they taught me quite a bit about the syndrome.

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Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal imbalance that affects an estimated 5 to 10 per cent of women of reproductive age across the world, and results in irregular or absent periods, acne, excess body hair and weight gain. It can also cause problems with fertility.*

PCOS can cause depression and anxiety. There is drugs to help with the symptoms and to improve fertility but there is natural solutions. Drugs comes with side effects and will stop working once I stop taking it. I don’t want to take drugs for the rest of my life so I’m very eager to solve or ‘cure’ my PCOS with my diet. The book I’m following is by Marilyn Glenville. Here is the link to her website and book. (I really wanted to follow my doctors recommendations first before I go off and do my own thing. He decided to put me on drugs but I’m still going to change my diet as Marilyn Glenville recommended in the book, Natural Solutions To PCOS, for the best possible result.)

https://www.marilynglenville.com/

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https://www.marilynglenville.com/books/natural-solutions-to-pcos-book/

I bought the book and three others on Amazon. I really enjoy Marilyn’s book. I watched her lecture and just really fell in love with her approach and overall success rate.

But let’s get back to my feelings. I’m surprised how detached I’m writing this but I can already feel the tears coming as I think of what I want to say next. PCOS scares me because I want children one day. What scared me the most is the infertility that comes with it. I read and seen so many women in support groups that has been struggling for years. YEARS. This one women has been trying for ten years. Not only do you struggle to get pregnant you have a very high risk for miscarriages. That terrifies me so much. I’m scared. I really am. I’ve wanted to be a mom ever since I could remember. I’m entering a stage in my life where becoming a mother is in the future. The diagnoses shook my entire world. So many thoughts raced through my mind and to be honest when I think about it too much I can’t stop crying. It’s just..what if? No let’s stop right there. I can’t put it in words. I just can’t.

PCOS has affected me emotionally, heck that is an understatement, but physically it has wrecked havoc on my body. My hormones are completely out of whack. I gained 15kg almost overnight. My acne is horrid. My mood swings borderline on she’s crazy and my self esteem is shot. I have excess body hair and the sudden weight gain has given me quite a bit of stretch marks. I don’t feel attractive. I’m scared that I’m failing as a women. Not only do I no longer feel attractive there is a possibility that we will really struggle to have our family. It’s heart wrenching. Okay I’m crying again. Can barely see my screen. I’m going to take a break.

My entire body aches. My energy is low. My acne and stretch marks is a daily reminder. I’m tired all the damn time and I’m constantly nauseous. I’m struggling with depression and I’m scared. I have days where I have no appetite and eating makes me want to throw up and then I have days that I just can’t stop eating. PCOS is completely out of my control and it will never go away. When I was diagnosed with celiac disease I kind of took it with stride. It was difficult as it was something so out of control and something that will always be there but…I don’t know. It seemed like well cut out gluten and make some sacrifices but overall it’s still good. PCOS on the other hand…it affected me on every single level and I will have to make a massive lifestyle change. My diet is going to have to change and hopefully that won’t spark up my old eating disorder…I’m scared and this is really hard.

I’m writing this four days before my first big appointment for my PCOS. We made the appointment soon after I was diagnosed but the waiting period was eight weeks. In these last eight weeks I’ve made a few changes but not a lot as I want the test results to be more telling if that make sense. I will explain in a bit. I’ve tried to keep up with my training more but at the same time I read so much about how this and that might not be good for PCOS so really I want more guidance. I’ve cut out almost all caffeine. In these last eight weeks I’ve had four cup of coffee. I’ve been drinking a lot of green tea and I’ve cut down almost all refined carbohydrates in my diet. I’m on a very low sugar diet. I check every single label for the sugar content and find the best product for me. But emotionally. I’ve been barely keeping it together. I cry at least four times a week about PCOS. I can’t open the PCOS book without crying my eyes out. I sometimes don’t really feel like doing anything and it’s just been so hard.

On Thursday the 29 of March I’m hopefully going to walk out with some future plans and more information. I’m not sure of the entire process as I yet have to experience this, I will add on to this blog after I’ve been, but I’m hopeful. Or I’m trying to be. My best guess is that they’re going to run some tests, see how my insulin resistance is (diabetes is at risk here) and over all what I should do, eat and etc to control my symptoms and balance out my hormones. Hopefully this will make me lose weight because barely any of my clothes fit me at the moment and fitting in my old clothes will really help my self esteem right about now. (PS, the appointment was a massive success. I walked out feeling hopeful for the future and a little less scared. The doctor gave me a future treatment plan. He ran some tests and in a week I will find out the results and then change my diet and drink the correct supplements from there. For now I’m just going to read all of my PCOS books and learn even more.)

I’m not sure what exactly I want to accomplish with this post. I’m not okay and PCOS is going to be a struggle but I guess I just want to say to my fellow cysters…you’re not alone and together we can support each other through this. And I also want to explain why I’ve been so absent and less like myself…I will definitely talk about what’s happening with my PCOS and what changes I’m going to make and etc. What products or stuff works for me and all that jazz. But for now I’m going to end this blog because honestly my emotions are just too much for me right now. As I’m writing this part still four days before my doctor appointment I’m really scared and overwhelmed so I’m just going to take the week off Instagram and Facebook. I don’t need social media to add to everything right now. It’s also my mental health week for the month so it’s needed.

Edit from future Cassy that already saw the doctor. I’m still scared for the future and I know I’m going to go through a lot of changes because of the PCOS but I’m feeling slightly more positive. It did help that when the gynecologist scanned my ovaries he saw that I ovulated recently. It just made me feel better about becoming a mother in the future…I’m not a complete failure. My body ovulated naturally. While I’m here I should explain something to those who doesn’t know what PCOS is, so basically I don’t ovulate normally. Where a healthy woman ovulates every month a women with PCOS will ovulated maybe 6 times in a year. Some even less. Some don’t even ovulate at all. There is drugs to induce an ovulation if you want to get pregnant. Not all of them work for every woman out there with PCOS and that’s when some woman struggle for years. That’s what scared me so much but walking away with the news that hey you have an egg in the basket just made me feel more hopeful about everything. I know that without those news I would be feeling a lot different right about now.

Edit from future, future Cassy that just got her test results back. Everything is GOOD! I don’t have other problems related to my PCOS. Feeling very happy right now!

Thank you so much for reading and I will see you in a click!

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Body & Soul, Body Love, Self Love, Story Time

Why I Stopped Wearing A Bra

I haven’t worn a push up bra in over a year. 18 months to be exact. The reason why I decided to ditch the boob holder was pretty simple. One night, after a very long and exhausting day I came home and the very first thing I did was take my bra off. I can bet some good money that most women who wear or have worn a push up bra or a bra in general know exactly what I’m talking about. That incredible feeling of pure bliss as the bra goes flying through the air.

After hours of wearing the wire and fabric concussion; it left a dent in my skin. It hurt like hell. My skin was bruised and sensitive. It wasn’t my first time nor would it be my last time (well it was but that’s not a part of my point) that this happened. Much like the eureka moment with my shaving habits my thought process followed along the line:” why am I wearing a bra?” I was around eleven when I started developing breasts. I remember my mom started to encourage a sport bra but at that point I didn’t see the big deal of it. Or well till an older boy in the neighborhood made a comment about my growing breast. So I started wearing bras but the comfortable ones. Eventually I switched to push up bras for more support and a day wouldn’t go by without a bra. Approximately six years the first thing I would put on in the morning is a bra. It would also be the first thing that goes.

Anyway back to my aha moment. Why am I wearing a bra? Well because I’ve been wearing a bra since my boobs grew. It seemed very logical. It was expected to wear a bra. If you have boobs and you go out in public you have to wear a bra. It’s something society enforces ever since I can remember. At this point in my life I was making conscious choices about my body. I didn’t want to do anything to my body that I truly didn’t want to do. Do I want to wear a bra? It was a big hard no. I can’t express the level of comfort I feel without a bra in my life.

Free the boobies and go braless!

Now it’s not all sunshine and rainbows in the world of braless. I’ve gotten quite a bit of a response to my lack of bras.

“You can see your nipples.” Oh I didn’t know a nipple stand when it’s cold isn’t a natural body function. Insert a gasp.

“Your boob are saggy.” Maybe but what does that have to do with you?

“Your cleavage looks gross.” See the worry in my eyes.

There has been so much more but honestly my response is that this is my body. This is my choice. If you don’t like being braless than that’s you honey. If you don’t like seeing a women without a bra than that’s you sugar. If you think I look ugly or less feminine without a bra than that’s you honey. But here is the thing. This is my body and I will decide if I want to wear a bra or not. I have no idea if I will never wear a push up bra again. Maybe in a few years I decide to incorporate them again but for now I will stick to my sport bras.

I also want to add this as a little side note: there has been some scientific research about the subject. Here is a link to an article — https://www.women.com/shannon/lists/8-little-known-perks-of-going-braless-every-woman-needs-to-know

Otherwise my advice to you is to just take a second and decide for yourself if you want to wear a bra or not. Challenge what society expects from women. Take control and make your own choices when it comes to your body.

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Body & Soul, Body Love

How I Plan To Stop Body Shaming Myself

The other day I got to thinking about my body. Yeah I know. The warning alarms definitely sounded. These thoughts entered my mind and has yet to leave since I went court wedding dress shopping. I spoke about the event briefly on my socials while running on a little great dress high, but as time has passed those demon thoughts pushed itself back into my mind. My body is ugly. I’m too fat in my stomach area. I will be perfect if I lose more weight. I get so frustrated. I have all the tools and knowledge. I know in what area of failing. I know if I really put my all in it I can do it. I can lose that weight. I can finally have that toned and flat stomach with zero bloating. Then maybe finally I will be perfect.

What a load of bullshit. Fuck it. I’ve had these moments before. Some days I love my body even when I’m not as toned as I could be or have been before. On other days one dress can ruin everything. It’s not surprising. I’ve hated how my body looked for years now. It’s not suddenly going to disappear and never come back. It’s just not reality. Ignoring your problems and insecurities won’t make them go away. I’m just so tired of it. I’m tired of feeling uncomfortable and self conscious about my body.

“You will have the perfect body if you lose that last bit of stomach weight.” Fuck it. Fuck it all. Excuse my language but that’s just how I feel. I’m so sick and tired of counting calories, tracking my meals, forcing so many greens down my throat, counting down the time till I can eat again and saying no to that god damn cookie. I’m just so tired of it. I want to eat what I want to eat without feeling guilty or beating myself up about it. I want to be able to flaunt my stomach fat come bloating (instant six months pregnant bump) or not. I want to stop hating my body so much. I want to always love my body. Always cherish it. I want to stop preaching and start doing.

You know when I first started working on my body my goal was to lose weight, build muscle, challenge my boundaries, gain strength, push myself when I want to quit, eat healthy and enjoy life.

  • I have lost weight. I have gained some of that said weight back and then lost it again.
  • I have build muscles all over my body. For the first time in my life I have definition in my quads.
  • I have challenged my boundaries.
  • I have gained strength not just physically but in some way emotionally too. I can step back and access my emotions and not just have them run rampant.
  • And boy have I pushed myself. I have done that extra push up when my arms wanted to give out from under me. I cycled those extra 10km when everything inside my body wanted to stop.
  • I eat relatively healthy. I never go a day without some sort of vegetables and fruit. I make sure I get enough protein in.
  • And I enjoy life till this demon pops up and ruins it all. Fuck this demon. I won’t have you control my life anymore. I don’t want to care if I will never have a flat stomach or if it will take my three more years to have a full set of abs. My relationship with food has come a long way and still has a way to go.

I’m going to make a promise to myself right now. I’m going to stop caring what strangers think and say about my body. I’m going to shut that demon up when I even think about shaming my body. I’m going to rock my stomach fat because you know what? Life is honestly just too short. So I’m just going to do what makes me happy. I’m going to stay active, make conscious and healthy food choices whenever I can and I’m going to eat that treat. My body is perfect NOW.

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Body & Soul, Body Love, Self Love

Challenging Your Insecurities: Horrible Pictures

We all have that one picture or like fifty we just completely hate at first glance. Maybe it’s the expression on your face, or the triple chin you’ve having going on, or maybe your arms or to chubby, skinny and etc. The list goes on, it really depends on what your insecure about. I’m insecure about my face. I have a very long and oval shaped face and it is something I’m constantly aware of. I was teased about the shape of my face for years and compared to a horse. If I walked by someone would make a horse sound, it honestly was terrible. I would stand in front of my mirror, staring at my face at all angles. What angle do I like? What don’t I like? I eventually learned to pose my face in a certain degree angle as to make my face look less oval like.

Now it makes me beyond uncomfortable when I see a picture of my face dead centre or from the side. It’s stupid really. It’s my face. It’s my first impression. It’s something that carries so much for me. It holds my eyes and with this I can see the world around me. The bright colors of natures landscape. It holds my nose and with this I smell the world. The delicious smell of coffee in the morning or the sweet scent or roses. The smell of the man I love. It holds my mouth and with this I taste the world. The sweet taste of chocolate and pasta. The  mouth I use to kiss the man I love every day. It holds my ears and with this I hear the world. The clattering of the rain and the beep of the oven. All these things I love so what makes the shape of my face so much different?

There’s nothing wrong with the size, the shape or its silhouette from the side. What’s wrong is my ridiculous insecurity about it. Something I want to challenge and change with time.

So here is step one, a photo I hate.

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This photo was taken on my wedding day. At that very moment I was truly happy. Yet when I saw this picture I hated it. It’s heartbreaking to know that my insecurities has such a deep hold on me. This is one of the reasons why I’m challenging myself like this.