Friday, 14 March 2014

King of Fools

We are never gonna be like you,
We don't follow - King of fools,
You are the blind who lead the blind.
You are the King of Fools.
Edguy - King of Fools

Diet and exercise – the two things most likely to irritate me as suggestions for how to make Petunia behave. Simple, obvious and perpetually ineffective.

The problem for me is two-fold. The assumption that everything that is wrong with a person’s health can be fixed with a mixture of the two is both tiresome and in some ways quite rude – there’s an unspoken assumption there that the person is too stupid to have thought of those things themselves and therefore is wholly responsible for their own problems. That also bolsters uninformed opinions regarding patients “attention seeking” and that they just refuse to attempt to get better and are in fact happy being ill.

Yes, we thoroughly enjoy it, and personally if Petunia were tangible I’d marry her, I love her that much.

(My lollygagging is becoming a real issue. Image from Tumblr, source unknown.)

(If I ever say that to you I suggest you duck, because eventually it’s likely that it’ll be swiftly followed up by something being thrown.)

So, I ask of all the pseudo-experts out there, what should I do when having a clean, healthy diet and doing regular exercise don’t work and in fact causes as many problems as they solve?

I eat pretty plainly in order to try and calm my insides down. Most of the time I aim for a good balance of protein and vegetables and a reduction in carbohydrates in a meal – I don’t cut out altogether, but I do cut down. I don’t drink because of the dual reasons of medication interaction and the fact the Interstitial Cystitis side of Petunia’s personality would no doubt explode if I did. I drink plenty of water (too much at times) and I don’t drink caffeine during the day. I don’t snack much except for fruit and mostly keep sweet things for weekends only. In essence I am pretty damn well behaved on the diet front.

I also exercise as much as I’m able. Due to my recent dip that hasn’t been as much as I’d like but it is slowly coming back and I hope to over time work up to the point where I’m working out three or four times a week again. This doesn’t include general walking about such as walking to work. I’ve just purchased a couple of Jillian Michaels’ more cardio-driven exercise DVDs to give myself a bit of a change and I’m hoping in a few months I’ll be back to being able to take this amount of exercise regularly once more. This will obviously be made easier as we move into Spring and things start to warm up too.

The second problem however is that this has become habit forming. There’s nothing wrong with that in itself, except that I’m a little concerned just how much worse I feel when I need to have an evening off. I’ve spoken about giving myself the evening off as a gift so I don’t feel like I’m just being lazy, and this is mostly effective. However it doesn’t change the fact that I physically feel sluggish and lethargic whenever I’m too tired or sore to exercise, and I don’t have an unrealistic idea that one day I will banish this problem. I have Fibromyalgia – I’m never going to be able to keep the routine all the time.

I wrote a post some time back about what I considered to be the negative and dangerous aspects of the “fitspo” fad – a wealth of articles, memes, diet and exercise plans constantly telling you that if you aren’t following exactly, you’re weak, lazy, fat and an altogether useless sack of flesh.

The thing is just avoiding fitspo related websites doesn’t keep you away from this sort of attitude. It's more than a little disturbing how quickly I’ve started to feel lousy in myself when I can’t complete my exercises as planned.

(Whilst I realise it's not all bad, I am predominantly very anti-fitspo, because as illustrated it can be sodding dangerous. Image from

There is something very insidious about being at the top of a slippery slope where your self-worth becomes completely tied into your diet and how much exercise you do. Constantly being told it is the way forward (even when you know it isn’t) will wear anyone down eventually, and it’s surprisingly easy to start to question yourself when faced with a relentless onslaught of pseudo-expertise.

Sometimes, it does just feel like far too much effort to keep explaining yourself and once you reach that point you start to wonder if it’s too much effort to explain because you are in fact incorrect. The pseudo-experts start to sound like they possibly make sense.

The slippery slope I just mentioned, do you know what is possibly waiting at the bottom of there? At the point when the apparent army of inherently arrogant “experts” and their unasked for opinions have won their battle with their victim's self worth?

A variety of different mental illnesses, self esteem problems and anxieties which tear people's lives apart.

I repeat myself a lot on this blog in terms of the topic of "think before you speak", but it really can be of vital importance. If even one person takes that thought away from this blog, then I'll feel like I've achieved something. A few would be lovely, and lots would be phenomenal. In a generation of trolling and keyboard warriors where people seem to feel that their opinion is the only important and worthy part of any discusion, it's a lesson that only becomes more necessary. The art of civilised discussion has seemingly long since disappeared into myth for most.

There are very few scenarios where you "have" to say something, so when you've ruled out necessity consider this:

Just because you can say it doesn't mean you should.

Wishing you all many spoons xxx


  1. WOW! You hit the nail on the head! Soft hugggzzzz

    1. Thank you for reading and commenting Bridget! :) x

  2. Ugh! There are people in life that need to be ignored for their total ignorance. I think the only way people will learn is for people like yourself to keep blogging, talking and raising awareness. Even then, there are always going to be ignorant people in this world -_- *hugs*