Saturday, May 22, 2010

The body .. where did it go?

Truth be told my body was never that fantastic. I've struggled with my weight. Been challenged by the back from hell (lots of surgery there just to keep me upright), had big droopy boobs - then no boobs, and now new boobs. It's been a dynamic experience my body - great variations of change.

The last two years have been pretty busy. The breast cancer thing (my present to myself for my 50th birthday) certainly diverted my attention from what was happening in other regions of the body geography. The dilemmas of multiple surgeries, infections, and the road to reconstruction was paved with a few diversions. It certainly was worthwhile though. Coming out the other side they're perky and for the first time in my life I don't have to wear a bra. I feel like a teenager again.

Two years later and I have just had the odd glass of bubbly to celebrate another birthday. It's amazing. What happened? Where did those 2 years go and what did the rest of my body get way with while I was preoccupied? I feel like I am in possession of this errant child that will do what it wants to do despite strict instructions to the contrary. It has bulged out in places that it never did. These granny arms have appeared and I long for longer sleeves.

Weight will just not disappear like it used to. Watching calories makes me feel as if I have to go on a hunger strike. I've had to resort to the gym. Serious exercise is helping to bring it into control. 5 kms a day on the treadmill (too hot and no footpath on the road) at 6kms per hour and then some weights to fix the granny arms is slowly bringing things under control. Even though I feel it is like eating brussels sprouts I get in there and do it.

At the start of this discovery I felt as if I'd woken up from a long sleep over the last 2 years and my body had been hijacked. Breast cancer had hit at the same time as menopause. I didn't have the time to do the book reading, Oprah and Dr Phil watching to know what the world was up to with these issues I just had to live them.

That self pity lasted about 5 minutes. Some time you just have to get on with it. Life is too short to be miserable. There is just too much to do, see and explore. Too many nice people to get to know and other people who you may choose not to have in your life (negative energy from them)!

My new body while it is a bit different is enjoying the new found freedom. A new range of bras I would never have worn, no drooping, a bit fitter - the middle is disappearing. I've discovered ten pin bowling a great activity to share with the man in my life and good for the granny arms.

And to celebrate the birthday I baked chocolate cake to share with friends. Why not!

Ginty's Foolproof Chocolate Cake
2 cups Self Raising flour
1 2/3 cups sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup cocoa
2/3 cup soft butter
1 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 eggs
Sift dry ingredients
Add butter, water, vanilla and beat 2 minutes
Add eggs and beat another 2 minutes
Bake in 180C for 40-50 minutes.
I used gas, middle shelf for exactly 50 minutes. I don't have an electric mixer so just beat with a wooden spoon. I cooked in a 26cm round tin lined with baking paper. The mixture can be doubled and cooked in a large rectangular tin for hoardes of hungry adolescents.
Turned out wonderful with a chocolate ganache frosting and served with fresh cream:
Chocolate Ganache Frosting
200 grams dark cooking chocolate
150 mls cream
45 grams diced butter
Melt cool slightly (until thickens so it is not too runny and runs off the top of the cake) Pour over cake.

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