Silver Linings

I’m sitting at the moment during a mid show intermission in a school hall in Coventry, where I’ve come to see the Silver Linings barbershop chorus. It’s late on a Friday evening and as I type this post on my phone I can hear a large hubbub of people behind a large black theatre curtain to the left of me.

A few minutes ago most of the people chatting behind it were sitting next to me in the audience. Now they’re attacking the buffet that’s been laid on by the singers and their families. I’m weighing in tomorrow and despite the lure of chicken drumsticks and mince pies I’m paranoid about food today. Every ounce counts. I’m not partaking.

I haven’t even peeped behind the curtain. I ate before I came out in preparation. Besides – I don’t really feel hungry because I’m in a really good mood.

There are few things that can lift the spirits more than live singing. When faced with these lovely women belting out songs in four part harmony I found that it was almost almost impossible not to smile broadly – regardless of how I may have felt earlier in the day.


(Silver Linings are also looking for new ladies to join – so have a look here if you’re interested! Photo used with kind permission)

I have a kind lady at Slimming World to thank for my attendance, who invited me to the family and friends concert she was singing in.

In doing so she’s enabled a change of mood in me tonight – which earlier wasn’t so great after a day wrestling with my self image demons in clothes and charity shops. It’s partially because of the joy that she and the others had so obviously display on stage but also because their choral harmony has been so all encompassing that I can still feel the air in the school hall vibrating around me with their voices.

As well as cheering me up it’s also made me think a bit. The second song ‘I hope you dance’ (chosen it appears by the lady who invited me, and originally sung by Lee Ann Womack) was one I’d never heard before.

It’s all about seizing the moment in life and making sure that whatever you do you don’t look back with regret about what could have been. Sometimes it’s possible to feel really happy and really sad in precisely the same moment.

During this song I think was both and I’m not shy to say I had a tear in my eye toward the end as it (for me at least) was really poignant. I began to randomly think about my mom and what could have been in both of our lives if things had been different.

The message in essence was that you have to live for love, joy and for the moment. Truthfully it’s the essence of what (unknown to her) she indirectly ended up inspiring in me and I wish that it was something that she too had come to understand in life.

Just like the song suggests, I don’t intend to look back when I’m old and wonder where the years went and why I didn’t do the things I could have.

As well as my unexpected moment of reflection the show had some other real standouts – particularly when they covered ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ so perfectly I was almost singing along with them. The whole affair also finished with a wonderful melody of Christmas songs (including a 400 year old Coventry specific one!) that made me feel unusually seasonal when I was driving home in the rain.

This may have also had something to do with the appearance of Santa Claus at the end of the evening clutching a bag full of presents for the children in the audience. I might be wrong but I think it was actually the jovial presenter in a Santa suit, not the real one.

But you never know….

(Time for bed. Author requires large doses of beauty sleep just to get back to vaguely hideous by the morning. He’s stressed as usual about weighing in and probably won’t sleep anyway but he must try.)

Well I’ve now weighed in, and I’ve nailed my eight and a half stone award! The back, front and now inside my book is positively crammed with stickers. 

My weight loss has definitely slowed a little with the reduced exercise over the last couple of weeks – but I’m being pragmatic about this. 

When I was walking myself to death and getting obsessed I just ended up injured, which screwed everything over (including my mood) so at the moment I’m really happy that I’m still loosing what is a very respectable amount of weight. 

That doesn’t mean to say that I’m not going to try really really hard in the coming week mind you!

In fact, immediately after my Slimming World meeting I put my fleece on, pulled on my gloves and headed out into the cold to pick up my new trousers which had been shortened overnight. 

Honestly today I wanted to drive the four miles into town and back. I really really wanted to take the car and sit in the warm listening to my tunes. 

But you know what? Every time In the past where I took the easy choice it cost me money and time. Every instance where I chose the lazy option just meant another day that I had to remain dissatisfied with how I look or feel. 

I want to defer it as little as possible now and do all I can. I’m still thinking of the song from last night and I want to dance not drive. 

Also I’m wearing my cargo trousers today. These were the ones from two weeks ago where I sat down and the button snapped off the waistline. They’re now repaired, in service, comfortable and making me feel great. I’m also wearing a nice warm shirt that (in the same way as my trousers) hasn’t been worn for eight and a half years. 

Sitting on the chair opposite me in the coffee shop however are my new clothes. The contents of this small plastic carrier bag represents two weeks of groceries and I want to feel happy with the contents of it – but I’m still grinding my teeth a little.

I’m going to go home, iron it all, try it on with my (old) smart shoes and determine whether those (almost certainly do) also need replacing. 

I want to feel smart and capable when I walk through a door wearing them and I think I may need to lose another few pounds to make that a reality. 

This will be a week for soups methinks. 

That’s going to be a LOT EASIER thanks to the lovely lady in Slimming World this morning who carved a giant hole in her bay leaf bush at home and brought me in more than enough leaves to see me through the winter. 

This photo of me enjoying the aroma when I got home is just for her 😉. She can rest assured my whole house will be fragrant this evening!

Love and silver linings Internet 🤗


2 thoughts on “Silver Linings

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