Another heavy food day. Here was today's thought process:
"I feel like shit. I'm going to eat."
"Something must be wrong, because I'm not hungry."
"I don't care. I'm going to eat until I hurt."
Interesting...that first "I feel like shit" sentence didn't occur to me until I typed it. WHY don't I post when I'm feeling like I want to eat without being hungry?
On one hand, I'm glad that I'm able to walk away from a binge with my head up and my dignity intact. On the other hand, I really do need to begin to employ better self-care strategies. And more importantly, I need to get back into dealing with uncomfortable things in "real" ways, instead of distracting myself with food. Food is not making my problems go away. It's creating additional problems (a stomach ache right now, as a matter of fact) on top of the problems that haven't gone away...and the original problems aren't being addressed. Seems sort of silly to me.
This is new...I'm in the car on the way to my dad's house. And I realized that I often feel like overeating because I'm somehow worried that someone is going to take my food away. Or that the food won't be there tomorrow. I didn't want to forget that thought, and I think I will explore it more when I get home. In the meantime, any thoughts on that?
Oh, and I was able to listen to Geneen Roth's free telecast tonight. Good stuff. Major takeaway thoughts: stay physically centered as much as possible, and it is possible to only eat a bite or two of any given food. I'll be thinking of that last one a lot at the big Italian Christmas Eve dinner tomorrow!
Dec 8th, 2010 at 6:24pm At 10 pm, I will have been quit for 10 days.
The first week went extremely well. For the past two days, I've been having a lot of problems. My sense of smell is back, and there's a student in my 1st hour who reeks of stale smoke (like a "parents smoke in the house" smell). It makes me feel sick to my stomach to be near her.
Also, my car still smells like smoke. I have NO idea how to get that smell out- I've got the windows open now, even though it's 35 degrees outside.
I feel really weepy and emotional and I thought I was having a panic attack today. I started binging yesterday and have been vacillating between grazing and overeating for two days. I'm super emotional and snappy and generally feeling like the world is falling apart. DH asked me if it could be PMS, and it can't- I'm at day 15 of my cycle. So, unless smoking was somehow masking PMDD symptoms, it's not that.
I've done a lot of work to try to figure out WHAT is wrong right now, and I can't figure it out. All I know is that I haven't felt so sad and disliked myself physically as much as I do today.
So, even though I posted a bit ago about having a bad day food-wise, I am really happy that I instantly realized that the eating is a way for me to try to take care of myself and deal with anxiety, etc. It's me trying to survive in the best way that I can at the moment, and since I'm not a self-actualized superhero, I am okay with my lack of perfection.
On the other hand, I'm starting to have a bit of negative self-image creeping in lately. I don't quite know when it started, although I suspect that I was unconsciously comparing myself (body checking) to other people at a party this weekend. It also could be due to my nervousness about having to pass my fitness test in April. I've already talked to my first sergeant, and he knows that I don't want to see my weight (even though I'm required to weigh in).
So, I generally do have very good self-esteem and self-image. I love my hair and my skin is looking good. I usually have a realistic view of my size, and sometimes I think I even am too kind to myself to the extent of maybe not making ENOUGH of a deal out of what I need to fix.
I guess that what I need to do is figure out how to feel okay about the April weigh-in, even though I can't weigh myself to see how much I need to lose and I won't know anything other than whether I passed or failed. I think this is part of my anxiety right now- I'm afraid of failing the fitness test, but I'm even MORE afraid of losing all the progress that I've made if I start focusing on my weight and diet.
Interesting realization today as i was ordering my very unhealthy lunch...i feel like I'm giving myself permission to eat. Which happens to be one of the fundamental parts of intuitivE eating.
So there is a distinct possibility that this is a great learning experience and exercise in self trust.
I've been wanting to exercise, and that will happen soon. I'm trying very hard to wait until I want to exercise *for me*, and not just because I need to pass a test. I think that will happen soon, though. Like I said, motivation is there- logistics are not.
I do feel a LOT better today. I posted upthread about how I ended up really giving myself unconditional permission to eat whatever I wanted, and I think that's an extremely big deal and a HUGE positive. I suspect that giving myself permission will also lead to me trusting that it really IS okay to quit eating when I'm not hungry, because I won't be worrying that the food will all suddenly go away if I don't inhale it. It's the difference between having a "bad day", then moving on...and having a "bad month" where I eat all the time and cry and beat myself up.
(I don't think most people will understand that feeling, and I'm sorry if you do. But if you do, I'll suggest that you do explore the whole Intuitive Eating thing, or check out Geneen Roth's stuff. It's helped a lot with that.)
I'm very, very lucky in that my 1st shirt understands why I don't want to be weighed. He doesn't want to trigger me, either. He's super awesome.
Here's what I have decided, and I'm really pleased that THIS is where my mind went with this situation:
The overeating is a really clear sign that I HAVE given myself permission to eat whatever I want. And I'm seeing that I don't beat myself up for it, and there is an ending point to the eating. This is huge progress. And, if I'm seeing progress in this regard, it means that I'll eventually become more and more intuitive. I don't have to worry about my weight at all.
That I'm starting to get antsy to start exercise is another good sign. I want to feel healthy and vital, and that will help with a lot of things.
Progress. I haz it.
I had an epiphany on the way to work today. I realized that the reason I want to exercise is because I want to lose weight/get smaller/wear smaller clothing. It's not because of the health benefits. I realized this because I asked myself, "Would I be happy if my cardio fitness was awesome and I could run a 10k and I could max out on pushups and situps and I was the exact same size I am now?" and the answer was no.
Focusing on the health, emotional, and psychological benefits of regular exercise is important to me. I'd like to come up with a way to measure improvement over time that does NOT involve weight or body measurements. Here's what I have so far:
Improved run time (if I can run- it's winter) Increase in # of pushups/situps I can do Improved sleep
What are some other things that are quantifiable?
(I think it's been a pretty emotionally draining couple of days!)
It all depends on perspective and where I focus my attention.
I've been feeling really strange today- maybe like I'm having a mild panic attack or like I'm getting sick or something. Basically, I feel physically crummy. And I feel really tired. And I've been on the verge of crying all day and part of yesterday.
I don't know what is going on. It might be because I'm getting sick, or it might be because I haven't smoked in almost 10 days, or it may be something completely different.
And, I've been binging today. Not to the point of utter insanity, but it's certainly a binge. That's part of the "terrible" part of the day.
Now for the great part. There was a point sometime late this afternoon where I involuntarily asked myself, incredulously, "What are you DOING???" And I answered myself, again without thinking, "I'm surviving."
I may not be engaging in picture-perfect eating practices today. But I am caring for myself in the best way that I can at the moment, and I'm being kind and forgiving to myself. That's way more important. I do wish I could figure out what is going on, though.
I'm sitting here playing on the internet, and I realized that I was having a serious craving for the leftover spaghetti in the fridge. I'm not super hungry (although I feel like I'm starting to maybe get a little hungry). This is very obviously "head hunger", which means that something is going on. I don't all of a sudden want to eat, especially warm carbs, unless there's something wrong.
So. I'm also noticing that I feel a little emotional, and there's a little lump in my throat. I feel a little like I'm going to cry. What's that all about? I've been having a little bit of "happy sad" today, because my son turns six tomorrow. I don't know why 6 is a big deal, except that he's a year older, and he's looking more like a big boy, and I'm really enjoying his company. It's mom blubbering, I guess.
I've also been really down on my physical shape lately. While I've been almost internally boastful about my face and hair (I've been spending a ridiculously large amount of time preening in the mirror, I'm ashamed to say), I've also noticed a resurgence in negative self-talk regarding my weight and size. It hasn't been very nice. And really, I'm not sure how to be kind to myself regarding the parts of my body that I WANT to change without starting to fixate on them. And that worries me.
Oh, and I quit smoking 8 days ago. That might have something to do with both my weight AND my emotions.
But mostly, I feel like my body can't possibly be what my husband wants to look at. I feel like I can't be appealing to him and I feel really unsexy. I know that he really doesn't care, but I do. I don't feel like a sex symbol, and I've got this idea in my head that I have to be physically perfect in order to be desirable. I feel like he's looking at other women and then coming home to me and thinking, "What the hell am I here for?"
I may still be hungry, but I don't feel as desperate to eat now. I'll see how I feel in a few. But writing really helps.
It's been a few minutes past 4 smoke-free days. And I can honestly say that this has been the easiest quit I've ever done. I did notice a few really uncomfortable days, but nothing that made me feel like I was "dying", which has been a pretty typical internal response to quitting in the past.
So, what's different this time?
I know that I was extremely prepared for the quit. I had relaxation strategies in place months before the quit occurred, and I was already thinking about long-term plans while I was still smoking. I did a LOT of extra preparing work this time.
I believe that the work with Intuitive Eating and Breaking Free have also done so much good for my entire self, and that this work transcends my dietary or physical health. I feel grounded- I feel like I am living much more "in the present", instead of fretting over the past or freaking out about the future. I'm much more likely to read feelings realistically, instead of building them up into something irrational and insane.
I wish I had known all of this was possible years ago.