Saturday, April 24, 2010
I'm back and I am done with the weeks of food centered events that daunted me so back at the end of March. Tomorrow is my weigh in and it'll be interesting to see how I've done, scale wise, but I already know how I've done on just about every other healthy front.
Very very well.
I'll go into that more tomorrow, when I can fold in any numerical successes I might have, but I do want to talk about the trick I used on this most recent trip. It's a Martha Beck 4-day win trick too and not one I would ever have thought of trying if I hadn't had the back story to it so I'll give you both. First the back story in extreme brevity. A rescue dog who had been starved as a puppy would bury a bone every day, on the floor beside his new, loving owners' fireplace. Of course, the bone was not buried, but lying right out in plain view, but the dog, who suffered fear of hunger, felt like it was safely buried and so long as nobody paid any attention to it, he was a perfect pet. Threaten his stash and the dog went ballistic. His fight-or-flight trigger went off whenever he felt like he might be deprived of food. He didn't overeat. In all ways he was a normal dog except over his need to have is cache, stored safely away.
In other words - our lizard brain will go ballistic if it even Feels like it doesn't have an adequate cache. But so long as it has one, the reptilian brain quiets down. The stash can be stored off site - perhaps not on the floor by the fireplace, but certainly not on our hips and thighs. Maybe packed away in a suitcase or a kitchen cabinet.
I know this goes in direct contrast to popular thought .... don't have contraband food in the house. But I had never yet been able to survive the groaning tables of rich food served by the folks at Graves Mountain Lodge, accompanied by lots of other people sitting beside me, piling it on, without joining them and I've been going there for 12 years. What if I knew I had a stash of chocolate wonder in my suitcase back up in my room? What if I could tell myself "pass on this and just go back and dig your spoon into that dark chocolaty nutella jar"? What would happen?
I'll tell you - I was able to get through 4 mammoth meals eating only 3 bites beyond that sensation of "Oh, I'm no longer hungry". Not 3 bites past feeling full, but up to the point of "not hungry". That's 3 bites spread over 4 meals. I was never "full" the whole time. I was always Just Right. In fact - I forgot about the Nutella by the second day and only remembered when I was unpacking last night and found it in a side pocket of my bag. And I never actually ATE any!
A huge bell is going ding-ding-ding-ding-ding in my brain. My WC is saying "Aren't you glad you listened to me?" I had a simply delightful time and by that last meal I felt actual Confidence as I sat down with friends and selected, from just a few heaping platters, the small bit of lunch I wanted.
Knowing I had that chocolate option was a great comfort. It made it easy for me to say "nah - I'll pass on desert" because I knew if I wanted something later ... it was there. What a discovery.
Don't think I'm advocating a house full of junk food. But having my bone packed in the suitcase really took the pressure off me. It freed me from the buried, hidden, denied, emotional pain of Fear of No Food. An irrational fear, I admit, but hey, there nonetheless. And years of Not Listening to that fear haven't helped my weight. I'm willing to give listening to it a try. Listening and finding a soothing counter to it.
Happy Saturday to you - I am rewarding myself with a New Knitting Project!
Monday, April 19, 2010
In the 1980's I began to see books about the bicameral mind creeping into the public market. The phrase was coined by Julian James in his book "The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind" which I tried to read and found heavy going. The one that hit the popular market hardest, though, was "Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain" by Betty Edwards, though my mother, a very fine artist, claimed that most of her ideas were representations of Kimon Nicolaides book "The Natural Way to Draw" which I own and pull out and enjoy every now and then.
Okay - last of the librarian stuff - promise.
I'm really here to report about my experiment with letting my WC right brain actually write to my SM left brain a la Martha Beck's suggestion.
First off, it was fun. It was a wee tiny bit scary but it was also exhilarating. I used her suggested questions from the word dominated left brain School Marm and wrote whatever popped into my head when I switched the pen over to the right brain Wild Child. Here's the conversation:
SM: Hey how are you?
WC: fine thanks
SM: What can I do for you today?
WC: food not hungry (something, something) rest, dog, glad
SM: What can I do to help you eat less?
WC: Play, go, rest, slow, sleep, run run, song, listen, ha ha hahaha
SM: Well, I'll give all these a try. More sleep and more laughter, huh?
WC: Got it, more sleep, gogogo
SM: OK - well, I'll see you tomorrow, we'll talk again - often
Hey - it doesn't take someone with a psychology degree to see that my Wild Child wants more play and laughter and MORE SLEEP! And maybe more time petting my dogs. But the interesting thing was that I could really tap into how I felt the rest of the day - and into the evening - especially about food. I did NOT eat too much - and 90% of it was both healthy and delicious. And there was a sort of calm glow going on.
I can't wait to try this again.
And this morning, when I woke up at about quarter after 4, I didn't rationalize that it would soon be 5 and I might as well get up and go do stuff. I very deliberately turned over and went back to sleep, waking up at quarter after 6, feeling pretty good but wishing I had another day off today as sweet as yesterday's. I really need to schedule some vacation time.
Saturday, April 17, 2010
Thank you all so much for the good wishes. We're going to spend the whole day playing together but our biorhythms don't change even for an anniversary so my Night Owl is still asleep while this Lark has a few moments to blog and I have a few thoughts I want to share before I forget them. Sieve brain stuff.
As you all know, I have been devoting a fairly good bit of time to letting my Wild Child and my School Marm duke it out and I am much more aware of fleeting emotions as they flicker through me. The hint of jealousy when a friend tells you of an adventure she's setting out on, while you are just scrubbing the bathroom floor. The pinch of frustration when the 60 watt light bulb is too dim and you haven't any stronger ones and it's 10 o'clock at night. That tiny pinch of anger when the socks are on the bedroom floor instead of in the hamper that is right next to them.
It dawned on me that it's important to acknowledge those twinge emotions because ... I think that tamping them down, ignoring them because we are ashamed of them, because it's polite, because they aren't really important enough to investigate, makes us stop listening to all sorts of emotions - which are our Wild Child's way of warning us that something's wrong. We just placate it with chocolate.
Well. I'll be. hmm. have I had a light bulb moment here?
I also notice about my WC and my SM is that for the most part they like each other and cooperate. Like true siblings they squabble and argue and each can make the other truly miserable. What I realize is that they both want me to be safe, they both want my life to be good and they often embrace.
So, I'm working my way through the 4-day win book, making head changes. I'm about finished my ridiculously easy first 4-day win, which I have accomplished, so long as I eat no more than 2 deserts tonight. LOL Really! That was what makes it so ridiculous. It's been hard to do the daily rewards because I tend to forget about that part, but the 4 day win reward, which is sort of big this time, because it's the first and because we're getting a tax refund, is to purchase some yarn from elann dot com - because they have some stuff I want to buy.
And I am utterly drooling at the idea of writing with both hands, dominant hand asking questions and Wild Child hand answering - so that is going to be my next 4-day win challenge. I'll let you know how it goes. Sounds like an art class to me!
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