Saturday, January 28, 2012
How many times have you heard to enjoy the journey? “Don’t wait until you’ve lost weight to enjoy life; start enjoying life now.” How many of you have struggled to do so?
I did, for most of the time I was losing weight. During the last few months of weight loss, I gained an appreciation for the steps I was taking, how far I’d come, the person I was evolving into. The majority of the time, though, was spent dreaming about a goal weight I equated starting a desired life.
Of course that’s not the way it happened. Last April, I wrote a blog I saved but never posted, on account of how personal it was. It discussed the issues underlying my weight, my fears about reaching goal weight, and my resurfacing struggles with emotional eating. Anyone that’s read my blogs in past months knows that maintenance has been very difficult for me as I’ve battled emotional eating and bingeing on an increasingly frequent basis. Ironically, the more I’ve tried to take the lessons learned from weight loss and apply them to other areas of my life, the more I’ve slipped back into the very habits that led to my weight gain. As I’ve tried so hard to avoid *directly* facing the problem areas in my life, the self-doubt and self–defeating thoughts I’d largely kicked to the curb slipped back into my head and have been poisoning my self-confidence.
I became so impatient with the journey! I stopped caring about progress; perfection became the ideal. I wasn’t where I wanted to be, I wasn’t WHO I wanted to be. Therefore, I felt worthless. After losing over 110 pounds, the realization that self-improvement was an ongoing goal drained me. To discover that I still didn’t feel “good enough” threw me into a loop of self-hatred when all attempts at improving my life and, subsequently—in my head—my worth, fell flat, time after time, no matter the approach.
Three chapters in, Dr. Roger Gould’s book “Shrink Yourself: Break Free from Emotional Eating” addresses some of the exact issues I’d pinpointed a year ago. Even better, the second part of the book includes exercises so that I can actually take my awareness and *do something with it*! I haven't gotten to the exercises yet, but the promise of actually having steps I can take fills me with hope. While I’m not thrilled about where I am currently by any means, I’m excited about the journey again.
Earlier this week, I found an element of patience for myself that’s been lacking for months, and the finding helped pull me out of the several week-long depression that’s been imprisoning me. Tomorrow I may wake up impatient about the process again, but today, I’m deciding that I’m ok with me, just the way I am at this moment in time. I make mistakes, am flawed, and have weaknesses. That's ok.
How do YOU stay in the moment and enjoy your own journeys?
Thursday, January 12, 2012
I was thiiis *hold fingers 1/4 inch apart* close to binge eating again tonight.
I recognized the precipitating thoughts and emotions, in detail. I recognized the distorted thinking patterns luring me.
I went on the Panic Button! message boards and saw that some of the responses to previous threads weren't as immediate as I needed for a deterrent.
I listened in on 1 1/2 Overeaters Anonymous telephone meetings.
I didn't binge.
Sunday, January 08, 2012
I want to be the girl who feels like she's on top of the world because she lost 115 pounds. I want to have it together, to feel in control, to be a success. I want to be empowered; I want to ~feel~ empowered.
I don't know how I ever lost weight in the first place. I keep trying to remember; but the truth is, it doesn't even feel like it was me that did it. It was some other person, some strong person, some person who's dead now. Me: I'm just the fat screw-up.
The person who lost 115 pounds wouldn't be out of her maintenance range because she's been bingeing close to every single day. She wouldn't sabotage and punish herself continually. She'd hear the voice in her head reminding herself of her goals and the steps needed to achieve them, and instead of blocking out that voice's advice, she'd listen to it.
I want to be healthy and happy and strong. I don't want to feel like I have to tack extra time onto my workouts and extra workouts into my week to compensate for my eating. I don't want to have urges to make myself throw up because I feel so fat and disgusted with myself and physically ill from bingeing. But I'm there. I don't know how to go back to how I used to be. I hate the person I've become.
If I felt capable of getting my eating under control, I'd be tempted to restart weight loss and keep going until I couldn't lose any more. I know the problems are tied up with weight maintenance. Until I hit goal, I was a success. I kept reaching goals; I felt unstoppable; I got compliments all the time; I had something I was good at. And then the compliments trickled down (although I do still get some intermittently, but that actually makes me feel worse now because I'm the biggest fraud there is), and I didn't have any more goals I could reach, and I went back to sucking at everything. No job, no life, no friends, no money, no talents, no skills, no high when I stepped on the scale and saw a lower number. And I know that my weight and appearance are insignificant in the grand scheme of things; even with my recent weight gain I know that. [It's the ongoing upward trend and lack of control that's really concerning me about my gain.] But my weight is ALL I'VE BEEN GOOD AT for years. I'm not even good at that anymore. If I could be, I don't think I'd let it go again. It's not that I hate how I look or think that I need to be skinny to be worthy. I just need to succeed at something to be worthy, and weight loss is the only thing I have any hope of controlling.
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