Stress is so powerful. A few blogs back I talked about excuses, there are always some, somewhere. I wanted to be strong under seige, stress coming at me from every quarter. I held up for awhile, then I faultered and stood back up, unsteady. Then I crumpled, I cried and I ate. I didn't totally numb with crazy amounts of carbs, but I used food as a drug. Once I crumpled, I threw in the towel. I quit bothering to exercise, or log food, or take care of myself. I did the best I could with the children, they are fairly well cared for, my 6 year old missed a few homework and physical therapy days - and with her special needs, that's important. Having a baby that's so sick, that may not make it, that's in and out of the hospital, is stress beyond imagining. Then he smiles and I remind myself to be here now with that beautiful smile and be thankful for now, that's all any of us have. I'm committed to making now as good as possible. Yesterday my 6 year old had a cardiac crisis at school, I was already shakey coming from the cystic fibrosis sweat test with the baby...my brain almost shut down, I had to make myself breathe to think of the sequence of actions I needed to take to move through the crisis. Stress is so powerful. My chest hurts just writing about it. She's okay, she recovered, no hospitalization, but a sober reminder, her life is tentative, her heart so fragile. Shook me to the core. The minutes ticked by painfully slow as I waited for the cardiology call, a half sigh of relief that we can 'wait and see' before heading to the children's hospital 2 hours away and an impeding cardiac surgery. 2 hours more of waiting for the sweat test results almost resulted in a stress response fight as my partner and I moved the refridgerator out of the house...(another stressor..), the call came just in time as our tones were becoming less friendly..it's not cystic fibrosis.. that's a huge relief. But still we have the pediactric pulmonologist...a lung biopsy..so many more hurdles. My partner and I ate hand fulls of cereal as we talked about the journey ahead and our stressful eating habits. We reinforced each other's emotional eating. We also knew how many calories the cereal was and that we could be eating potato chips and ice cream, probably would have if we had any...since I was without a fridge so long, I didn't do much shopping.. I try to not buy that stuff very often, but I still do. At least I know myself enough to know I can't totally forbid it or I would just run to the store and binge - just to have some control over something. I didn't run to the store. It's an improvement. Somehow I have to learn to manage stress with my partner, so we don't reinforce each others emotional eating as we process the stressful experiences. We are best friends and bring out the best in each other at every turn, we were being conscious as we had handulls of the cereal, but we never shifted to another method of processing, that's what we need to shift. I'm underperforming in every segment - the stress is draining me. I know exercise would help, but I can't seem to get out the door, I let other things take priority. I'm lapsing into zoning with the tv and video games for short breaks, when I know some stretches and writing would be so much more revitalizing. It's so hard to make the healthiest choices under seige. Even when the healthiest choices will sustain us the best. So I'm not calling it an excuse, but I'm acknowledging how challenging it is to be under stress, under seige and underperforming. Having let go of guilt, at least the underperforming (in housework, work, parenting, errands, etc.) isn't devastating me. When I did guilt, I would really beat myself up for underperforming, I'd be downright abusive internally. That is such a huge shift, that I can at least be trying to be healthy, in trying to sustain some good choices. When I did guilt - I did true gluttony - true binging - true hopelessness - it was a very vicious and unhealthy cylce. So, I know I'm making progress, now to keep moving in the right direction.