Monday, November 23, 2009

I Need an Ear

i've been on the road for weeks and will be traveling until xmas. thank you everyone for your comments on the blog, and i'm sorry i haven't had much chance to respond. i've been reading everyone's blogs but again, i run out of time. can't wait for the xmas break!!!!

so, as i've said repeatedly, i'm a travelin' gal. some of it's good -- i've read gallons of wonderful books, journaled numerous pages, seen very pretty parts of the country and had some really good business meetings.

on the other hand, the travel can wear me down. right now, i have my period and my usual cramps and have two very long days of convention ahead of me. that means long hours on my feet, cheerily (how?) greeting and informing throngs of people.

my cramps can rule my life. (sorry if this gets a little graphic). nothing works (i have tried EVERYTHING but surgery for endometriosis and the IUD.) for the first time in a very long time something popped into my head (i was doubled over on the toilet. not much else to do but think.) when i didn't get my period for years, i didn't have to deal with cramps. that was wonderful. BUT, when i didn't get my period it was because i was way too thin to menstruate.

that's really dysfunctional thinking, and i won't starve myself like that again. but it was a thought and it lingered. and it still lingers. i have some mental work to do.

also, the time changes screw up my eating. we've been going to california (three hours earlier) almost every week, and we layover in denver (two hours earlier). wherever we are, my brother wants to eat. if it's noon somewhere, it's lunchtime. we land in california at 4pm, but it's 7 back home so, you guessed it, it's time to eat.

i don't always eat with my brother and sister-in-law, but i do have a hard time figuring out when i'm hungry. i'm jet-lagged and tired a lot, so it's challenging to be in touch with my body.

the schedule's different too. this morning we had to be at the convention center at 6:30 am for a day of exhibiting (i'm on a break now.) getting up at 5;30 throws my whole day off and again, i can't get into a comfortable eating mode.

if i'm traveling a little less, i can handle it, and i've got it fairly well covered at home -- i live my life and don't obsess about the whole food/weight thing too much.

BUT, BUT, BUT here on the road, i'm noticing a new (re-newed) interest in food, my body, restricting, etc. is it a distraction? is it that i'm not in control of my time or my own schedule, so i'm trying to control what i can? i bet that's it. right now, i'm on my brother's time. he and my sister-in-law are the bosses. and they have the car. my sister-in-law talks about her weight ALL THE TIME. she also complains constantly about my brother's weight and yells at him for everything he eats. they're both short-tempered. you never know when my brother's going to get nasty, so i'm on usually on edge. he's so rude to service people -- waiters, hotel clerks, starbucks baristas...

any ideas for keeping me mentally healthy? i'm resistant and cranky (hormones, anyone?)

traveling's hard on all my recovery. when i go to california, i get back into sleeping pills. i don't abuse them, but i do take ambien. i need to stop that, no matter the consequences. but i DESPISE the thought of not sleeping and being even more exhausted.

finally, a glass of wine would be nice (no, it wouldn't). we go to lovely restaurants, my sister-in-law drinks a lot, and i wish i were home with my fiance and my lemonade. i'd like to stay in my room sometimes, but rarely have that choice.

the alcohol i can handle. the sleeping pills are harder, but i want to be drug-free. i think i'll start that over xmas break. also some of our trips until then are more local, and i won't need (want) the ambien.

food. it always comes back to food and the body. i don't have answers right now. i just wanted to write this out, to "speak" to people who understand.

THANK YOU for listening. it's so important to have friends on the road!!!!


  1. dont have much advice for you I am afraid, since I am not much of a traveller. The best i can say is make sure to get enough sleep because that helps EVERYTHING. Have you tried trazodone for sleep? It's not habit forming.

    Good on you for committing to not drinking that wine :)! I had to remind myself today why alcohol is so bad for me. I was buying holiday baking supplies and guess what you can't find any almond or peppermint extract that doesn't contain alcohol. But I feel sure I will not drink it so I guess that is ok.
    Maybe after all this travelling settles down you can give yourself a nice long break.

  2. I don't have the mental strength right now to comment or even think about the food, but want to suggest melatonin for sleeping. I have 1 g pills, and they never fail to put me down within 20 minutes, and keep me down for 6 hours (my normal sleep amount).

  3. I know for me traveling is super, super hard. The time changes, the chaos that comes with traveling, the unpredictable food, the reduced sleep. It can be a recipe for eating disordered behaviors for me. Mostly, traveling causes me great anxiety (reasons listed above), and restricting calms my anxiety. I think you just have to know what's going to work for you. I've told my employers that I "don't travel." They assume I have some fear of planes, and I let them think that. You deserve time to yourself, to meet your needs and get centered. Will the traveling ease up a bit? I think it's hard for anyone to be on the road, so don't be too hard on yourself if you're having less-than-healthy thoughts. Everyone likes a home base that feels safe and secure. Keep blogging or talking to people who can ground you, and I'd say to try to take out a certain chunk of the day just for you, whether it's a bath or massage or meal by yourself.

  4. traveling throws me off,too. no good advice, right now... as i am hiding from the Office Thanksgiving Dinner and feeling kinda ashamed about it...

    We enjoy your writing, thank you for updating!

  5. I think it's really hard travelling with others who try to make you eat at their times. The best thing will be to get away from your brother. If not possible, try to keep sanity however you can (no answers unfortunately)

    Glad to hear from you and hope all goes well!

  6. My son takes melatonin and swears it helps him sleep, but it didn't do anything for me. It's worth a try though. I've been taking benadryl before bed for about a week, and it's working like a charm! Also my husband has lost some weight and thus stopped snoring. That helps too.

    As for how to get through your day when you're surrounded by insanity, well, how about audiobooks or meditations on your ipod? My therapist would say to practice mindfulness, although I haven't gotten very good at that yet. Singing songs in your head could work, I personally like the ABC song. Seriously.

  7. lisa, lisa: yes, life without alcohol is incomparably better. i do take trazedone, but i don't find it all that helpful. i wish i did. no, i wish i were a better sleeper, right? thank you for the suggestion. it was a good one.

    i am home and finally getting some rest. i slept most of turkey day and then for ten more hours at night. feeling much, much, much better.

    julie; hang in there. for me, staying with family was always so, so, so hard. i'm sure you're doing the best you can. and when you get home, you can feel like yourself again. have faith!

    kim; i made it! i'm home until tuesday. ahhhh. i'm definetely working on career change. i haven't figured it all out yet, but i'm heading in the right direction. i have two more traveling weeks before xmas and then i have some time at home.

    taking time and treasuring it is so important. i have a hard time on the road, particularly with time change and very early mornings. i'm trying to take that time in the evening before bed. it's getting better. hormones made this trip particularly difficult. but it's over. yippee!!!!!

    ghost; i read this a couple of days ago and laughed out loud and cheered. i've ducked out of so many office events. why do they have those stupid things? give us a check and let us go home! i have to say, though, i knew so many people who loved, loved, loved these "free meals" and parties. WHY?

    thank you for all your support!

    Topiary Cow; your name alone brings great cheer. yes, ducking (no animal reference intended) the brother's a great idea. i will work on some ideas and report back.

    i find it odd that i, a gal who's recovering from an eating disorder, travel weekly with a foodaholic. he needs to hire someone with a tape worm.

    Harriet; mindfulness can really help me, but i do find it difficult, particularly if i'm tired and would really like to be somewhere else. i've never learned to meditate -- it's a good idea and probably would help.

    i'm glad your husband's stopped snoring. i can't sleep through snores, although, evidently i snore. isn't that embarrassing? i have tried melatonin and it didn't do much. maybe i have to give it more of a chance.

    singing songs in my head. brilliant. in fact,when my brother and his wife start arguing, i think i'll sing out loud! thanks, harriet.

  8. When I am on holiday I think non stop of food. Apart from the fact I am fairly nit picky about food I also worry that I will come back from a trip with extra weight which would be depressing. Last year I lost 4kg in 3 weeks on holiday.

    Now I have a four week trip coming up I will be eating out every day, every meal. It is very stressful. It does my head in.

    When I used to get periods I took huge amounts of evening primose oil every day. It helped with the pmt slightly. Sadly, the cramps were just hard to get rid of, thinking about them now makes me feel ill. The hysterectomy helped hugely, but that is a drastic solution to say the least.

  9. I left a great comment here the day you posted this, and it must have gotten eaten. It happens all the time over at Linda's place. It's somehow my fault, I'm screwing it up somehow.


  10. I realize it's not 2009 anymore, however I just found your blog and have been reading it from start to finish. I went through the ED stuff for 6 years, I still have my moments but I'm enjoying life. My sister in law had terrible endometriosis and took gluten and dairy out of her diet and according to her the results are life changing. It's worth a shot? Thanks for sharing and best of luck!