Friday, April 29, 2011

Hello Mojo

I'm happy to say that my mojo is back! Hallelujah.

I'm comfortable with food again -- YAY! it took a while, and i sure felt uncomfortable but things are back to normal. i'm not stressing or obsessing, which is brilliant.

i suppose it started with the food journal. writing everything down helped me see where and when i was using food for purposes other than fuel and nourishment. giving up gum and candy made me feel so much better about myself too. although i've struggled some with missing my candy, overall i don't even want it.

with the food journal, i did send it to my acquaintance, Mary, as she suggested, but i haven't heard back, and it's been a week. somehow, that's okay. i needed her comfort so much that night that i called her. her kindness and suggestionss in that moment put me right on the path of healing. perhaps, that is just what i needed.

i've also been making myself go to bed earlier, and that really helps. i'm such a night owl and hate the morning BUT i don't have that luxury with the new job's schedule. being inflexible was only hurting me, so i'm off to bed a little earlier and really feel better.

i've been working on myself -- working on patience, kindness, compassion, tolerance, gratitude......all this helps more than anything i could ever dream of.

and very importantly, i got a couple of highlights and, finally!, a cute haircut -- it makes all the difference. i was feeling frumpy and pasty and my hair was drab and the cut was kind of square-shaped. now i have a little bounce and some brightness, and i swear, i'm a new woman.

Compassion and a good haircut -- what else does a girl need?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

A Girl Can Dream

this life here, right now, is kinda "eh". sooo, i am perking up to get things going. a girl can dream -- dreaming, happily, is free.

sooo, the job is quite "eh". there's still pretty much nothing for me to do, and i get the really scut jobs, if any. it's not particularly good for the ego, BUT i am doing so much work on myself around it. i need a job, i need to pay my rent, i need benefits and this is where i am right now, and it really is okay

but, this is not where i have to be forever. that's where dreaming comes in. and that's how i'm going to spend some time today. where would i like to be? what kind of work sounds appealing? what do i want in a job, a home, a life? what do i want for myself. what's important to me? what are my values? what am i doing to live them?

i've sort of been biding time, trying to make the hours pass at work. but that's not how i want to spend my days -- life is too short to kill time. what can i do to make the most of this life?

i'm a little nervous. will i get overwhelmed, as i do so often? will i decide i'm too under-qualified for everything i want in life? will my old negative voices kick in, as they always have in the past? and then what will i do to bring in new, hopeful voices?

hmm, we'll see.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


i'm shutting down the gum and candy. i just emptied my purse and put all my goodies out for my colleagues. they're in bubble gum heaven.

i've had enough. it's kind of like when i put down the drink -- i was done.

after work, i'm off to the dentist to have two cavities filled. that's FOUR total this year. i've had tons of cavities and several root canals. ouch. i'm sure it's all the gum and candy (none sugarless).

plus, it's obsessive and just a replacement for food, alcohol, drugs....whatever. i've used whatever i can to calm myself.

we'll see what happens. it's going to be pretty uncomfortable, i'm sure. uh, very sure. (hope i don't take up smoking!)

but i want to make this change. i want to be healthier. i want to be free of all my obsessive chewing and sucking; all my comforting through snacks.

writing this here on the blog is meant to help keep me "honest". i'll be checking back with status updates.

i'm not touching coffee and diet soda. yet.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Sending the Food Journal

i'm procrastinating typing up my food journal and sending it to Mary. i was completely honest, and it's somewhat embarrassing. i'm too mortified to tell you guys how many pieces of bubble gum i chew in a day. and how many diet sodas go down.

i truly hadn't realized how many old habits i still have! but i am excited to start fresh -- to give my body a chance to be happy and healthy.

On a different topic (well, it's really the same topic, isn't it?), i'm a little nervous about Easter. I haven't been nervous about a holiday in years, but this time i way 15 pounds more than i have in many years, and i'm not as comfortable.

Plus, we're eating early which, historically, is tough for me. And i'm going to my best friend's house. His mother is the best cook of all time, and makes enough wonderful Easter food to feed the Tri-State. and THEN she also makes enough Italian food to please Rome -- all from scratch.

Growing up, i spent most Christian holidays (i'm Jewish) at my best friends house. Christmas Eve AND Christmas day were gastronomic miracles. At different points in my eating disorder, i'd have varying amounts of difficulty with the meals BUT i loved his family so much and being with them and for once, feeling a part of a family, that it didn't much matter. i was just gloriously happy to be with them.

i haven't seen the family in over ten years. we were all living in different areas, and i had my own (crazy) life.

this year, i invited myself. my parents are gone, my brother and i still aren't on particularly good terms, and my sister's in Pittsburgh. I WANT FAMILY.

i've been praying a lot about it. i want to go and enjoy the company and catching up with everyone. i want to enjoy a nice meal but keep the focus on the joy of this beautiful sunny day spent with people who are so dear.

i'll let you know..

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Some Help

i just made my first entry in my first ever food journal. it's kind of a breakthrough. Never, ever before, in all my 47 years, have i shared my food intake with another human being. what i ate was between me and my eating disorder and that was that -- a sacred pact. I refused to share with any therapist or nutritionist. None of their nosey business, i told myself

Until now.

I've been displeased with what i've been eating and how my body feels lately. I've been leaning on diet sodas, sucking candies and late night snacking. It just doesn't feel healthy.

but i hadn't known what to do or where to turn. then it hit me -- a lovely woman in AA is a nutritionist who had nearly my exact eating/food/body issues. She's been doing great for years (she, Mary, also has something like 20 years of sobriety.)

Mary always looks great and healthy and she's got a very happy and full life. And I like her.

Yesterday, I got her number from a friend and called her. She was WONDERFUL and truly "got" where i'm at and knew exactly what i was talking about. another plus, we're about the same age with one major difference -- she feels great and has lots of energy. Me, not so much.

Mary offered to work with me in any way she can. She told me to write down everything i eat for three days and we'll look at that and go from there.

I am beyond excited and relieved. Mary really has everything in perspective -- she eats for nourishment, and she eats healthfully BUT she used to be just like me.

I'm also thrilled that she has a really solid Twelve Step background. On the AA front, she's a true leader who's founded meetings and sponsored many, many women.

That's why i just made my first entry in my food journal and i have no problem with it. My new, free life awaits!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Just the Way I Am

i want to remember that i am fine the way i am.

yes, i want to find a way to feel more free around food and weight. i would like food to truly settle into its proper role -- fueling and nourishing.

when i'm depressed and bored and frustrated, sad or upset, i want to turn to God, not to Werther's caramels. and i'm hoping i'll find some resources in OA and all my reading that will allow me to take the steps toward the freedom i seek.

yet, i also want to be okay with myself, just as i am right now. i am a fine, healthy weight. would the ED in me like me to weigh less? sadly, it's still a yes. so, part of my process is learning to accept me for me.

maybe i don't want a food plan? maybe, i don't mind eating the way i do now? i don't really over-eat. i truly like healthy food, in general. i do eat dinner very late, but i always have (my mom worked very late when i was little and dinner was often past 10 pm.) i never let myself get famished. i don't binge or purge.

but i do still use food for comfort. i definetely lean on diet soda to get me thru the day. and all the gum and candy. i'm getting tired of it, yet i can't seem to slow down or stop. hmmm, guess i do need some help here.

good to know.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Figuring it Out

it started with eating. sure, later i found drugs, alcohol, spending, obsessing about men...

but it started with food.

i'm going to get to the bottom of this. i'm going to be okay.

i've been reading a great book, Food: The Good Girl's Drug, by Sunny Sea Gold. It's all about binge-eating. i identified one million percent. my eating disorder started with binging, day and night. after i gained 70 pounds, i caught the starving disease. starving, as it so often does, lead me to binging, then purging.

i've come a loooong way, baby, but i still worry about my weight, still think of food when in need of comfort, still look forward to eating alone at night and well, i haven't got this down yet.

i'm going to. i'm not giving up until i'm living in this world content with my body and having food in its proper place.


Saturday, i'm going to an Overeaters Anonymous meeting. i've never been before. i'm not sure it's for me, but i'm interested in seeing how it works. AA, of course, changed my life in every way, but it makes more sense -- you can (you must) abstain from alcohol. but food? we'll see.

i've decided to make a study of this whole thing on my path to real freedom.

Ciao, ED.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Hormones and the ED

...with apologies to men. and anyone else who doesn't feel like hearing about this. also, maybe triggering?

yes, it's that time of the month. the time where i'm completely on edge and grimacing, no matter what you or anyone else says. it's the time where i am crippled for 2.5 days of pulsating cramps -- yes, i swear they vibrate. and now is the time when no pants (not even one's from ten pounds up) fit. as i write this, my super stretch jeans are unbuttoned, and i'm about to change into sweats before i head out to pick up Chinese food for dinner.

of course, there's nothing wrong with getting Chinese food. there's nothing wrong with eating dinner.

but why did i think about food all day? why did i think food would comfort my screeching, exploding belly? a "normal" person, (read: someone not reared on bingeing, purging, and starving) would want nothing less than a meal at these particular moments. in fact, they might have to force themselves to eat some rice or crackers or something to coat their stomachs before they take their next five Advil.

hmmmm. come to think about it, maybe i really just need some rice and maybe some gentle protein to fuel my body and coat my stomach before gobbling afforementioned ibuprofen.

this post sounds like the "old" me. hormones make me cuckoo. i'm thinking about not posting this -- is it pissy? resentful? vaguely nasty? is it triggering?

is it? please let me know. i have no perspective at this moment. Thanks!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

comparing ourselves

turns out, the gorgeous woman who sits next to me at work weighs exactly what i do. how happy am i -- she's perfect, so i must be okay.

but here's the thing -- why am i comparing myself to every human on earth? i'll even watch my guy friends eat and gauge what i'm eating against what they consume. with the guy i'm seeing i'll hear myself thinking, "he's 5'11 and weighs 170; i'm 5'6 and 135. he ate a whole sandwich, but i had more potatoes..." how ridiculous.

i compare myself to everyone about everything, actually. i think everyone's better, smarter, funnier... mostly, i assume everyone knows better than i do.

i'm starting to work on this. it's SUCH a habit -- it's shockingly constant. at this point, i'm more noticing than taking action - it's so ingrained.

i'm working to ground myself in myself. THIS is where i am and who i am right now, separate from other people and who they are.

it actually feels odd. i've always gauged who i am against other people.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

My Answer

A.A. in Two Words

"All A.A. progress can be reckoned in terms of just two words: humility and responsibility. Our whole spiritual development can be accurately measured by our degree of adherence to these magnificent standards.

Ever deepening humility, accompanied by an ever greater willingness to accept and to act upon clear-cut obligations - these are truly our touchstones for all growth in the life of the spirit. They hold up to us the very essence of right being and right doing. It is by them that we are enabled to find and to do God's will."

Bill Wilson from a talk in 1965 (Printed in Grapevine in 1966)

i didn't know what else to do. Humility seems to be my answer. Work is finally fine. I realize nothing is beneath me (except denigrating or judging others)-- this is where i am in life. Learning and practicing humility is something i've never done before. it's actually kind of interesting and it's makes everything, well, just fine.

as for taking responsibility -- living up to my side of the bargain, changing the things i can and accepting the things i can't -- well, that's pretty cool too.

these two words bring me great peace and freedom.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Not a Problem

i'm going to mention my weight and my eating, so if that's difficult for anyone, i completely understand.

I'm 5'6, and this morning I weighed 135 at the boy's house. That's the most i weighed in years and years and years. It's fine, and I look fine, but i'm no longer super thin, as i was for years. In my mind, being slim was one of my best (and only)claims to fame

Last summer, when my world was so crazy and i was drinking like crazy, i weighed 110. SUPER skinny -- i looked awful.

I've gained a lot of this weight recently and quickly. I'm sure that my horrible new work hours and unhappiness in the job have contributed to this burst of pounds - eating out of boredom comes into play. and with the weird hours, my body's not sure when it's truly hungry or if it's just tired.

BUT i've been eating differently and better. I used to live on salad and red wine. i had to seriously restrict to keep my weight light.

so, i'm no longer exclusive with salad. i'm now dating around. this must be fairly confusing for my body -- red meat! potato salad! butter!

I'm still okay, though. In the past i would have created a problem somewhere where there wasn't a problem

My weight is fine. I'm fine. The guy I'm seeing doesn't have an ounce of diminished passion, because i'm heavier than when he met me.

i was raised to believe that people would like me less if i weighed more. i was raised to believe this was acceptable. now, i believe neither. if someone's opinion of me changes because of weight gain, i don't want to know that crazy person.

i was raised to believe that all men would have no interest in me if i weighed more. so far, not the case. it's still a little difficult for me to believe, but the proof is in the.....well, the bedroom

this is still a work in progress, but it's good. i do wonder, though, if this bothers any of my readers -- talking about my quick weight gain? i don't want to scare anyone. my body has always really, really loved weight. and i don't exercise at all, (that's something i need to look at for my health and bones.)

it's my experience that when most people start eating more naturally, they don't gain anywhere near what i have. each body is different.

this journey has it's moments, but i find it pretty liberating and not particularly scarey. i'd love your feedback and reactions

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Accepting Weight Gain

Russian peasant stock. That's what i come from. All of my ancestors were strong and hearty and healthy. NOT thin.

i've written about this before, but it's coming up again. i'm not naturally thin. my body loves to gain weight and does so quite quickly and easily.

as i've been letting myself be about food, i've definetely put on weight. as i've forgone the daily weigh-in, my pants have tightened indeed. however, this is what's supposed to happen, i'm sure, for MY body.

i weighed myself at a friends' a few nights ago, and i'm now up 15 pounds since last year at this time. that's 35 pounds heavier than my lowest weight. am i healthier, you betcha. am i happier, YES. and i'm no longer living on red wine and salad.

i look like an adult woman, which makes a lot of sense, since that's what i am.

still, it can be difficult. i'd assumed that if i learned to eat intuitively, i would somehow end up nicely thin (not skinny). for many people, that happens. but i have to accept, as i've said, that i'm not naturally thin. i don't know what my natural weight is yet, but i want to be ready to accept it, no matter where it falls.

until then, i'm hanging in there, literally loosening my belt and staying away from the scale as much as possible. i also (and this is corny) look in the mirror and tell myself i look just fine. this actually works. i do look fine.

my guy friend pays me lovely compliments (love that!)and seems to find me pretty attractive.

i'm eating well. not binging, purging or starving. and i'm living life.

pretty good, if you think about it.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

What to do About My Job?

my new job's got me depressed. well, i guess i'm letting myself get depressed.

i have worked really diligently to keep myself from griping and moaning and whining and blowing off the steam. today, i need to vent. please forgive the rant.

there is NOTHING to do here. why did they hire me? I sense they thought it would be busier.

when i say i do nothing, take it literally. every once in a while, they hand me some grunt work -- make a few copies, send a fax, order lunch, pull a couple of files. other than that, i spend 8 hours trying to look busy. i fail.

i'm just not sure what to do. i'm considering checking to see if my old job will take me back. who knows if they would -- i left after only six months, thinkng this here was a good oppty. my last job didn't thrill, but it was fine.

i was happy then -- happy with my life, my adorable little apartment, my AA meetings, my friends. now, i'm depressed and obsessed -- all i can talk or think about is how bored i am all day. dread.

i need a job/paycheck, OF COURSE. and benefits, so it's not like i can just walk.

should i give it a chance? my boss tells me it will get busier and there is oppty, but can i make it, doing nothing for 40 hours per week until who knows when?

everyone is very nice. it's a small family business in a very small office. i like that's it's super casual -- i could wear pajamas and no one would care. if i need to leave early or take a day off, they don't care at all, and they'd pay me, even though i've been here only a few weeks.

still, i'm not a morning person and the job starts at 7:30, and its 45 minutes from my house. at my old job, i got in at 9:30 and it was 12 minutes from home. my sleep was, for the first time, great. now, i have so much trouble again -- getting to sleep and staying asleep. i'm always exhausted

also, food's more problematic here -- i've over-tired, bored and unhappy. and they're ALL obsessed with food. they order lunch before 10 am.

i'm certainly building a case for leaving, aren't i? but it's scarey -- i do need that paycheck and who knows, maybe the next job i'd find would be AWFUL. i hate job-jumping too.

does anyone have any suggestions or thoughts on this? i find myself pretty confused and bummed.


Monday, April 4, 2011

Clothes That Fit

Yes, my clothes are too tight. As i write this, i'm wriggling around in some jeggings that used to fit just fine. now, there's muffin top rolling over the front of my jeans. happily, i have a big sweatshirt that skims my (newly full) thighs. unhappily, i struggle to breathe.

i've been ignoring the fact that my clothes are just too tight. i kind of wondered were my weight would land after i got better adjusted to the crazy hours of the new job. but instead of floating back down, as i'd truly suspected would happen, things are still going up, up and away.

i'm hanging in. i'm genuinely interested in where this all will settle. i'm just doing what i'm doing and living a good life and wondering what size my body wants to be.

it's not always easy, but i can put it aside and go on with my life. i think i look like a normal person -- i'm not special in my thinness or special in my heaviness. i'm average. nothing about my weight or eating or body image is special. but, i can be special as a person.

so yes, i'm okay with body changes BUT what about my wardrobe? i can't afford new clothes.

ahh -- there's a bright side. it's almost summer -- i'll bet all my sundresses and t-shirt dresses will fit. problem avoided. YAY