Recovery or Not, Greasy Hashbrowns are Gross.

Six solid weeks have passed since I embarked on my total recovery journey, but it feels like just yesterday.  Though I have seen significant progress, especially when it comes to weight gain and calories eaten, some things happened this week that made me realize that my mental journey is far from over.  Let me explain.

I woke up and had a smallish breakfast around 7:30 – a yogurt bowl.  I knew that we would likely be meeting friends out for brunch, but there was no way I was gonna make it that long without eating.  I ended up eating my brunch around 10:30-10:45ish.  The problem was that we went to a really greasy restaurant that has very little options to choose from. It is seriously the last place I would have chosen, but that was what the group of about 10 or so wanted to do.  I wasn’t going to just sit there and starve, so I did the best I could by ordering an omelette with ham, tomato, onion, and cheddar with a side of hashbrowns and toast (no substitutions available on the sides unfortunately).

But after brunch, I felt miserably sick.  I kept burping up the greasy hashbrowns, and I was in a FOUL mood.  And that mood continued for the next 3 hours or so until my stomach started feeling better.  I was just so mad at myself because it’s like I KNEW that was going to happen.  And then I started thinking, “If I wasn’t expecting to feel sick and miserable, would I still feel sick and miserable?  How much of this is all in my head?”  As I laid there, I had to pick through my thoughts and identify what is “normal” and what is “disordered.”

Disordered Thoughts:

  • I should only have a small breakfast since I already ate something this morning.
  • I shouldn’t be hungry right now.  Am I really hungry?
  • I can’t eat that.  It will make me feel sick.
  • I am not going to enjoy this breakfast because the food doesn’t meet my standards.

Normal Thoughts

  • I don’t like greasy hashbrowns.  They don’t taste great, and I’d rather not eat them.
  • I will order what sounds good at this particular moment.
  • I will make the best of this moment to enjoy spending time with friends.

I was having an internal battle between these opposing thought, and unfortunately, I feel like the disordered ones won out this time.  The important thing is that I have learned something from this.  If I had been presented with the situation again, I would know what to do.  And I would definitely not let it affect the rest of my day.

The only thing I still don’t understand is why did I feel sick in the first place?  Is it mental?  Or did it actually make me feel sick?  Is it that my GI system is just not able to handle the fat load after years of restriction?  When I am fully recovered, will I be able to eat greasy hashbrowns without feeling sick?

But that isn’t the point, really.  The point is that sometimes I feel like I am trying too hard to “prove” to myself that I am recovering.  That I can face those greasy hashbrowns without looking back.  But what it all boils down to is that I really just didn’t want the dang hasbrowns.  I’ve never really cared for them, ED or not.  Recovery looks different for everyone, and just because I’d rather turn down one junk food doesn’t mean I’m inviting ED back into my life.  I wholeheartedly believe that unrestricted eating is crucial to full recovery.  But I also believe that eating healthy foods is the best way to nourish your body.

So next time I feel the pressure to stick it to my ED by eating a junk food, I need to stop and remind myself that I don’t need to prove anything to anybody… not even myself!  I am trying to HEAL by eating what my body wants at any given time.  I know that some people like to see recovery as a battle.  But for me, it is not a battle.  It is a spiritual journey of healing and self love.  Yes, there are some days I feel powerful and strong, but there are also days where I need Christ to hold my hand every step of the way.  Remember, we are all trying to get to the same place [recovery], but not everyone takes the same path or goes at the same pace.

No questions today, but I’d love to hear your thoughts!

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Weekend Musings + A Mini Progress Check

HOW BOUT THEM CATS?!?!?!

This weekend was full of basketball, good friends, and good times!  Kentucky is headed to the Final Four and Lexington is getting crazier by the minute.

On Friday we went to a friends house and grilled out burgers (with the free ground beef I scored!).  We topped them with cream cheese and sweet chili sauce… ok I know, sounds like the weirdest burger topping EVER but it was SOOOO GOOOOD!  We then put the baby to bed upstairs and sat around the fire pit talking about randomness until the game started at 9:45.  Somehow in the conversation, I opened up to my friends about my hormonal problems/infertility and my need to gain weight.  I’ve always been a very private person about things like this, but I can’t tell you how good it feels to actually talk about that stuff to real people!  Their reactions were much more positive than I was expecting and I feel kinda stupid for trying to hide stuff all the time.  I once heard at church that we intimidate others with our strength and connect to others with our weaknesses.  What a great example of how true this is!

Saturday was supposed to be the day of my big half marathon race.  I was registered and everything.  This was definitely one of my biggest obstacles to committing to full recovery… I just really didn’t want to let this race go.  But I did.  And the world is still turning.  On the bright side, I still got to go to the race as a volunteer.  The swim team I coach used it as a fundraising opportunity, so we were there cleaning up around the finish area.  But goodness, the weather was AWFUL.  It started out fine but the temperature plummeted and the rain and wind just kept picking up.  By the end, I was honestly glad I didn’t run it!

We spent that afternoon doing some major house cleaning and we started working on the master bathroom (which is currently not in use… our house was a disaster when we bought it last year!)  We went to another friend’s house for dinner that night.  The host is from California and her parents send her fresh produce all the time.  That girl can cook!  I am always so impressed with her dishes!

We went to the early church service on Sunday and then I worked in the nursery for the later service.  In the afternoon we went to yet another friends house to pick up some plants they are trying to get rid of since they are moving. We came home with several strawberry, blackberry, raspberry, arctic kiwi, and blueberry plants.  I think we are all set for berries this summer, y’all.  So excited about this!!!

After that, the cats played in the Elite 8 against Michigan and WE DID IT AGAIN!  So it’s on to the Final Four!

As of today, I have been through 5 weeks of ED recovery.  I thought I’d do a little “mini progress check” rather than a whole post.  There will be some numbers posted here, just FYI.

  • I am still gaining weight – it does not seem to be slowing down.
  • I have gained an additional 3 lbs since my last progress check.  My BMI is now 21.5.
  • Extreme hunger is gone.  What I’ve noticed is that my amount of weight gain does not seem to correlate with my actual intake.  For example, I’ve had weeks where extreme hunger has caused me to eat waaaayyy above my minimums, and weeks where I seem to be right on my minimums.  Yet I still seem to gain about 2.5 or 3 lbs a week.  I am really starting to see evidence that what I’ve been reading on Your Eatopia is true!  There is no need to fear extreme hunger!

How do you feel about running or any other aerobic exercise for those who are recovering from an ED?  Can it be done in a healthful manner?

Any ideas or recipes with berries?  I am probably going to end up with tons all at once!

Also, follow me @sydwitz on Instagram!  My account is set to private but I will approve all my lovely blog readers!  My pics are mostly babies and food!

Recovery Progress Check – 1 Month!!!

I’ve made it through one solid month of legit ED Recovery and life is good!  Since I’ve made it this far, I think I’m going to cut back to doing these posts once a month from now on until I feel like I’m 110% recovered.  And then it’s probably still a good idea for me to sit down and reevaluate myself occasionally to make sure old habits aren’t slipping back in unnoticed.  P.S. If I do ever start to do that – please, by all means, call me out on it!  I need some accountability here, peeps!

Body

** I have posted any numbers or potentially triggering info in white.  Just highlight it with your cursor if you’re interested. If not, then just read through!**

My weight is still going up, but it seems to be slowing down.  So far I have gained 12 lbs.  It seems like such a large amount of weight to gain in a short period of time, but I am surprisingly okay with it.  I have gone from a BMI of 19.4 to 21.1.  I know there’s a possibility that some of it could be water weight, but I’m not counting on it.  I still have some trouble with bloating, but it has gotten much, much better (i.e. it is no longer painful, just merely unpleasant).  I don’t have any soreness or fatigue anymore, but I have been really sleepy lately – yet having trouble sleeping at night.  Another weird thing is that I have seen some minor breakouts, which I haven’t had since college.  Could this be a sign that my hormones are going back to normal?? Hope so!!

Hunger/Satiety

I really felt like my hunger was starting to stabilize for a while.  I was comfortable eating my calorie minimums and seemed to feel the sensation of hunger at appropriate times (which I did my very best to respond to at all times!)  However, just last night, extreme hunger decided to visit me again in the wee hours of the morning.  I had to get up and eat at 5 AM, which sucked because I was soooo tired!  But I started feeling nauseous, which for me is a sign that I need food, stat.  (Does this happen to anyone else?)  I was finally able to squeeze in an hour of sleep after that.  The extreme hunger is still lingering today – I will most likely eat well above minimums, and I’m cool with that.

Emotional

Never better!  I think spending some time at home with my family in TN was just what I needed.  I’ve been able to draw my mind away from food and body image and focus on more important things.  I honestly can’t remember my last drama-filled “I’m so fat and I hate my life” emotional breakdown, so things are clearly moving in the right direction.  Spending some time outdoors this weekend has also lifted my spirits; there’s definitely something to be said about the powerful spiritual connection with nature and it’s positive effects on mood.  It also doesn’t hurt that I have a few sets of new clothes that actually fit me now.  It’s hard to be happy when your size 2 jeans are squashing your internal organs and you can’t breathe, and your muffin tops have gone to like professional bakery level.  Okay that was an exaggeration, but you catch my drift.

So yes, I’d say that my progress so far is pretty much awesome!  Have a wonderful week everyone 🙂

It's a good day to have a good day

Do you think face breakouts have something to do with hormonal change?  Or completely unrelated?

What is the weirdest thing you’ve ever eaten in the middle of the night?

 

 

 

Five Things Friday 3.14.14

Note:  I have updated my About section to share a little piece of my background if you are interested!

Today I’m blogging from Nashville, TN!  I am spending the weekend and part of next week at my parents house.  I have a 9-year-old brother and it is Spring Break for him.  I am basically just trying to live vicariously through him and pretending I’m on spring break too.

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This was me and my brother when I was in high school (we are 16 years apart!)  It is crazy that my daughter is about this age now!!

Since I was too lazy to pack my laptop, I am attempting to do this from my husband’s iPad.  Also, since last week was kind of a poopy one for me (and I also did a terrible job of taking pictures) this week’s 5 things will be all about the weekend ahead!  Bear with me guys, I’m a noob.

Thank you to the wonderful Clare for hosting!

5 Things I Want to Do:

  1. Get the movie Frozen and watch it with baby girl and bro.
  2. Spend some quality outdoor time with my bro… he’s such a video game addict!
  3. Going out to eat with my parents… and NOT stressing about it!  Not one bit.
  4. Read Divergent.  Yep, I went to WalMart last night and bought it.  I caved.
  5. Do some solo yoga + meditation (with the added bonus of having my parents to babysit!)

I know – I am such a party animal.  Spring Break 2014, you better watch out!

5 Things I Want to Eat:

  1. Tacos – preferably from the Local Taco.
  2. Anything from the Cheesecake Factory.  (We don’t have one in Lexington!)  Cheesecake is my kryptonite.
  3. Mom’s homemade chocolate cake.  Oh wait, I already had some.  I had it the second I walked in the door, actually.
  4. Salad.  Yep, I actually want it.  I’m not in the mood for cooked vegetables.  Salad it is.
  5. Well this isn’t a food buuuuttt…. sweet tea!  I’m back in the south y’all – sweet tea is a must.

5 Things I Want to Pray About:

  1. That my brother is happy, and that he will find a path to Jesus.  I won’t get into details, but the poor kid has it kinda rough.
  2. That everyone enjoys the company of family, and that this weekend will bring us closer to each other.
  3. That my parents, who I feel also struggle with disordered eating, find peace and self-acceptance, just as I am learning to do now.
  4. For the safety of my husband.  Who is going hiking and camping this weekend… and not like RV or even tent camping.  He’s carrying everything on a backpack and is sleeping in a hammock.  I will pray for his strength and for good weather!  And also that the bears are not hungry.
  5. That this weekend will give me time to rest, mentally and physically.  That it will strengthen my ED recovery process.

Hope everyone has a killer weekend!  And if it is spring break for you, be safe and have a blast!

Thank you, yoga.

I just have to give a big thanks to yoga for pulling me out of my funk that I’ve been in the last couple days.  (Yeah, sorry about the negative nancy post yesterday… but hey sometimes I gotta be real!)

Yesterday was an overall terrible day that ended on a poor note of stepping on the scale.  Why?  I just couldn’t take the unknown anymore.  Curiosity got the best of me.  I was spending all day wondering how much I weighed.  Instead of just trying to ignore and not care about it, I chose to know my weight and accept it.  I won’t lie – I didn’t like the numbers.  But after some sleep and a good yoga class, the numbers don’t seem to bother me nearly as much.

For all you MinnieMauders out there (or those who are familiar with the method), I am aware that I should not exercise during recovery.  I talk about my reasons for continuing to do light yoga in My Recovery Plan.

And today, my eyes were opened to yet another wonderful benefit of yoga – the state of mental rest and spiritual enrichment that it provides.  I finally had that “aha” moment where yoga just clicked for me.

Every day we start by acknowledging our intention for our practice – a “goal” so to speak.  We affirm that intention to our minds and then seal it to our hearts.  We reaffirm this intention after we have completed our practice.  In the past I have chosen happiness, peace, balance, and fertility as intentions for my yoga practices.  Today, a new one came to mind… self-acceptance.  To simply be, and be okay with it.

Once I sealed that intention to my heart, I just knew it was right.  I had by far the best yoga class I’ve ever had – I breathed through the poses with ease and reached new levels of flexibility.  At the end of the class, I felt fulfilled.  I accepted myself.  It was glorious.  I hope I can carry that intention with me throughout the day!

Before, I was unsure whether or not I should be doing yoga – but now I am confident that is exactly what I need right now.  I am very grateful for how yoga keeps me grounded and opens my heart and mind so that I am able to learn more about my self.

Any yogis out there?  What kind of yoga is your favorite?

Do you think that yoga can be a part of a good eating disorder recovery plan?  Or do you consider it “exercise” to be avoided?

Why I Probably Shouldn’t Read Blogs on Wednesday

Short answer – it’s triggering.

I know – the whole “What I Ate Wednesday” concept is cool.  I get that.  I like food.  I like pictures of food.  But it’s just far too easy to fall into the comparison trap.Comparison is the Thief of Joy Print. This is absolutely my favorite quote ever.

I look at others’ eats and think about how it was healthier than mine.  Or how someone showed all their eats for one day (yes, I know they could easily be omitting stuff..) and it was so so so much less than what I ate.  Or someone laments over how bad they feel for eating two pieces of chocolate in one day… meanwhile I’ve had half a bag of chocolate-covered pretzels and an ice cream sandwich (and it’s only 1:00).

If I were to post exactly what I ate today, I would feel gluttonous, unhealthy, weak, and to be 100% honest… fat.  It’s getting so incredibly hard for me to stick to the MinnieMaud guidelines these past few days.  Now that the weight gain is visible and real, it is so much harder to just give in to my hunger and desires.  I want to stop.  I want to eat healthy again.  I want to go running.

You see, over the past 5 years or so, I have made “healthy living” (a.k.a. dieting and exercising) part of my IDENTITY.  It became part of who I AM.  It was far more than just a hobby or interest.  Heck, I wanted nothing more than to make a career out of it.  It became internalized – part of my core value system.  It is extraordinarily difficult to knowingly violate one’s own core values.  I am working hard to define a new set of values for myself – but man it is not easy.

Sometimes I feel like I’m doing something I don’t truly believe in – like this isn’t going to work.  Like I’ll just keep eating and eating until I’m huge – yet I still won’t be happy, I’ll still obsess over food, and I’ll still be infertile.  Good thing I have read research and testimonials that prove otherwise, or else I’d have jumped off this “recovery” bandwagon this past weekend.  I am giving this a real shot and am seeking God’s guidance on a daily basis.  I do not have the strength to see this through, but He does.  Right now, I am putting it all in His hands.

Printable, I can do all things through CHRIST who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13. Scripture Wall Art decor, Christian quotes and printables by dwellart.

Love is not a Feeling

The ED recovery online community is filled with message like “love your body” and “love yourself.”  Some things I have heard and read lately have changed my perception of these phrases so that they now have a whole new meaning.

You see, the problem is that we think of love as a feeling (a noun).  We all know that love is a very powerful thing – possibly the most powerful force on the planet.  It is capable of great things.  People who are reactive (rather than proactive) make love a feeling.  They  empower that feeling and let it control their actions.     See the problem here?

Proactive people on the other hand, are driven by their own inner values.  They recognize their own free will to choose and their responsibility to produce actions that are in line with their core values.

Friends, love is a VERB.  It is something you DO.Love is a verb!

If you crave the feeling of love, then you need to take responsibility and DO love.  I’m not here to tell you how it’s done – you were born with the innate intention to love and your heart has great capacity to do so.  We must subordinate our feelings to our intentions, and we will be greatly rewarded – because love (the feeling) is the fruit of love (the action).

This applies to almost every aspect of life, but since this is an ED Recovery blog, let’s talk about loving ourselves.  Weight gain is the inevitable consequence of recovery.  We know we are doing what is best for our bodies… that we will be stronger and healthier as a result – living much more fulfilled lives.  Yet we struggle with what we see in the mirror.  How can we love that which society tells us is ugly or not good enough?

Well we just do it.  Ignore the fact that we don’t feel love for the way our bodies look.  Ignore the feeling and focus on the intention of self-acceptance.  Find the positive qualities.  Thank your body for all it can do.  Thank it for the miracle of life that you are.  Think of the air that moves in and out of your lungs.  Appreciate the way your smile looks when you are genuinely happy.  Go easy on yourself.  Cherish your body’s wonderful ability to walk, swim, and give hugs.  Notice how wonderful the spring breeze feels against your skin.

It’s okay if you don’t feel love yet.  It’s not your fault.  Society has not conditioned you to love your body as it is.  But the secret is that you have the POWER to choose love.   I challenge you all to go out there and DO love, and you will FEEL love in return.

-Syd