Sunday, November 29, 2015

A Trip to the Grocery Store

Just getting back from the grocery store. I'm pretty stoked. Been craving sweets for the past few days and doing well with it because I do not have sweets in the house, except a half gallon of frozen vanilla yogurt which is by no means a trigger for my ED.

I only needed a few items and was careful to make a list so I would not have to linger in the store too long. It never fails, I always have that sinking feeling that I've forgotten something no matter how many times I check my list and I usually walk around the store just in case the illusive item comes to mind. I couldn't do that tonight. My cravings for sugar are so strong right now that I'd better not take the chance worrying about a possibly forgotten item. I probably don't need it anyway. Better for me to get out of the store as soon as possible or else a bag of sweets will surely be brought home tonight accompanied by the excuse of purchasing it for my son. If only my son knew how many bags of candy I've purchased for him that he never got. Well, at least it saved him a few extra trips to the dentist.

Time to get to the register. I'm making tracks while checking my list several time. It looks like I've gotten all of the items. A quick right turn and the checkout line is just ahead. happens. Argh! The mind is a terrible thing sometimes... I'm almost at the register, just gotta get around the chip display and basket comes to a screeching halt. Their I am standing at the end of the dreaded candy isle. [Deep breath] I turn left to go to the candy isle or do I go straight to checkout.


I stood there holding up traffic and then I kept standing there until I made myself go straight to the checkout line. The safest one is the line with no candy. I think grocery stores did that for parent's sake so they don't have to endure their kids begging for candy while waiting to check out. They'll never know how much of a blessing it is to have the candyless checkout lines. Thank you for doing that.

I made it home. Groceries in tow and no candy in sight. Thank God!!

By the way, I did very well last night. After I published my post I piddled around the house getting everything tidy for a fresh start tomorrow. Went into the kitchen to wash dishes and saw a Bojangles bag on the table. I opened it to see if there was anything in the bad that needed to be put up. There in a smaller bag was the container for a family sized fry. Most of the fries were gone, only a few left in the bottom. Before I could help myself, I stuffed three of the fries into my mouth. I sighed and rolled my eyes. How in the world can I be so careless. I tossed the container with the remaining fries into the trash. My fear is that I might have triggered myself into a night long battle of wills. Me vs. My Mind.

Several hours have gone by, it's just about 5am. I know...I'm an insomniac. Can't help it. Sleepiness was finally setting in when the seemingly benign little voice tells me to get a bite to eat. Usually that last hour before I actually fall asleep is the most difficult hour for me. That is when the need to feed really steps up. I'm usually very tired and my mind tells me that I need to eat in order to sleep. And if I want to sleep bad enough I tend to give in. One small serving can easily lead to another small serving and so on. Right now, I take a vow to forsake a few hours sleep to allow my body to move into sleep mode naturally. I've got to retrain my brain into believing that I can go to sleep without eating. I went to bed and fell fast asleep. Another hurdle met face on. I hope I can be as successful tonight.

For dinner we are having brown rice served with turkey hash and chopped dessert.


Saturday, November 28, 2015

A Little Something For You

Hi there, I want to share a little something with you before I go to bed. It's late here...1:15am, so I'm going to tidy up a bit and call it a night. 
Last night I had gotten real hungry. I ate a small snack of leftover turkey and a handful of plain unsalted chips. Yeah, I wanted more, but I didn't eat more. I went straight to bed and prayed for sleep. Last night was a successful night.
Today was a very good day and tonight has been good also. No cravings or hunger so far. I just hope I can get to sleep soon.
Anyway, I was thinking of you guys and found this video to share.
Keeping you all in my prayers.

Friday, November 27, 2015

The Day After

It's the day after Thanksgiving and I'm doing well. I did not binge last night nor have I starved myself today. I was exhausted. I did have one small craving for something as I was getting ready for bed. I did not eat anything and went straight to bed. 

My plan to avoid cooking foods that trigger my binges was successful. And I cooked enough to share with friends and family as well as have leftovers for a couple days. Just finished a plate not that long ago and I am quite satisfied.

The sun is setting. This is the time urges to begin feeding or hording foods for a later feed begin. I don't feel the urge to do that today. In all actuality, I've been doing pretty well for the past few weeks. There were a couple nights I had a late night snack, but no binging. The urges were still there and that's what lead to the snack. The rest was sheer determination not to keep going back for more snacks.

I think one of the biggest hurdle for me was emotional attachment to eating. I'm so glad to be past that now. It's not been that long. I should have written it down. A couple weeks ago during my prayer time while reflecting on the things God has brought me through, I realized the emotional attachment to my binging was gone. I did have a small binge once or twice a few months prior. It was different. I wasn't upset about anything or plagued with memories from the past. Actually, I was in a very pleasant mood but felt a strong need to eat after a certain hour.

I realized that feeding has taken on a more habitual feel. Kind of like being an alcoholic and taking that first drink after being on the wagon for a while. Well during late night hours I need not put a morsel in my mouth nor should I watch any cooking shows. Once I walked by my son's snack bowl. He had a few goldfish in it, so I grabbed a couple, popped them in my mouth and went into my room. Immediately I knew I should not have don't that. Instantly, my mind went straight into the kitchen to roam the cabinets and pantry on a search for something else to eat. I ate a couple snack that night, regretfully so. It's amazing what eating 1 or 2 goldfish can do.

The little voice inside my head doesn't try to discourage eating during the day anymore. I can eat freely without feeling the urge to restrict. However, the little voice makes up for it's daytime absence during nighttime hours. As soon as the sun sets the little voice kicks in attempting to sabotage my plan to exercise. Periodically I'd hear, "I don't want to exercise.", "It's getting late and I'm tired. I can exercise tomorrow.", "I've done a lot of walking while cleaning and running errands, that should be enough. No need to exercise." I heard these discouraging words every evening for the past month or so. I don't fight it. I don't even acknowledge it. I just go on with what I'm doing and at the end of the day I still exercise. My mind is not going to get the better of me.

Last night was different. After two days of going to bed around 7am and getting up to continue cleaning and cooking, I wanted to rest. I was physically too tired to do anything else. I needed to sit for a while and do nothing. I hobbled into my room, slightly hunched over, feet burning, legs wobbly and arm hanging heavily at my sides. All I could think about was how good it was going to feel to plop down on my bed and do nothing. I looked at the area where I usually exercise and thought, "I just can't do it. Not tonight." My feet were too tired to walk in place. My arms too tired to do anything. Suddenly another thought crossed my mind, "Your waist isn't tired. Try a few sit ups." Huh. Where did that come from? Usually I only hear words of discouragement. Who would have thought in this moment of pure exhaustion I'd hear encouragement. Hmmm. So I did a few sit-up and then hobbled over to by bed. I felt better and I felt proud that I was able to still do something just for me. It was nice.

Yesterday's dinner was turkey, dressing made with gluten free cornbread, green beans sautéed with tomatoes and shrimp, greens and roasted potatoes and butternut squash. I did not make a desert. I didn't want to and we didn't miss it. I may make a little something this weekend. A couple muffins, no glaze or frosting just plain. That will be a nice little treat for us.

Last night I was working on a post that I published around 1am or so. It was my first post with audio. I wasn't sure if I'd be able to do it, because I did not know how to get the audio to play within the post. And I was afraid. Kind of weirded out about hearing my voice, well really about you guys hearing my voice. I'm past that now since posting it. I'd like to do more audio only this time I'd like to just talk and see what happens. I don't know. One of the things I am working on is being more committed to the things that I say I want to do or are going to do. Procrastination is one of my biggest downfalls. So as I become more committed to self that also includes being committed to the things that I want to accomplish in life...everything.

I'm feeling stronger...getting better.

I hope you're having a great day and I hope you have an even better tomorrow. Take care. Talk to you soon.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Thanksgiving Day is over


It's 12:32am, my time. You might be asleep already. Just thought I'd check in. Thanksgiving Day is over. How are you doing?

Were you able to do okay better?

I hope no one made references to your weight or size. I hope no one comment on how much or how little you ate or even worse watch every morsel you put in your mouth or in a napkin. Try not to internalize it. A new hour is coming and if that's not enough....tomorrow is another day and a new beginning. Don't give up.

On a better note...

Perhaps things went well today. You managed to eat a small meal while with family and friends. You might have resisted the urge to purge at least once. That's a start. Baby steps, right...


Perhaps the hours are ticking's getting late. You are able to dig deep within yourself finding courage and inner strength to fight the urge to binge. Don't worry about the rest of the night. Give thanks for the moment and move forward.

Depending on where you are in your journey, try not to measure triumphs by days and weeks...not now. There will be plenty time for that as you get further along. It's easier to feel encouraged with every hour you're able successfully manage cravings and urges. And the successful hours will add up. Before you know it, you will have succeeded days, weeks, months and even years. It's a process and the process takes time.

Take it slow. [inhale/exhale]  Breath...

In the meantime, do you have something you can be doing...something that gives you enjoyment?  Reading, writing, journaling, listening to music or  singing?

What about a long hot bath?

You might want to try meditating on your affirmations.

And if you do...

As you meditate try this...

As you're lying, sitting or walking (you can walk during meditation), breath slowly in and out. Clear your mind and imagine seeing words of your affirmation around you or hovering over you. With every inhale you're drawing those positive words deep inside of you. Deeper and deeper with each breath the positive words begin to push the negative words out of you. 

Give yourself permission to let the negative words go and watch them float far, far and even farther  away. Keep doing this until all of the negative words that you see are gone.

Do this exercise as often as you feel you need. Give it a couple tries. It may take a couple times before it feels comfortable to you. And you may want to try meditating in different ways to see what works best for you. It's all about you.

Anyway, I hope you sleep well tonight.

Be encouraged. You are worth the fight.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

A Quick Note

Hi everyone,

I hope everything is going well for you during this holiday season. I know the holidays can be very difficult when having or recovering from an eating disorder. I want to share with you a few things that I am doing to help myself get through the season.

Don't worry about tomorrow. Focus on today and try to find as many things as possible to be thankful for...even the small things...especially the small things.

For my issues with Binging

1. Give myself affirmations throughout the day and night.

2. Be aware of foods that trigger binging. Do not have them in the house. Instead have quick healthy snacks like fresh fruits and veggies. Make a light dip using low fat dip for your veggies. Drink plenty water.

3. Continue with meal plan. Avoid cooking too many dishes. Make 1 desert and keep it simple. I'm making sweet potato muffins, no frosting. They are easy to bake and I can leave a few out and freeze the rest.

4. My side dishes for the meal are mostly green veggies. Only on starchy dish and that is going to be roasted potatoes and butternut squash.

4. Avoid sugary treats and side dishes. Sugars can trigger cravings.

5. Eat regular portions sizes. Try not to overeat and avoid having too many leftovers laying around. Having fewer cooked foods lying around is a sure fire way for me to avoid having several midnight snacks.

6. I try very hard to make sure I have eaten sufficiently before sunset. Late night is when cravings tend to be most aggressive.

For Daytime Anorexia

1. Sometimes it's overwhelming when vising relatives and friends during the holidays. There's always so much food, more than I can stand to be around. Usually I have a meal already measured out for me at home. While I'm out I can select a little something to eat so not to be rude. I am comforted by the fact that I already have a pre-measured meal waiting. That way I don't have to overthink it. Having to think about food too much can also mess with my appetite.

2. Keep my same eating schedule. If I have to wait until after I eat to go out, I will. Better than skipping a meal and possibly avoiding it later.

3. Here is where I may plug in a few tips from the previous list... :-)

These are just a few of the things I try do daily, but especially during the  holidays. I wish holidays weren't so food focused.

I hope these tips help. If you have any tips of your own, please share them here. Thank you.

Be strong...
Give it your best shot...
Don't beat yourself up if you slip...
Keep trying...
A little goes a long way...
Don't give up!

Be True to Who You Are

For those of you remembering all of the pain.
For those of you who have been kicked, pushed, punched, knocked down, beaten, spat on; raped mentally, physically, emotionally or all of the above...
For those of you baring the scars of battles, fighting for you life, never winning the war.
For those of you who still hear the voices telling you you're ugly, fat, too skinny, crater face, sherman tank, piece of crap, dumb fuck, chicken shit, looser, worthless, not good enough, wish you were dead...

Know this...

Bullies and abusers want to break you because they themselves are broken.
They don't know what love feels like or how to love.
They're hurting you because they want to make someone else feel as bad as they do.
They'll never hurt the ones who hurt them nor will they ever forgive.

You don't have to keep hurting.
You don't have to keep hurting yourself.
Let go of the pain and sorrow.
There is so much more for you.
Live your life.
You deserve better.
You can be better.
You WILL get better.

Learn to love yourself.
Learn how to accept love from others.

YOU deserve it!

YOU don't have to be anything more than who you are.

YOU are enough!

Believe that, and if you don't...

Say these affirmations to yourself everyday, multiple times a day. It may take months before you really feel the words you are saying. Keep saying them...say them until you believe you are enough. Say them until you know you are worthy of love, especially the love you will have for yourself. You CAN love yourself. It really is possible. Ask me how I know...

"When I say I love you, I mean that I am committed to working to love you even when it's hard."

YOU are worth the commitment.

"I deeply love myself and recognize that I am a perfect reflection of my beautiful soul."


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Little by Little

In the spirit of Thanksgiving I'd like to share the things that I am most grateful for with you. Some of these things may seem small to some. No matter how small all of the steps I've taken so far had to be taken for me to get where I am today. Every step you take towards healing and recovery counts. There is no effort too great or too small.

I am grateful for my faith in the Lord and how He has blessed me to come this far.

I am grateful for the beautiful child God gave to me.

I am grateful my son has not had a seizure since April 2015.

I am grateful for what Autism has taught me.

I am grateful for every fall I have taken and every time I've gotten up.

I am grateful for the few times I have gone to bed without eating anything as well as the times I do feed being less than what it used to be.

I am grateful for finding the strength to be completely honest with myself.

I am grateful for the inner peace that comes after facing the most painful times of my past.

I am grateful for everyday I did not give up on exercising.

I am grateful for the differences I'm starting to see in my body and being able to embrace my current physical state. I am able to appreciate my curves.

I am grateful for how much energy I have and look forward to having more.

I am even grateful for the days that I feel down because I can say to myself, "No matter how I feel about my looks today, I am actively doing something to help myself." I always feel better when I remember that.

I am grateful for valuable life lessons I've learned.

I am grateful for not smoking cigarettes anymore.

I am grateful for changing our diet to gluten free.

I am grateful for checking off a few more thing on my to-do list today.

I am grateful to be able to love myself.

I am grateful to fully receive love from others.

I am grateful to be grateful for so many things that I'm not able to list them all in this post.

I am even thankful that my dog did not roll around in anything stinky today.

I am grateful to be here and to be able to offer encouragement to you all.

Peace and Joy you...

Remember...even a little effort goes a long way. Don't give up!

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Happy Holidays!

Happy Holidays everyone! Tis' the season... 

I haven't been around much, but I'm doing well.

How are you doing? I hope that you had a good Summer and Fall. Summer was a little lack luster for us, but still pleasant in a peaceful sort of way. We've been doing well. I don't know if I told you, but we've gone gluten free. The transition started back in April of this year. My son has adjusted well to the change. There's only one thing, he can't let go of the goldfish crackers. They are his all time favorite snack. I wish I could find a good substitute, but there really isn't one. I'm thinking of creating my own version of his favorite snack, even if I have to bake small batches several times a week.

My son has not seized since going gluten free. He still has gut issues, but the seizures have ceased, at least for now and his gut issues are not as bad as they were before. He's taking a very low dose of Trileptal, which is a seizure medication. The only side effect that he's experiencing is sleepiness within an hour or two after taking the medication. The sleepiness is welcomed for night time, but not so much during the day.

I've read a couple articles claiming gluten free diets have no impact on behavioral issues in autistic children. I don't know about that. I do know that there are many parents out there who swear by gluten free living and have seen noticeable to tremendous change in their child's behaviors and moods since going gluten free. I am one of those parents. No matter what articles are written, I can tell you from personal experience that the benefits of going gluten free far out-way the rhetoric of naysayers.

How have you been doing with your eating? My hope is that you are getting better. It takes time to get past ED (Eating Disorder). Don't beat yourself up if you are still struggling. I'm struggle too. Even with the struggles I have made great improvements and you can too. Don't give up. I know it is especially hard this time of year which is one of the reasons I felt a sense of urgency to begin writing again, letting you know I'm still making strides and I'm still here with you.

I've had a couple binges since my last post in February. They weren't big binges, but binges nonetheless. Night time hunger is one of the hardest things for me to beat. I once described the urge to binge as a dark shadow looming over me. It's as though this dark shadow has control over me, literally willing me to go to the kitchen to feed. I voiced concerns about my inability to combat this dark shadow. Despite the fact I was having difficulties with night feeding, I knew it was time to embrace the next step...exercise. I don't now if you remember, I tried to start a routine several months ago and failed miserably. I just wasn't able to keep it up. So I put that effort away until I became stronger and better equipped to face it.

Do you ever feel like the control you once had has spiraled out of control? I can't speak for everyone. For me, my eating met several needs. There was the need for physical comfort which I did not have and there was a need to gain some control over my life which I also didn't have. I wanted to hurt my parents for hurting me and so by hurting myself I thought they would eventually feel sorry for me and maybe even feel some since of remorse. Maybe they would realize how their bad parenting was affecting me. Obviously it did not work. The sad thing is... I came up with this notion as a child and still believed it would someday work as an adult. By the time I realized that my "plan" was not working I was already in way too deep...40 years deep to be exact. Okay. That realization came 8 years ago when my parents died. Wow! Has it been that long? I didn't realize it until this moment. I guess I have come along way, but it's also been a long time.

I've been actively trying to combat ED for 6 years and have been in therapy for 3. Please forgive me, I'm just realizing the timeframe for this process and that I'm still in the process of healing. Wow.

Okay, clearing the mind and getting back on task.  I realized that the dark shadow known as ED also has a voice. ED likes to tell me what to do. It tells me that I don't want to eat when I should eat. It tells me to eat when I shouldn't eat. It tells me what and how much to eat and so on.

I started exercising on August 22. Yes! I marked it on my calendar. I circle everyday that I exercise, missing only a couple days here and there. So far I've missed 4 days in September, 1 day in October and 1 day so far in November. That is excellent for me. I have already given myself a pat on the back and an A for effort :-) Moving forward...

You might be wondering why I'm not taking more days off like exercising 5-6 days per week and taking 1-2 days off. If I were strong enough and disciplined enough to do so I would, but I'm not. ED is an opportunist. ED resides in my mind and is always looking for any opportunity to stunt my ability to succeed in overcoming it. At this point I cannot allow my mind to rest on an option of having any amount of set days to take off. If I allow it to settle on a certain day or number of days to take off the voice of ED will become stronger, insisting that I take even more days off. This has been my experience in the past and why I have yet to successfully maintain a healthier lifestyle. I can't give ED any leeway.

By the way, I've picked up some of my methods from reading Life Without Ed, by Jenni Schaefer, which I have yet to finish. I do want to give a review of this book, even if everyone has already read it. I guess it comes down to my wanting to complete this goal, if for no one other than myself. It's just that important to me.

Sometimes it's difficult for me to want to exercise. Other times is seems to be as natural as breathing. One morning, about a 3 weeks into exercising, I heard a voice inside my head saying, "I don't want to exercise today." I thought to myself, that's not how I feel. Lies you tell." I AM going to exercise today and YOU can't stop me. I sat in my favorite prayer chair and asked God to give me the strength not to give in to my mind. Then I stood up and walk into my room and began to exercise. Tears stream down my face as I continue praying for strength, determined more than ever to not give up. I didn't give up. I did a full workout and I added a couple extra reps...just because. For the first time, I stood up to the voice inside my head. The voice that has given me so much misery all these years. Always telling me I'm not good enough and I'm too fat. How many times have I stood in the mirror listening to that voice tell me I was ugly. That I was so unattractive no decent man would ever want me. Yep, that's the one. I walked away victorious and I knew if I was able to stand up to that voice once, I would stand up to it again. Let the games begin!!!

It wasn't long after that glorious moment that I also discovered my night time feedings were no longer attached to my emotions, but rather a habit that I needed to break. That's pretty much where I stand today. I'm working on breaking the habit of snacking or placing anything in my mouth after a certain time. It's difficult right matter. This too shall pass.

"That which is difficult for me today, will no be as difficult for me tomorrow."
"In every failure their is a path towards success."
These are two of my quotes. I say these quote to myself whenever things get difficult or I want to quit. I believe that anything I try to do today that is difficult for me to achieve will be less difficult for me tomorrow because I would have gained a little more knowledge and maybe even a little more ability. Besides, tomorrow is another day and a fresh new beginning.

Oh, I almost forgot. I am proud to report that I have lost weight. As promised, I will not give numbers. I just wanted to share my joy and surprise. I've only weighed once so far. I may weigh in again in another month or so. My goals are not centered around loss of pounds. I only have two goals to be honest. They are to exercise at least 20 minutes everyday, increasing slowly over time and to be healthier and look better in my clothes in two years. That's it.

Well, I'm going to call it a night. I've just finished my dinner and I'm ready to clean up and relax a little. For dinner tonight we had pan seared boneless, skinless chicken thighs, roasted potatoes and butternut squash and a salad. It was delicious and my son enjoyed it also.

Take care my friends.