Monday, May 15, 2017

Being More Aware Makes All The Difference

I've learned a lot on this journey. One of my biggest lessons is to pay close attention to my emotions and reactions to different things that may affect progress. Triggers for example. Though I have gained the ability to deal more healthfully with emotional peaks and valleys, but I still have triggers that are not as noticeable, at least not to me. For example, in my last post I wrote about finding success in failure. The success was that I crossed over a weight threshold that eluded me for 16+ years. What I did not expect and what I obviously did not pay attention to in the past was the overwhelming feeling of fear when I realize I've achieved another goal. It's subtle at first, so I didn't really think of it much. By the following week I was in full binge mode. I found myself in a battle of wills. The will to continue moving forward with my progress and the lack of will to fight off cravings. The vicious cycle reared it's ugly head.

It was all consuming. Everyday I dealt with urges so strong they'd actually stop me in my tracks. One day I was going to do a couple loads of laundry. As I collected items to wash an overwhelming urge to get pizza came over me. I literally stopped in my tracks, looked towards the front door and almost gave in to the need to feed. I managed to fight it off for a bit, but the cravings continued in waves. Sometimes the urges were so strong that all I could do was stand right where I stood and not move...not speak...and try not to think until the wave was over.

Wednesday was the hardest day. Thought of pizza whirled around my mind. All kinds...every kind... The waves of urges to feed were unstoppable. I refused to give up. I put all my energy into not walking out the front door. Not even to take the trash out. When it seemed as though I was going to lose the battle, I picked up the phone and called my cousin. She too struggles with binging. As soon as she answered I warned her and asked for forgiveness for possibly triggering her with what I was about to say. She gave me the go-ahead...I began to share my plight. She understood and fortunately was not triggered. She listened as I rambled on frequently switching between the subject of the foods I wanted to devour and my desperate plea for help to get past the whole thing.

Exhausted, I felt as though I were being bludgeoned and all I wanted to do was crawl into a hole to lick my battered emotions and bruised ego. Then my cousin asked a very interesting question. She wanted to know if I had anything in the house to make a pizza with or something pizza like. I did. I had turkey pepperoni in the fridge and a couple gluten free tortillas in the pantry. In almost an instant I became calm. My cousin noticed and spoke to it. Even as I sit here reliving my experience I can still feel the calm that came over me with a simple question. I made my makeshift pizza. It was delicious and it took away all the cravings. I was satisfied and did not binge. Thank you, Cuz! You threw me a lifeline that day. I'll always be grateful for it. Love you much!!

Being aware of my emotional cycle during that period made all the difference.

I'm glad to report that progress still continues. I have not weighed since my last drs. visit and presume that I will not weigh until my next drs. visit in a few months. In the meantime, I continue to exercise 30-45 minutes every night. If I feel tired or sick I remind myself of my commitment to do at least 10 minutes. Often I feel much better once I get started and can go for the full time. I also really appreciate that I've started following through on opportunities to walk more.

I'm feeling better. I'm starting to look better. I'm eating healthier than I ever eaten before.

Onward and Upward!