So it’s been crickets around here over the past couple of weeks, and that’s because lately, I haven’t had a whole lot to say. Recovery is hard, and some days, it’s all I can do to get through 24 hours without going off the rails and dipping my head into a vat of chocolate. Or wine. Or chocolate wine.
It’s funny, because friends and family often ask how I’m doing, and I’m not always sure how to answer. (Although most of us SAY we want honest answers, most of the time we really, really don’t.)
The short answer is that my life is changing, even if my waistline isn’t (yet.)
It’s a little frustrating because I feel this social pressure to lose weight, but that’s really only a small part of my wellness journey. When I started this blog, I wanted to let go of dieting and develop a healthier life from the inside out, and that’s exactly what I’m doing. The problem is that inner work is more like a marathon than a sprint. You don’t automatically see the results reflected in your pant size or the number on the scale.
Here’s the thing: I have come LEAPS and bounds in my perception of myself, the practice of self-care and making smart daily goals that support my recovery. Although I am dealing with a crap ton of emotions (which I haven’t allowed myself to feel in years), I’m learning new (better) ways to cope and I’m starting to reach out instead of reaching into the pantry when I have a bad day.
My support team is AMAZING. I have the best people in my life and most have been overwhelmingly supportive. (I don’t have time/energy for toxic people.)
I’ve got a great therapist and have been working with a registered dietitian for a little over a month. This was SUCH a smart move and I need to devote several blog posts to the amazing things she’s teaching me. The biggest change? Instead of focusing on the all the stuff I needed to give up, she began by asking me to focus on all the great, nutrient-rich foods that I could actually add to my diet.
This shifted me out of restrictive thinking and into making conscious decisions about my food based on the nutritional quality of my food. I have counted calories, points, carbs, fat, sugar and protein for YEARS but never gave even a passing glance at the vitamins and minerals (or lack thereof) in the foods I eat.
Now that I eat more nutrient-rich foods (e.g.–lots of vitamins and minerals, and therefore, lots of great health benefits) I have naturally turned away from a lot of the foods I used to eat. I’m not even snacking much anymore these days. (Me, the queen of grazing? This is a miracle.) I’m learning to listen to my body, and without all the junk food and artificial sweeteners and other stuff throwing off my brain chemistry, I can actually tell when I’m full or when I’m hungry. It’s remarkable.
My progress may not be showing on the outside yet, but change IS happening. And it’s good.