Hey, James Brown, I Feel Good Too!

As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I’m feeling really good for some reason. Good enough that I’m truly dabbling with the idea of not using my food scale and measuring cups for weighing and measuring, as well as not writing down my calories every day. I would be eating intuitively. This idea scared the crap out of me a month ago, but for some reason, it feels more comfortable right now. I still don’t know if I’m going to do it, I need to marinate it in my brain a little more I think.

So why this sudden change, you ask? I’m wondering too. Could be due to a few reasons, not sure if it’s all or any of the below…

1. Lately I’ve been preoccupied with fixing some feminine pain issues that I’ve been suffering with for over 10 years. Over the course of that time, I have seen a few different doctors and tried many treatments to no avail. I just saw a new doctor last week, who came highly recommened, and he feels 90% sure of both my diagnosis and the treatment that he prescribed will cure me. He is coming at my issue from a totally different angle than the other doctors did. I’m so excited about this, but am trying to remain cautiously optimistic as I know it may not work for me. He put me on estrogen and other med too, (which I just started today) so maybe I’m preoccupied with that and not so into food.

2. As I mentioned yesterday, I’ve been taking an estrogen supplement for a week now. I know my body became slightly depleted of estrogen after my weight loss leveled off 18 months ago, and perhaps I really need this supplement to fix a hormonal imbalance. Could that be why I’m feeling so good -my body now has the right amount of hormones it needs? I hope I don’t gain weight from the estrogen, but I’m guessing that if I truly gained big pounds, we could lower the dosage and still gain some of the benefits but less of the weight. I will cross that bridge if and when I come to it. Thanks so much to those of you who wrote in to say they/or they knew people who weren’t, really affected by it. I hope I am one of them!

3. That great book I mentioned – “Eating in the Light of the Moon, how women can let go of compulsive eating through metaphor and storytelling” by Anita Johnston.

Reading that has really showed me how and why I became eating disordered. As some of you may know, I didn’t even realize I had an eating disorder until a little over two years ago. I didn’t know that all the pigging out I did since I was little, was actually called bingeing and that I was a compulsive overeater. I didn’t find out until I went into therapy that my eating issues were caused by my upbringing. This book explains what went on in my head and why I turned to food.

Here are some great points from the book…

A. One of the first things a woman on the path to recovery from disordered eating must do is to reframe her concept of who she really is. She must recognize her bright, intuitive nature for the gift that it is even though others’ discomfort with it has brought upon her some struggles and emotional wounding. She must begin to assert, both to herself and the world around her, that she is not defective.

B. Recovery from disordered eating begins with the understanding that the disordered eating behavior served you when your goal was survival. This understanding is then followed by the development of new skills that will enable you not to simply survive, but to get what you want out of life, to thrive. Survival is no longer the only goal. The goal becomes one that includes a life that is rich and fulfilling.

C. If I am obsessing about food, fat and dieting, what I am doing with food is distracting me from the real issues I struggle with in my life.

D. They do not see that the addictive object (food in my case) is a representation of something much greater, this it in only a symbol of what they truly desire. They do not understand that the terrible emptiness they feel is a spritual or emotional emptiness, not a physical one.

E. Addictions keep us from being fully present in the moment with ourselves, our feelings, our friends, our lovers, or with whomever or whatever might have capuured our attention. Instead we find ourselves agonizing over how many calories we ate earlier in the day.

If you are obsessing about yesterday or planning for tomorrow, you will be unable to take in and receive whatever is in front of you that can be nourishing: a smile from a child, the scent of a rose, a favorite tune, a brilliant sunset. So the hunger continues and the emptiness grows.

I could go on and on pulling text out of the book, but I think you get the idea and see how powerful these ideas are.

4. I realize that we all go through cyclical highs and lows on a monthly basis, maybe I’m just on a crazy high right now and in two days I’ll be back to my normal, scared-of-intuitive-eating self.

So it could be any of these reasons of why I feel so good and feel like I am a step closer to trying the intuitive eating. As Diana pointed out in yesterday’s comments, if it doesn’t work, there is no law that says I can’t go back to my safety net of weighing/measuring my food and counting calories.

I really have nothing to lose, right? Just um, a major food obsession!

One Day at a Time... Nurture myself... Awareness... Letting Go... Listen to my Body

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Comments

27 Responses, Leave a Reply
  1. Diana
    25 March 2010, 8:09 pm

    I really do hope it works! I’m excited for you that you feel you can try it and be ready!
    Maybe its also that you were able to truely trust yourself with the dessert buffet (I think that’s what it was) after discussing with your therapist what to do! And, you’ve been showing yourself (through things like throwing food away that you don’t like) that it’s not all about the obsession with stuffing yourself anymore. And, you have all your tools you’ve built up! 🙂
    .-= Diana´s last blog ..Meeting a fellow blogger! =-.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    thanks, diana! i still have to take that first step and i’m still mulling it over. we are going away for spring break next week and i wonder if that’s a good opportunity to start or if i should wait ’til i get back…
    once again, as you wisely pointed out, i can simply go back if it’s not working.

    [Reply]

  2. Lisa
    25 March 2010, 8:09 pm

    Many compulsive overeaters do not view their eating as disordered. They believe a diet can “fix” them. They look for a diet instead of looking at the “why” in their eating issue.

    I’ve struggled with many spectrums on the disordered eating scale.

    I think you’re taking baby steps towards intuitive eating. There is no rush. You will know when you’re ready.

    I know I haven’t followed your blog long, but I’m just so impressed with your honesty and digging into the reasons “why” you have had disordered eating.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    i know just what you are saying and agree. i’m not on a diet, this is a lifestyle for me – eating properly and working out. i realize i will have to do this for the rest of my life. i’m at the weight i want to be and my goal is to stay here.
    yup, i am taking baby steps. i feel like i’m ready to try intuitive eating, but of course that is a huge leap of faith. deep breath!
    i feel like honesty is the only way to go, lisa. not to be corny, but as my blog tagline says – you are only as sick as your secrets – i really believe that’s true.

    [Reply]

  3. Weight Watchers Versus Protein Power
    25 March 2010, 10:25 pm

    […] Hey, James Brown, I Feel Good Too! | Confessions of a Compulsive Eater […]

  4. Jess
    25 March 2010, 10:44 pm

    I’m glad things are going well, and Diana is right–your food plan is always adjustable if you’re concerned with abstinence.

    I like what you excerpted. It really supports my current program. I’ll look for it.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    thanks, jess. i could have pulled out tons more from the book, but hopefully it gave you and everyone else the general idea. i’m glad some of it “spoke” to you! if you read it, you’ll have to let me know what you think.

    [Reply]

  5. Gina Fit by 41 Maybe 42
    26 March 2010, 12:54 am

    “not to simply survive, but to get what you want out of life, to thrive. Survival is no longer the only goal. The goal becomes one that includes a life that is rich and fulfilling.”
    — that made me think of how many times I go through the day and just can’t wait for it to end instead of living the day fully alert and engaged.

    I could hi-lite the rest of your post and points. Very powerful stuff.

    Could you have an “intuitive eating day?” Maybe once per week or month. “Just for today (or just for this meal), I’m going to eat intuitively.”
    .-= Gina Fit by 41 Maybe 42´s last blog ..C25K Report – Week 5 and Gratitude =-.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    that quote really resonated wit me too. i am not as present as i feel i should be. some of that is food-related, some of it is just as i’m so task oriented. *sigh*

    i think i really have no choice but to take it one day at a time, once i start =). i will see how the days feel and it may end at days or perhaps it could go for weeks. i can’t worry about it and can only take one day at a time. i don’t think i want to set a plan. i’m just a little nervous doing it in tandem with the estrogen supplement. we’ll see….

    [Reply]

    Lara Reply:

    One day at a time is how I am navigating Intuitive Eating. Some days yes, some days I like to weigh my food/track. I have to gauge it on how I am feeling, what else is going on in my life, etc. I know in times of stress I like the structure of tracking and I am able to do it without obessing or stressing if I go over or what not. I just like to “see it in black and white.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    thanks for sharing that, lara. it’s good for me to know that you still weigh and track sometimes. i really like the one-day-at-time perspective. it’s less overwhelming that way.

  6. Christie {Honoring Health}
    26 March 2010, 10:00 am

    I agree about going back to weighing and measuring whenever it feels right. I went back on several occasions for it actually clicked for me. That measuring and counting becomes a comfort just the way that the binging does so it makes sense that we would grab onto those sometimes. This is a long hard process and it is ingrained in us that food is the answer – whether it is binging or obsessively counting. That doesn’t change overnight. Just keep doing what you are doing and you will get to the place that feels right for you.
    .-= Christie {Honoring Health}´s last blog ..{recipe review} Coconut Red Lentil Soup =-.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    christie, thank you so much for saying that. it makes me feel good to know that you went back to weighing and measuring until it clicked for you. i needed to hear that. this is one of the reasons i love this community so much!

    [Reply]

  7. Rita
    26 March 2010, 12:39 pm

    Loved the post. The part that stuck out for me was the estrogen bit. I never knew that long term calorie counting and restricting can have such a dramatic impact on estrogen levels and it’s very important to get that information out there for people.

    I found out the hard way as well and fortunately I had a doctor who knew what was going on. It can be pretty frightening to be so miserable and not know why.

    Thanks for highlighting that.

    I think I’m going to pick that book up as well. I’m still very comfortable in my measuring and weighing but always love reading about how to unwrap another layer off this eating disorder.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    so this happened to you too, huh, rita? did you take estrogen supplements? if so, how did it affect you/your body.
    what’s scary is that my regular gyno, who sent me for bloodwork when i stopped getting af a year or so ago, saw my estrogen was low, but still in the normal range, so she didn’t prescribe me the supplement to up it. then this other dr, who is trying to help cure a big issue “down there” showed me the cells under the microscope, said i was on the low side and immediately felt i should take the supplement.
    you will enjoy the book. i’m the same as you – always looking to unwrap another layer off this eating disorder.

    [Reply]

    rita Reply:

    Not yet, I have been without since August and so far she wants to see how my body will react to the return to higher calories. We are going to give it two months and then if nothing happens, we are going to look at topping up. I think things are improving but we’ll wait and see.

    I’m grabbing the book on the way to our Mexico next week. It’s beach reading! Thanks for the recommendation.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    my menses eventually came back on it’s own, just as my gyno predicted. however, the estrogen remained on the low side. please let me know what happens in two months. it would be nice to go through this with someone. =)

    enjoy the book and enjoy your trip!!!

  8. Holly
    26 March 2010, 3:12 pm

    Gosh, so much of this spoke to me….especially “If I am obsessing about food, fat and dieting, what I am doing with food is distracting me from the real issues I struggle with in my life.” Sometimes I tell myself when I have a better job/great guy in my life then the whole eating thing would magically go away. I really know this isn’t true, but I wonder if subconsciously I’m distracting myself from things that I worry about?
    .-= Holly´s last blog ..Chicken Cacciatore and Mama Got Some New Shoes! =-.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    i’m so glad it spoke to you, holly! i really could have put a lot more excerpts, but didn’t want the post to be long and boring. you may be on to something in that you are subconsciously distracting yourself. just that awareness is great!

    [Reply]

  9. amanda
    26 March 2010, 4:06 pm

    Wow you are very brave and really good luck to you. 🙂
    .-= amanda´s last blog ..Las Vegas Food Porn =-.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    *deep breath* i haven’t done it yet, but i feel like i’m wrapping my brain around it. thanks for your support, amanda!

    [Reply]

  10. Ameena
    26 March 2010, 5:18 pm

    I don’t think there is anything wrong with weighing and measuring…I do it sometimes when I start to forget how much something should look visually.

    I feel your pain on the estrogen…I think we can all relate!
    .-= Ameena´s last blog ..Life-Changing =-.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    thank for your support, ameena. i weigh/measure pretty much every thing that goes in my mouth though so i know how many calories i’m having. it’s a totally compulsive behavior. i only wish i could do it sometimes like you do! that is what my goal is.
    sorry to hear you have female issues too. =(

    [Reply]

  11. Bobbie @Anonymous Fat Girl
    27 March 2010, 9:54 am

    Yes, I agree, if it doesn’t work then just go back to what does work. I think it’s great that you are thinking of changing things up! 🙂 And best of luck with the issues you’ve been having, I hope you get it figured out soon.
    .-= Bobbie @Anonymous Fat Girl´s last blog ..Caskets for the obese & Jamie Oliver’s ‘Food Revolution’ =-.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    thanks all around, bobbie! i will certainly keep everyone posted once we get back.

    [Reply]

  12. Jody - Fit at 52
    27 March 2010, 11:07 am

    So great that you are feeling so good & doing things to move forward! I agree, if is does not work long term, nothing says you can’t take another path!
    .-= Jody – Fit at 52´s last blog ..Saturday Funnies! =-.

    [Reply]

    love2eatinpa Reply:

    thanks for your support, jody! moving forward is both exciting and scary at the same time.

    [Reply]

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