I’ve recently been watching a show on TLC called my 600 pound life. I can relate to a lot of the issues on this show. I can relate when some of them said that they blank out when they eat. Which means that they don’t feel anything. They escape from their feelings. It’s only temporary but that is why you have to keep eating the food to keep getting that numbing feeling. Sometimes when you binge, you get “high”. You feel the most incredible excitement. I would almost not even want to get full so that I could keep eating more. I wanted that excitement to last forever. It would only last as soon as the last doughnut was eaten and then I would start to feel guilty and horrible about myself. I would stay at home and not go out much. I felt like a prisoner in my body. I hated the way I looked in clothes. I would make up excuses when friends asked me to go out so that I could stay at home. I would be excited to go out until I started to try on my clothing and then my self esteem would go down because I didn’t like the way the clothes fit me. I didn’t like that I had to get a bigger size in my clothing. Another issue from the show is that when the patients go to the doctor they lie about what they have been eating. They say that they don’t know why they haven’t lost any weight but they are in denial. I was in denial too. I was embarrassed and scared to tell the truth about what I was actually eating. I only binged when I was alone. It’s very hard to change your eating habits, especially when you have been using food to deal with your emotions. Food is always there. Even now when some of my patients want to thank me they get their family members to bring in doughnuts or a cake to us. Now I usually just leave it for the other nurses. Sometimes it’s hard to say no. I still remember how the doughnuts taste. I indulge sometimes but not all the times like I used to do. I have other things to lean on now. I talk to my friends and my parents now. I have a blog. I go out to exercise. I sit by a river or a lake. That rejuvenates me. It makes me feel so peaceful when I’m sitting by a river or a lake. I can relate to their struggles. It’s a daily struggle to show yourself that you love yourself. Some days I get lazy. Some days I’m tired after work. I go to work and give so much to my patients, that when I get home I’m just tired. I don’t feel like exercising and I don’t even feel like eating. I just feel like going to bed. I’ve learned that if I fall off the wagon, I just need to get back up and continue. In the past, if I binged then I would just continue binging. Now if I have a doughnut, I don’t continue to eat just doughnuts. I still eat my raw vegetables and my smoothie. I don’t feel guilty. I’m just human. I don’t deny myself what I want. I also don’t give in every time I feel like it. I examine my emotions and figure out why I’m having a craving. I journal it and get it out. I’m making progress and I don’t think I’ll ever be completely done. This is some thing that I’m going to be working on for the rest of my life and I’m finally up for the challenge.
I went rock climbing with some friends last year. I didn’t expect to get a life lesson from it. If you pay attention, you can get a life lesson from some unexpected places. One day, I woke up and heard some crows cawing really loudly. I looked out of my window and saw a hawk on the roof of my neighbor’s house. The hawk was surrounded by four crows. The hawk didn’t move and when the crows came near it, the hawk would just ruffle it’s feathers and the crows would back off. Eventually the crows left the hawk alone and the hawk stayed on the roof. The lesson I got from that was, that is how you have to handle your haters. You have to stand your ground and not let them move you from where you want to be. So I went rock climbing for the first time and I would get halfway up the wall and get scared. I would look down and see how far I had gone and I would look up and see where I wanted to be. When you are on the wall, sometimes you can’t see where you need to put your feet to get to the top. Rock climbing is like a puzzle where you have to figure out the best place to put your feet to get you to the top. The first time rock climbing, I didn’t make it to the top because I was scared. At that point in my life, I had started working with my health coach and I was in a major transition. I could see the old Shavawn and where I didn’t want to be anymore and I could see in my dreams the new Shavawn and where I was going to be. Sometimes you need help to get you to where you need to be. Some things you have to do on your own. You have to know when you need help and when to do things on your own. No one can eat healthy for you. No one can exercise for you. No one can learn life lessons for you. I’ve very grateful for the people who are in my life now and helping me. Get out into the world and learn all you can!!! You may make mistakes but mistakes are just lessons.
Over the past 12 years, I’ve been struggling with this eating disorder. I would be lying if I told you that I don’t worry a little bit about having a relapse. Just today I ate some muffins. Now I’m bloated and my stomach hurts. It’s hard to eat unhealthy when you eat so healthy. I’ve had about 4 relapses over the years. When I’m in the diet phase I feel so in control and when I’m on the binging phase I feel so out of control. This time is different. I want to be healthy. I’ve found a way to eat healthy that works for me. When I was on my diet programs, I couldn’t sustain them for long. I could only go about 6 months and then I would be back on my binging phase again. The binging phase could last for years. With the help of my health coach, I’ve been on this healthy eating for about a year now. I can sustain this program. I’m eating foods I like and I still cheat occasionally but for the most part I eat healthy. I see first hand everyday what not taking care of yourself can lead to. I went shopping today for clothes and I felt so good about myself. I still have 18 more pounds to lose but I really needed new clothes. My scrubs were hanging off of me. I was tired of always having to pull up my pants at work. I haven’t worn shorts in over 4 years. I wore shorts for the first time last week when I went para-sailing. Tomorrow I’m going for a hot air balloon ride! I’m taking more chances and doing the things that I’ve always wanted to do. I’m even doing things by myself, which for me is a big deal. I would usually wait for my friends to be available before doing certain things. Now, I’m going out and doing what I want on my own. I’m para-sailing and going for a hot air balloon ride. Hopefully when I get back home, I can do some of those things with my friends or family. Every day I have to make the decisions about what I’m going to eat. I have to choose healthy food choices so that I won’t have a relapse again. I can no longer take the easy way out and just eat doughnuts or fast food. I have to take care of myself.