Friday, May 25, 2007

Goddesses, we are

"We put aside our issues for the beauty of it because we see each other as goddesses and beautiful women." From "In the Buff: Naked Yoga" by Rachel Telehany (last updated May 25, 2007) -

I read the article from which this quote came and was in awe of these women yoga nude.

I've been pole dancing for over 4 months now and while I still blush profusely when I talk about it, I absolutely love it. No therapist in the world could help me feel as confident, empowered, as sexy as I do after an hour class. I crave those feelings and truly notice a difference in my outlook when I am unable to attend class.

I believe that everyone needs to find a way to get in touch with or recharge her (or his) innate sexualness. For all humans are inherently sexual beings. And that should be okay.

Alterations expected

So, the last I left you, I had just been given a mealplan by Jennifer, my nutritionist. That was over a month ago.

In that time, I did follow the mealplan exactly for about 3 weeks - excited about being given permission to lose weight in a healthy way. But then I couldn't take the feeling of deprivation anymore, the obsession with the numbers of the scale, and I binged.

I talked to Jennifer about it at my last appointment (two weeks ago.) And we realigned our goals. We agreed that I didn't need to lose weight. That the point of all this was (is) to balance out my eating to ensure that I was getting all the nutrients I need to live.

At that appointment, we talked about serving sizes and portions. She gave me rubber food to illustrate how much is a serving of pasta and that I should have about 2 or 3 servings at a meal. We discussed eating out - how most restaurants serve one 10 or 12 servings. She suggested that I eat half of a lunch platter and a quarter (or so) of a dinner platter (when eating out.) She reminded me that half of a meal should be veggies, a quarter lean meat, and the last quarter a complex carb.
We also figured that my cravings and binges are probably stemming from the lack of fat in my diet. So recommended that I start taking fish oil pills to give me the healthy fatty acids that olive oil and salmon would give (two foods that I'm not fond of.)

But I still have questions. Some are admittedly neurotic (like what is the serving size of a sweet potato or white potato?) Some are at a higher-level (ie. how do I get more fat in my diet when fats frighten me?)

And that's okay.

This is a learning process. I was never taught to listen, let alone trust, my body to tell me what it needs nutritionally. So I have a lot of reprogramming to do.

So I try to remain calm (by using my alternative coping mechanisms of breathing deeply, stretching, talking, walking, writing, etc.) And I try to eat thoughtfully.

Have I been successful? Not all the time. I have succombed to mini-binges often these past two weeks.
Am I a failure? Absolutely not.
Each time I stumble, I learn something new. These mini-binges probably mean that I'm still not getting enough fat in my diet. So I make adjustments - minor ones until I meet with Jennifer again on Tuesday. I refuse to choose to chuck everything, no matter how much my eating disorder is tempting me to return to it.

I am worth the effort.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Prying out of ruts

I haven't been online much lately. The weather where I am has turned absolutely gorgeous - sunny and warm - that I've been enjoying some much loved time with my family.

When I actually got around to checking my email, I found some opportunities for a friend of mine who is currently out of work (having been laid off from the same company that let me go last year.) So I called her up to chat for a few minutes. She emailed me back an apology for not writing more or calling. She wanted to hide because she thinks that all she ever has to share is "bad news."

So I wrote her back, apologizing for not being there for her because I was living my life. I also let her in on my new way of thinking. I focus on the positives as much as possible. And while not everything in my life is peaches and cream, and while I do feel all emotions now (many not so pleasant ones,) I do allow myself to experience each moment fully.

One of my favorite Thoreau quotes is:

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.... I wanted to live deep and suck out all the marrow of life..."

And while I'm not willing to go live like a hermit in the middle of the woods for any stretch of time (lol), I am willing to seek out every enjoyable moment in this life and experience it fully.

Does this take a lot of courage? Perhaps. But what is the alternative? John, my therapist often reminded me that great risks often equal great rewards.

I do believe that everything happens for a reason, but I also believe in free will. We all make choices in our lives, everyday. I've come to realize that if we choose to live with a choice, that's still a choice we've made and at any given time, we can choose something else. I guess I believe that life is too short to spend even one moment of it feeling resigned or stuck. If my groove turns into a rut, I'll choose a different groove, or better still, make a new groove. ;-) Life is just too damn short.

So for those of you who think you are stuck in a rut, remember that the power is within you to change. No one can do it for you.

Helen Keller said it best. "You make your own heaven."

So, what do you want heaven to look like?