Friday, May 23, 2014

May 23rd, 2014 It's Hard To Explain

May 23rd, 2014 It's Hard To Explain

It's hard to explain, really. This feeling of control, it's just been awhile since I felt this. It feels amazing. In the middle of the isolating and sneak eating, the binges and all that contributed to my weight gain, this seemed a million miles away. I was in deep. I'm not even sure I've accurately described just how deep. I'll try to be brief in this example:

I was on my way to a friend's house one night for a wonderful dinner. It was to be a nicely balanced, calorie friendly meal and of course I was on my best food behavior.  "No, thank you--no dessert for me!" What my friend and not another soul didn't know, was how I was lusting for a binge while driving across town for this dinner. And I wasn't salivating for the meal I was about to consume, I was fantasizing about the giant double cheeseburger and large ice cream shake I planned on buying later, after dinner. Now, take that actual happening and multiply it by, hmmmm... I don't know... a lot.

The kid at the drive-through had no idea he was playing the part of my dealer. Like a paranoid drug addict, I would literally look from side to side, back and forth--making sure nobody caught me while exchanging the money for the goods. I always waited to insert the straw into the shake until I was safely undercover, far from the well lit main drag, on the darkened residential back streets that lead back to my dungeon, I mean apartment. 

Driving slow and sucking in the first tastes of that high calorie dose of sugar and fat was always the best. Then, with each additional mouthful, it just wasn't as good.  Maybe I started mixing some guilt into that shake and a dash or two of shame. When the cup was empty, I'd feel like I was about to burst--completely miserable. The negative inner dialogue was relentless. Then, as if making a new deal with my abusive thoughts (I'd tell myself anything to make them stop), I'd sit in my recliner and promise myself it had been the last time. No more, no more, no more...because maybe if I grab control now, nobody will be the wiser about this--I'll return to my healthiest weight and take these dark secrets to my grave.  The next time would also be my last until the next time and so on. So much for taking the secrets to my grave. Weight gain is terrible at keeping secrets.

A wise person once said "You're only as sick as your secrets." Yeah...that.

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The schedule today included an early remote broadcast with two clients promoting a customer appreciation cook-out.  They had all of the expected items: Hot dogs, chips, cookies and soda. I was well prepared. I packed a turkey and provolone sandwich with plenty of fruit into my man-bag just before departing for the event. I wasn't the least bit interested in the food they were offering. I wasn't, not even a little bit.  It was as if I was a completely different person.  Suddenly I've become someone who plans ahead, sticks to my plan and doesn't negotiate with errant thoughts.  But there wasn't any errant thoughts today. Just peace and calm.
I waited until it was a good time to eat lunch and I dined right there at the broadcast. I politely declined repeated offers and encouragement to indulge, "Hey, those dogs are hot off the grill--doesn't get any better, you should get you one." No thanks, I brought my own food. "We got cookies!" I see that, yes, yes you do. "You want half of my Doritos?"  Nope, I'm good, thank you! This experience left me feeling enormously grateful for the strength that is nothing short of an answer to a desperate prayer.

I enjoyed some good snacks later in the day, took a little nap and made my way to the YMCA for a solid workout on the elliptical. I must look half-crazy on that thing, lip syncing to the music that moves me--but I can't play air-instruments because my entire body is involved in the workout. I get so into it, I don't even notice if anyone else notices my antics. And I don't even care.  Even if they did, I don't imagine a negative reaction--quite the contrary, it would probably be something like, "Wow, look at him go, he's really into his workout! Good for him!" 

Trying to decide on dinner tonight was a little challenging. I had some things at home but it wasn't what I wanted. I wanted to grill out. It's Memorial Day Weekend after all! I put my ear buds back on and headed into the grocery store as Walk Off The Earth's REVO filled me with positive energy. I grabbed some veggies to grill, some fruit for "dessert," a pre-cut bag of shoestring all natural sweet potato fries and a top sirloin I found on sale for $2.88!  Dinner was on. And it was good. 610 calories worth. I couldn't eat it all and ended up adjusting the calories down to 580.

I'll be up late tonight working on the final preparations for a wedding reception I'll be DJ'ing tomorrow evening.  I don't usually do mobile dj work, but a friend recently gifted me his old equipment and when he declined the date, he told them to call me. For some strange reason I said yes. Oh yeah, they offered to pay me, that's why. Just between these pages, I honestly don't like doing mobile dj work. It's completely different than what I do on the radio. I don't feel very confident in my dj'ing ability, is what I'm saying. But I accepted the gig and I shall give them my best.  I mean, it is one of the most special days of this couple's entire life, I suppose I better give it everything I got.  I plan on packing a good, portable dinner tomorrow evening. I don't want to be caught off guard by the wedding reception buffet.

Again, I'm pleasantly surprised by this fantastic feeling of control, purpose and positive spirit. The recent identity-self-worth epiphanies have been working their magic on me. I spend a lot of time alone and usually I don't like it at all.  But you know what? I'm digging it. Suddenly and effortlessly, I don't mind being alone as much. In fact, I kinda like me a lot. It's like getting better acquainted with a long lost friend you promised yourself you'd take the time to get to know someday.

You're welcome to follow me on Twitter: @SeanAAnderson I post pictures and calorie counts of every bite of food I eat.  It's an extreme accountability measure. And I don't say "extreme" in a negative way. It's simply working well for me.  And something important to remember--I don't post the pics as an example of what anyone else should eat. I wouldn't do that. What I like and what you like may very well be two different things completely.  And if you're also on this road, I believe it's important to eat what you like.  I do find myself taking extra time and care in preparation of my food--and plating it nicely for the camera...and that's nothing but good because it slows me down and allows me to enjoy my meals and snacks even more. The food picture Tweets have been an invaluable tool of my recovery.  If you enjoy that type of thing (the food pics), then awesome, it's a win-win!

I'm also on MyFitnessPal under the user name: SeanAAnderson  I welcome you to friend request me there as well. One of my MFP friends pointed out today that my stats still say "0 pounds lost." It does because I haven't updated the weights in there. I've used MFP strictly for logging my food and exercise. I suppose I could sit down and go through entering all of the different weights in order to get an accurate profile display, but I just haven't had the time. I may do that sometime over this holiday weekend.

Thank you for reading,
Strength,
Sean

10 comments:

  1. Wow, way to go~yes planning is key. When my family visits I love to cook for them but what they can eat and the grandkids are not necessarily what I can eat. So I make what I can have along with theirs, no big deal or a modified version. And wow a wedding reception, how fun! I used to be a wedding photographer and though it was a lot of work it was such an uplifting job. I bet you will make it a great time!

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    1. Great planning, Julie! And a fantastic attitude. The wedding thing-- it's a lot of pressure!! I bet it's even more so as a photog...With music, it's one night...and they'll forget that I didn't have the Vanilla ice song, over time.. But photography---that's forever stuff!!! I couldn't do what you do and have done... I'm stressing out about making this one night good... and that's enough! At 11pm tonight I will be breathing a sigh of relief... I'm sure it will go wonderfully. Thank you for your wonderful support!!!

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  2. I so relate to the feeling of being a junkee and going to my 'dealer' in my past. "Yep, that family size bag of Reese's cups is for a party"...make that party of one. People without food issues wouldn't truly understand though they may sympathize. It makes the times when we make the right choices so much more of a big thing.

    We go to my father in law's lake house every couple of weeks and sometimes we take a dessert and buy takeout on the way. This can be bad, kinda good, or really bad. I do go over the hilly property and pick up limbs and drag them to his burn pile so I get a work out in each time. Today , I planned the meal I'm taking. Crock pot BBQ chicken (started at 10 pm the night before and cooked till 10 am), with veg and probably some kind of starch (sweet potato fries?)...And for the first time, rather than think of a dessert that I could also enjoy (my guilty pleasure). I decided to buy Individual cake slices for the 'boys' and I'll eat strawberries and a Garden De lites chocolate zucchini muffin. Exercise will be picking up limbs and maybe a wade in to the cold lake.

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    1. It does make them bigger, PJ--so true. I love it that you're not only planning well, you're getting two kinds of exercise---deliberate and functional... Being on "limb duty" has got to be a lot of work!!!! These Garden delights you speak of... with zuchinni?? Tell me more, please! Oh--and strawberries are incredibly wonderful this time of year, aren't they? So sweet and juicy!

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  3. I totally understand the addict type behavior that goes with certain foods. I can remember grabbing cadburys easter eggs and putting them quickly in my purse after I paid for them so I could eat them alone without having anyone else know.
    Planning is definitely top of the list of things that help you stay on plan :)

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    1. Oh my, yes.. Suzanne--I relate, I've hidden more candy bars in my time than I can remember!!! Planning: Critical, crucial, must have for successful recovery. thank you Suzanne!

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  4. I'm still waiting for you to post the story about when you hooked up with Kenlie and she pretended you knocked her up! Spill it!

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    1. Elaine, sorry to disappoint you, but recounting the story wouldn't serve any positive purpose. It was proven fictitious and we live and learn. Your enthusiasm for the soap opera-like drama of it all is understood and human. My first inclination was to delete the comment, but I decided to allow your comment and respond to it because I sincerely appreciate your wonderful support of me over the years. Seriously, I don't blame her or hold any ill will toward her. Had I known then what I know now about setting proper boundaries, the entire situation would have never happened. I don't keep up with her, but I sincerely hope she's finding what she's looking for and needs along the way. And I truly wish her the very best. And you too, Elaine. :)

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  5. The food junkie behavior... yesssss.... been there. I suspect it doesn't taste all that good as we go along because we're really hungry for something else, to fill some deep inner void.

    The lovely, calm feeling of being in control.... yessss... been there. Why have I made it so hard? Losing weight is really simple. I can do this... it's not that hard.

    But what I don't understand... and I hope it's not a jinx for me to throw this out there, but what I don't understand is... what is that feeling of possession that takes us out of control? Is it some mixed up inner message that wants to take back the freedom and spontaneity of eating whatever we want, whenever we want? Is it a rebellion against the structure, some prideful part of us that doesn't want to be treated like a child who's being monitored? Is it that desire to fill the inner emptiness that can never be filled by food? Is it all of these things? I know that for my own part, I go out to eat a lot because I live alone and work from home, and I just want to be out among people, hearing people's voices, and interacting, if only for a moment, with the waiter or waitress and enjoying being taken care of. On some level, food represents family and comfort to me, and I've been missing family and comfort. It's a very complex dynamic, and one that is hard to solve.

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  6. PJ mentioned Reese's Cups....oh, that was so me!!! Control--it's an awesome thing. I think you will do fantastic tomorrow night!!

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