This morning I am working on getting life back to normal after the storm. My work is still closed because it has no power but my husband is back at work and our children are back at school after 9 days in a row at home! Today is about getting the house back in order and having some time to reflect on my personal, metaphorical, “house”.

The dieting has been in a weird limbo since the introduction of Hurricane Sandy. I think, that it stems from the obvious: part of my eating disorder comes from a need to feel in control of something and this storm made me feel very out of control, the most out of control I’ve felt since starting this diet last May.

Usually when I’m feeling anxious and out of control I try to “take back my will”, as we’d say in Overeaters Anonymous, by messing with my food plan. Which I did, but only to such a small degree that I’m still feeling proud of myself.

But, I’m proud of myself for finding a way to balance out my compulsive need to take back my will, the anxiety I felt, and still following the basic tenets of the diet. Yes, I’ve eaten vegetables every day for the past week and a half instead of alternating pure protein days with protein & vegetable days, but that’s as far “off track” as I’ve taken it. For that I am grateful.

I will say, though, that it’s made me really want to move on to the consolidation phase. I am very content eating protein and vegetables together and I’m not even thinking about the carbs. I’m not even really ever thinking about fruit anymore. I don’t miss it anymore. But, on the days I’m supposed to be eating pure protein I kind of just don’t want to anymore. I want my veggies too.

I know that long term commitment to keeping the weight off and following this plan will mean one day a week of pure protein, but I feel as though I can do that pretty easily. I’m not worried about that. What I’m worried about is the process of reintegrating all those other foods and not gaining any weight and not losing the sanity I’ve gained through this plan of eating.

My clothes are fitting fine. I’m comfortable in my pants and tops that I’ve been saving for the past 5 years. I was even able to buy a couple of things this past weekend that I like, in sizes that I like, which was really nice.

I got my period last week on my weigh-in day so I skipped the weigh-in and I’m nervous about skipping another week. I’m at the tail end of my period now which would normally mean I wouldn’t weigh-in because it messes with the scale so much, but this month, it’s hitting two weigh-ins which makes me nervous. Not knowing makes me jittery, even though part of me doesn’t want to know in case it’s not what I want to see.  So I think that I might bite the bullet and get on the scale on Wednesday so it doesn’t have the chance to mess with my head any longer that it must.

When this diet started I set up a “responsibility chart” for myself in a spreadsheet on my computer. The first page of the spreadsheet is a food log where I keep track of if I’m on a PP day or a P+V day and I log everything I eat and drink . The second page is a responsibility chart where I keep track of the four things I’ve been logging in my weigh-in posts: the number of days each week where I stay on the food plan, drank 64 oz of water, ate my oat bran allotment, and exercised. The third page is a log of how much I weigh each week, how much I’ve lost since the past week, and  a running total of how much I’ve lost overall.

I noticed that a few weeks ago I had basically stopped filling in the responsibility chart page and I have been having to reconstruct it at the end of the week before writing my weigh-in post. I’ll be honest that I was worried about this pattern until I tried to reflect on why it was happening. The answer was so simple and so reassuring: these things have become so much a part of my life that I’m doing them all every day without thinking about it. I’m not logging it because it’s happening anyway without needing the reminder of the chart.

Of course, with work and taking care of the kids I’m not able to exercise every day, but I’m getting it done enough that I’m in a routine and I like doing it. So, I’m not worried about that. It feels so good to not be worried that I’m doing things “wrong”. That has always haunted me in my past weight loss attempts that have failed. But now, I’m just living it, and I’m living it the way it is designed to be lived.

It feels so good to realize that the things I’m “supposed to be doing” are actually things that I want to be doing. That’s a new experience for me and I love it.

One day at a time, the pieces are coming together to give me the life I want.

I am lucky. I am grateful. I will continue to do the work I need to do to stay in this place.

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