Everything still feels like an obligation rather than anything I want to do. The closest I’ve come to finding something that I wanted to do that wasn’t going to make everything worse is playing a certain song over and over again. I’m embarrassed to admit that the song is from the movie Frozen and I only downloaded it for my daughter.

But something about Idina Menzel’s voice makes me feel… I’m not sure how to describe it… filled up in my chest and whole in a way that I don’t feel normally. So I’m listening to it over and over. I feel stupid but I kind of don’t care.

One thing I’ve really learned this time through relapse is that the food is really all about my mental health not my weight. Trying to regain my mental stability is so intricately interwoven with what I eat that it’s hard to separate it from the effects it has on my body. But I have to differentiate. In the past I would have eaten my way through the depression and when it had run its course I’d have the weight to fight with.

This time I feel as though instead of eating through the depression I am abstaining my way out of it. I’m not deluding myself into thinking that the scale is going to reward me for this in the end by showing some big loss. I’m just hoping that it has the side benefit of not creating more problems for me to deal with later.

But abstaining throughout this bout of depression makes the whole thing feel different. I can see how I used food to block myself from feeling these feelings. Instead of feeling bloated and defeated and hazy through the food hangovers this time I just feel… well… depressed. There’s no joy, lots of obligation, exhaustion, erratic anxiety, and easy tearfulness (although this last one has abated a lot).

What I don’t feel right now is hopeless or helpless. Yes, that is bound to be influenced by the medication. But I’ve been down this road before and the helpless and the hopeless usually stick around a long long time. I believe that much of this round’s quick dispensing with the helpless and the hopeless is due to the food choices I’ve made this past week. Cutting the wheat and carbs made a difference and it gave me something very concrete to do to help myself. When it worked it took a lot of wind out of the “helpless” sails.

Now I have to decide where I’m going from here with the food. Do I go back on Cruise and try to lose the weight I gained over the holidays or do I give myself and chance to stabilize mentally first? While I think there’s a case to be made on either side, the back and forth (one day PP one day V+P) of Cruise might make me feel pressured and revert my focus back to the scale, which I don’t want.

So, I think now that I’ve cleared my system of the wheat, gluten, and carbs I’m not going to go back on Cruise fully while I still feel as though my emotional recovery is so tenuous. The 5 days of Attack were essential to clearing my system. But right now I’m just going to follow the Cruise V+P guidelines until I feel mentally stronger. Having veggies won’t cause the scale to skyrocket or cause the depression to get worse and it will help me avoid deprivation.

So, that’s my plan. At least for now.