Weighty Matters

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Recognizing the Changes

Pyxi had an up and down weekend.  Yesterday, although she ate a couple of times during the day, she couldn’t keep it down, seemed very weak and was not at all perky.  Honestly, last night I was afraid she was going to die.  This morning, I texted our friend/vet and he met us at the clinic to administer more sub-cutaneous fluids and some anti-nausea medication.  He prepared me that she’d probably be very sedate today from the meds, which she was.  However, she also ate three small meals throughout the day and has kept it all down!  She is still turning up her cute little nose at the carbs, but as long as she eats anything and retains it, that’s something.  We’re testing her blood again tomorrow and, hopefully, her numbers will have improved.  Fingers and paws crossed!  We can consider an appetite booster which might make her more interested in a greater variety of food items or, that might happen without help if she starts to feel better.

I had a little bit of an up and down weekend with my food and, at times, I thought I was a whole lot worse than I truly was.  Thankfully, I’ve continued to log my food in my digital food diary so I can go back, read, and truly analyze my intake rationally.  This is so important because when I don’t look at things with logic and rationale, but instead view it through the distorted lens of my eating disorder, my perspective goes all screwy.

Even with Pyxi sick, I know she’s okay if I leave for an hour or two.  I don’t go for long stretches of time, so I get back to coax her with food, check if she needs anything, and so on.  I went to rowing class yesterday morning.  I had a facial mid-day.  I went to dinner last night with a friend.   These all fit under the heading of taking care of myself so that I can continue to take good care of her.

I didn’t pre-plan my exact foods for dinner.  Instead, I logged it in the morning as “reasonable dinner”.  We went to a local restaurant that I really like and I ordered food that I really like – including the brussel sprouts “chips” appetizer that I love.  We split it and brought at least half of it away in a box.  Same thing with my entree — at least half of it came home with me and will be dinner tomorrow.  They asked if we wanted dessert and I made the conscious choice to share some of that too.  A few bites were totally yummy and satisfying — and saying yes to myself actually helped emotionally.  If I’d denied myself the treat, I would have experienced resentment, grumpiness, and, most likely self-pity.  All of those could have led to me coming home and binge eating on something.

Of course, even though I completely ate reasonably and did not overeat, I still experienced several moments where I felt like I’d done poorly.  Such is the nature of my disease.  I came home and started to beat myself up and then called a halt to the negative mind-trend.  Instead I reminded myself how I’ve been taking good care of myself; how I’m being rational about my food, how I worked so hard in the morning rowing class.  I’m convinced that doing these reminders kept me from eating compulsively last night after I got home.  Being able to stop myself from disintegrating into disease behavior is a positive change.  I need to recognize these changes when they occur.  Doing so helps them take root and provide a stronger foundation for the future.

I recognized another positive change a little later in the day.  After getting back from the vet and spending a little time decompressing by reading a book while Pyxi rested, I decided to go into the pool and exercise.  I went into the bathroom to change into my swimsuit.  When I took off my shirt and started to remove my bra, I glanced in the mirror.  In that moment, I saw where the rowing classes have begun to cause some changes in my body.  There are hints of better definition in my shoulders that weren’t there before.  My waist looks a little smaller.  I nodded at myself in the mirror and smiled.  Then I put on my bathing suit, went to the pool, turned on some music and exercised for 30 or 40 minutes.

Seeing some physical improvement is such good positive reinforcement.  I don’t know what the number on the scale will read tomorrow morning.  (Forgot to tell you that I stuck to my commitment of only weighing Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings.)  If it’s down from Friday, terrific.  If it isn’t, I know that my body is still slimming down, getting more defined and also gaining in strength.  No matter what, I need to recognized and acknowledge these changes.

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The Relief of Decisions

A month or so ago I talked about making a difficult decision to step away from an organization on whose Board I served. I didn’t fully understand how much stress I put on myself with that involvement until I no longer felt it after I resigned. (The friendship I was worried about has not gone completely south either. I think eventually we’ll be okay.)

About a week ago, I realized that I was in another situation that, while not stressing me out, was making me cranky. I had previously said to a group that I was interested in training as an instructor. Over time, I asked for a better idea of the path and process to achieving that and wasn’t given the information that I’d hoped for. It wasn’t the organization’s way. Then I saw some decisions made that puzzled me and, to be honest, hurt my ego. I thought I could process the emotions and thoughts and bring myself to a place where it didn’t bother me. I thought I could be patient. I was unsuccessful in both areas. With everything combined, it made me, like I said, cranky. I don’t like being cranky in my leisure activities. The emotions leached the enjoyment out of the activity and allowing that to happen just didn’t make sense.

Still, this was also not an easy decision. I am, at heart, a people-pleaser and it’s really difficult for me to make a change that’s better for me if I perceive that I’m going to disappoint someone else – particularly if the someone is a friend. Ultimately, I withdrew myself from consideration. My friend was disappointed but supportive. This was a welcome experience after the previous dust-up in the other situation. Overall, again, having made the decision I then felt relief and a reduction in stress and upset. I was happier and more relaxed in tonight’s class and that reinforced that I’d made the right decision. For me.

I don’t know why it’s so hard sometimes to choose actions and decisions that are right for me. Probably something to do with not wanting to be, or be perceived as, selfish. There’s a line to be determined between acting in a negatively selfish way and doing something that is necessary for my improved wellbeing. In my heart, I believe that I took actions that support my recovery. Regardless of how others may feel, I know I’m relieved and I’m sticking with them.

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