Monday, May 25, 2009

Listening to my body

I will never forget when I was 13 or 14 I was astonished how my uncle stayed so thin and he never finished what was on his plate. I remember saying to him, “How do you know when you are full?” He replied, “I eat until I am satisfied and then stop.” I remember thinking, “What are you talking about?” I have never understood that concept and I still don’t. I am a member of the “Clean Plate Club.” My grandmother really drilled that into my head because I had to eat for the starving kids in China and Russia. All these years no matter what was on my plate I always have to finish everything. I feel like I have been out of touch with my body for a very long time and the truth being known probably about 30 years since I was 13. That is when I started eating to stuff down my emotions after my mother passed away two months before my Bar Mitzvah.

I realized quickly that if I ate enough food at the right times that I didn’t have to feel whatever feeling was going on at the time. By overeating enough at the right times I could go to sleep or just “veg” out in front of the tv with food. As I got into my mid twenties I noticed that I had a lot of gas and was going to the bathroom a lot. When I had these “episodes” it would be smelly enough that I could have probably been used as a weapon. Years and years went by and I was never able to correlate what was going on with my body in relation to what I was eating. At some point I just surrendered and said to myself, “This is just the way my body is.” Meanwhile I was struggling with food and always feeling hungry.

In 1999 after I found a 12 step group for compulsive eaters. I learned a new way of eating and started eating 3 meals a day. That is where my work began in relation to my eating issues. That is when I learned that I didn’t need white sugar or white flour anymore. That is also when I learned about eating different vegetables. Still through all of this I was still having my issues with gas and having to go to the bathroom a lot. Again I just assumed that this is what my body is like and I never pursued anything further.

Fast forwarding to March 2009 I am still dealing with those same issues. I have gained back 80 of the 100 pounds I lost and feeling horrible in many different ways. I was having such issues with gas, bloat, and diarrhea. Just plain feeling horrible and at the end of my rope. I was gaining weight like crazy and I was certain that it was water retention and bloat. The crazy thing was that I was eating what I considered to be healthy. What I didn’t realize was what I was eating albeit healthy was making me sick.

I finally decided to call a friend of mine who is into holistic health type work and knows a lot about nutrition from her own learning’s. I told Vicky what was going on and she asked me to tell her what I was eating. I proceeded to tell her what I was eating during the whole day. Then when I told her that I was eating 1 pound of raw vegetables with lunch and 1 pound of raw vegetables with dinner she couldn’t believe it. She asked me if I were a horse and she said that I was eating enough rough vegetables for a small family every day. We then further discovered that my problems were happening after lunch and dinner. She immediately made me change my diet. For one week I was not allowed to eat any vegetables at all and only simple grains like oatmeal, yams and sweet potatoes. I couldn’t eat anything that was loaded with fiber. That night when I had my new way of eating at dinner I felt so good it was crazy. After a week I gradually added a little bit of vegetables here and there. She also told me that if my body did flare up that drinking mint or chamomile tea would help calm things down.
What I learned out of this is I can no longer not listen to my body and I have to pay attention to what my body is telling me after I eat certain foods. I have had to give up spicy foods for now because of how it makes me feel. I can’t eat the quantities of raw vegetables like I used to. Vicky taught me how to eat all over again and I haven’t felt this good in years. I started losing weight again. I only weigh myself once a month but as of the last time I weighed I lost 10 pounds. I hadn’t lost any weight for such a long time I didn’t think it were possible anymore. My mind is so much clearer now. I think because of how my body was interacting with what I was eating it was causing my depression and also my body wasn’t absorbing the food it was eating. I discover now that I can eat slower, eat more wholesome foods and feel fuller longer. I have made the decision to eat for the most part totally organic. I will only by organic grass fed beef and organic chicken. I also increased my water intake to half of my body weight in ounces. There are times when I make a mistake and my body flares up. I whip out my mint or chamomile tea and usually that corrects it.

What I learned out of all of this is we are all different and we have to do what works for us. Knowing what I know now I would have done this a long time ago. I feel so good these days and haven’t felt this way in a long time. There is a wealth of information out there that tells us so many different ways to eat. If what we are doing is not working and we cannot figure it out then we have to go to someone who can help us. If I didn’t have my friend Vicky to go to I would have gone to a nutritionist. We have to listen to what our body is telling us otherwise we don’t know the damage we could potentially be causing.

I was sharing this with some friends of mine recently and unbeknownst to me one of them went to a nutritionist because of her issues. After going to this doctor she has found out that she has an ulcer. Had she not gone to this nutritionist she would have never found out that she had an ulcer which could have caused other problems down the road. She came up to me a few weeks later to share with me that after I shared with her what was going on with me that she too hadn’t been listening to her body.

Although we want to fit in and we want to find an easy answer to help our bodies. We have to remember that we are all different and our bodies may require different things sometimes. There are experts out there to help us when we cannot help ourselves. I am so grateful to my friend Vicky who has forever changed my life.

Monday, May 11, 2009


I have really learned to love Mondays. I USED to dread Mondays. I have discovered that Monday's are my favorite day of the week! It is a fresh start to a brand new week and a brand new moment in time. I get to create whatever I chose to create for my week and I have found that it's all about my attitude. When I keep an open mind and positive attitude, no matter what my week goes great. That doesn't mean that challenges don't appear along the way it means that when those challenges appear I am much better equipped to deal with them when I have an open mind.

You have a fantastic and glorious week!! The week is yours and you can paint your canvas however you chose!!

Let me know your thoughts about Monday's.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Mothers Day, Expectations and etc...

Wow. What a week this has been. It is nice to be able to sit down for a bit and write about what is going on with me. I keep reminding myself that writing is healing and perhaps what I write about could help someone else. It just has been one of those crazy weeks. Maybe it's something in the universe I have heard a few people say thte same thing about this past week.

One thing that became very apparent for me this week is the importance of sleep. I am one of these people that if I don't get 7 - 8 hours of sleep a night I am no good to anyone. I get cranky and crazy when I don't get proper rest. I had a couple nights this week that I got to bed after 10:30 which is just way to late for me. I am usually up every morning between 4:30 and 4:45 which means I need to get to bed no later than 9:30. When I get proper rest I can think better, I perform better, my mind is clear, my food is clean and I can just be a better person with proper sleep.

I have heard from different people this week that, "Expectations are resentsments waiting to happen." It's funny when I first heard that expression last week I thought to myself. Duh, it's a no brainer, how obvious. Funny that a week later I again hear that same phrase and think the same thing to myself. Then not one hour later I call my step mom and tell her I'd like to come by and see her for Mother's Day. This is not something I planned out. It just happened on the spur of the moment. She told me that she was on her way out the door and had other plans. After we hang up I find myself upset and in tears. I am thinking to myself. "I can't believe she isn't going to be home." I am feeling sorry for myself and having a pity party. Then it hits me a little while later. If I truly had the intention of spending time with her today I would have planned this in advance and not wait to the last minute. Based upon results it really was my intention to have this pity party, feel sorry for myself and not see her today. Instead of being happy that she was going to be spending time with other people. I was upset that she wasn't going to be home for me to come by and see her. Crazy, huh?? This is just another reminder that the world does not revolve around me and that I have to plan things out.

Perhaps it was my way of creating chaos on Mother's Day. This day is a mixed bag for me. My mother passed away when I was 12 in 1978. Most years it's okay for me but sometimes it's not. It really depends on what is going on in my life at that moment. I am very grateful that my step mom was able to go out and spend some time out with other people. She doesn't do that very much so I am truly happy for her.

I am also grateful that I can sit here and write about what is going on without having go overeat. Even now as I write this I feel myself calming down and feeling so much better. This is such a huge step for me. My first instinct is to just eat and stuff the feelings. I have to admit writing this feels so much better than eating!! I am beginning to practice what I preach. I tell people all the time to carry around a notebook in their car and write when something comes up to help stay away from the food. It truly does work. :)

Everyone have an incredible week this coming week. Happy Mother's Day to all Mother's and Mother figures!!

Monday, May 4, 2009

One of my favorite quotes

"Our Deepest Fear"

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” by Marianne Williamson