Week two is finished and I couldn't be happier. That's not sarcasm and I'm not happy just cause it's over. I'm really, truly happy with this!
I'm happy because I feel like I did before everything went to shit. This is really how I used to eat. I seldom touched sweets. I didn't snack. I did eat a lot of bread and carbs but I was a gym rat so I kept the weight down. And, even with going out to dinner and eating rich food (I never ate dessert) I still managed to maintain my weight. True...I was also still smoking which I know helped to fill that hole in my soul but it worked.
After the kids came along the every night restaurant meals went away and low fat home cooking was the blue plate special in our house. I continued to work out like a crazy woman and it became easier to maintain my weight.
So this journey feels like...well...going home.
The biggest difference is how far I've come in recovery. I may not have figured out how to fill the entire hole in my soul - notice I said in recovery not through recovery - but I have recognized it's existence and have begun to explore why it exists and how I got here in the first place. In her ebook, "Break Your Sugar Addiction Today", Cynthia Perkins says that, for some of us, by feeding our reward pathways in the brain, we become desensitized to the pleasurable reaction we have to sugar, drugs, alcohol, sex, nicotine, caffeine and even some carbs. We build a tolerance (hmmm....sound familiar?) and seek more and more of the substance of choice in order to provide the same "high".
When we remove one of the substances, we simply move on to the next. And it starts in early childhood. As a child we become addicted to sugar. For me it was an escape from a screwed up household. I guess I needed something to release those happy hormones cause it sure as shit wasn't happening at home.
Later I moved to nicotine (at 16) which shoved sugar aside as the drug of choice. Surprise, surprise I lost weight. As I "matured" I added alcohol. Partly from peer pressure but I think more from the fact that I was becoming clinically depressed and seeking more and more pleasurable things to fill the hole in my soul.
Then, after realizing my own mortality, I removed nicotine...and began to gain weight...and recognized a serious depression issue. I sought help and began medication. But that's when the drinking REALLY began to escalate.
Then I removed the alcohol...and reverted right back to sugar. Sigh...
So the difference this time is that I know that sugar will kill me because I'm an addict and one cookie is never enough. On piece of chocolate won't cut it. A small slice of birthday cake is an insult to my neurotransmitters. That kind of thinking will kill me. It has to go. Now...that's not to say that I'll NEVER have a piece of wedding cake or bowl of ice cream or piece of Christmas fudge because I will. But I'll understand the reaction my body has and I'll eat it knowing that I'll have a battle for the next day or so while I fight the beast in my head roaring...MORE. I'll have to weigh whether that piece of whatever is worth the battle. I have a feeling that more often than not, it won't be.
Let's see...fight the motherfucker or remain serene. Move from living in the moment to constantly fighting a craving that overtakes all of my thoughts and makes me a bitch. Risk an early death or continue to enjoy my kids and grand-kids. Put that way...I call bullshit on sugar.
I'm very respectful of the power that son of a bitch has but I'm also very familiar with where his weaknesses are and, more importantly, I know how to whisper a lullaby which can put him right back to sleep.
Cheats from the Whole 30 week 2:
- Cheese in my morning ham and cheese omelet (weekends). I'm getting a little sick of eggs at this point so I'm going to have to figure out what other options I have for breakfast.
- A Friday Starbucks Latte.
- Diet sodas...yes Mary...I'm still dancing with the devil. But at least this time I'm leading.
Changes that surprise me:
- I'm craving fruit. I have not been eating it even though it's allowed in Whole 30. That's because Cynthia Perkins doesn't recommended it when trying to break a sugar addiction. Plus, I don't really like much fruit. But now I'm craving it? I've added watermelon, grapes, pineapples and the emergency banana (when there's nothing else available) back in small doses. I may have to amp that up this coming week.
- Scales and tape measures are not allowed until after 30 days. This is huge for me because I was used to stepping on the scale ever freaking day. This moratorium has allowed me to focus on how my body feels rather that what mass it takes up on the planet. It's fairly liberating. (But the shorts I wore yesterday I couldn't wear two weeks ago...just sayin')
- Raw cashews are really, really expensive. That is all.
- My cravings have pretty much passed (you were right RoS...duh). I sat at a function this week and stared directly into the soul of a piece of triple chocolate cake. Nothing...nada...zip. That was a huge relief.
- The quiet in my head has returned. I actually did some yoga and meditation last week. Baby steps back in the right direction.
So on to the second half of this journey. I'm trying to live in the moment but I can't help but think that this is the way I want to live...forever. We'll see.