I have had a really hard time the last couple days. I have been hungry, I have been expecting to feel different, I was thinking I could relax. I was wrong to expect that any of these things would change.
I get it now- I will be eating a little more, but it will continue to be a struggle every day. Every day is a battle with myself. A battle to stay in control, a battle to make the right, healthy choices.
OF COURSE, I have had a jillion people TELLING me this, but until I went through some things yesterday, I had no real comprehension. I have to keep doing what I have been doing. I have to continue to exercise like a fiend, I have to keep my tendency to eat mindlessly under control, I have to drink a lot of water. Of course this sounds totally obvious now, but for the last couple days it was not clear.
I was caught by surprise by a plate of coconut candy-
My focus had been temporarily distracted by this attainment of my goal weight. I felt like I should somehow magically be different, that I should feel or look or think different. I must be a differentdebi since I no longer needed to lose weight, right? But how different could I be from Friday to Saturday? How different could I be when one day I weighed 145.2 and the next I was 144.6? How is that even possible? Confuseddebi imagined that suddenly she could just go on with life and magically have the instincts to eat like a "NORMAL" person! So she didn't really think that she should be having some wild swings from being starving to full to hungry in the course of an hour.
I have made an interesting analogy in my mind. This attainment of goal, while exciting and cool, is a little bit like Christmas..... it was a big letdown after the excitement died down. Not that I am wanting the hurrahs from people or feel the incredible joy or break into happy tears every day, but it definitely was a "now what" feeling. Similar to Christmas, where you often have these little scenarios of what things will be like in your mind, those little Hallmark images of how you imagine the day should go and how you should feel and how perfect every thing will seem, my goal weight attainment should have some lasting glow. But like Christmas, where the horse needs to be fed, the dishes need to be washed and at some point you just get tired of the whole thing and you want to take a nap or tell the entire family that they should really go outside or something, reality has reared its head. And you have the urge to find the bag of chocolate that you think could be left in the cupboard, or the box of Triscuits that are up on the top shelf. Aren't those feelings supposed to be gone and I should CERTAINLY have a more "normal" relationship with food by now......??!!!! I should be able to avoid all of this angst!
So after a few days of uncertainty in what to eat or how I "should" feel (I surely am using a lot of "Quotation marks" today!!) I had a forbidden moment with a plate of coconut candy in the teachers lounge. I was innocently checking my mail in the morning Wednesday (there is no innocent at this time of the year, though, there is always a chance that there is a plate of something in that lounge) and there it was--- with a little glow from above shining down on the little glass plate and some angels singing in the background. The most perfect candy in the world: like a little homemade Mounds bar- adorable little white discs of coconut deliciousness with a sweet little dark chocolate "kiss" in the middle of it. So pretty and so perfect.
And before I knew it I had eaten 2.
This was a moment in time that transcended the entire joy and torture cycle that I had been experiencing. I realized at that moment that there was a problem with my thought process, that the feeling of confusion I was having was being straightened out, being resolved and I wasn't real thrilled with the conclusion that I was being faced with. I was no different that I had been last Friday. I sort of tortured myself, and possibly a friend or two, with this little unfortunate coconut escapade for quite a while. But my mind was processing the event and after a wise comment or two from afore mentioned people, I had an aha moment while driving to ballet class. I have to keep doing what I have been doing.
Somehow this seems unfair, but it is logical. If you spend your entire life trying to be thinner, and you finally get to somewhat thinner, what ever makes you think that you will suddenly have to stop trying? Why would you have a different metabolism, or no longer have all that history with food marring your eating habits or all those latent fat cells hanging around waiting to be refed? You don't. So, carry on, woman, you have more work to do. EVERY DAY. It will be a BATTLE every day.
So now I know, that I have to be on guard against plates of candy, and cookies and bags of chips. I have to watch out for unguarded moments and well meaning friends. I always have to be vigilant about logging my food (I figured out that probably those 2 coconut candies were probably between 150 and 200 calories for both) and mostly plan to be prepared for those moments of the unexpected. I can't really relax, one pound can become 5 or 10 and that just cannot happen. But the one unexpected thing I do need to do is not be so hard on myself if I consciously decide that a treat is ok to have. And I am amazingly hard on myself.....
I need a new goal. I am not sure what that is going to be. If it is a fitness goal, or an exercise goal or a body fat goal...... I just don't know yet. But I will have one soon, because I do well when I am aiming for something specific. For now, for today, I am going to get out my food for the day and plan to succeed. I will attempt to ignore my hunger pangs, will spread out my good, healthy food through the morning like I have been, to stay really active and drink a ton of water. I will be finding joy where I can and give my students the love, understanding and information that they expect from me. I'll continue doing what I do best and keep attempting to do what I want to succeed at the most. Then I will go to the gym and take all my frustrations for the day and throw them on the floor underneath one of the stacks of weights, along with those of 10 or 15 other great people who are doing the same thing.
I know that there really is no differentdebi, that the confuseddebi was just a few moments in time and that the same old me is here: just like last week and just like next week. And I think that is ok.
By the end of the day, I will find a little zen time, connect with a few of my friends, finish logging my food and exercise, feel some success in my day and relive the joy that I found. And that is no different than last Friday.
Until next time, find your joy, be a joy giver and do the best you can...... that is all we can ever hope for.