Running on Fumes and Food

Tuesday night, for whatever reason, I could not sleep – not even a minute, if I remember correctly. Then off I went to a 12 hour day at the restaurant – a very busy, long and late day.

I was utterly exhausted all day and night.

Often, when so beat, my body confuses tired with hungry. If I’m tired all day, my body incorrectly tells me I need food, when what I really need, of course, is rest.

Usually when so tired, I clamp the reigns down tighter and follow a stricter food plan, so i don’t get confused. But for some reason yesterday, I just let go.

So, if my head said “hungry, need food”, I’d have a small snack. I nibbled throughout the day – typically NOT a good way for me to eat, but I left myself alone.

In the past, I would have freaked out that I was out of control and feared desperately that I’d never get back to my usual, happy way of eating. I also might have eaten A LOT, thinking this was the last time EVER to eat so freely.

But none of that happened yesterday. I now know that 1.) I’m fine no matter what and 2.) I’d be fine the next day, today. So, while I did snack way more than usual and I did eat some foods I regularly don’t – I was fine.

The best news – last night I slept a solid NINE hours (the definition of utter bliss!!!) I didn’t even get up to pee (nothing short of a miracle, right sis?)

I can’t remember the last time I have felt this rested and fabulous. And, of course, right back on track with easy, happy eating 🙂

I kept wondering yesterday – if I could eat like I did yesterday – easy, breezy, snacky throughout the day, with no consequences – weight gain or food obsession, would I prefer it?

I actually don’t know the answer and, frankly, I don’t really care. After all, it’s just food.

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The Plus and the Minus of Sizing and Bodies

The Good American is a denim brand co-founded by Kloe Kardashian with the radical idea of having Standard AND plus-size jeans offered on the same racks. Nordstrom’s was the first store to pilot this new approach and when it debuted, Good American was the most successful denim launch in history, earning $1 million the very first day.

Good for you Kloe Kardashian.

However, this is the very same woman who, on the tv show Keeping Up with the Kardashians, ‘complimented’ her sister Kim by telling her she was so skinny she looked anorexic and that she had never looked better. Kim thanked her profusely.

Crazy thinking? Yup. Dangerous thinking? Yes, it truly is. Still buried deep down in me somewhere,sometimes. Yup

The other day at the restaurant, a woman said to me enviously, “you look like you never eat here? You can’t be eating this food. Wish I looked like you.”

Some tiny little part of me tingled. Success! I don’t look like I eat a lot.

Of course, my healthy self bristled at the tiny tingle and told her she was dead wrong. I do eat. Everyone needs to eat. Everyone needs to look like she eats, including me and Kim Kardashian!

I’m surprised that tiny voice is still inside of me. Time for more work to make sure she finds peace – and is able to rest in peace!

And kudos to Good American. I hated being banished to plus size sections and/or stores. It felt like I was different, weird, ‘other’, wrong and somehow bad.

A change in thinking is always good.

Dating and Trust

It’s very hard for me to trust a man. I’ve worn my heart on my sleeve way too many times, and it’s been ripped apart way, way too many more.

The new guy I’m dating is smart and funny and adorable and really, really sweet and kind. He’s all ‘guy’ (fixes things, hangs with his buddies, drinks beer), but he’s also so open emotionally. I have yet to find anything wrong with him.

HOWEVER, I met the guy before him, Jake, on an online dating site too. Jake told me he wanted a real and committed relationship. We saw each other quite a bit for a few weeks and had a great time. He texted, he called, he wanted to see me. I really started to like him. Once or twice, his last girlfriend came up, but that happens. Until one day, he told me that he really wasn’t over her and that he was in touch with her and probably going to start seeing her again, so we should probably table ‘us’.

But – did I want to have sex one more time?

The guy before that, Kevin, I met through a dear friend. Great, great guy – fascinating career, cool interests and a lot of fun. He pursued me, told me he was finally at the point in his life where he wanted a real and committed relationship. We had a wonderful few months. Then he got scared. He told me he just couldn’t be in a relationship. It just wasn’t him. And he disappeared for a couple of months.

Then, he showed back up. Did I want to have sex?

The guy before that, who shall remain nameless, was super smart, funny, inspiring and motivating. We had a wonderful few months together – some of the best I’ve ever had. But then I got way too acquainted with his really bad temper. I stayed a long time, because he was so smart and funny and motivating, but when he hit me – I finally decided to leave.

And we won’t even talk about the men before that.

Soooo, here I am. Here I am with this super nice, cute, smart, funny, ATTENTIVE dear guy.

Hard to believe – I’m actually willing to try again. Idealist? Glutton for punishment? Playing the odds?

We’ll find out.

That Old Obsession

I have a mind obsessed with…relief from pain or discomfort of any sort. So, back in the day, I turned to substance, alcohol and of course, food, the great aneasthetizer.

But my crazy mind didn’t stop there – there’s pretty much nothing I can’t obsess about if … need be.

Like men. Do you all remember the movie, Fatal Attraction – when Glenn Close boils the family bunny for revenge when the guy ignores/dumps her? I’ve always worried I’d become a bunny boiler, so much does stalking run through my blood.

I’ve driven by men’s houses, had other friends call them to see if they answer, had other friends drive by their houses. And always, always, I’ve thought the worst. They’re with another woman, they don’t like me anymore, I said/did something wrong and I’ll never here from them and on and on and on….

If a guy doesn’t return a text quickly, that’s it, he’s definetly done with me and, of course, he’s with another woman. If he doesn’t call or text me first, I can’t stand it and reach out to him. Sometimes incessantly. I insist that he tell me how he’s feeling about me, about us, about relationships, about marriage — all on the the first date .

Long and short of it, I probably drive most men crazy. Hmmmmm, why on earth am I single at 54?

So, here I am, beginning to date a man I really like. Already, I’d started stalking him online to see if he were viewing other women on the dating site we met on. That didn’t go well, because he then thought I was viewing other men, and we both got upset.

Happily, I acted like an adult and brought it up to him; and BLESSEDLY, he was cool and we worked it out.

I think it’s time for me to get over my stalking, my obsession – my insecurity. AND it’s time for me to have a man who makes me feel safe!

And, as always, to live life, it’s self; to contribute; to show up; to be kind, patient, tolerant and loving – and, to stay away from bunnies!

More on Dating and Food

So, I have gone out twice with a guy who’s not into food – clearly he just eats to live. He only feels like eating when he’s hungry, doesn’t really eat a lot and doesn’t care much about what he’s eating. Not adventurous, not a foodie – not interested.

And he couldn’t care less what I eat. He doesn’t really notice – he seems to just want me to be happy with whatever I’m doing.

Joy. Pure and friggin’ utter joy. Love this.

The last guy I dated loved food and tried ceaselessly to feed me. And feed me. And feed me.

The guy before was an athlete who burned up copious calories and needed to eat constantly. And eat. He couldn’t believe how ‘little’ I ate. Oh yeah, and he was dessert obsessed. Obsessed.

The guy before that lived to cook. He’d show up at my apartment with enough containers to feed the Duggars. And it’s only me. (And Rebecca, my cat of course. He’d bring her fresh shrimp and lobster! But I don’t even really want her eating all that.)

The new guy doesn’t even like dessert – although he assured me that if I ever baked something, he’d promise to eat. so that’s not going to happen. lol

So, even if it doesn’t work with the fabulously un-gourmet/gourmand new guy, I think I will add this to my list of pre-requisites;

kind, funny, positive attitude and…. please make sure you can just take or leave food.

Wonder how many responses I’ll get?!!!! 🙂 Perhaps we’re getting an inkling why I’m still single?

From Compulsive to Intuitive Eating – and more

For years, a good friend, Tina, in 12 Step food recovery has been a huge proponent of abstinent eating – no sugar, no processed foods, and a very set food plan which includes weighing and measuring all portions. Stalwart, solid – pure and simple. Tina has been considered a true leader in this field.

She was, and still is, also a huge proponent of the 12 Steps process which allows us freedom from compulsion and obsession.

Over time,however, Tina has changed her thinking about food and begun the path to intuitive eating – eating when hungry and stopping when full. Not one single food is off limits and there’s no weighing or measuring of everything.

This is a new challenge for Tina, but it also seems to be somewhat of a challenge for so many who followed her very solid lead on food abstinence over the years.

If Tina no longer defines herself as a compulsive eater, what does that mean for them? Should they start eating sugar again? Can they? Do they need to re-define themselves and ocmpletly shift their approach to food -the problem that once owned their lives, body and soul?

It’s a tough one for them – most of us compulsive eating folks would dearly love to eat like normal people. I, myself, continue, absolutely, to know that I am a compulsive eater. Never a doubt – not since birth. Left to my own devices, I do not eat like a normal person. But that’s me. I continue to eat in the way that honors my truth and have no interest in a food free-for-all. For me, that would lead nowhere good.

I tell those in doubt to do the same – honor what is true for you – and work with them to find and discover and solidify that truth and then to move on and live life.

There is one particular issue that really seems to bother my friends in food recovery. Tina has gained a fair amount of weight. Weight gain is scary for those who lost many pounds. And if we are able to maintain that loss AND live free of compulsion through a certain method, perhaps we don’t want that method called into question.

I’ve heard from a number of people who are really troubled by the 30 or so pounds Tina’s put on since her shift. They assume she’s in relapse. Why else would she have gained the weight? And will she continue to gain?

What, I wonder, would the reaction be if Tina had shifted her eating and maintained her light weight?

I don’t have answers to any of these questions. I support Tina in her choice – it’s her body, mind and spirit. I hope she continues to know peace.

And I don’t know where Tina’s natural body want to settle. Every body is different. I certainly don’t believe that every body needs or wants to be thin. She says she’s feeling strong and healthy. I can’t imagine much better than that.

So, I don’t worry about Tina’s path. I am clear about my own and encourage each person to follow hers.

May we all know peace!

Dating and Body Image and finally, Self-Esteem

This dating is exhausting – and not just sorting through strangers. What about the meeting them? All the work that goes into pulling a 54 year old together to meet a new guy…

I really hope I find someone and relax. Putting your best face forward can wear a gal out. Applying make-up well (not too much but enough to be flattering); blowing out hair (I promise you – men prefer straight hair. Don’t even try to argue with me); picking the right clothes (not too sexy, but still appealing)and right shoes (I’m lost here – I never wear heels, so this one is tough – flattering AND flat)

And yeah, what about the body? I’m not athletic, so don’t have muscle. (Remember the last guy who told me I was a few short abs classes away from a great body?) That didn’t exactly calm my worries.

It’s weird to be still dating at 54. The boobs sag even further, the abs flab, the face is wrinkled. I don’t mind my face and body on a daily basis, but when putting it out there…

So yeah again, what about the body and my food/body stuff. Certainly, I’ve clamped down on food since starting at the restaurant. I just can’t be as free as I wanted to be – nibbling and snacking are the luxury of naturally normal eaters. No one who knows me would say that that’s me!

But yes, I have been pretty strict with myself, not wanting to get lumps and bumps before meeting new guys. And, I want to fit into particular clothes that are ‘date’ appropriate.

BUT, the truth is, tho, that all of the above is just who I am. For my ninth birthday, I wanted hot rollers and make-up and nothing’s changed since then. In high school, the welts on my neck really WERE from the curling iron, not hickeys.

As a kid, I poured over every fashion magazine looking for new options in hair and make-up and clothes. It’s just me, dating or not.

And I, Melissa, prefer my hair straight. So, I wouldn’t go on a first date with it natural and frizzy. But I wouldn’t visit a women’s college like that either!

Re; the body. Who am I kidding? I am most comfortable with it at it’s current weight, and I’d feel the same way around a guy or my grandmother.

The real hard part about dating, of course, is does he like me and my soul? It’s way easier to worry about mascara than if I, myself, am lovable.

Right?