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Posts Tagged ‘Julia Roberts’

Just as Maggie in Runaway Bride made a new life for herself, so must people who recover from eating disorders. The funny thing is, eating disordered people have spent so much time obsessing about food that it can be hard to figure out what a normal life is.

Today I learned more about myself. I slept late, and skipped breakfast, because I had snacked heavily late last night. Those snacks I labeled “early early early breakfast.” It totally worked with my (lack of) hunger this morning.

As I lay in bed, I figured I’d better sleep late so I wouldn’t be tempted to eat, since I’d already eaten breakfast, and was definitely not hungry. But I couldn’t sleep any more, and I wanted to do stuff, so I took the chance and got up at 8 a.m.

It paid off, because the next thing I knew, it was lunchtime, I hadn’t eaten, and I’d spent the whole morning doing fun things like recycling and sewing. I’m very proud that I practiced normal eating and self-correcting, just like a naturally slender person, and I didn’t even have to avoid food by hiding in my bed.

As the afternoon progressed, life got more complex. As the evening came, I recognized that I hadn’t gotten as much done as I’d hoped during the day. That triggered not a binge, but rather a steady eating pattern throughout the German version of Idol. More than I preferred to eat, but not so much that I can’t self-correct tomorrow.

So, all in all, a pretty good day. 50% normal eating, 50% not going overboard.

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Once people with eating disorders start to get their heads on straight, they find out there’s lots of things they don’t know how to do. Rather than make decisions, they (read I) used to eat until the decision was no longer necessary.

Maggie Barnes (Julia Roberts) in Runaway Bride had the same problem.  She’d fall in “love” with anyone who fell in love with her, and life was great until the wedding day. Then she’d run.

People with eating disorders are often pretending that everything’s fine, until a crisis comes up. Then they run to food.

When Maggie realizes she must find a new way to face her crises, she works through it bit by bit. Not only does she discover her career path in hardware (lamp) design, she also looks at other areas in her life. The story shows the example of Maggie finding out how she likes her eggs.

What have I been discovering lately? Sewing. Pride in cleaning up my own space. How to decorate. How to let go of the past. How to stop mindless internet surfing. That I like my fingernails 1-2 millimeters long. And how I like my eggs cooked.

I like my eggs cooked to fit the recipe. Not to fit my man, not to fit a chef’s definition. That means I like hard-boiled eggs in tuna salad, sliced omelet in fried rice, poached in Eggs Benedict, fried over medium to go with creamed spinach and boiled potatoes, and omelet in a breakfast McMuffin-style sandwich.

When I eat eggs with toast, I prefer scrambled, soft but not runny, and made with about a teaspoon of water per egg.

Maggie would be proud.

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Not eating is good self-care too. 

Loving myself and taking care of myself is hard work. Instead of waiting for DH to suggest something to do, I am responsible for making my own dreams come true. But I’m finding it quite difficult to know what I want.

Last week a radio station was advertising that they will fulfill a wish for some selected people. One of the last winners got an in-vitro fertilization treatment.

As people called in to make their proposals, I searched for a wild wish of my own.  Nothing came up. Funny to think that I can’t articulate any fanciful dreams.

Afterward, I started paying attention to my language. I realized that I don’t use words like “I want” or label things for what they are, like “he’s a jerk for doing that” or “I didn’t enjoy that at all.” Like Julia Roberts in Runaway Bride, I don’t even have an opinion on many of the simplest things. Sometimes I eat too much because I can’t decide what to eat, so I choose a lot of different things, and eat them all, eating way past full.

Tonight I managed to choose to eat just soup, and let the rest of the evening take care of itself. Then I found myself still thinking about a particular muffin I bought today, that I haven’t eaten in over a year. When I realized that the obsessive thinking wasn’t stopping, I ate the muffin. Tasted great!

Even with DH, I’m using my words of “I want” more often. It’s very different from “Would you do x for me?” because that’s very disempowering. I want simply makes a statement. I can do it myself, because no one takes better care of me than I do, or he can do it if he feels like it.

And I choose to not eat sometimes, because feeling good about my body also means feeling good about what I put into it. Putting too much food into my body, makes it easy to not feel good about myself. I want to feel good about myself as often as I can.

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