Friday, February 25, 2011

The siren song of not caring

Cut loose.  Relax.  Chill out.  Loosen up.  We humans just love to let our hair down, throw caution to the winds and let it all hang out.  It feels so good to say "who cares?" and just do what we want.  And, why is this a bad thing?  I don't think it always is.  Sometimes we need a little down time.  But, I find that the more my hair is down, the less content and satisfied I am.  We thrive on structure.  We need boundaries, if only to have something to push against.

I did so great this morning.  My hubby was working from home today, and at about 9:00 I decided to go out anr run some errands, and bring him home some breakfast (in the form of a greasy, buttery honey chicken biscuit from Whataburger).  I had already had my breakfast (two pieces of whole wheat toast with blackberry jam), so I didn't get myself anything to eat.  It made me feel so confident and powerful to not eat when I had the chance.  Fast forward to this evening, after an extremely stressful afternoon consisting (among other things) of our babysitter canceling so we didn't get to go on our date, my nine-year old failing yet another math test, and the same nine-year-old not turning in a month long project that was due today.  Add to that the sink full of dirty dishes, the huge fort of blankets in the living room and the fact that I have gained yet another two pounds (now 12 pounds above my goal weight), and what did I feel like doing?  That's right- giving up and eating two apple pies from McDonalds.  That doesn't sound like much, but after doing so well this morning, thinking that maybe, finally, I'm getting it again, two apple pies feels like a major defeat.

The question is:  what am I going to do now?  I've eaten the pies, I can't change that.  I'm still depressed and stressed, eating didn't help that.  Well, I guess the only thing to do is try again.  And again.  And again.  I will go to bed and try to make better decisions tomorrow.  I need to remember that as wonderful as it sounds to just let go, it really doesn't make life better.  No matter how much I try to not care, eventually caring happens.  Then, I wish I had cared.  Just a little.   

Friday, February 11, 2011

What if I do it wrong?

One of my very favorite books is Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale.  It's about a ladies' maid who gets locked, with her lady, in a tower for seven years.  In one of my favorite parts, the maid decides to teach her lady how to cook.  The rest goes like this:

She said, "I don't know how, Dashti."
"That's why I'll teach you."
"I'll do it wrong."
"Of course you will, everyone does wrong when learning something new."
Then she started to cry.  "But I'll do it wrong."

Confession:  I hate getting things wrong.  I like to be good at things, and if I'm not good at them almost right away, I quit.  This tendency has kept me from many experiences that would have been very good for me.  So, I am working on overcoming this.  I am currently in Massage Therapy school.  I have loved it so far, but I had my first major check the other day.  I was practicing on my hubby's shoulders, and I twisted his head to the side a little too fast and gave him a cramp in one muscle.  I felt the all-too-familiar despair (maybe I can't do this after all, what if I screw up like that for real?  etc).  I refuse to give in to those thoughts this time.  I will try again, I will learn, and I will get better.
Everyone does wrong when trying something new.  Don't be afraid of being wrong.  The only way to fail is to not try at all.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Rome Wasn't Built in a Day

Learning to eat only when you're hungry is HARD.  I knew this before.  I'm sure many of you know this.  But, I feel the need to say it again:  eating only when you're hungry is HARD.   Okay, I'm better now.

That being said, I actually think I did fairly well this week.  Remember, I'm developing a habit that I plan to keep the rest of my life.  And, I'm breaking habits that I have had for the past 30 years.   So I don't expect to have it down anytime soon. I don't ever expect to be perfect with this.  I'm simply shooting for "more often than not".

I managed to put down my fork and be done before the food was gone many times.  I have discovered I have a bad habit of piling waaay too much onto my plate, then I feel the need to finish everything in front of me.  Have to work on that one.  I'm not sure if I want to start using smaller plates, or teaching myself to get smaller portions.  I think I'll go with the smaller portions.  Using smaller plates would just be a temporary measure, it wouldn't teach me anything about true portion size.  And how many restaurants/grandma's houses are going to serve you your dinner on a saucer?  Exactly. 

I did my weekly weigh-in yesterday and I was down by about half a pound.  I'm not focusing on the numbers, but it does help to know that I am on the right track.  I also went running a couple of times this week.  (Before the bottom dropped out of our weather; anybody ever gone running in -15 degree wind chills?  Me neither.)  It felt soo good to run again.  I have lost my pedometer somewhere, so I couldn't use the stopwatch on it to keep track of my time.  And, you know what?  I enjoyed my runs so much better when I wasn't able to care how fast I was going!  I didn't worry about distance.  I didn't worry about time.  I don't really care if I ever get faster or able to go longer, I just enjoy the run!  How liberating.   So that is my message to you this week:  enjoy the journey.  Don't worry about how far you will go, or how long it will take you to get there.  Learn to love yourself and learn to love the journey!