Friday, October 9, 2009

Need Vs. Want

I want to lose weight. Do I NEED to? I honestly don't know. My doctor hasn't said anything to me about it.
I want chocolate. Do I NEED it? Probably not; at least, not for survival. (For quality of life, maybe.)
What I REALLY need is to make peace. With food and my body. I REALLY don't want to turn to food anymore out of boredom, sadness, anxiety, etc.
So last month I signed up for an online program out of the U.K. called "Beyond Chocolate." I's ideas are very similar to Intuitive Eating, but this is an actual, step-by-step program. Every week I get a new "assignment." (I'm about 4 weeks behind, but that's OK. I go at my own pace.) It's something concrete, and I can feel myself making progress.
Every once in a while I get derailed by Diet Think. You know, pre-planning my meals, swearing to have flax/blueberry/spinach smoothies every morning, vowing to eat clean/raw/low-fat/vegan, etc., all for the sole purpose of losing weight.
But here's the thing; I've lost weight before. Many, MANY times. And I ALWAYS gain it back. And there's the definintion of insanity right there. So what's different now? What will I change this time around? WHY do I want to lose weight?
In he past it has been for reasons outside of myself: people will like me more if I'm thin; I need to be skinny in order to get an acting job; others are starting to comment on my weight, so I'd beter do something about it.
No wonder I never STAYED thin!
This time, it's not about pounds lost, the number on the scale, or employment. (In fact, I just got a new class and have added a bunch of clients to my existing classes. Yay!) This time, it's not even primarily about losing weight. It's about getting mentally healthy. I'm tired of thinking about food and weight ALL THE TIME!
When I first started Inuitive Eating, I kept wanting to skip to the end: the part where I would no longer worry about food, eat when I was hungry, stop when I was satisfied, and exercise for health and enjoyment. The problem was, I HAD to focus on food, so I could stop eating mindlessly, and I kinda skipped that part. So here I am, starting (almost) at square one. But I can feel myself changing. I can feel my atitude becoming different. I am learning to accept myself AS I AM, RIGHT NOW, and worrying less about how I look. (OK, except maybe during that time of the month {NOW!} when I'm bloated and my face looks like a constellation. But that's a WHOLE different post!)
Last night, for the first time in about 4 years, I was excited about cooking dinner. I made a brand-new recipe for Hubby and myself, and made the kids one of their favorite meals. I ate enough to satisfy myself, and even had enough energy left to do the dishes and give the kids their baths! When Hubby got home from school, he warmed up the food and told me he felt like he was eating at a restaurant. I was so excited that I actually prepared food, last night, for tonight! It's marinating as we speak. (And this morning, HUBBY MADE ME BREAKFAST!!!!!!! He said I'd inspired him, so he cooked us some eggs.)
The best part, for me, is that I was inspired by a non-diety cookbook. Don't get me wrong, I love me a good recipe from "Eating Well" or "Cooking Light," but sometimes it's nice to use ingredients that don't say "substitute" or "fat-free" on the label. For last night's fish, I made a lemon vinaigrette from scratch. It took about 3 minutes and was delicious. And all the ingredients, except for the olive oil, came from the produce section. Of Trader Joe's. Which I adore with a burning, abiding passion.(BTW, in case you're wondering, the cook book was "Giada's Family Dinner," by Giada DeLaurentis. It's WONDERFUL!!!!!)
So, if I can get to a place where I genuinely love cooking and eating (the cleaning part? Yeah, not so much), make good food that we all enjoy, and exercise because I want to and not because I HAVE to, then I'll be in a MUCH healthier place. All around.
Now, if I could only organize all the clutter around here...


Crabby McSlacker said...

That's so cool that you're making peace with food and body issues. And what a great experience to enjoy cooking so much and to even inspire your husband to make breakfast!

Charlotte said...

I can so relate to everything in this post! Esp. the part about wanting to just skip straight to the end of Intuitive Eating:) I'm glad you are doing this and I hope you find the harmony you are looking for this time! So many of us are trying to follow in your footsteps:)

azusmom said...

Thanks, ladies!

Neversaydiet said...

Good thing it's National Love Your Body Day, huh? For all of us, I mean!

I wish I could nail the whole IE thing...I feel like I'd wind up saying, 'Oh, I feel like three slices of deep dish every night this week." I know, realistically, that I wouldn't. I need to learn to trust myself more.

azusmom said...

That's the hardest part, learning to trust yourself. I'm still working on that!