January 10:  Is it normal?

It has taken 10 days, but the simple question – is it normal is beginning to matter.

I want to eat 6 monster cookies in secret.  Is that normal – no.

I fancy breakfast.  Maybe some salmon and eggs.  Is that normal – yes.

If the answer is yes, I can proceed.  If not, rethink.  I might have a cookie, but with my partner and a cup of tea and only one.  And enjoy it – it not be a guilty pleasure.

My weight loss has slowed which is mentally proving really difficult.  But am just so relieved I have used the holidays in order to try and start some normality.  Work starts next week and am scared of the pressure derailing everything.  But that is next week, for now I’m living in the present.

January 9:  Two meals a day

As you might have gathered from previous entries, I have an issue with food.   I binge, I purge, I fast.  Very rarely would I ever not be in one of those cycles.  This year I’m trying to break these patterns.

I am still incomfortable in my own skin.  I am close to 20kg more than I was 3-4 months ago so not that surprising.  I have already lost around 6kg this year, however, I know I could speed it up if I simply stop eating.  I have done water fasts before and obviously, results are quick.

The first week of the year I settled with one main meal a day, cofffee and tea and the odd peanut butter spoon.

This second week, am trying to up to 2 meals a day.  Which I have done.  Yesterday I had fish and salad for lunch and lamb and veg for dinner.

Writing this, I feel ridiculous.  Here I am thinking I’ve achieved so much simply by eating 2 meals.  But I did.  The instinct to overeat and then purge was so strong yet I just drank some water and rode it out.  I know I will have some lapses but I’m taking each minor victory as one.

January 8:  The day after the night before

I realise I am a mass of contractions.  I love eating out and drinking.  I like people and company.  Yet sometimes avoid all social situations because of the fear of losing control and/or feel like a big slug and the last thing I want to do is go out.

It also is easier to stay at home and eat copious amounts of food and drink wine. 

Yet last night was my first test.  Dinner then a funk gig at a local bar that I had tickets for and was meeting friends at.  New friends who I will lose if I keep cancelling at the last minute like I have done with so many people before.  Could I order sensibly at dinner and not drink at the gig?  Or would it be a trigger like it has so many times before.

People who have binge issues will sometimes know the anticipation of a binge is a key draw – what to eat, what to buy, when.  My first thought was initially – I’ll get my partner to go for dinner without me, I can binge at home and then join at the bar.  But it is a new year and new me so fought it and went to the restaurant.

I ordered badly with the pressure and had food envy and it certainly wasn’t the healthiest choice (vietnamese pancakes for those who care!) but managed to have just the main and then drank water all night at the gig and even danced sober.  Who knew that was possible!

So I’m feeling good.  I have successfully traversed a social night out and acted like a normal person.  I didn’t hide anything – simply took things in moderation and had fun.  I looked at all the people around me and wanted that.  To be a healthy and happy weight and enjoy company.

I woke up this morning and didn’t have a hangover, craving for fried food nor feel lousy.  Went for a walk with the dogs (still managing to get my 10000 steps a day so far) and then came back and made breakfast.  Eggs, salmon and broccoli.  Yes, I still then had the urge to keep going and smash boxes of cereal, toast, pancakes.  But I took my time and it was lovely.  I feel nourished and a small breakthrough.  Yes I can fast and lose weight quickly.  But how about being mindful, enjoy life and see how that goes.  May take longer, but he quickest way isn’t always the best.

Early days but day by day.  I feel like I’m moving in the direction.  And damn those scales – didn’t check as today is not a day to be ruled by a number.

January 7:  The number 

Couldn’t sleep last night.  Work up wanting food and a drink.  I had a cup of tea and 3 teaspoons of peanut butter.

The day before, my food has been a few peanut butter teaspoons (I know, I love it!) and a ham salad with an egg and some veg.  I made my partner a risotto and then also had about 5 heaped teaspoons of that.

So far in 2017, I have yet to have a drink or sugar.  Some carbs in the risotto and one potato, but that’s it.  Also walked close to 17k steps yesterday (about 12k distance).  Yet I weighed 0.4kg more this morning.  All I want to do now is eat and when I go out tonight, drink like a fish.

So I’m thinking if I’d been stronger and not eaten in the night, I might have lost weight.  Nor had anything beyond my meal.  I know I am still low in total over the day but am determined to shed 5kg before I go back to work in 9 days.  As I write that now, I realise that sounds like a stupid plan.  Yet I want to start back at the gym and cannot until I drop back to an overweight but not so I am ashamed to walk on weight.

I wish this didn’t take so much thought space.  

3 January:  Intimacy

On March 16 2017 – I will have known my partner 6 years.  We went on our first date on March 16 2011 and we’re living together by September that year.

We are pretty different.  From different countries, he left school early, is sporty, laid back, good looking, body confidant.  I’m a typical high achiever – uni, post grads, lawyer, top jobs, less laid back, not sporty, not body confidant.  He is also very sexual.  At the start of our relationship, I was in a good space and the honeymoon period was fab!  However as years have crept by and I have ebbed and flowed between body sizes, our sex life has dwindled to little and practically non existent.  How can you feel sexy when you don’t like how your body looks?  Once again, I rue the irony.  When I’m exercising and losing weight, I feel great but am too tired for sex as I’m up at 5.30 to go to the gym, work a 12 hour day (with a lunchtime gym class for good measure), normally do something post work, come home, eat some veg and white meat and go to bed.  When I’m bingeing and eating food in secret, the last thing I want is him to see my bloated stomach and thighs.  So he loses out each time.

I know he hates it and the lack of sex makes him question our relationship.  I wish he could realise it’s me, not him – but I’ve never ever spoken out loud what I’m writing here.  However I thought if I’m going to make this work, we need to build back our intimacy.  So I initiated sex this morning.  It wasn’t fireworks, but it was something.  I need to focus on myself yet I also need to focus on my loved ones as well.  Perhaps this will be good for both of us.

2 January: Reality bites

I have never been treated, never been referred.    I have a job and a partner.  Yet if I am truly honest, loneliness is a huge feature of my adult life.

I’ve had plenty of friends.  Am an extroverted introvert.  I am good at small talk, bond quickly with people, have a natural curiosity and am well read.   But they don’t stay because when I’m in the grips of the disease, I cannot see people.  I let them down, ignore calls, go into retreat mode, I lie.  I don’t want to be forced to eat and social life so often revolves around food and drink.  Or I am locked into my body and would rather eat obscene amounts of food in secret.  I despair at both sides of this coin – both extreme behaviours, neither provide happiness.  I don’t have one friend left from university I speak to.  School is prettty similar although a few held on.  No one text me on new year to say happy new year.

I just woke and looked in the mirror and was disgusted.  Not dsymorphia – am fat and bloated after 6 weeks of food self abuse and binging and no purging.  The wind is roaring and I dont know what to do.  Am hoping writing gives me the strength to avoid extreme behaviour and start being gentle on myself.  A walk with the dogs, a normal breakfast.  Yet it already feels so hard.

Patience is a virtue I long for.  To realise that contentment is a journey and my brain will tell me to repeat old behaviours.  But I am in control of my destiny and it is going to be me that wins.