Posted in Self Acceptance

When the Universe Speaks, Listen

Sometimes the Universe speaks to me. You might call it God. I call it coincidence, but it’s fun to think the Universe is speaking to me. The day I decided to quit dieting, the battery on my scale died.

Withings-waage-ws30
Credit Wikipedia Commons

This is significant, because another first step to intuitive eating is letting the scale go. You might need to take a sledge hammer to it, or give it to a charity thrift store, or if the Universe is so aligned, let it take the juice from your battery. Because if you’ve been dieting almost your whole life, you won’t even know how to feel until you step on that thing. Sometimes I’d step on it twice in the same day, because using the bathroom might have changed the number. TMI? Anyway, that’s how I’d know how to feel about the day ahead.

So when the Universe spoke, and my battery died, I put it in a closet, and there it’s been ever since.

But as it turns out, there are several ways to measure your body and how it makes you feel for the day. And at the same time that I was trying to imagine what the scale would say if it hadn’t been rendered mute, I was learning the fine art of body acceptance.

The first few days of eating intuitively I went crazy with bananas and avocados. And amazingly, what was supposed to happen, happened. By the fourth day, bananas and avocados were no longer the forbidden fruits. They were just bananas and avocados. Eureka! I mastered it! This was going to be a snap.

That fifth day I had a hot fudge brownie sundae for lunch. I repeated that three times in the same week. But none the following week. A few months later I had another and realized that craving had probably run it’s course. So yes. I was getting it, but how many foods was I going to have run through? How many foods had I even forgotten were on my forbidden list? How long would this take?

Cream cheese? Why had I stopped eating cream cheese? Was it forbidden, or just disliked? Unlike a diet, these intuitive eating books didn’t offer a complete turn-around in 30 days. There was no 8-day foolproof detox for my diet-brain, and my list of demonized foods was long.

Donuts. Cake. Chocolate chip cookies. Sour cream. Peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. Hot chocolate. Butter. Cheese. Mayonnaise. Ice cream. Candy. Full fat lattes. Pie. Pancakes. Toast. Fried chicken . . .

 

Fried-Chicken-Leg
Credit Wikipedia Commons

Oh . . Fried Chicken. Golden brown, steaming hot, perfectly seasoned, juicy, crispy, battered and fried chicken. For six months I ate chicken from every grocery store, family restaurant and fast-food chicken place I walked into. Colonel Sanders found his way into my hottest fantasies. I had chicken fingers for lunch. Deep fried chicken for dinner. Broasted, nuggets, tenders, wrapped sandwiches, wings, pretzel-bun sandwiches, salads; I couldn’t get enough of the stuff. Until eventually I did.

 

But along with all my other food exorcisms, this took a toll on my pants size. Like I said, there are other ways to measure your body than with a scale. And while I think I could have learned to accept my body at any stage along the way, that goalpost kept shifting. Just when I was about to accept my body, it changed. So okay . . . let’s accept this size. Fried chicken for dinner? You bet!

What I learned is that the only way to fully accept the body you’re in, is to be in the present. This bears repeating.

The only way to fully accept the body you’re in, is to be in the present.

Because at any time your body can change. You could lose a limb. You could contract a disease. And yes. Your weight could change.

You only have the body you are in. Right now. You can never have the body you had ten years ago. You don’t know what body you will have ten years from now, or even tomorrow.

This is the body you are given today. This is your Universe. And it speaks to you.

Listen.

Peace . . .

To follow this story from the beginning, check out The View From Here

Posted in Room and Board

How I Lost Over 150 Ugly Pounds in One Week

Five days off work, plus two weekends equals 9 days in a row of over-indulgent ME-time!  Some people travel.  Others reconnect with nature or family.  I like to choose a theme.  This week the theme was Decluttering.  If you know me at all, you will know that anything worth doing is worth making a list:

Items that need decluttering include:

  • Coats
  • Table Linens
  • Entertainment center
  • Clothing
  • Undergarments and socks
  • Pajamas
  • Cleaning closet
  • Pet supplies
  • Cookware
  • Beauty and health products
  • Crafts
  • Books

Half Price Books

As you can see, I have my work cut out for me.  I decided to start with the books.  Three boxes have been patiently waiting for their trip to the Half-Price Bookstore for several years, so this was an easy beginning.  I dusted them off, trying hard not to fall back in love with any of them in the process.  I only rescued two.  One was a trail-guide to trees, which I’ve actually searched for twice this year.

“Oh, hey . . . HERE you are!”

The other was my How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk book.  I can’t believe I was going to give away the all-time best book on communication EVER.  What was I thinking?

Because today is a beautiful sunny day, I dressed in a lightweight t-shirt.  I checked twice to make sure you couldn’t see the dark-colored bra underneath, finally deciding it was only visible if you were staring at my chest.  At my age, I can only hope for so much!  My brushed hair fell in soft waves along my shoulders.  With my cheeks blushed, eyelashes curled, I looked in the mirror.

“Hello, beautiful!  Looking good!”

On the way out, I grabbed another stack of recyclables harvested from craft supplies and patterns, and a sack of trashed junk from the basement.  Both the trash bin and the recycle bin are nearly full, and the garbage pick-up was yesterday!  My step lightened as I went back in to grab the latest box of culled books.

“Wow!  How much does this bad boy weigh?”

I stepped on the scale with and without the box.  It weighed in at around 38 pounds.  No wonder I was looking so great this morning.  I’ve lost a lot of weight!

Balancing the box against the store window while pulling the door open, I looked down.  The weighty box stretched my shirt, revealing not only my plentiful cleavage, but the black brassiere I had carefully checked for show-through.  I released the door and hauled up on the neckline of my t-shirt.  A chivalrous employee ran from inside to hold the door.  Hiding behind my sunglasses, I accepted their offer and retreated to my car.

George Washington smiled smugly from the ten-spot.  He knew I was taking him to coffee.  There I ran into a friend from work.  She asked how my week of decluttering was going.  After I shared with her the fruits of my labor, she said, “Well, you look . . ”

“I know.  I look great, right?”

We shared a nod and a broad grin before I went on my way.

Clearly the weight loss was showing.  As with any plan, you need to stay motivated, or you’ll be right back where you started — or worse.  The problem with taking nine consecutive days from work, is that nine days is exactly how long it takes to forget how energy-depleting work life is.  Today, on day eight, I’m all like,

“I can keep up this momentum!  All I have to do is to come home from work and spend a half hour each day organizing and decluttering!”

I seem to have forgotten that feeling of wanting nothing more than to put on my p.j.s and melt into the couch.  Not to mention getting ready for the next day,  bedtime rituals, possibly mustering up enough energy to eat a healthy dinner.  And how, by Thursday, I usually just say,

“F*** it, give me a peanut butter sandwich.”

English: A peanut butter and jelly sandwich, m...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Don’t get me wrong, I love my time off, but she’s a tease.  Everything seems attainable from this side of the time-clock.

So what’s my plan?  How do I keep moving forward after the success of a 150-pound week?  Maybe these inspirational quotes will be more effective for decluttering than they have been for weight loss.

“This is a journey, not a destination.”

“One pound at a time.”

“When I feel like quitting, I ask myself why I started.”

“Good things come to those who work their asses off.”

“Keep calm and carry a gun.”

Wait . . . that last one I read on a t-shirt at the gas station.

Never mind.

Peace . . .