Abolition of Meal Plans

25 05 2010

I wish! 😀

What we (KY and I) have done, though, is built a little more freedom of choice into the system. Everything I eat still has to be documented and weighed/measured out in order to prevent relapse, but I get to choose my own foods on a day to day basis, instead of planning several days in advance. I have to keep a running food diary throughout the day, though, and send it to him every night. If I choose, I may make a meal plan, instead. I might fall back on that if I am going to be having a busy day or something. . . . . I can’t stand making the stupid things. . . . . but they’re a wonderful tool to have. It’s comforting sometimes knowing that I don’t have to deal with the anxiety of picking something in the moment when there’s not much time to choose. Eating disorders are tricky little buggers, and relapse is even sneakier. As such, KY is being extremely careful with what he allows me to do, concerning meal plans, exercise, food choices, or rate of weight loss. Eating disorder relapse isn’t a possibility either of us want to consider, although it does, for now, have to be on the forefront of our minds.

My “running around” has increased, and I’ve got a puppy that is very high-energy. I think I told you guys about her awhile back. Anyways, I’m back to losing weight after being stable between 155 and 158 for about a month and half. I’ve dropped two days in a row, but it’s a healthy rate! A couple of weeks ago, I was at 154.6, and now, I’m at 153.2. It’s healthy, y’all, I swear!





Treatment Goals

21 04 2010

I found a resource today that said the main goal of treatment of bulimia is to “cut down or even eliminate the binge eating and purging.”

It’s well known throughout the treatment community that the establishment of a consistent, steady, scheduled amount of daily calories is crucial in both the treatment of bulimia and anorexia.

I’m proud to say that I haven’t binged since March 5th, 2010. That’s well over a month, and the longest time I’ve gone since October 2008. I have deviated from my meal plan a couple of times and have eaten over my current daily calorie count, but it wasn’t an unhealthy amount, excessive, or mi even emotionally motivated.

My daily calorie count is 1500, and I’m struggling to continue to meet it. The first place my brain goes when I look at my meal plan first thing of a morning is, “What can I cut out? What can I halve? What can I replace?”

I force myself to follow the meal plan, but it’s difficult, especially because my weight is relatively stable right now. I’m walking 3-5 miles a day, and you’d figure that’d help, no?

I know the problem is likely that I’m not quite eating ENOUGH, and so my body is clinging to what I’m giving it. According to calorie calculators, I should be eating roughly 2100-2200 calories a day, and that’s if I put in “light physical activity” and “slow metabolism”. However, I can’t see myself consistently eating more. . . . . . I’m having a time and a half now.

My weight is stable, so I can’t really complain. . . . . . .  at least I’m not gaining weight, which was one of my biggest fears when it came to recovery. I’m border-line overweight according to BMI charts; I didn’t, and don’t, have the room to gain weight.

I’ve got a horrible headache today that I’m trying to get rid of. . . . . . thus far, it’s not going well. 😦





Getting Real

8 04 2010

I thought the real world was yesterday. . . . . . . . Yesterday, I was still in a fog.

Today is when everything has hit. Today is when the real anger and frustration showed up, and when I began to alternately withdraw and lash-out at those closest to me. Today is when the thoughts hit hard and heavy that cutting this, or cutting that, or substituting this, weren’t really an issue, and while we’re at it, purging doesn’t hurt, either. Those thoughts only made me more sullen, as I didn’t particularly want to deal with them.

I’m proud to say that not only did I eat my full 1500 calories, but I kept them all. I just got back from a 3 mile walk, and while I’m hungry, I can’t say I’m enthused, in the slightest, about eating anything. I’ve met 1500……. that’s all I need to do, right?

I have this brick wall there that says going over just isn’t needed. . . . . . . . . . . . period. I’m also being asked to drastically cut back on my water intake. On a normal day, I can easily drink 4-5 liters of water, and not think twice. (And, I’m not up all night running to the bathroom! My body is actually quite used to that amount of water.) When I was binging, I used it to make purging easier. When I wasn’t eating, I used it to keep my full. When I was just eating and purging, I knew it slowed digestion. Now, I’m left with none of the active eating disorder habits, but the same water habit. . . . . . . . . that I’m being forced to address head-on.

And the walk continues. 🙂





Series of Unfortunate Events

7 04 2010

1316. Yes, you may laugh at my title. 🙂 Seriously, though, due to a series of unexpected, unfortunate, and rather dramatic events, I am back at home. To be quite honest, I wasn’t ready to be back in the “real world”. My habits and new-found thought patterns were beginning to solidify slightly, and my comfort level steadily increasing. However, be that as it may, I’m now facing the scary world of recovery with just my mentor, KY, and myself.

Yesterday was rough, foodwise. Even though I felt sick as a dog, I managed to choke down the calories I needed for the day, and keep them all.

Today, things have been a good bit more structured. My mentor, KY, has stepped up to the plate, and is implementing the same plan that Nouveau Vie used. I’ve been grocery shopping; I have meal plans finished up until Friday, and I have a sparkling new digital kitchen scale and a set of measuring “things”. (Spoons, cups, whatevers). 😀

It’s been an odd transition. Since I’m back in my old environment, my old thoughts are stronger than ever. When I went shopping for myself, every where I turned was a lower calorie version of this, or a reduced fat version of that, even though I know that I often need to full calorie version in order to meet my caloric needs for the day. However, being presented with the option to cut calories here, and cut them there made me want to do it SOOOOOOOOO bad. If it’s so readily available, why not? I could follow the exact same meal plan, eating the exact same amount, and end up around 1100 or 1200 calories instead of my agreed upon amount.

However, I didn’t. I stuck to what I knew I needed. got some extras to have around, and got some staples, since the house was quite barren upon return.

My dog was incredibly psyched to see me, and I her. She’s a pit bull, and is the SWEETEST little girl (and she is quite small!). I love her to pieces. We’ve been spending the day running errands, and we’re going to have a house-cleaning party soon. Sounds like fun, no????? *grins* I’ve yet to unpack and try to get settled in. . . . . . . . I’m still shell-shocked from yesterday, and the speed with which everything happened.

In any case, I’m still the same fighter that I was then, and I’ll make it just as far.





Nevada, Day Eighteen

6 04 2010

0741. New day, new start. Vitals are over. . . . . . . . 154.5. BP 107/70, and temp 97.3. Breakfast was a banana/PB smoothie. Today, I know Dr. Dan comes, but beyond that, I’m not sure what’s going on.





Nevada, Day Seventeen

5 04 2010

0801. It’s been a grand morning. I woke up around 0530, but I didn’t move until 0700. I slept all night, and I slept well. It’s honestly about time. . . . . . I was getting to the point that nothing was really registering, because of how exhausted I was getting. Overnight, we got a good 3 inches of snow, and it is GORGEOUS. I finally got moving, and went off to vitals. Weight, 155, BP 118/70, and Temp, 97.3. All stable. 🙂 Breakfast was a smoothie, but I had to make it with soymilk instead of my normal protein shake base. 😦 Today, we have yoga and art therapy, and I’m not really sure what else.

1050. This has been an awesome morning. Instead of yoga, we took advantage of the warm, yet snowy morning, and went on a walk. The snow glistened like diamonds, the air was crisp and clean, and the time relaxing. Afterwards, since the wind coming in off the mountains was quite cold, we took a break for some hot tea, and then we went straight into art therapy. Today, Victoria is doing her first split drawing, consisting of the darkest place she’s ever been, and the absolute happiest she can imagine. I did a second one, consisting of where I am right now, and where I believe I can go. When I first started this project, I couldn’t even see myself on the recovery side of the page. . . . . . . . I couldn’t see a way to make it over there, although I knew there had to be a way. Today, the appearance of the second part of this project is far different. No longer filled with desolation and hopelessness, there are splashes of color on the “now” side of the page, although, they’re often overshadowed by black and gray. The color shines through. . . . . . . . . . it’s definitely there. . . . . . . . . but there’s a foggy, murky quality to it. On the other side, though, the colors are bright, vibrant, stunning. There’s a small patch of gray, for I just don’t currently see how life can possibly be lived without some kinda fog to it. . . . . . . . . . I’ve never known life not to be “foggy”. The two sides are NOTHING the same, though, and the colors on the “potential” side of the page are colors that I can see happening, for the first time in my life. We’re taking the last half of art therapy to talk about our projects, both the current one, and past ones.

This day feels entirely different from any of the past few. I feel vibrant, connected, and fully in the present. It’s a new day; a new start; a time to make progress. I’m loved, needed, cherished, and not only do I have people fighting for me, but I have the strength and wherewithall, today, to fight for myself. This is my current song addiction, the one that speaks volumes. I might do a post later about why it’s perfect for the current situation.

In this farewell
There’s no blood
There’s no alibi
Cause I’ve drawn regret
From the truth
Of a thousand lies

So let mercy come
And wash away

What I’ve done
I’ll face myself
To cross out what I’ve become
Erase myself
And let go of what I’ve done

Put to rest
What you thought of me
While I clean this slate
With the hands
Of uncertainty

So let mercy come
And wash away

What I’ve done
I’ll face myself
To cross out what I’ve become
Erase myself
And let go of what I’ve done

For what I’ve done

I’ll start again
And whatever pain may come
Today this ends
I’m forgiving what I’ve done

I’ll face myself
To cross out what I’ve become
Erase myself
And let go of what I’ve done

What I’ve done

Forgiving what I’ve done

1155. We’re finished talking about our projects, and we made several startling correlations concerning my concepts of recovery. Without fail, my “now” or “current” or “deep, dark place” projects involve shades of gray, red, and hints of yellow, although this one had far more color. My recovery projects always are bright, vibrant, and involve bright blue, green, yellow, and orange. This is a correlation we just saw today, when all of my projects where laid out side by side. We’re getting ready to head to lunch. 😀

1843. It’s been quite an afternoon, to say the least. Lunch was wonderful, and then, we all headed out for what has become the normal Monday outing, bowling. That was fun, but I got totally and absolutely CREAMED. It was still fun, though. Victoria and I did some painting, and then, caught up with some various important people in our lives. Shortly after, we moved on to dinner, which was far more difficult than it probably needed to be. Since then, we’ve just been chilling, and we’ve now started a movie called “Old Dogs”. I’ve never heard of it, but it has good reviews.





Nevada, Happy Easter

4 04 2010

0702. Happy Easter, everyone! It was a long night, but it’s finally morning, and time to do whatever I want. 😀 We’re allowed to “sleep as late as we want to” today, so I think I’m probably just gonna stay holed up and be all anti-social. I’ve got all of my art work scattered around my room, and it’s taking on a personable look, finally. Victoria and I have the Easter outing. . . . . . . I’m pretty psyched about that. It’ll be amazing.

1013. It’s been a low-key morning. Breakfast was toasty and melty and amazing. . . . . . .. . . . . A hot peanut butter roll-up. Vitals were pretty good. . . . . . . . . Weight 154.5, BP 107/68, and temp 97.4. Since breakfast, I’ve been enjoying a John Grisham book and holding text conversations with half of America. The weather has finally (thankfully!) cleared, and this definitely has the makings of a good day. I had a great phone call that I took while staring at Heavenly (one of the big mountains out here) and watching the avalanches rumble down the mountains. Apparently, they set them off with dynamite so that the skiers don’t do it by accident. 😀 The only thing to do before going out on pass today is to make my meal plan for tomorrow. I believe I’ll probably spend the morning reading my book, sipping tea, and listening to fine music. Happy Easter to me!

2110. The outing today was WONDERFUL. Movies, laughter, girl time, and wonderful food. Absolutely everything was homemade, and it was very relaxed and enjoyable. The next week is supposed to be insanely busy, so I’m excited about that. It’ll be a good week.

The meal tonight went really well, although I guess I didn’t watch everything as closely as I could have. It was really good, though, although a bit difficult. We started Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince. . . . . . . . . . . . I’m lovin’ it. 🙂





Nevada, Day Fifteen

3 04 2010

0811. Interesting morning. 😀 Sometime last night, I went and curled up with Victoria. (We’d already talked about it; don’t worry!) I was having an exceptionally difficult time sleeping, and it was the only way I was going to get any sleep, at all. I sleep better when I’m with someone else, or they’re at least in the room. My other choice was to move upstairs, and sleep there, but I figured there’d be a house wide panic when I couldn’t be found in the morning. So, this morning, Julia comes to get me up, and she is not EVEN happy. We went through the normal routine, though, starting with vitals. My weight was 154.9, my BP 115/78 (a good deal higher than it’s been in a REALLY long time), and my temp 97.6. All relatively stable. 🙂

I took a few minutes before starting breakfast in order to start my day on the right foot, and because I was very nauseous. However, I ate breakfast soon after, and had my normal PB smoothie and this morning, I had a big bowl of cereal. I think it’s going to be a bit of a better day than yesterday. . . . . . at least, I really hope it is. I don’t know how many days like yesterday I can handle. 🙂 We’ve got several projects to work on over the course of the weekend, so that’s a good thing. We found some really cute birdhouses (what am I talking about. . . . . . We? *I*) that we’re going to paint. We’ve got a couple painting things to do, and then, I’ve got some hemp work to do. I’ve got a charm from KY that says “Embrace Life” that I’m going to put on a hemp choker. I only take it (and the ring that I wear on my chain, as well) off when I shower. I feel naked without them, but I can’t stand wearing a long chain around my neck. This one is just too long, even though it only reaches my collar bones. I wear it every day, though. I use both objects on there to not only still anxiety, but to ground myself and remind myself why I’m fighting.

I’m excited. 😀 I can tell that my hair is starting to thicken and get a bit more shiny. . . . . . . . . I am STOKED. My hair used to be so thick, I couldn’t wrap my hand around my pony-tail. My fingers wouldn’t close. Now, It’s probably about as big around as my thumb. I’ve lost SO MUCH hair. . . . . . . . . and while it’s still falling out, it’s not nearly as much. It’s also, like I said, picking up a bit of shine. I’m happy. 😀 I know a couple of other people who are gonna be happy about that, too. 😀 You know who you are. *soft, happy grin*

Today, the plans are few and far between. Weekends are very fluid, but we are going on an ice-cream outing today. *elated* It’s gonna be good. 😀 It’s not supposed to be warm today, so we may or may not make it to the park. I really hope we do, though. I need a good long walk.

1235. It’s after lunch. . . . . . . . . I had another burrito. Chicken and bean this time. I’m having a bit more of a difficult time than usual this weekend concerning food, and I attribute that to the almost non-existant sleep I’m getting. After PDT, we’re going on an ice-cream outing, which oughta be a whole lotta fun. I’ve spent the morning being artsy, and working on re-learning the hemp knots, and I’ve started an abstract painting. Right now, it’s a blended mesh of blues and greens, much like a sea scape, but I’m going to be adding a second layer of abstract detail. I hope it looks really cool when it’s finished. 🙂 I also spent the morning talking to various people, some friends, some family, and there were several interesting conversations going on there.

1745. It’s been a relatively low key afternoon. We’ve basically all been in our own little world, sticking to ourselves. It’s gray and dreary outside, and everyone is very contemplative. Victoria and I have been doing art all day, and Brittney has been doing homework. I’ve painted several canvases, and a birdhouse, and I’ve started working on the promotional DVD for Nouveau Vie. It’s been a good bit of fun, although, of course, I once made the huge mistake of not saving my work, and lost a couple hours of it. Today has been “good” in and of it’s own sense. I’ve been relatively disconnected from both my body and emotions, and so, nearly everything has very little effect. We went on an ice cream outing, and that’s the most time any of us has spent together, today. It was a good outing, though. I just had dinner (chicken noodle soup and a pizza roll), and the anxiety is intense. We’re watching “Aladdin”, and it’s actually only the second time in my life that I’ve seen it, so. . . . . . . . . . . . I don’t know what to follow that up with. So what? *grins* In any case. . . . .. . . . . . . . yeah. I don’t know what’s going on for the rest of the night.





Nevada, Day Fourteen

2 04 2010

Happy Good Friday, everyone!

0813. I got started really late today. . . . . . . . Julia actually had to wake me up, which never happens. I’m usually up on my own around 0630. I missed my morning reflection time, which helps me a good bit get my headspace right for the day. . . . . . . I had a rough night last night, but hopefully today will be better. Vitals were good, all around. Weight, back to 155. It’s hung out there for several days, minus yesterday. BP, 114/74, and temp 97.1. My weight has stabilized, for the first time in years. Alex is bringing Righteous down the mountain today, and I am STOKED. Not only is he a big, beautiful dog, but that means I have an excuse to take long walks, and get in a bit of running. Victoria is going to Reno for the day for a doctor’s appointment, so it’ll just be Alex, Righteous, and me for the afternoon. Christina is coming this morning for yoga and art therapy. Breakfast was a bit rough. . . . . . . . . . It was really big, which means I’m really full. What’s cool, though, is that I don’t even have the thought that purging is an option, merely that I’m very, very anxious. I do know, though, that the anxiety will fade, and that it’s impossible for it to stick around forever.

1228. Lunch is over. . . . . . . . . bean burrito. We did yoga and art therapy this morning. For the project, we painted the paper mache’ masks that we’ve been building all week. Mine is painted solid black with shaman type tattoos in bright red lines all across the face. . . . . . . . . . as if ED represents a darker side of life, or is an angel of the dark. It often appears to be a saving grace, but in all reality, it never is.

1550. Alex and I just got back from Michael’s, and we got some really good deals. We found some cool projects to do this weekend and picked up some art supplies we needed around the house. Victoria is still out on pass, and I’m just hanging out upstairs. This is the first day thus far that I haven’t taken ANY pictures. . . . . . . . .

1947. I just finished a really good session with Dr. Dan. He called me on all of my defensive mechanisms. He said, “Now, tell me if I’m wrong, but as I see it, you are the QUEEN of intellectualism. You use it to keep your feelings, and people, at a distance, along with your dry humor, bordering on sarcasm.” Well, he’s not wrong, and he was very good to pin-point it. We talked about my PTSD startle reflex, and about my need to talk about my feelings, and turn to people here, as opposed to pushing those feelings and reactions back down. We covered a good bit of the workbook, and all in all, it was a good session. I’ve still got food to eat. . . . . . . . . . 3 cups of popcorn. . . . . . . . . . and there’s no telling when I’ll get to sleep tonight. The wind is blowing like crazy. I swear, I’m sleeping somewhere else tonight. 😀 We will more than likely play Wii for the rest of the night, or track down a good movie.





Nevada, Day Thirteen

1 04 2010

0813. Vitals are over, and so is breakfast. Vitals weren’t really all that fun today. . . . . . . My weight has fluctuated a pound and a half (156.5), and my blood pressure is still a bit lower than what it has been, but higher than it was yesterday. It was 100/70 today, but my temp was 97.2. It’s April Fool’s Day, and Victoria and I are working very diligently on a great April Fool’s prank. I’ve decided that I’m a Trader Joe’s addict. There are NONE in my home state, but there are 3 in surrounding states, within a 100 mile drive. *grins* That’s not bad, at all. I’d drive that for the fun of it. The more I discover Trader Joe’s foods, the happier I am with eating. 😀 I had a smoothie this morning for breakfast, with PB, banana, and chocolate whey, using a protein shake as a base, and it was quite good, although anxiety-inducing. I’ve struggled a little bit more the past couple days with anxiety, but it’s still NOTHING like it used to be.

I have a new camera. 😀 *does dance* I’m a crazy happy camper, and have been trying to figure out all the new settings. There isn’t much going on today, at all. We’re starting a new inspirational painting, though. (Remember Stripe Overload?) Well, Victoria has to start HER version today (which can be whatever she wants it to be), and I get to do one, as well. It’ll be fun. I’ve already got an idea, and I’ve gotten some input from a couple of friends. I’ve got to hit the workbook hard and heavy today, because Dr. Dan is coming tomorrow. I don’t think being on Chapter Five two weeks in a row is a good idea.

1234. It’s been quite a morning! I just finished with lunch, potato soup. I’ve gotta say it wasn’t the best, but then again, I don’t typically eat things that come out of cans. 🙂 All morning, I’ve been working on a project. We started another inspirational poster, and I actually finished mine. It’s a pastel beach scene with the words “Never give up for that is when the tide will turn” stenciled above it. I don’t like pastels. . . . . . . . I’d never used them before, and they’re not nearly as exact as I wanted them to be. Color is smeared everywhere, and I can’t say it was my favorite project, but it will add a good bit of color to my room. That will be good. After that was lunch, and while it wasn’t the best, I ate it. I’m really struggling with anxiety today concerning food, and that soup really filled me up. During PDT, I started working on my meal plan for tomorrow, and no matter which way I flip-flopped things, increased portion sizes, and added stuff in, I was short. After 45 minutes, I was STILL short. I’m currently 45 calories short, which is far better than the 250 I was short 20 minutes before that. *sigh* I’m getting frustrated with meal plans. . . . . . . . This is supposed to be EASIER, not harder. 1504. We had some mad Wii tournaments after lunch, and I kicked butt in bowling and tennis, but lost miserably at baseball. I hurt my shoulder in tennis, but the pain quickly passed. Gotta love it. 😀 Alex and I had a session about my meal plans and calorie count. . . . . . . My protein count is great, but my fat count is low. I’ve got to work on that a bit. He tossed the idea out of raising my calories again, and I nixed that one. I’ve also earned the right to go on walks by myself, so I’ll be able to do a bit more exercise. I’m gonna hafta say I’m definitely excited about that, and next week, we’re going to go on a hike. I am stoked! We talked a bit about the Easter outing and rules, as well. Rules there are the same here, but we serve as accountability for each other. It’ll be my first “real world” excursion, and it will be a challenge. Alex says that’s why he’s excited about it. . . . . . . . It will give me a chance to succeed. I’m worried.

1608. We just had an awesome communications group. It was an exercise I’ve done before drawing, but we used blocks. Two people sit back to back with the exact same pile of blocks in front of them. Blocks vary by color, size, and type. One person (the communicator) builds a tower, and then they must describe the tower to the other person (the listener). The listener’s goal is for their tower to appear EXACTLY the way the communicator’s tower does. The hitch is that the listener may say NOTHING. The can’t ask questions, peek, or give feedback in any way. During the first round, the results are often hysterically funny, as there is a COMPLETE communication disconnect. The two towers are often NOTHING alike. So, the exercise is repeated, with the ability for the listener to ask questions and seek clarification. It takes awhile, but the towers eventually match. Then, roles are switched.

This is a frustrating, fun, inspiring, eye-opening activity. It’s a really good exercise to drive home the point that communication without feedback and clarification can be not only frustrating, but detrimental. It helps to drive home the point that if something isn’t understood, advice and feedback HAS to sought because the long-term ramifications can be horrible. I really enjoyed that session.

2104. Last update for the night. The evening was consumed with dinner, PDT, homework, and relaxation. Dinner was grand. . . . . . . . a chicken burrito and fresh fruit. . . . . . . . and was exceptionally anxiety producing. I spent a good bit of PDT pacing, and then had my pacing privileges removed on a couple different counts. Victoria and Brittney played Wii, and I caught up with some online stuff. We then all turned to homework, and I read the rest of the ACT book. I did most of the exercises, but there were several “feeling” based exercises that I didn’t do. Not only was I not comfortable with my own feelings, but neither was I comfortable sharing those feelings with Dr. Dan, for I know he’ll see those exercises. The biggest thing that stuck out to me tonight was the phrase, “Every minute you spend calorie counting, purging, binging, excessively exercising, and having anxiety attacks is a minute you take away from what truly matters to you.” That drove everything home. . . . . . . . that without the eating disorder, I can actually talk about LIFE with the people I love. I can have a different focus, and my life can move forward. Today has been relatively anxiety-ridden, and I’ve still got food left to eat. I’ve managed to put it off this long, but it’s not waiting much longer. Victoria and I are taking our showers (instead of the nightly movie), and that was my last ditch effort at “It’s too late to eat. . . . .” After I eat this snack, I’ll probably head to bed. Busy day tomorrow!








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