Thanks so much for all the sweet well wishes for the husband’s first day on the new job. Ya’ll are so sweet. I texted him mid-day to see how it was going and he texted back “it’s going really well. A great company to work for…and so much to learn!” Today and tomorrow are basically just orientation days, and then Wednesday will be his first day in the office. That is, unless the predicted 6-10 inches of snow keeps him home (fingers crossed:). Anyway, I’ve always been so thankful that he has a job he loves, and I feel that way even more now. Every time I ask him about how he’s feeling regarding the change, he just starts talking about how great he feels about this company and the difference they’re making in people’s lives. Yay.
Now let’s just see if I can get a job as well!
I started off yesterday morning with a serious craving for yogurt and raw oatmeal.
1/3 cup raw oats, whole soy yogurt, chia seeds, dried cranberries and cinnamon
Totally hit the spot. Sometimes I feel myself getting tired of foods that I’ve been eating a lot of, and all it takes is scrolling back through my blog a little bit to find inspiration. I can almost always find a basic meal that I haven’t had in awhile to bring back all fresh and new! This oldie was definitely a highlight to start the day.
Other highlights for the day included but were not limited to the following:
- painting my nails mint green
- spending a little extra time with God this morning
- making my green smoothie with a scoop of natural peanut butter and chocolate almond milk for lunch
- having a really great conversation with my mom on the phone this afternoon
- eating yet another leftover cinnamon roll for a snack this afternoon (I know). One a day does = moderation. It does!
I have had two tasty meals in my head all day today, but I’ve been on kind of a weird schedule (hence the green smoothie for lunch), so I haven’t been able to make either one of them. One is the veggie chili I made for the husband’s work party a couple of months ago, and the other is a really simple lunch idea that I just can’t get out of my mind. I’m thinking I’ll be enjoying it for lunch today, and if so then I’ll share it later on! As far as the chili goes, I think it’ll be the perfect meal for Wednesday when we’re all snowed in again. mmmm.
The last part of this post has been pretty much all about food, ha! Food is where it’s at, though. Even Mr. Squirrel agrees.
He sits right outside our kitchen window almost every morning, munching on all kinds of nuts and seeds. Gives me a hankering for nuts and seeds myself, just watching him.
But really food is such a big part of life, you know? We need it for fuel and nourishment…but it also affects us in psychological ways. We celebrate with it. We comfort with it during times of loss. We have memories attached to it.
I’m not encouraging emotional eating in the sense of eating to hide or cover up emotions, but we’d be crazy to say that food isn’t tied to something besides a physical need.
I’ve never really talked about this on the blog before, but in the past I’ve had issues with emotional eating, and it wasn’t in a positive way. Sometimes, whether I’d be feeling stressed, sad or just plain tired, I would go straight to the pantry and just eat mindlessly. And then when I would finish, I’d feel guilty and even more stressed, not to mention physically kind of sick. I remember at times feeling like I’d never be able to break the cycle. I ate healthy enough all the rest of the time and exercised enough that I never really put on any visible weight, but the emotional weight it was adding on was not a good thing. It was a bad habit…and I needed to break it.
It has been a long time since this last happened. I still get carried away with the chips and salsa occasionally (okay, often;), but it’s not the same kind of destructive behavior. It’s no longer me trying to cover up an emotion…it’s more just about liking blue corn tortilla chips a little too much. ha. I think the point that I really was able to gain control of what I was doing was when I recognized the true issue behind the behavior. After a lot of prayer and internal processing, I realized that I was eating at these times in an effort to relieve the negative emotions I was feeling inside. Food was a way to cover those emotions up by doing something that felt good right at that moment.
Besides identifying the root of the problem, another thing that helped a LOT was realizing that just because I disappointed myself by doing this didn’t mean that I should punish myself afterwards. When I treated my body that way I needed to do something really nice for my body in turn…rather than beating myself up about it. So, I started going for a long, slow walk, taking a bubble bath, or just cuddling with Olive for a bit. I also spent some time identifying the specific reasons why I would eat, and then made an alternative plan for each negative emotion, such as laying down for a twenty minute nap, getting into downward dog and holding it for 20-30 seconds or spending some time in prayer. Basically, I was ready to tackle the problem itself, whatever problem it was, rather than trying to put a band-aide over it.
After so many weeks of implementing my new plan, it became a habit, and now I don’t even think about it. I’m not saying it was an easy process, and I definitely had my fair share of set-backs, but in the end it was so worth it. Every time I would fall back into the behavior, I would take time to really process through what I had really been feeling in the moment, work through that emotion (if it was anxiety over my job, I would take 30 minutes and problem solve or call my teacher friend and ask for advice). And through the whole process, not only have I gained confidence in my ability to eat in a healthy way, but I’ve also become more confident in handling conflict and anxiety.
I don’t know if I’m the only one that has ever dealt with us, but somehow I doubt it. Just the other day I was talking to the husband, and it suddenly hit me that I hadn’t eaten in this way in a long long time. I realized that I’d totally forgotten what it was like and is totally out of character for me to do something like now. I know there’s a possibility that I could fall back into the habit someday, but it feels good to know that making slow progress toward a healthier way of dealing with negative emotions has brought me to a place where I feel much more confident in my relationship with food. Isn’t that how it should be?
Anyway, these are just some thoughts I’d been pondering lately, and I thought I’d share them. I used to think this issue was something I was ashamed of and wanted to hide. I’m still not proud that I struggled with it, but I realize now that we all have battles such as this and the best way to overcome those struggles is to bring them out into the light.
What is something you’ve overcome through a lot of time and hard work? How does it feel to be in a place where you feel confident and at peace in regard to that issue? Or are you still working through something and trying to get to that place?