So, I’m starting to get annoyed… Annoyed with my “Oh my goodness, look at me, I’m so healthy meals.” Eating exclusively fruits & vegetables/salads, egg whites & eggs, salmon, nuts & nut butter, greek yogurt and *sometimes* quinoa (which I consider indulgent, seeing as it is a carb/wannabe grain/pseudograin) is getting me really frustrated with myself. It is too rigid, too healthy. Gasp! But yes, you can be too healthy and too obsessed with health. It’s called orthorexia. Now, I’m by no means saying that I am orthorexic (I’m definitely not), but it just feels too reminiscent of my ED days. And it’s kind of making me feel like I want to scream.
I feel like eating disorders are such conniving little things that lead you to believe that you are getting better, but they are just tricking you. Yes, I am eating now, and I am fuelling my body adequately, BUT, I am being just as calculated and rigid about my eating in terms of WHAT I’m eating and what I’m ‘allowed’ to eat. Even more importantly, the anxiety I feel if I contemplate NOT following my rules is not normal or healthy. I feel too restricted, constricted and it’s really making me feel like, well… sh*t.
Chelsie’s post resonated with me today SO much. I totally feel like I am in a straight jacket too, just like she said. I guess physically I feel great- how could I not feel great eating SO well, but emotionally? Yaaaa…that’s a different story. And I don’t even want to do anything crazy like go out an eat a massive brownie sundae or something like that. Nope. Just being able to have toast for breakfast, crackers at lunch and some quinoa at dinner would be an awesome start. And maybe a bowl of some vanilla bean coconut milk ice cream? :)
It can be difficult for me to differentiate between what Lauren wants to eat and what ED wants me to eat. I am usually better at being able to separate the two, but I think being back at school has my equilibrium a little thrown off. Plus, I am eating more fruit which was a big fear food for me. I know ridiculous, but I was terrified of all the sugar and carbs. I literally thought that I would gain 20 pounds overnight and lose all muscle tone and the lean look I worked so hard to achieve if I were to eat fruit. So dumb. Anyways, I have been challenging myself, allowing myself to have 2 servings of fruit a day and I am LOVING it! Bananas and almond butter, smoothies with frozen berries and vanilla protein powder, Macintosh apples #autumnlove, pears… It’s been very delicious :) Facing this one fear makes ED all the more sophisticated however, as it can constantly remind me that we are challenging the ‘fruit-issue,’ and so I must be doing “so well,” when in reality, I have found other ways to gain my control back. Enter the ‘Super healthy no grains eating plan.’ It makes me feel more in control, anxiety decreases (temporarily), and I feel back on track. However, I can feel the background level of anxiety building and I am certain that it is 100% due to food (it always is).
I have also been a little more lenient with meal and snack times which has been a pretty massive deal for someone like me. This has made me feel pretty darn strong. I’ve felt on fi-yah some days, like when I buy and eat lunch on campus, have a piece of salmon for an afternoon SNACK or eat dinner at 7:30pm and then another ‘snack’ of dark chocolate at nearly 10pm (aka, my bedtime #partyanimal). Like, who is this person!? There is such a dichotomy because I feel like on one hand I am KILLING it, challenging myself, and knocking ED out of the park, but on the other hand, I feel like I’m creating all these ‘new rules’ in order to ‘make-up’ for breaking down the old ones. However, what is AWESOME is that I am ON-TO this, which I LOVE. Gotchaaaa ED. Suckaaa ;)
So…what is my game plan now? I think that the best thing to do is simply follow my cravings and allow myself to eat what LAUREN wants. If I am craving eggs and salad, I will eat that, however, if I am craving a bowl of oatmeal with banana and PB, I’ll have that :) And, I won’t go backwards and attempt to structure my meals more timing-wise since I am altering the contents of my meals. I will continue on breaking my own rules and NOT creating new ones. If I always just exchange my rules for another one, I’m not really getting any better. I don’t want to play a game of stagnant deception- always appearing to change, yet really just remaining in the same place. It’s not a fun game. I never win. And I reallyyyyy like to win :)
Question: How has your ED tried to gain control in sneaky ways? How did you overcome this and show ED who’s boss?
Much love and health,