Oddly enough I haven't had the courage to write about what's been on my mind. At first, sitting down to write felt nearly impossible. That's not like me and I started to question whether or not I was losing that little piece of myself. I would write a sentence and delete it. I would come up with a way to get my words across and within seconds change my mind. Everything felt forced until yesterday and I think I know why.
You probably read about my 30 Day Clean Up. And my words probably sounded motivating and uplifting and emotional. But guess what? I've been miserable. Not only because I took nearly five things out of my diet that I absolutely love but also because it has made me dread every meal, every snack, and pretty much the last ten days of my life. I felt like my body needed these drastic changes in order to feel healthy and once again I started basing my happiness on depriving myself rather than giving it what it actually wants. Cutting out meat, sugar, coffee cream, peanut butter, trail mixes, and beer has been one of the hardest and most ridiculous things I've ever done and I continued to question myself every single day as to what the heck I was thinking. I had no answer, just a stubborn mind that told myself I would be a complete failure if I had a cashew. I'm now able to sit down this morning and actually write a post where sentences flow because I've given my body a little taste of happy...
I've learned a few things about this form of dieting that I would like to share with so that you can avoid it at all cost.
- Taking away the foods that you love to eat is not even dieting. It's deprivation, it's misery, and it's creating unnecessary suffering in your life that you do not deserve.
- It creates conflict between you and your spouse. Nick supports me always and is willing to help me every single day but it's not fair to him when I'm crabby, starving, and upset that avoiding my favorite foods has had a negative effect on my happiness...
- ...which leads me here. Even though I had cut out sugar and everything else, I still looked the same and I still weighed the same. The only thing that was different was how I felt and honestly, I had never felt worse.
- It screws up your digestive system...just saying.
- You are constantly thinking about what your next meal is going to be and wondering if anyone else but you notices the fact that you skipped dessert and are suffering.
- You are always telling yourself "I can't." Do you want a coffee? "I can't unless it's completely black." And let's be honest...black coffee around 2:00 PM with nothing sweet doesn't even sound appealing. "Do you want to go to Panera?" "I can't because then I'll want to order a bagel with peanut butter or a chicken salad sandwich or a coffeee..." It's a viscous cycle.
- I have told myself that I can't more in the last ten days than I think I have ever and it's been a little hard on my self esteem.
- You waste precious energy. See numbers 2, 5,6,7...
- You ask yourself question after question after question.
10. You compare yourself to others way more when you're dieting than when you're just living.
Yesterday was hard for me. I was sad and frustrated and I couldn't place my finger on what was bothering me. First it was this and then it was that and then I finally realized that I was placing blame on things that had nothing to do with the way that I felt. I was hungry. I was sore. and I was tired. I understand it's hard for a lot of people to relate to the anxiety I feel about food and exercise. I'm working on them each and every day. And for some reason I thought the best way to work on them was to just quit eating everything I enjoy. I laid down and was crying and also laughing at myself because I was crying and the moment I stopped, took a breath, and asked for his help, everything started making sense and I was able to find myself again. I found that girl that was completely lost for ten days because she decided to take a trip down the crazy lane and try to become something she's not.
Somehow his grace always seems to find me. And once again it only took a minute for him to remind me who I am. Why do we consistently try to change ourselves or our lives in search of happiness when the soul purpose of living is to just be. Be joyful, be merry, be peaceful, and be content in the middle of every sun's rise and set. I learned an important lesson in all of this. I learned that I was miserable not because I was missing the things that I had removed from my diet, but because I was trying to completely change myself when I already loved who I was before. Change, my dear friends, can be a very good thing but when you are in a constant battle with yourself and who you are, the deepest part of your heart never comes alive. And it's here, inside your deepest self, where most of the good in you is kept. Realizing that the big picture in life goes far beyond our day to day struggles makes me wish I could just be a dreamer all of the time. But the big picture, the parts of life that really matter are when we discover our own gifts and talents and doing the things that we are truly capable of. What I chose to do is not one of my gifts and something I will never be proud of because it went completely against my beliefs about living a healthy and balanced life.
I apologize if not following through with my original plan makes me come off as a quitter but I'm not willing to call myself this. I'm so grateful I stopped the diet, I'm so grateful for balance, and I'm so grateful for peanut butter bagels.
I guess what I'm trying to say is that if you want the full experience of life in your days...eat the dang cookie and be exactly who you are because no matter how much you try to consistently change yourself there is a ton of hearts out there that absolutely adore you.
Cheers to wonderful bike rides, tall Miller Lites, and prayers. Everything becomes so so right when we pray.