Monday, September 15, 2008

From the beginning... Find Your "Other" Thing

After ending up in the hospital at this time last year, I began struggling with my eating again. I was told I was eating too little and had to increase my calories. I was told I was teetering on malnutrition. I was freaked.

First I ate too much, then I ate too little, then I evened out. Then I started flirting with sugar again. Then I started binging on sugar again. Now I am trying to get back into recovery on the whole sugar thing. (The giant piece of ice cream cake for my birthday not withstanding.)

Today I interviewed the woman in charge of the Walk from Obesity, it's the 27th and I am the 'celebrity' speaker. Helping other people is something I am passionate about. Helping people take that first step or stay motivated in their weight loss journey is important to me. That's why I am looking forward to the walk.

But after she left this morning, I felt the snugness of my pants and felt sad. I have let myself go, given in too many times to sugar, eaten away at my pain via cake and cookies. So, as I worked away the 'whys' tugged at me.

I have wondered for some time why it was easier the first year to deal with food than it has been the second year. Today, perhaps, I have come to at least one answer - I lost my 'other' thing.

When you are trying to lose weight, you need something to distract you from food, especially if, like myself, you are a food addict. When boredom sets in or when free time appears or when emotions get heavy - you need something else. I realized that my crash into the emergency room last year was about a month after Caelen went to school full-time and I went to work full-time outside the house again.

When I came up on the other side of being ill and had the food world opened up to me again, I had nothing to distract me. As I settled into a stressful job with too many hours that never took off, I fell back into old patterns. I took to scanning the break-room for free food and sneaking a snack here or there. As the stress rose, so did my calorie count.

If I had still been in the 'Caelen world' I would have had a full-time distraction. Teaching and loving him was my passion and more than enough to keep me from diving into doughnuts. But outside of my home full of healthy food choices and 4-year-old fun, I have been vulnerable to the same temptations as everyone else.

Now I realize I need a new 'other' thing. Work is long and arduous at time, it can't be the other thing. Workouts have become just part of what I do, like bathing, a goal I set for myself a long time ago - so it's definitely not the 'other' thing.

I don't know what it is. But I am going to spend the next few weeks trying to figure it out. In the meantime, I will eat healthier and let finding my 'other' thing, be the other thing.

Yours in health, Kate

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