Saturday, May 4, 2013

Abstinence is my #1 Priority

Today has been an interesting day (although I suppose they all are). I had a HORRIBLE night of sleep last night. I went to bed around 11:30, and was WIDE awake at 1:30 (I had to pee). I managed to get back to sleep, but I kept having intrusive food thoughts about what I was going to eat today... WTF?!?! At 3:00am...I was wide awake and could not stop meal planning for myself. I tried talking to my Higher Power, asking him to relieve me of the obsession, and grant me the ability to quiet my mind so that I could do his will and be of service today... but I got NADA!!! I'm sure I eventually drifted off, but from then until 5:45... I might as well have not been asleep :(

I woke up early, because I had to get in my long run for the week. I knew that if I was having intrusive thoughts in my sleep, then they were FOR SURE going to try and infiltrate my run. I decided to write out a quick meal plan before heading out, and I felt MUCH better. It was humid, dry and awkward out this morning, so I was a little uncomfortable throughout my run (I always had to use the bathroom from mile 3-9.3.... NOT cute). But, I did some reading before I headed out so I had things to keep my mind preoccupied.Today's focus was Gratitude, Freedom, and Mistakes. I thought this was an interesting combination, but started out with a Gratitude list, and I found that I have A LOT of things to be thankful for. But I started doing something kinda funny with the list. Every time I mentioned something I was grateful for, it always had a judgmental twist. For example:

I'm grateful for the fact that I have an amazing neighborhood to run in EVEN THOUGH people cant drive
I'm grateful to be attending the school of my dreams, EVEN THOUGH I have to sit in traffic every day!

It was the strangest thing!!! I feel like this is how I approach most things in life... "Provisionally". Like there is always a stipulation to what is going on. For example, the recent ambivalence I have been feeling about my joy lately. I want to truly enjoy it, but am letting the fear of losing it impede on my happiness. Or the fact that I have a really difficult time accepting when good things happen to me and always have to look for the negative. Its not a really good way to go about life, and I am going to have to start trying to make changes to this point of view... but for today I can just be aware of it.

Anywhoo, I made it through my miles, but I was left feeling dehydrated, grumpy and totally exhausted. I headed off to group therapy. I made some outreach calls and texts on my way in and  I started to feel much better. Group therapy was really good and interactive today. Everyone had a lot of wonderful input which made for an exciting deal. But my most favorite part was starting with the Meditation. This is where we sit for about 7 minutes and become aware of the room, do a mental body scan and try to get rid of any judgments we are feeling and then practice saying positive affirmations to ourselves. We start every session this way, and as the weeks have gone by, mine have gotten progressively better. The first time we did the exercise, I had absolutely NO details in my face. I could see every pock mark, dimple and horrible blemish in my thighs and my body was completely distorted... but I had NO FACE!!! Even why I tried to focus and create one, I simply could not do it. The next time was pretty much the same and I was beginning to get a little weirded out by the whole things. I would try to think about what it meant, and the best that I could come up with was that I just felt that I wasn't deserving of having facial features. That I was such an unworthy person... that even my mental image of myself did not really have an identity.

Well, today during our meditation.. I HAD A FACE!!! It wasn't completely detailed, but I could see my eyes, smile and the outline of my other features. I was really excited!!! The other parts of my body are starting to look more "realistic" (although... its my perception so who know how "real" it is), and I had only minimal bad things to say about it. When we got to the part where we were suppose to "let go" of our judgments... I was able to imagine that each one was a balloon, and I literally imagined myself letting them go and fly off into the distance. It was a beautiful experience. I think I might start to try and use this meditation more in my own daily life... perhaps with the way I start my day when I wake up. It felt really freeing and left a really good feeling in my body :).

After group, I went back to feeling dehydrated (I had left my water in the car on accident and drank a TON of coffee) and a little icky. So I've been taking it easy for most of the afternoon  and drinking plenty of fluids.

I finally got to do some reading today as part of my meditation and this was the "Just for today" for March 3, 2013.

Just for Today: Nothing gives me more strength than my abstinence. It is the NUMBER ONE necessity in my life.

This is really resonating with me today. Even though I stated that I was going to try to stop obsessing about my days of abstinence, it has recently become somewhat of a big deal for me. Today is day # 26 of my new abstinence, that I will KEEP WHAT I EAT. This is a pretty big deal in a lot of ways. Last month, it was day 27 (also a Saturday) that I made the decision to break my previous abstinence. So, I'm a little superstitious about repeating the same mistake. Although I have not had ANY desire to purge, my desire to overeat and binge has been creeping in slowly. I know that the two are not linked, but they often go hand in hand. I know that they only way to really recover is to break the cycle. For me, that means that I need to work extra hard (or maybe that my Higher Power needs to work extra hard) to try and maintain my abstinence. And for me, right now, that means not over eating... because right now I feel that it could lead to  So I feel that for the rest of the weekend, I need EXTRA reminders about how important protecting my abstinence is. So, essentially, this was the perfect message for today.

I have to work and be busy all weekend which means I am away from home a lot, I wont be able to go to ANY meetings and life is going to be high stress... and you know what NONE OF THESE IS AN EXCUSE TO OVEREAT AND BREAK MY ABSTINENCE. I am going to focus on listening to Podcasts, doing reading, and just remembering to live for today. Abstinence is a tool, not a good, and it is something that is helping to make me feel better... NOT A PUNISHMENT :)

So For today, I will feed myself and NOT my disease!

I got to end my day by being of service to someone who has served as a mentor to me in the program. I got to help her get through a really rough and scary times... times that I know will come and go for both of us. It felt really good, because in that moment I was thinking about coming home and binging myself. She may think that I was of service to her tonight... but really... she just was just of service to me.

Time for AEIOU's!!!

A- Yes. By the Grace of my Higher Power I kept what I ate for one more day
E- Ran 9.3miles (1:20 minutes)
I- I outreached all over the place (called and text everybody), went to group therapy and shared, fueled and hydrated myself properly, spent some MUCH needed time with my other half, placed my abstinence first, did writing and reading
O- I was of service to two fellows (one in crisis and one who I just needed to share some strength), volunteered at the Suicide Prevention Center, shared recovery tools with a friend
U- When I want to go to the food, it is usually because there is something I am trying to avoid dealing with. Today, I wanted to avoid intimacy with the person I love the most and feelings of inadequacy. I do not have eat over these feelings, just admit they are there, accept them for what they are and challenge myself to feel them. The discomfort will dissipate and I can remain abstinent, and this is the NUMBER ONE thing in my life today :)

God, please help me protect the most precious gift you have given me. Help guide me to do thy will, so that I may be of service to others and strengthen my recovery. Help me do they will, ALWAYS! Amen. 

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