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Sometimes You Just Gotta Laugh

Saturday, February 16, 2019

My SparkPeople Premium Coaching Community Task for today is to write a blog about things I can do now that I couldn't do before I started this journey...and since I'm still recovering from the concussion I suffered a month ago all I have been focusing on these last four weeks are the things I suddenly CAN'T do and how frustrating all that is for me. So I was really struggling trying to figure out what on earth I was going to write about here. Here's the thing though, and it's huge, SparkPeople has changed my relationship with food and the scale and myself to the point that even as frustrated as I am with the process I'm still here trusting the process.

Sometimes you just gotta laugh.

See I found SparkPeople while recovering from an eating disorder induced by a then popular diet program called "Weigh Down Workshop"...I wasn't supposed to be dieting at all, in fact I'd pretty much been told it wouldn't be safe for me ever again. The doctor and I still knew my physical health would be better if I could do something about my weight though. I was both anorexic and morbidly obese. It was a very strange place to be. SparkPeople worked for me because it wasn't about weight. It was, as the tagline says, a way to "Live Healthy and Happy" and over the years in fits and starts, retreating when my disorder required it, returning when I had learned what I needed to learn and healed where I needed to heal that's exactly what started to happen.

When I got hurt a month ago and started researching the best way to help my brain heal and everything kept coming up "Keto" I was not happy. I was really afraid that going on such a restrictive "fad diet" would be a trigger for the eating disorder again. I had forgotten or perhaps not realized how much I've learned here about intuitive eating though. I knew, intuitively and from research, that Keto was what I needed right now for my brain to heal. I'm sixteen days in. The ringing in my ears stopped within the first 5 days. The daily headache left a couple of days after that. My stamina is beginning to return. This week for the first time since I fell I had the energy to take a walk on an unseasonably warm and beautiful day and the balance to not be afraid I would fall again doing it. I am still having some visual issues but according to the optometrist and the doctor everything is healing well and very normal for being 4 weeks post concussion. It's just going to take a lot longer than I want it to. SparkPeople though has taught me to celebrate every small victory, so I don't just give in to my frustrated desire to be better RIGHT NOW and rage quit. I am plugging along, being gentle with myself, challenging myself to do a little bit more each day without demanding that I be "normal" right now because I'm not. I'm hurt, I'm healing and it's OK not to be OK.

I'm super ready to transition from strict keto to a more Mediterranean approach once February is over. I can't see myself being successful or healthy on Keto long term. Mediterranean offers many of the same benefits in a way that feels more like how I prefer to eat. If I don't see those benefits continue I may return to Keto until the most acute stage of this concussion recovery passes (about 2 to 3 months the doctors tell me...so hopefully by spring I'll be feeling more myself again). Being at SparkPeople and learning to trust myself and my body and tailor my own approach to health has taught me how to navigate this run of rapids on my journey.

Things I can do now that I couldn't before SparkPeople...believe that I have the ability to do what I need to do to achieve health...place my focus on health and celebrate victories that have nothing to do with weight...realize that my worth doesn't reside in a number on a scale or a size in a pair of pants...navigate whatever comes my way that intersects with food in a way that doesn't send me back into a disordered spiral...be ok with not being ok...be as kind to myself as I would be to anyone else who was in a similar situation...laugh at how absurd this one beautiful life sometimes is.
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