“I’m an MD/RHN/RN, here’s what I eat in a day”

I call this bullshit.

In a world already so disconnected from ourselves, these tempting motives to “solve our own routine conundrum” serve as confusing AF.  It’s like stevia: sweet, but the body is like “well shit, can I eat more now because that was calorie-free?” (you know? How many times have you tried to “trick” your body into thinking it’s satiated, and then the #headinfridge nighttime syndrome hits? And, sweetheart, when you say “I couldn’t help it”, that is OK.  It’s not lack of willpower.  It’s physiology, and it’s OK.)

Confusion.  Tempting at first, but also like the Finnish education system: it works for them, but you can’t take Des Linden’s stride, put her in a pool, and expect a Phelps #nahmean?

This is why I think “diets” in their very essence are dangerous to fall into.  Rules, rules rules rules, stress me out, and also calm parts of me.  It is so nice to think of a specific way of doing things that leads to health and is relatively simple to emulate.  But that’s the easy way out.  The way that calms the overwhelmed and fearful parts of us that are at a loss of what to do, and then just doesn’t serve the soul part that is all like “but listen to me, I know what’s best for Me!”

Like, side-note.  Is it just me, or is Intermittent Fasting the way of like 90% of Tinder dates right now?

Intermittent Fasting: can certainly serve some people, at some times.  But I’m fearful of the idea that it enables addiction.

I feel like I am straight up addicted to sensation from controlling all aspects of nourishment from food.  I’m using Food control and restriction and “allowing” bits of treats as a way to fuel my nourishment needs that I’m lacking in other aspects of my life.

Similarly, like Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs, I am keeping myself stuck in the lower pyramid

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This blah blah blah goes back to me not feeling “safe” in the world so I’m keeping myself “safe” #traumashit through physiological preoccupation.

Blah blah blah.

On this level, it’s simply a way to keep myself outside of myself.  Which is why it’s so tempting to look more outside of Me at what other people are doing, what helps them, the scared parts of myself think “Let’s do that!”  While inspiration is great, what if by listening in, checking in, the answers come to me.  What if by creating pathways of outer-dependency, I disconnect myself from the umbilical cord that’s like the cup-string telephone to the soul, (remember?)

Image result for cup string phone

Image result for cup string phone

Now back to the really somehow fascinating phenomenon that is looking at what people are eating on social media.  Enter hashtags:

#WIAW
#Paleo
#Keto
#IF
#cleaneats
#cheatday
#ifitfitsmymacros

ETCETCETC.

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#amiright?  What about “Fear of Finished Meal Syndrome”?  Do the RHN’s, RN’s, RD’s, MD’s get this, too?  (Do hooman’s breathe?)

Maybe we think that the hidden mind’s of these people are pristine such that they have not the pains we have?  Maybe they poop better?  Like,

“hey, she’s got toned-ass arms, her diet must be soooo perfect!! I will get arms and poops clean as hers if I eat exactly what she eats!”

Bullshit.

But also,  compassionate bullshit.  I hear this, I also feel this.  But I know my soul is calling out this human ego temptation because #slowcarb #fatfree #LCHF #vegan etcetcetc seems easy, but doesn’t work.  It only worked for me to get me more aware of the need to connect with myself more deeply.  So in this way, and in celebrating the idea that “the only way out is through”, I’m grateful.

I’ve been on a ride through Anorexia Nervosa, Bulimia (no blaming here, but the “cheat day” from Tim Ferriss’s (sexiest bald man I know) #4HourBody fuckkked me up hard), Vegetarianism, Paleo, Anxiety, and has truly winded my path around like a rollercoaster.  Right now, my gut is speaking to me.  The powerful, resilient body perseveres through all the confusion, which is so damn beautiful.  Throughout all the ignoring, all the pain, all the anxiety, the body is here.  Not without scars, inside and outside, but it’s here.  It’s always here.  That’s what we’re born with.  We’re actually born with exactly all we need to thrive on this earth.

Similar to plants in nature, they use whatever is available near them at the time, in order to survive.  Each plant uses its own individual programming to absorb from the Earth what it possibly can to life the longest and most robust life.  Maybe a plant is healthier in different soils, but the internal ability for it to hear its needs are just that: internal.  So, an onion will need different things than it’s tomato neighbour.  Likewise, one onion might need different things than the onion beside it, that is closer to the cuke which changes its constituency.

So fuck, please, be wary of outside noise.  Just because an MD eats avo-toast erryday, doesn’t mean it’ll give you better poops.  I mean, it may; that shit’s great.  But listen in.  Get inspired, and then take the language outside and translate it into your own Mother Tongue for your individually resplendent body.  And also, listen to the whispers coming from your SOUL!

Fuck, it’s beautiful (thank you).

Love,
Mel

A “Human” Professional

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Hi, my name is Melanie, and I’m a recovered Bulimic, and recovering Anorexia Nervosa monkey-minded human being.
I’ve sat with crippling depression, anxiety, and taken laxatives while scared shitless of the idea of imperfection.
I’ve run trails in a healthy state, and I’ve also gone to morning swim practice in Uni while probs still drunk from the bar having come home a couple hours before.
I’ve aced papers, and I’ve also retaken courses.
I’ve googled ways to purge, tried many, and I’ve searched the shit out of the internet about how to heal.
I’ve gone to India to become a certified Yoga instructor, and I’ve pranayama’d the shit out of datstuff.
I’ve traveled across the world to New Zealand and am now a certified Holistic Nutritionist.
I’ve been a vegetarian, I’ve done Paleo, I’ve hashtagged #lchf like it’s going out of style, and I’ve been a devout “I Quit Sugar” spokesperson.
I’ve gone from eating full tubs of sugar-free/fat-free yogurts with 8 packets of TwinSugar in one sitting, to beef jerky.
I’ve found that food isn’t as important as the emotions behind it, and that sugar is OK.
My beliefs have changed more times than pugs fart (and they fart a lot….#teamantipugs).
I’ve learned that you can’t hate yourself into a version of yourself you can love, and that you can’t find yourself in New Zealand, or anywhere other than inside yourself, for that matter.
I’ve learned that happiness has no correlation to your pants size, bra size, or bathing suit size.
I’ve learned that being present is the most important part of life, and that awareness brings solace in darkest of times.
I’ve observed myself self-numbing, escaping, and also sitting right with pain; a bloated belly post-binge, an emotional smack in the face after a sexual abuse, a stress fracture from literally running away from myself.
I’ve honoured and dishonoured myself, and I’ve fluxed the shit out of life.
And through it all, I am exactly where I am today, flawed as ever, and loving myself anyways and always.

No one is perfect, and no one will ever be a “certified perfect professional”, in my humble opinion.

I’m certainly not, and this by no means takes away from the ability for someone to have a gift to help, myself, or anyone else.  In fact, the warriors with battle wounds, healed and healing are the ones I connect with and trust the most.

I’ve been afraid of sharing my story lately, uncensored, because of the stigma of mental health shame, and the thought of being unhirable in flaw.

Fuck.
That.
Shit.

This is me, there’s you, let’s do this shift.

How to sit with a Binge

(starting this post with shameless self-promotion for my emotional eating workshop where Deanne and I will be sharing our insights and human honesty with our binge and emotional eating journeys)

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Was that a binge?

I’m letting myself eat.  I’m listening to my needs.  I’m realizing that even when there’s some kind of feeling telling me to nourish, even when I’m not in a state of being famished, I follow it.

Ever have what my friend once explained as “itchy teeth”?  She called it the feeling where you feel like munching on something but aren’t necessarily hungry.

It’s times like these where I have to tune into my gut, ask myself what I need.

What am I hungry for?

  • Connection?
  • Love?
  • Self-care?
  • Rest?
  • Creative expression?
  • Meaningful work?

Today, I finished lunch very aware of my craving for connection.

BUT: there are times, especially during this re-feeding, where I am actually physically needing nourishment, and in spite of my mind saying “You’ve had enough!”, body’s actually asking for nourishment.

My dear friend expressed herself after feeling like she’d overeaten, I asked her what part of her felt full, or like she’d binged.  She said her tummy wasn’t bloated, it felt comfortable and sated.  Her mind, on the other hand, didn’t want to believe that her body required that much food.

That’s the shit though, eh?  I’m hearing both voices, the mind and the soul when I eat.  I often feel like I can have an extra spoonful of peanut baetter, hummus, extra handful of nuts.  

And then, I’m full.

It’s a new feeling.

Sometimes I’m in shock at how much I am eating, and it fucking terrifies me.

My mind wants to flee, to distract, to numb.  I want to busy myself and get back to that feeling of being “in control” of how much I’ve eaten, or of how much I’ve decided my body needs.

How silly is that though!?  As IF my mind has enough say over how much nourishment my wise-ass body needs.

And so, fuck man, if I overdo it a bit, or if I’ve err’d on the side of a little too much, so what?  I’m not perfect!

The fear is in old ways of void-filling with overeating; bingeing and purging.  But my soul has found its own wisdom there to overcome that.  I’m tuning into all parts of myself; mind, body, soul.  I won’t dishonour my needs anymore.  Nor should you!

If you eat a piece of cake, or three, OK: it’s always OK–the key is to be so damn present and aware of the fact that you’re coping, that in your presence, you can be with yourself.  The whole way.  Man, that’s fucking powerful!

In the evenings, generally this is when my body speaks about if I’ve undernourished or not in the daytime.  This is when rules go out the window.  This is the scary time!  

You can’t trick your body into fake nourishment!

AMiRIGHT?!

There’s a reason for the fridge light…and nighttime #humancondition in form of binges.  This is when the body is like:  bitch please

“I’m still LE HUNGRY!”

This is when the body tries to play “catch up” with the under-nourishment, lack of nutrients, fasting.

So, it’s not willpower we lack.  It’s the idea that we can fool ourselves into in-authenticity, into being something we’re not.

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And the first things we try to do after feeling like we’ve overeaten, or if we have overeaten, or goddamn under-eaten for that matter – is run, is escape, is distract, numb: sex, self-pleasing, cigs, alcohol, work-addiction, drugs, even distracting with mindless media scrolling, which is fucked because of all the images of sculpted abs and the impossible flat tummy post-meal…we don’t want to face what our body is speaking to us.

BUT

This IS the pivotal moment to connect and to stop the binge cycle in the future!

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From Michelle Yandle Health

I’m sitting with it when I do it, I’m breathing, in lotus pose bc itsbetterfortheburps….I’m journalling.  I’m asking myself:

  • “was that too much?”
  • “Did I under-eat during the day? or even yesterday?”
  • “Did I turn away from another part of myself I needed?”
  • “Was I trying to fill a void?”

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And, after this reflection, know this:

This too shall pass.

It always does.  May we be wiser for next time.  Tune into our needs periodically so we don’t get hit with the headinthefridgesyndrome.

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An Open Letter of Apology

This is for myself, for you, for my parents, bro, friends.

Kelly Boaz, an Eating Disorder warrior now providing Holistic Nutrition counselling for those struggling, once told me that post-recovery (from any form of addiction or coping), comes a reintroduction of the real self to all- to the world.

I’m coming back.

(Also sorry for the camera angle…iunno…”YOLO”?)

Shit…I’m Becoming one of those “self-love” People…


I feel myself turning into one of those “self-love” people…terrifying bc:

1. ummm…because “those self-love-people”…#refertohomeboyJPSears

2. There are so many out there already. Like Danielle Laporte.

3. It’s not that Danielle Laporte’s not cool…but my shit’s just more John Blaze then that…

4. They use terms like: love-warrior…”divine”, “goddess”, “radical”(in the non-hippie-dude-way), “blissful”(oops), “sanctuary”…iunnoyouknow?

In other important news, a guest blog post is coming today from a Bulimia and Anorexia survivor I had the pleasure of meeting. This feels so cool to share and feel the awareness spread that once again, I (nor you) am never damn alone, as often as I feel it, shit, that’s false as hell!

The Universal Root of Addiction

Holy shit.

I am a little bit of “holy shit”, and I say that amicably.  Yesterday, I approached a gentleman smoking at a cafe and bluntly invited him to punch me in the neck via nosily asking him why he smokes.

You see, I’m fascinated about the nature of addiction, (even The Man, Gabor Mate expresses in that vid that he has a hard time stopping a meal…and experiences “fear of end of meal”-syndrome, #nahmean?) and I offered amicable banter via an inquiry about his attraction to smoking, when he knows it’s not good for him. ( I was clear about my intentions being directly reflecting my own addictions with food.)

We chatted, my neck was spared, (thanks, man) and he was a rad warrior of a human being.  His story was great, having battled addiction in life.  He said he was aware of the dangers of smoking, just as I am aware of the dangers of restriction.  He is enlisted to quit, and he damn sure will.  He said that his battles of addiction stem from an avoidance of pain. (long story short bc aintnobodygottimeforlongblogposts…similar to when looking for a recipe online…and the “prologue” to the ingredients is a novel….bloggers who have the “skip to recipe” button are angels).

My blog post about wanting to feel my pain was big emotionally, and now after speaking with him, I’ve realized what Bulimia served, and what Anorexia is serving for me now: as much as my being is craving to feel my pain, there is a part of me that is equally as resistant to feeling it.  Man, Anorexia is serving to keep me out of presence for the exact reason of avoiding pain.

Honestly, I can’t believe that this is hitting me now as awareness.  I’ve read about this so many times, but it totally just clicked yesterday, not too dissimilar from how you “just click” when you learn how to find your stroke in swimming. You just click that “downward dog” is the pose that dogs really do….maybe that was just me….took me a while…or that dogs are in a permanent push-up position…Life’s so strange that way, that we can read things so many times, but when they “click” it’s like a veil is lifted, it’s like a good poop.

And so, I called a good friend last night as I finished dinner still hungry.

I realized that when I restrict, it’s because I’m pretty damn good at controlling so that I’m just undernourished enough to be able to plan my next meal, to routinize and “time-fill” because if I am sated and present, fuck, I don’t know what I’ll do with myself.  There’s almost this non-reality of living in a haze when I’m still hungry, and it’s total numbing.  It’s non-rational thinking because my cells are in survival mode.  It’s a way of living under intoxication.

I don’t feel like I know myself, and I’m learning to love myself.  I am so scared to sit with a full belly, probably bloated (because eating disorders fuck with your gut- and no amount of kraut will heal that shit…it’s gotta come from inside, the seat of self-love, where I’ll no longer self-sabotage), knowing that I’ll be gaining weight, and in spite of it not being about the physical appearance, it’s the act of being in a state of treating myself well while respecting my needs.

I am scared to not punish myself.  I am scared to accept that I deserve to be healthy.  Omg, I’ve grown up my whole life feeling like a loser and I’m terrified to defy that belief.  I’m scared to sit with satiety and fight the inner voice that says I’m: gross, ugly, unworthy, useless…never good enough.

whoa

So today, I had a private swim training client, and it felt fucking good to be in my element like when I coached out in Vancouver.  I really “get” the swim technique, and I love helping other people.  She was so lovely, and it felt really good to be authentically in a healthy state of helping.  I’ve realized that I’ve been walking on eggshells in Anorexia and Bulimia, not living.  I’ve been waiting for life. I’ve been passing time in a numb state to Life, and that’s why my efforts to find my passion or a fucking job are useless because the initiatives aren’t authentic – they’re literally just a distraction until my next meal.  I haven’t been in a healthy state in so damn long, and the universebelike:

bitch please

Glennon Doyle Melton: huge.  If you want to learn more, these two videos were epic in my moments of realization yesterday.  If you have interest in these, watch them.  Please, for yourself.

Thank you Claire, and Deanne for passing them along and for the fucking amazing universe for this.

Sitting with fullness is going to fucking suck.  But you know what sucks more?  The idea of living this half-ass-one-cheeked-bony-bummed life for the rest of my existence.

And so to that life, I say, “Bitch please!”

Also: Sonya, my god, you made my day.  And a continued thank you for all the love, it’s mind-blowing.  Thank you for helping me fight, from my whole heart!

I guess I’ve stopped giving two shits

Literally and figuratively.

I sprained my ankle running last Wednesday.  That sucked. It’s still paining, I’m hobbling, can’t do the grocery store trek for my orders….can’t (literally and figuratively) run away from myself anymore.

Yesterday, I had a godawful bout of food poisoning.  I forgot how shitty puking feels.  Puking, while feeling like someone’s taking a bat to your head, and then sitting you on a roller-coaster ride.  Thank god my mum came and helped me.  I was all “no way, Sanjay”, but she came and I’m so grateful for her passing me my “Ginger-Aid” Kombucha etcetcetc.

It was from this, relatively non-threatening shapeshifter culprit (chicken soup, rosowek, thanks Babcia, ja cocham ciebie) that I took to Algonquin to camp, frozen, after taking some time to eat it (half a jar), then having it thaw, re-freezing it at home…thawing it in commuting, and now eating it fuck yuck.  I honestly am so grateful to have combatted bulimia because that shit sucks.

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So I spent all yesterday in fetal position in the bathroom.  Ate nothing.  Pooped once (that’s TWO TIMES ALREADY less than the usual…).  Felt not good.

And then, mum was beside me helping me.

I think that my strong ass determined mind has clouded my intuition in this way: I believed that my sugar-addiction days coming from a restriction-binge-purge cycle in uni led me to intense fear of carbs, paired with my knowledge of carbohydrate-and sugar-burner addictions.  I went to school for Holistic Nutrition and learned about ketogenic fuelling off fats.  I grew terrified and demonized carbs, despite my school condoning the principle of “carbohydrate appropriate” vs no carb. 

 I totally lost trust in my intuition.

Via support from Cliff, the school’s founder (who I akin to Tim Ferriss as the New Zealand-version related to his sheer brilliance and charisma) who has been cheering me on and checking in on my recovery, he expressed the concept that we don’t as anatomical beings need CHO, but his course runs on the philosophy of “high performance” in terms of holistically prescribing the nutrients, and lifestyle to thrive as humans.  This being said, carbs are a wicked tool to use in relation to needs.  These needs vary from person to person.

Yesterday, in my pain, I was pretty damn desperate.  It popped (always somehow have to autocorrect myself from typing pooped….) into my awareness to 

use food as a way to heal myself.  

Holy shit, right?

So bitch felt.

I tuned in, I accepted my feelings, I aksed my body what it needed right then, to feel better.

(that’s not unintentional, aks, gotta do things for your own pleasure sometimes…right Lo?!)

Maybe it took feeling like absolute fucking hell to realize that I don’t want to feel like fucking hell anymore.  Self-inflicted hell, no need.

So I aksed mum to get me things that called to me, the only things I could bare to think I’d be able to stomach, because I was hungry, and nauseated, and confused, but also solid in my intuition: I wanted deez tingz:

  • Granola (got grain-free, but hey)
  • Crackers (got Paleo, but HEY)
  • Corn on the cob (organic? non-GMO? don’t know, don’t care atm–butprobswillcaremorewhenimoutofsurvivalmodebcGMOisrubbish)
  • BENNA’S BAKERY AND DELI SEED BREAD (it’s been frozen in my freezer for ages, and I’ve had inklings to try it for just as long)
  • Lebanon Express dal soup (have been eyeing this damn soup for months….)
  • Kombucha (nobigdealanymore)

FullSizeRender (9)My god, I was solid in my needs.  I ate the soup to start, even when my ED was saying to pick at little things….nibble in non-satiating foods (which is where my bulimic tendencies stemmed…so grateful for my awareness in my post about tools helping me overcome Bulimia and knowing that nibbling doesn’t work…I had to COMMIT to nourishment, so I had the soup).  The soup was first food I ate all day, and had to go slow from nausea, but it felt really nourishing.  I dozed a bit then (was like 7pm then).  Then, round 8, my bod was hungry.  I put my hand on my heart, another on my tum, and felt what I needed: a piece of Benna’s seed bread with GHEE babis, an egg, the granola with cashew milk, and PBaetter.  Honestly, I was pretty shaky, and I remember the feeling of being “out of control” in my binge purge days.  So I swore no phone, no distractions, to mindfully feel my needs and be present.  I listened, I listened to my sweet inner voice that so desperately needs compassion and honouring.  Man it felt so odd.  And so right. (that’swhatshesaid).

I finished, I finished and washed up for bed.  I felt so good.  I turned my phone away, I did bloat myself, I want to heal my gut, be free, help myself, help others, be in nature, run with the wind!

I journalled, I watched Joe Wong, I “prayed”, and went to bed.

This morn, I swam, oh I swam respectfully and slowly.  I ate eggs for breakfast, it was aight…it was aight…it was cool..butmyshitsmorejohnblazethanthat.  Then, I allowed myself to feel hunger.  I never do this.  I suppress hunger till I let myself eat.

Not today.

I came home from the pool, and ATE!  I ate a bowl of the granola, flax seeds, collagen, milk.  It was so liberating!

IMG_8291HUGE!  Man, I can’t describe how huge this feels.

I genuinely think it’s coming from both myself, and being catalyzed from you blessed souls reaching out and cheering me on.  Honestly, fuck, man, the call from Claire, from warrior and swim (AND LIFE) Olympian Coach Ken, love from John Salt, messages in my inbox, Marta, the squeeze from Nicola this morn from way back at Towhee, the honest cheerleaders around me, Jenn at Reunion Island here and now as I blog-post snack (would NEVER be able to do this even last week!  I am free! I don’t need to eat at certain times, man it’s time!).

Yesterday, my roommate expressed how perspective is so key: deaths and illnesses are all around us, and life’s fleeting, everything is fleeting:

This too shall pass

So goddamn it, I listen to my body.  I’ll help you listen to yours, soon.

My life’s beginning to have colour.

Thank you all, thank you Mum, my god you’re beautiful.

You too

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