well kids…i’m off!
burning man is finally here! i leave in about…ten minutes. aaaand i’m still scrambling to pack. go figure
be back next sunday! have a beautiful week!
well kids…i’m off!
burning man is finally here! i leave in about…ten minutes. aaaand i’m still scrambling to pack. go figure
be back next sunday! have a beautiful week!
for some reason, every time i consider unrolling my mat some excuse floats up out of no where and convinces me to keep myself off of it. i think i am afraid, kind of. a lot might come up emotionally and, as of late, i have not trusted myself with feeling my deepest emotions. i think also, i’m feeling anxious and judgmental and frustrated. weight gain and my complete aversion to a regular practice for the past few months has yoga feeling like more of a labored love. i breathe a little harder, i fall out of poses, i take breaks. i think, in the back of my mind, my ego feels a little bruised. a little prideful. because in the middle of a pose, in the middle of a breath, i am distracted by the thought of “god. i used to be able to go deeper” or “wow, i’m totally winded” or “fuck. this is depressing. i have no core strength anymore”
i think i am forgetting, though, just how opposite of yoga these thoughts are. in yoga, you meet yourself where you’re at (thanks, lizzie, for reminding me!). so sure, i lost a little bit of strength. i no longer inhabit the body which knew strength, grace, and ease. but i am only here, as i am right. it may not be the same place but it is nothing to judge or wish away. i am starting the process over. what an interesting new journey i am on now. one headed toward health and the healing of the heart, mind, body, and soul. one toward wholeness.
today i woke up early, too excited by thoughts of the burning man ‘to-do’ list, to sleep. the idea to maybe breathe a little and maybe stretch a little stumbled into my head. before i chose to listen to another excuse, i leapt up and locked myself away in my room. twenty-five minutes later, i felt more open, grounded, and soothed than i have in a long, long time. i think i forgot there for a second that, when i go outside of myself, yoga brings me right back. it calms me down, regrounds my soul when it panics, assures me of my strengths and capabilities. i think i am being stubborn and closed off instead of curious and humbled and open about where i currently am in my practice.
my therapist most definitely called me out the other day, telling me i could not ignore the eating disorder simply because i did not want to believe it or deal with it. recovery takes effort mixed with a splash or two of dedication. rebuilding from the ground up requires diligence on top of a strong foundation of patience. right now, i am behaving a bit like a child who plugs her ears to block out the negative noise. instead of listening, unattached, to thoughts and emotions, i am trying to ignore them. i am resisting acknowledging the issues. i am resisting recovery. why, because it’s hard?
i think, really, what i realized today on my mat is i am capable of beating this. i am strong. for the past few weeks i have felt defeated and deflated. a sort of apathy took root and i felt myself glaze over. last night a friend also called me out. he urged me to try and try again, to employ all my effort toward health and happiness. he’s right. my therapist is right. i need to stop fighting and start accepting. accepting that i do have an issue, that it does need to be dealt with. accepting that this is my body right now, and that’s okay.
i took today’s yoga session as a sign.
i am pledging to try my very hardest to jump onto my mat in uncomfortable moments, even if only for five minutes or to simply slip into child’s pose. i am pledging to not berate myself if i follow an urge to its end. i am pledging to actually work on this, to listen and feel with out falling over.
i am coming back to yoga. finally. i feel myself coming back to myself. finally.
how about something light hearted?
the posts around here feel pretty heavy as of late. no need to constantly muck around in the thoughtful stuff, you know? also, i feel a bit anxious today too. trying to stay away from the thorny, dark center of my mind a bit and just feel the emotion instead of allowing it to take me over. i spent a lot of time in the sun today. always a good thing.
i also listened to a lot of music today. not done listening, really. so. thought we’d play a little game i’m stealing offa the 30-day challenge i’m ever-so-slowly making my way through. (because some of the questions are too deep or not resonating. forget going in order! not as fun )
day 11: put your i-pod on shuffle and write down the first ten songs!
1) getting better — the beatles (i swear i didn’t do that on purpose!!!)
2) i would do anything for you — foster the people (saw them at outside lands!)
3) high life — daft punk (i am kind of obsessed with daft punk…)
4) rocket in the sky — benny benassi (not a huge fan of him but i looove this song)
5) aerodynamic beats / gabrielle, forget about the world — daft punk (see, told ya!)
6) hide and seek — imogean heap (remix…dunno who it’s by though. still good! also…what’s up with all the electronica? you’d swear that was all i listen to but dang, that’s so not the case!)
7) rome — phoenix (ugh. i love this band so much.)
8) someone in the dark — michael jackson (i think…i’ve never listened to this song. hah.)
9) what you’re doing — the beatles (:))
10) molly’s chambers — kings of leon
well. that was fun! despite the repeats
anyway, hope you all have a beautiful evening! two more days till burning man!!!!!
what’s your favorite kind of music? is your itunes eclectic? pretty basic? know any songs on my list?!
as i drove to work yesterday morning, awash in hurtful behaviors and self-pity, some voice in my head sounded off. some voice (dare i call it my compassionate, self-loving voice?) blurted out to me before i could potentially stop it.
“i am worth more than this.”
the comment totally caught me off guard. like, completely. sure, i think positive thoughts from time to time but it’s rare (almost entirely) for me to believe them wholeheartedly. the negative voice tends to linger right behind the positive voice, ready with a counter thought. something like: yeah, right. but yesterday, no challenging voice emerged. i only sat there, stunned, before thinking “yes. yes i am!”
for the remainder of the day, whenever i found myself trolling into negative mind space, the thought “you’re worth more than this” kept popping into my head. and i kept believing it.
because i am worth more than all the painful acts of self-harm and all the negative self-bashing comments. i am worthy of all good things. like happiness, balance, love, light, and a comfortable existence. i think i forgot that there for a second. yesterday was the first time in weeks (literally) i went to sleep without feeling sick and full.
despite the sketchy start of the day, it ended beautifully. i climbed for a few hours after work. i felt strong. i tackled a 5.10 (routes usually start at 5.6. the difficulty increases as the number increases). i forgot all about feeling shitty about my body. i forgot all about how my harness made my legs look, my stomach look. i forgot all about all those insecurities. i just was.
i wouldn’t trade that feeling for the world.
if you’re ever feeling down and out, just remember one thing: you are worthy of all good things. believe it. and no, that’s not a suggestion.
do you have any personal mantras?
i’m going to be honest again and say this: i am running out of hope.
i am burning up my reserve of patience.
time, will, and motivation keep dwindling.
i feel like i am trapped inside of a fat suit and the healthy me is scratching to get out.
at least, that’s how it all feels.
key words: how it all feels. situations may feel a certain way but the truth may not be the reality you see — something i am scrambling to remember during hard to breathe moments like this week. the reality is this: the truth most likely looks a completely different way from how you feel. flipping the perspective helps. challenging the immediate negative thought and following it to its real source helps. challenge the false reality your negative voice creates until you live completely in the true reality.
(real) negative thoughts:
“i’m fat as a fucking house”
“no one will like me at burning man”
“i’m so disgusting”
“i’ll never get better. this is the rest of my life”
“no, you’re really fucking not. you can still run. you can still climb. shut up”
“no one will notice your weight at burning man. they’ll notice your character though, which is rock solid”
“no, you’re not. you’re bloated and uncomfortable and ill from bingeing. it will pass“
“you will get better. no one said to road to recovery was easy. it gets easier every day, even when it feels more difficult. you will get better“
the truth is, i am not as big as a house. i only feel as big as a house because my self-worth is still wrapped up in my weight and appearance. as much as i’d like to say i’ve kicked that nasty habit i really haven’t. this week proved that to me more than anything. i want to move past that notion but i know i won’t until i accept myself as i am right now, stop throwing punches and insults, and soften. for now, i’ll just keep challenging that voice until all i hear is nothing but positivity. or, at the very least, a severely muted version of the negative voice.
best part of your weekend? learn anything insightful?
(p.s: a week from today i leave for burning man. one week till one week without electronics, my car, or control over food. i look forward to a mini vacation from my brain. )
i’m discovering i am not a very good feeler.
the thing is, i always assumed i was. i always thought i knew how to tap into my emotions and submerge myself in them. the more i practice awareness, i more i realize how unaware i really am.
when i feel, i tend to feel so deeply i end up feeling numb. or i binge to compensate for not knowing how to sit comfortably in the discomfort of a distressing moment. i slip out of my body and sail away from myself. i am, however, learning, albeit painfully slowly, just how capable i am at feeling emotion. i am baby
stepping inching my way into understanding that strong gusts of emotion will not blow me over.
today i am wickedly uncomfortable. i want to say i feel fat but my therapist tells me fat is not a feeling. i am inclined to agree. reluctantly. why reluctantly? well, for one because i know she’s right…and because i know that, underneath the feeling of “fat”, lurk the real emotions. and uncorking that bottle scares me.
chasing away difficult to deal with emotions is like dismissing a three- year-old in pain. the hurting three-year-old needs open arms and a little affection, not the cold shoulder. the same goes with your emotions. good or bad. acknowledge them, wrap your arms around them, and invite them to stay until they’ve served their purpose. hear them out. listen to what they tell you.
and come back to yourself. always come back to yourself. breathe into tightness you might unknowingly carry. breathe into your belly. breathe into your chest, your lungs. breathe into that pain you think will become you. breathe into that loneliness, that anxiety, that sadness. breathe and realize that, actually, you’re okay. you’ve always been okay.
what am i really feeling today? sad. nervous. lonely. worthless. hopeless. not very positive feelings. all for a variety of reasons too varying for this post. the real point? i’m sitting amidst great discomfort. simply sitting, breathing, and riding out the wave till its end. no, it’s not easy. nothing we practice usually is. but it’s worth it. coming back to yourself is definitely worth it.
“i have lost my smile,
but don’t worry.
the dandelion has it.”
–thich nhat hanh
i hate listening to people discuss the “bad” foods they avoid. i hate listening to the list of rules pile up over the untouched bread basket. maybe i am taking it personally and maybe i feel some guilt over my choices but dang, i think sometimes we forget eating is a personal thing. it comes back to using your words wisely. you never know if your “bad” food or your rule is someone else’s “good” food or a complete non-rule for them.
the other day my therapist asked me to identify all the “food rules” i keep and apply in my eating. so i listed them out.
no white foods.
no refined sugars.
no eating after seven.
watch the carb intake.
eat every 3-4 hours.
no dessert every night.
no pasta or pizza.
five servings of veggies a day.
veggie at every meal/snack.
the list could go on friends.
i spent so long tangled up in rules and avoiding the pleasure food offers. it makes me sad to look back and see how controlling and obsessive i was. i passed up dinner dates and outings with friends because of the threat of “bad” food. if i learned anything in my months of restriction, i learned there is more to life than counting the calories in a slice of pizza.
do i believe in food rules? no.
do i believe in loose guidelines? yes.
what do i follow?
eat when you’re hungry.
stop when you’re full.
eat what you really want. really.
eat the foods that make you feel good.
can they be difficult to follow? yes! and they can be just as easy. a lot of trust is involved. a lot of awareness too. while eating eat without distractions so you can be involved in the actual process of nourishing yourself. feel the food in your mouth and enjoy the texture. taste all the flavor. savor the feeling of satisfaction and recognize the moment when you’re completely content and another bite is not needed.
most importantly, eat the foods that make you glow. eat the foods that nourish your heart, soul, mind and body. eat the foods that give you energy. and yes, also eat that slice of cake from time to time.
can it be difficult to eat what you want after years of not allowing yourself to? yes. i am still balancing it all out (as you well know). but i am getting there. i am slowly realizing i actually don’t want to eat sugar anymore. that i actually don’t want to eat chocolate as much as i think i do. that dairy upsets my stomach. i am learning. i know you can too. the more you experiment in listening to your body’s true wants and needs, the more you’ll see and understand that all it wants is to be nourished. and nourishing will start to come easily because you’ll be in love with feeling alive. just know that food is not the enemy. food is a supporter. it possesses the goods to make you feel good.
remember: food is not your life — just a part of your life.
so what do you say? do you abide by food rules? or do you loathe rules? no judgement!
by the way…did i mention i broke off my unrelationship sunday night?
yeah. made for the most awkward concert in history (he came along to adele because we originally planned it that way. i wondered if i should do it pre or post concert but he brought it up in the car on the way there so…oh well.) i’m not sad. i’m relieved.
yeah. relieved. and i’m starting to realize something: i’m not very good at relationships. i get bored really easily. i loose interest in the first couple of months, after the heat of the chase dies down. rarely do i settle into something wholeheartedly. i don’t settle period — if the “spark” does not exist effortlessly between me and another person, i usually can the “relationship” before someone gets way too attached.
curious about my romantic history?
in my short (almost 22!) twenty one years, i’ve been in five relationships. i ended all but one. the longest one lasted ten months. i’ve had my heart broken once and utterly shattered once. i’ve never had a random hook up. ever. and i’ve only been in love once. that head over heels can’t get over it type of love (the one that ended up shattering my heart and soul).
in high school, when hormones go nuts and people merge constantly, i avoided boys for a myriad of reasons. low self-esteem topped the list. i never felt pretty enough. i always felt fat, ugly, and worthless. my poor high school boyfriend never got to touch me because i was so uncomfortable in my own skin i never let him (or anyone) touch me. this attitude followed me into college. i self-sabotaged a million chances with a million guys because i felt uncomfortable with me.
anyone surprised? anyone? didn’t think so.
i may not be sexually savvy but i have learned a lesson or two. the most important? sexuality is an integral piece of being human. shutting it off is like shutting off a piece of you that is hardwired in your system. essentially, shutting off your sexuality short-circuits the rest of your system. now, i’m not saying go bang everything you see. i’m not saying indulge every sexual whim. i’m saying recognizing, accepting, and owning your sexuality (e.g: be safe. use protection kids!), whatever it may be, is incredibly important to your health (mental and physical).
unfortunately, i know i am not the only one who shuts off her sexuality. i know i am not the only one who convinces herself she’s not pretty enough for touching and feeling. talk to almost any woman and you’ll find some sort of apprehension concerning the body. we bang with the lights off. we avoid intimate situations because we don’t want to take off our shirts. we don’t masturbate because we’re not worth feeling good. we simply float through life with this ridiculously important switch flipped off.
well, loves, i’ve got some news for those of you who withhold your sexuality:
you do deserve to be touched.
you do deserve to feel.
you do deserve to love and be loved in returned.
you do deserve to not settle for the first person who comes along.
you do deserve to have sex with the lights and your shirt off…or not at all!
because every body, no matter what shape or size, deserves all the same wonderful things. there is no age limit to sex, no weight limit, no size specifications. you only require a body, a heart, a soul, a mind, and openness to new experiences.
something tells me you lovely people already have all these tools in your toolbox. and if you still struggle, know that when you love someone and someone loves you, they could care less about all the little bits and pieces you fret so deeply about. i’m finally starting to see that. i sincerely hope you will too. now i just gotta find me someone to love…
tell me, what is your relationship with sexuality? with sex? is it important to you? or not at all? i think we could have an interesting conversation here…
(p.s: so…i think i’m in love. ugh.)
i’ve never experienced outside lands before and whoa. what an awesome experience! i went with three friends and enjoyed three days of rockin’ music. i feel like this weekend was soul soothing and heart warming and eye opening. what did i do?
i danced. (like crazy).
i discovered phish. (new favorite band!!!)
i ate pizza. (a lot).
i enjoyed the sunshine.
i enjoyed the crowds.
i enjoyed the music.
oh, the music. i saw the black keys (!), phish, john foggerty, !!!, muse, the shins (disappointing live), and phish (for four hours!!!). and that’s not even all of it. so much music!
most of all, i enjoyed the care free spirit i seemed to tote around. nothing really mattered but the sunshine and laughing and music. usually i allow my apprehensions about my body dictate and control my experiences. i often feel uncomfortable and, consequently, unworthy of fun. this weekend taught me that none of that should matter. your body is not your life — it is part of your life. i cannot tell you the amount of time i’ve spent withholding life from myself because i’ve been uncomfortable in my own skin. not this weekend! i just reveled in pure bliss. because i am worthy of it after all.
i ended the weekend at adele which, i can tell you, was fucking amazing. the woman knows how to put on a show! she was so endearing and so sweet and so engaging. and fucking brilliant. her voice live is captivating and incredible. i wish i snagged some pictures but i everything turned out blurry. too bad because the seats were pretty fabulous! anyone ever been to the greek theater in berkeley? it was my first time there and man, what a cool venue!
basically, this weekend was full of awesome. and it was a preview of what burning man is going to be like. oh, have i mentioned that? i’m going to burning man in a week and a half more on that later
now tell me, how was your weekend? ever been to a music festival? how was it!?!