I am not doing so hot lately. My eating is in a pit right now. I am kind of appalled at the stuff I have been eating when I should be focused on the best possible nutrition to get myself better from this illness. But the fact is, I am eating worse (nutrition-wise) now that I was when I got sick... even worse than I have since last summer. This week when I didn't get better (and just got worse) my eating plummeted to the depths of junky comfort. I'm not proud of it, but I don't know how to fix it, either. Sure, I know logically "how," but that's quite different from having the strength to do it. I mean, I spent *months* letting myself eat whatever I wanted but in very small portions. I got to a point that all foods feel normal and even with all junk on the table (so to speak) I still chose healthy foods the vast majority of the time... and lost weight. But eating whatever you want kind of falls off a cliff or something when you are sick and wanting comfort in any form. At least it has for me.
The first two weeks with what one doctor named "a sinus and a respiratory infection, possibly pneumonia" and the other doctor called "acute bronchitis", I was mainly fed by lots of batches of homemade chicken soup, the baked chicken I made for the soup, plenty of fruit, and honey lemon tea. There was some toast and a couple ginger snaps but nothing out of the ordinary for me. But this week when the coughing/breathing got worse and my energy went to about 2% of normal, I started wanting things like pie. Donuts. Crackers. And there was no vegetable that appealed to me at all. I was too tired to make chicken soup anymore and instead have slept a lot. But when I'm awake I have been doing stupid stuff like stopping at Burger King on the way home from taking my daughter to school and eating a sausage biscuit sandwich with hash browns and orange juice, or swinging through Starbucks on the way to pick her up and getting an iced latte and a donut or a cake pop. These are *not* habits I want sneaking back into my life. I kept telling myself, "you're sick, just have what you want, you can eat something healthy tomorrow." And then I feel incredible guilt for not eating all the healthy vegetables and protein I should eat to help my body get over being sick. All the sugar has just made me feel worse... but every day this week I give in again and have what's easy. When I make myself breakfast at home it's been a couple of scrambled eggs with ham and cheese and buttered toast. I eat a bowl of cereal for a snack. And all the time I am thinking, oh this is bad. This is not even halfway decent enough to fit into my "normalizing food" lifestyle, because I don't want to re-normalize things like fast food and candy bars on a daily basis. The amount of junk is just too much.
I'm still on antibiotics, and I use an inhaler every 4 hours throughout the day to be able to breathe better. I have a never-ending headache from the constant coughing, and nothing is getting rid of the headache so far. I use cough syrup with codeine at night so I can sleep (otherwise, constant coughing keeps me awake all night). The doctor said the next step will be steroids, but only if I get worse or don't improve over the next week or two.
I don't know where I am going to get the energy or "oomph" to pull myself out of the junk food rut, even knowing that the way I ate this past week is not helping me heal. I guess acknowledging it is step 1, and doing a little better tomorrow is step 2. For the first time in 8 months I am going to have to say "no" to myself about some foods... and I hope that doesn't trigger resentment and the obsessive eating behaviors that went away when I finally gave myself the freedom to eat whatever I wanted. Maybe I will have to make a different rule for when I am sick or stressed. I really hope this whole mess doesn't derail me from all the progress I've made.
I am 38 years old, female, a degree-holding stay-at-home-mom, and I weigh 278 pounds. I have been obese for ten years now. Time to get out of this fat prison I have made for myself.
--This is the original introduction I wrote when I first started this blog in 2007. I leave it as a reminder to myself of where I came from. Currently, I am 46 years old and weigh significantly less...see the blog for details. I lost 103 pounds, then had a partial regain, and am once again working at weight loss and better health.
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