Recovery from Food Insanity

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Ahhhhh, Exercise! August 19, 2010

Filed under: Exercise — gohopchick @ 8:42 pm

I got back to the gym this week.  What a relief!

A couple of months ago I broke a rib.  I was installing a hook on my bathroom door.  Couldn’t find the ladder, so I was standing on a kitchen chair.  Wooden kitchen chair on tile floor.  Biiiiig mistake.  The chair went over.  I went down.  Whack!  Chair leg, meet rib.  Rib, meet chair leg!

I can finally sleep on my side again (who knew that sleeping on your back was a skill that one had to learn?) and can rock and roll without pain.  So back to the gym I go!

And my body is so grateful.  It sighs, it stretches, it tingles and make happy sounds.

I never could understand people who hated exercise.  I have always enjoyed it.  Winter hiking up the Escarpment, risking life and limb on icy trails.  Kickboxing to Pink (the artist, not the color)- I love her attitude!  Lying in dusky quiet after a stretching session.  It is when I exercise that I get lost in the moment, and re-connect with the body that I divorced so long ago.

I love it.  I love it all.  And I missed it so much.

After a couple sessions this week I’m walking around like a granny – lactic acid pinging, muscles creaking and groaning.  But it’s so worth it, and the stiffness will pass.

Yay!  I’m a gym rat again!


I’m so noble August 16, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — gohopchick @ 11:52 am

I was doing a mini 5th step with my pastor a couple of weeks ago, and the topic of self pity came up.

Self pity wears many faces.  I don’t usually mope around crying “oh poor me!” I’m more socialized than that – but I recognized years ago that there is a big difference between being socialized and being holy.  The face self pity wears in my life is the face of nobility.  A lady at church yesterday asked me how I was, and I responded, “Trying to face life’s challenges with courage.”  How noble of me.  Poor brave longsuffering Jill, who makes the right choices, does the right things under pressure. (I hope you’re hearing the sarcasm in my tone)

“You’re right,”  I said to my pastor, “well, let’s deal with this self pity thing.  It’s ugly and deforms my personality.  I’m happy for God to remove it.”

“That’s very noble of you,”  he grinned.

Being a very mature and spiritually advanced woman, I stuck my tongue out at him.


Perception Management August 14, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — gohopchick @ 1:41 pm

I’m back from the cottage and today I am going to my first live OA meeting since I “slipped” and changed my date.

I find myself rehearsing in my mind what I’m going to say.  In our group, it is suggested that if you don’t have a week of back to back abstinence, that you just listen, but I find myself wanting to share.  About my slip and the changes I’ve made to my abstinence definition.

I don’t want  people to feel discouraged.  I don’t feel like I’ve failed.  I feel like I’m moving forward, getting more honest, getting much more peaceful with the food and with this whole process.  I want them to understand that a “slip” can be a good thing.  I want to share my experience, strength and hope around this issue.

Or do I?

Maybe I don’t want them to think I’ve failed.  To be disappointed with me.  To fill in my silence with their own personal extrapolations.  Maybe I want to manage all of their perceptions of me and my journey and maybe I’m trying to put a  “spin” on my story to show me in the best possible light.

I find myself choosing today’s clothing with care.  Don’t want to wear anything tight, that shows the little roll I’ve developed on my tummy.  If they are anything like I was even six months ago, I know that as soon as they’ve hear that I “slipped”, they will be checking me out to see if I’ve gained weight.  Yeesh, I’m even trying to manage their perceptions about my body!

So much internal chatter!  So much concern about what people think!  I could start my own personal PR company!  Ah, I’ve still got a ways to go yet.  One of my sponsors told me that other people’s opinion of me is none of my business, and it’s good to remind myself of that.

I’ve decided I am going to dress up.  Just a little bit.  Put on makeup.  Do the best I can with what I’ve got.  I want to feel pretty, comfortable, and relaxed.  And when I get to the meeting, if I want to share, I’m going to share.  Instead of obsessing about what others think about me, though, I’m going to try to be fully present for my friends, and focus on how they are doing.  God, free me from the bondage of self, so that I can better serve others.  I resign from personal PR.


Morning Prayer for Peace August 10, 2010

Filed under: prayer and meditation — gohopchick @ 1:28 pm

“In the quiet of the morning hour I come to you for peace.

Give me the power to view the world today through love-filled eyes.

Help me be patient, gentle, wise;

To see beyond what seems to be;

O clothe me in your beauty, this I pray –

Give me the grace to do your will today.”

~ Lifeline Sampler p. 59



Filed under: Nurture and Comfort — gohopchick @ 1:22 pm

I miss my bathtub.

Several times in the last two weeks at the cottage, I’ve found myself longing to submerge in warm bubbly goodness.  There is something comforting, nurturing and enclosing about being underwater.  I suppose I could swim in the lake, but warm it ain’t, and somehow when I’m in the open water, the Jaws soundtrack niggles away in the back of my brain.  Northern Pike can get pretty big up here – better safe than sorry.

Overeating for me is often about nurture and comfort.  One of the skills I’m learning in this phase of my recovery is finding other ways to add sweetness to my life.  Water is zero calories, especially when used on the outside.

I love baths.  I love whirlpools and hottubs.  Submerging to my chin, hot water frothing and foaming.  Sinking into happy lassitude.  I love long hot showers.  One of my favorite perks of my gym membership is that I can shower as long as I want to without worrying about my gas bill.  I’ll do the requisite soaping and rinsing, and then stand there, sometimes slowly rotating, and feel strains and sorrows dissolve.

Images of water as healer abound in Wisdom Literature.   The Psalmist speaks of a river flowing from God’s presence, a stream that makes us glad.  He talks of drinking from the river of God’s delight, and all of God’s waves and breakers pouring over him.  Hydrotherapy is an ancient and spiritual practice, and one that enhances my program of recovery.


It Ain’t Rocket Science August 9, 2010

Filed under: prayer and meditation — gohopchick @ 2:23 pm

How is it that we always over complicate things?  I was angsting in my prayer and meditation time yesterday morning.  Fretting and fussing about my marriage.  Feeling overwhelmed by the complexities, and not able to see next steps.  Finally, I gave up in frustration (prayer, not being married) and took a day in town just for a change of scenery.

I stopped by a little church and participated in their Sunday service.  When I arrived, I was told was a children’s service, not their usual Sunday morning offering.  I nearly turned around to find some more sophisticated spiritual expression, but figured, what the heck?  Maybe God was talking to me about simplicity.  We grooved to some rockin’ kids tunes, wrote our worries on little whiffle balls and fired them out of the front door of the church (cool!).  “Marriage”, I wrote on my ball and hoped it wouldn’t get squished by cars on the highway outside (a bad omen!).  A handmade and somewhat wibbly poster on the front of the church proclaimed the virtues of “patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, self control.”

After the service, I meandered along the main street of town.  A sandwich board sign in front of a New Age Bookstore read “Personality differences gives you the opportunity to be kind.”  There it was again.  Kindness.  Be kind.

Refreshed by my outing, I came home to find Kirk puttering happily in the workroom, Motown crooners serenading him.  He came out to greet me.

Be kind. I gave him a hug and rubbed the back of his neck where he was sunburned and itchy.

Later we chatted over dinner and played with the birds.  Every time I looked at him or talked to him, the quiet voice inside reminded me.  Be kind.

I don’t have to figure things out.  I don’t have to fix things.  It doesn’t have to be complicated.  Doesn’t have to be rocket science.

Be kind. I can do that.


Good Girl ~ III August 7, 2010

Filed under: Uncategorized — gohopchick @ 3:21 pm

Friends  wondered if I was performance oriented – that I got significance from my job.  (With friends like these, who needs enemies?  No, really, I’m grateful to have people in my life who have the courage to tell me the truth about what they see)

I considered that for a bit.  But it didn’t seem to fit right – like the shoe was on the right foot but maybe I needed an extra wide, or something.

Upon reflection, I realized that it wasn’t my job that gave me a false sense of worth.  It was my work ethic.  I look pride in the fact that I was a hard worker – when things got rough, I hunkered down and did the right thing, no matter what.  In my job.  In my marriage.  In every aspect of my life.  I was noble.  Enduring.  Loyal.  I took care of things.  Self sacrificing.  (yeesh, make ya sick yet?)

I was a good girl.

Now don’t get me wrong, the attributes I mentioned above are positive.  Definite character assets.

Where things got mixed up was when I clothed myself in those attributes, found my identity in them.  I was playing a role, hiding behind what the Catholics call a “false self”, rather than living authentically.

I was bowing to the altar of self, rather than responding in love to God’s initiatives.  It’s subtle deviation from the lifegiving road, but one that was leading me further and further astray the longer I walked on it.

But the alternatives?  I didn’t want to be a bad girl (ok, so sometimes I do).

I want to be His girl. Loved by God and ok, no matter what.  Free to fail and to be weak.  Taken care of.  Cherished.  Beloved.


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