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It’s been quite some time since I posted last…my apologies.  In the 5 months on Optifast product, I lost 75 pounds.  I am in week 2 of the maintenance program and intend on continuing my journey to my ideal body weight.

That is 30-35 pounds away and I am losing about 2 pounds per week on full food.  If you are new to the journey, keep going.  I am off all diabetic drugs now and working on my cardiac health and fitness.

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Favorite Pirate outfit!

Pope Francis!!

I am reading a book “The Emotional Eater’s Repair Manual” by Julie Simon and am learning some new things about myself and my steady climb to the 300 pound level.  I am learning about the tools I need to get my train back on the tracks and running properly.  There are 5 self-care skills and I have just made a connection with the first car in my train – so to speak.

Skill #1, according to Julie is to Establish the Habit of Self-connection.   As a person with a penis, I don’t “feel” my emotions as women apparently do.  Or at least some women do, I suspect.  So, I decided to get in touch with my feminine side…  This meant going inside myself to “check in’ with my inner world of emotions, needs and thoughts”.  I was a little apprehensive about this as it was a new experience for me.  But, as Simon says on page 14, “The primary cause of your emotional eating is your disconnection from yourself.  You’re cut off from your most basic signals, your emotions.”

So, come hell or high water, I was determined to “cop a feel” of my emotions and to express them however I could.  I recognized that overeating was a distraction like sex and that I was trying to soothe and comfort myself.  So, I thought it was something like masturbation – it was an attempt to gain pleasure (feeling?) and fill up (orgasm?) on something outside myself.

“Getting clear on what you feel is the first step in determining what you need.”  With some trepidation, I journeyed on toward the Emerald City, hoping that the great and wonderful Oz would help me to FEEL“.  Along the Yellow Brick Road, I began an inner conversation with myself.  It bothered me that Dorothy could do it easier because as a woman she was wired differently.  Like most men, I got distracted by a naked Dorothy playing in a field of poppys.  Then, a voice, my mother’s voice, sweet and nurturing helped me to realize that I had reached my thinking self.  That is, the part of my “…personality that includes experience, knowledge, intellect, wisdom, rationality, morality, and logic.”

The voice was my mother’s that I remember from childhood when she would hold me.  She said that playing naked with Dorothy looked like fun and since I was having fun, she invited me to let myself “feel” and to recognize the childlike part of my personality that was “intuitive, sensing, vulnerable, feelings-centered, spontaneous, pleasure-seeking, wonder-filled, imaginative, and authentic.”   She said, this is the part of you that does not age or change with time and to embrace the comfort of my nakedness and accept who I am.  And to get to know myself better through an inner conversation.

On page 17, Julie Simon lists 3 steps.  This is where I start to feel, I thought.  And it would require some effort on my part to learn a process.

Step 1:   “How am I feeling in this moment?”

Step 2:  “What do I need?”

Step 3:  Use your “inner nurturer” voice (my mother’s) to reassure and comfort your feeling self and address your needs.

 

DO this whenever you want to use distractions, if you experience unpleasant emotions, when you feel numb, when your thoughts are obsessive or when you encounter stressful situations.

I have identified over 25 needs that are not being met.  In my next post, I will share how I did this and start to explore how I can meet these needs.

 

 

Discovery Lake

Discovery Lake

On the way toward Double Peak Park…a glance down at Discovery Lake

I continue to lose and am thrilled.  So far, I have lost 18 pounds altogether.  It gets confusing, but I have started my weight graph now.  Group last night was good, although I did not participate much.  I slept almost 12 hours and got up at 11:00 am.  I am still tired, but have been out to pick up my grand daughter from school.

I am working on a sculpture of Kate Shelley.  It is a doll actually, but with a clay sculpted head.  I have learned some things and that is good.  I have made her body with a wire armature and will pad it with tissue paper.  Her legs are inserted into a wooden base – and she is able to stand upright.  I have to either fabricate a lantern or find one online for her to carry.  So far, I have not been able to find one in any of the craft stores or card shops I have gone to.

I have decided that she will be dressed in 1880’s style in a Pinafore with a white apron.  I have yet to find an appropriate hat, but will keep looking!

Last night, we did an exercise in group as follows:

     Overeating ____________________ me and makes me feel _______________.

We learned that there are many substitutes for food and I am learning how to shift my focus to activities like my art projects in place of eating something.  Or watching TV and eating… etc.

Fill in the blanks and reflect on what it is telling you.  Can you change the word overeating to something else?  For me, I changed it to Art… and the words I chose last night were STUFFS  and GOOD.   So, now… Art, stuffs me and makes me feel good!  Stuffs being like fulfills me…..

We have a new Holy Father to guide us.  I am very pleased to have this humble servant at the helm of our church.

It’s Sunday, but on Saturday, Cathie and I went to one of my favorite places for our walk.  The Pier in Oceanside, CA!    I try to get at least 30 minutes of walking in and today, we decided to go out to the end and back twice.   It is 1954 feet long.  We walked out and back 2 times or 4 x 1954 = 7816 feet.   We were 104 feet shy of 1.5 miles.  We made the walk from our car parked a half block from the entrance to the pier and back in 44 minutes (using the parking meter as a timing instrument) + or –  a minute.

At the end of the pier is Ruby’s restaurant, one of my favorites!  We did not stop in – this time – and enjoyed our walk.  We saw 3 Pelicans and a few seagulls.  Several teen girls were entertaining the crowd by feeding them fish parts they scavenged from local fisher persons and the cleaning station.   The Pelicans were thrilled!  In fact they were quite willing to perform by catching the morsels thrown their way.

Another less ingenious fellow tried tempting them with an old pair of knee highs, but the Pelican wasn’t buying into his game.  We walked on and decided to snap a picture of me at the beginning of round 2.  I think it will be a good reference to look back on in July when I am near my goal weight of 170 lbs.  At weigh in on Tuesday, I was at 269 pounds.

Sunday, we went to another park in the area and got a short walk in with the grandkids as we fed the ducks and watched a box turtle sunning on the rocks in the pond area.  So, no bonus points, but it was a delightful day.

Walking the Oceanside Pier

Nick on the 2nd time around…

Happy Friday!!

It’s Lent, it’s Friday and I am FASTING away.   One shake at a time….  I weighed myself this morning and thought I broke the scale.   It read … well let’s just say that if it’s correct, I have lost 4 pounds so far this week!   I am learning to recognize urges.  I still think about food, but am able to dismiss the thoughts after enjoying them.  I am not hungry and temptation does not have any grip on me.  And THAT is a nice feeling.