“You become what you think about all day long.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
My bestfriend was kind enough to send me that image tagged with “Danielle’s Weight Loss Diaries” She couldn’t be more right. I haven’t kept it to one room so it doesn’t look that terrible; however, I very well may have as many things as that shed does. I have spreadsheets, log books, graphs, calendars, piece of paper, notes, apps, count downs, etc. etc. tracking everything relating to my weight loss. An unhealthy amount of tracking. Everywhere I look there is a constant reminder of my weight/size/food/calories/obsession being slammed into my face.
I read Food: The Good Girls Drug and it brought a lot of truths to light for me. Specifically how crazed and insecure and anxious I am. Most people think I’m just a chronic dieter on the surface but they have absolutely no idea how much this consumes me. Every single waking thought has slowly become about how many calories I’m burning, consuming and planning. I weigh in multiple times a day…and by multiple I mean literally every time I see the scale. At my worst I was netting my calories in the negatives after having worked out…at my best I’m panicking over not netting in the negatives. I’m the girl that after she binges doesn’t purge, but will work out until she’s burned off the calories she’s consumed. I’m the girl that has one bad meal and then punishes herself for the rest of the week. I’m the girl that avoids social situations so I’m not faced with having to feel out of control when I’m faced with food choices. I’m the girl that can’t lose weight and the terrible part is that I fear I’ve destroyed my metabolism by all of these absurdly unhealthy habits which is certainly contributing to my inability to lose weight. I also think a large part of it is mental in the sense that I have SO many body image issues now after losing 106lbs that I can’t imagine losing another 69lbs, hitting what my current goal is and being just fine. I don’t know this body and changing it even more is terrifying.
So, I read the entire book in one night, realized all of this, cried and promptly emailed an old shrink of mine:
I’ve kind of had a realization in reading/self help books/working through some of my own issues for self growth and improvement and realized that maybe I should see someone for my anxiety issues.You had mentioned it, people comment on me being “so uptight” and “not being able to let go and have fun anymore”, but I never really thought about it. I’m realizing that I think I do have an anxiety issue and it relates a lot to food/weight loss/body image issues. It’s gotten pretty bad and become an obsessive thing for me that isn’t healthy.I’ve done “crazy” and I’ve been through “crazy” and I don’t ever want to go back there again and I understand that my obsessiveness regarding food/body image is not healthy at this point. It has become all consuming and is truly an addiction. I fear that I’ve replaced my earlier, absurdly unhealthy coping mechanisms when I was younger with this.So, I guess I was wondering if you know anyone that dealt with anxiety AND body image/food/weight loss AND maybe had a little experience with my kind of crazy if you can’t take me.