Saturday, August 22, 2009

A Rough Patch


I'm trying to get back to pure raw joy...but having a tough time.

Actually, yesterday was pretty awesome most of the day.

Foodwise, I did well for most of the day. I worked yesterday, and actually did fabulously the majority of the day, which was an absolute surprise to me how that happened since i've been struggling. I drank smoothies, green smoothies, had whips, a saltfree raw spaghetti meal. I couldn't have asked for anything better. It was a busy day. It was a productive day. I was totally in control.

But, then about 7:30p.m., i was slightly hungry. And completely exhausted.

What's that thing they tell you in OA. Don't eat when you're Hungry, Angry, Lonely and Tired? "H.A.L.T." I was definitely the tired part.

I decided to eat. Not a good decision. I should have "halt"ed. Raw bread, raw bread, nutspread became the choice. Raw comfort food. Later when i arrived home, it snowballed and turned into more raw bread, raw bread, and raw cheese. I had opened the door to fat and salt. And it slammed me in the butt.

I actually don't think there's anything EVIL about fat and salt. It's just when i'm in this state.
I can't seem to get any consistent success going here.

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I awoke sweating and bloated. I look awful. I feel awful.

When I overload the body with heavier raw foods not eaten in moderation, the body temp raises, the body has a lot of work to do to digest.

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My throat feels like there is a golf ball in it. My voice sounds like i am a bass.

I checked the pollen count again. Mold spores are extremely high.

I know, i know, as a raw foodist, aren't i supposed to be over seasonal allergies? I guess because my body is in a state of dis-ease, i am susceptible. My system is really not made to handle overload of gourmet raw. I get sick easily like this. When will i learn?

Whatever it is, reflux, allergies, it's awful. And i feel terrible. And my voice is terrible. I'm supposed to sing at the RAW SPIRIT FEST. I'm singing an opera in a few weeks.

God, help me to return to a state of pure raw joy so i can sing and share my vocal gifts with others.

I need to practice and in this state, it's practically impossible. My voice is bad.

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Everytime i have a troublesome time with food, it always starts with raw living bread. For the average person, living bread is healthy: flax, buckwheat, veggies, celtic salt and olive oil. All good things.

For me, it turns into the potato chip phenomenon. In fact, it contains basically the same ingredients as potato chips, some fiber, but basically salt and fat. salt and fat. salt and fat. salt and fat. Salt and fat have always been my comfort foods.

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My stress level is increasing daily with the impending Raw Spirit Fest and the opera coming up and the catering job we are almost assured of having. And my health is declining daily. As the days go on, it becomes closer and closer to the time i am to speak and sing at the RAW SPIRIT FEST...and every day is a day closer to the my first opera rehearsal and the catering job, where i might be able to sing.

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As a singer, my body is my instrument.

If my body is in a state of dis-ease, that is bad.

My throat is swollen, my body is swollen.

Salt and fat and raw dairy and dehydrated foods are not my friends today.

Maybe i AM one of those people that just HAS to do 80-10-10...because i can't REALLY cope, control gourmet raw, especially right now. I'm suffering. I'm gaining. I'm under stress. I can't seem to dig my way out of this.

These days, it is apparent that i cannot control it. I've had some success, but not much. Now, it's bad. I'm out of control.

The impact on my body has been awful. I was afriad to weigh in. I'm bloated. I'm hoarse. This is bad. Worse than bad. Disasterous.

Yesterday morning, i drove to work in a panic. All i wanted was to eat raw bread and nutspread and to binge. At 9a.m.

When i got to work, i told myself, "This is NUTS. If you want to eat nutspread and raw bread, eat it for lunch." Giving myself permission calmed me. I chose a smoothie and forgot about the nutspread and raw bread.

I felt great in the morning. It was a good work day and as the day went on, I made excellent choices. I actually surprised myself.

Yet, i felt the hoarseness return. I can only surmise it is the mold spores, i am highly allergic to mold.

I continued on with smoothies and whips eating when i was hungry. I did really well.

I asked myself, 'Why are you able to regain control today?'

I realized that i took time to meditate when i awoke. I asked God for help. I listened into myself during the day. I asked myself what i NEEDED and addressed those needs. Everything worked like a charm.

On days when i plan, "this is what i'm going to do." but i'm not connected to the spirit or the spirit is not leading, i can easily fail. I'm relying on the strength of my intellect. Willpower. It doesn't work. At least not now.

Blogging is mostly an intellectual, analytical experience. I can talk about how things went, what i plan, but in desperate times of need, i'm finding it not enough. I have to connect with the spirit. And the spirit can take over where i have no power and good things happen. Like most of the day yesterday.

I think the really big successful raw foodists who have completely overcome their issues are highly spiritual. I don't think one can really succeed without it.

So, around 7:30p.m. last night, after a long hard day at work, i felt slightly hungry. I did not ask myself any longer what i needed. I was exhausted after a 10.5 hour work day. I asked myself what i wanted. i didn't consider my spirit. I considered my mouth.

I had wanted nutspread and bread since i got to work. But, by the grace of God, that obsession had been lifted for the day. I felt sooooo grateful.

Yet, making the decision to indulge was so easy. It was as easy as deciding, "This is what i'm gonna do." I didn't consider the consequences. i didn't consider it might turn into a binge. I knew best what to do. So, I began eating. I overate. I don't even remember feeling satisfied from the meal. it could have gone on and on had the phone at work not rang. It did, i answered, i got distracted. I did sit down to eat, at least.

When i got home, well, you know what happened. Raw bread, more raw bread and i'm ashamed to admit, a whole 8oz block of raw cheese, right before bed. Talk about reflux central. How does one create reflux? Eat fatty foods right before laying down.

This is so destructive. It's a destructive force that's at work inside of me. It feels like it's out of my control. I'm on reactive mode. I'm a nuclear reactor. I need to meditate.

Cheese, i am firmly convinced of today, is bad for me, today. Well, binging is bad for me, in general, and binging on raw cheese is even worse. Maybe raw cheese could be okay as an ounce or two ounces or even 4 ounces if i were highly active, for a meal. But this is awful. I'm going to get bronchitis or something, i just know it. I have often gotten sick during allergy season. I cannot get sick right now. I mean, i am sick. I am already sick. If i don't get myself under control, this will turn into a cold and bronchitis. And i'm eating CHEESE?? Christ almighty. Talk about self destructive.

Actually, in all of the binge literature i've read, binge eating is not an attempt to destroy, but rather to calm. I'm not TRYING to hurt myself. I'm trying to feel calm.

* * * * *

I've been conversing with a friend who often runs problems through her intellect. "I don't know what to do. I don't know what to do." But, she does know what to do. That still small voice inside knows. That's the spirit. When we get to THAT level of connection with that power inside of us, good things happen.

It seems I'm in the same sort of quandry. I KNOW what to do. Everything in me says to take a break from heavy foods. Juice. Smoothies. Fruit. Greens. Lay off of the raw bread, the cheese, the nutspreads, the salt. Drink water. Exercise. Get back to 80-10-10. Start a cleanse going. Do the nasal saline rinse. Get a colonic.

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I awoke to the horror at remembering what i did last night and how horrendously it is going to impact me. i got up to go to the bathroom and looked in the mirror and was aghast at the bloat.

Gaining weight is not a crime, i have to remember, but it feels HORRIBLE. Shame. Embarrassment. I MUST disconnect from this emotionally if i am going to break free of it. Forgive myself. Move on. Move forward. PRO-ACTIVE. Reacting does NO GOOD. Exacerbates it. Keeps it alive. Stop reacting emotionally.

I laid back in bed and mentally went through a checklist of my options. I can start taking allergy pills. I can go back on reflux medicine. I can mentally practice my opera instead of vocally until things let up. I can go on a juice fast and forget the meds. I can contact Carlene of and go back on 80-10-10 fully with much needed support.

When things are not great with food. I wish i could just get away from working with food.

One of my hugest issues is that i have a talent with food, but food is also something I struggle with, terribly.

Several times yesterday people commented about something i've made, "Man, this is SOOOOO good, you should open your own restaurant, or a food stand or a food truck and write your own recipe book." I COULD do that. But, i'm like a food addict. And i work in a kitchen. And i work with food. And i'm struggling. Still. After almost 2 years as a raw chef. I'm still struggling with controlling raw gourmet food. And i'm failing. And i'm a food addict or whatever you want to call it.

The best success i had controlling food at work long term has been when i have done 80-10-10 strictly, no cheating. I start to run into problems when i try to have a little of this, a little of that. It mostly starts with raw bread.

Who am i? A spirit shelled in a body? Or a sensual glutton? Can i GIVE UP salt and fat and raw bread and gourmet food to become a better person, a better singer, a healthier body, an in control 80-10-10 success story giving up all of life's raw pleasures? Is this my destiny? Or can i learn to control my 'substances of choice'? And become a sensual in control raw eater enjoying decadent raw gourmet food in moderation, losing the rest of her weight, saying to the world, 'you really CAN have it all.'

I thought it might be possible to eat gourmet like everyone else, and thrive.

I feel like i can't get off of this treadmill. i have 2 in-home cooking jobs over the next two days. That's GREAT. I get to help teach people how to make raw food. The only problem is, i usually need to taste test the food.

After two more in home classes, i go back to work. With food.

Food. Food. Food.

I wish i could just get away from it.

Lisa Montgomery, the new local raw book celebrity author came into Arnolds Way yesterday to deliver more of her fabulous book, in which my story and recipes are highlighted. "Raw Inspiration, Living Dynmically with Raw Food" is a really good book. We'd almost sold out of it at work. As my story and recipes are contained within the book, it's become quite popular at Arnolds Way. "Are you THE Chef Michelle?" Everyday customers come in and are amazed at my before and after pictures, at my story, interested in my recipes. This is all so great. This could be such a GREAT time. I need to get out of my own way.

Three customers yesterday said i should write my own book. One had me autograph my story in Lisa's book.

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I'm just having a tremendously challenging time coping with life right now. Things are good. But, i'm not.

Gaining weight, binge eating. This is not a crime. But i cannot let this go on. I refuse. I will not gain all of this blog weight back. What WAS this blog all for?????

I know that this too shall pass. That i'll get through this. The calmer and quieter i get, the more and more i contact the spirit and not let the head run amuck, the better i'll be.

I need to practice my opera, mentally, which i'll do this morning. That will relieve alot of this stress.

As far as food goes, I'll get real quiet and figure that out. One day at a time. If i call on God to help, he will help. As he did yesterday.

I can do this.

I'm sorry if i'm a disappointment, but I can’t worry about that right now. I’m just being honest. I’m communicating my truth. This is just a tough period and i'll get through it. I hope to get through this and be able to tell others: this is what you do. this is what works.

p.s. When I talk about meditating, it’s a meditation that I learned from the Foundation of Human Understanding,

Roy Masters brilliant meditation technique is expressly designed to help us detach emotionally from stress, to connect with Spirit and to thrive. Reacting to life is bad. The meditation is exactly what I need and exactly what I have been missing. Especially when stress is amped up, if I don’t hook into a power greater than myself, my own ego/faulty coping methods/food issues take over.

xoxo michelle joy

1 comment:

Pattywack said...

You are an inspiration to me. What you express in your blog is how I feel at times too. You are not alone in your struggles. Have you ever tried EFT to help with cravings and eating patterns or absolutely anything. It is also known as tapping. I enjoy your blog, I am not 100% raw but really like eating a lot of raw dishes.