Thursday, August 5, 2010


Hi Folks,

Today is Day 5 of Banana Island...that's right, nothing but bananas! I'm bananas for bananas!

Under the guidance of Dr. Douglas Graham, I am going to return to my normal weight and end my lifetime compulsion/obsession with food, yay!

I can't tell you how on fire i feel for raw again! Just like the old days when i was newly raw and raw for 3 years.

I had really been through the ringer with lots of different and conflicting ways of thinking about raw and about food and about curing eating disorders, and had listened to and tried many coaches, plans, programs' advice, which only left me confused and feeling hopeless and frustrated about losing weight on raw, frustrated with losing weight on cooked, and hopeless about stopping binge eating.

Dr. Graham swears that i will lose all of my excess weight following his advice. Bananas??? Go figure. On Carlene's plan, they were forbidden. He knows Carlene and doesn't think too highly of her. Carlene, herself, told me that all of th people on her website who lost 100's of lbs have already gained them back.

So, week one is banana island. What week two entails, i have an inkling. To tell you the truth, i think or fear, not sure which, i'll be on banana island for like a month... I think he intimated that...

It's not too bad, actually. I eat when i'm hungry and that's that. He's pushing me towards large meals with nothing in between, meaning, say 7 bananas for breakfast, 7 for lunch, etc.. I ate 4 larger meals yesterday. And i've lost a ton of water weight. My face looks like my face again, and i'm not depressed at all. Man, was i feeling hopeless before. It was probably all of that shit i was eating.

Detox dizzyness and fatigue come and go, but i try to rest when i need to. i'm feeling particuarly good this morning. What a blessing!

~ ~ ~

Mom may go to rehab...TODAY!!!

~ ~ ~ ~

Dr. D and I had a particularly profound discussion about PLEASURE VS. HAPPINESS. Here is some of the discussion, as i thought it might help others suffering with food choices. I find Dr. D's simple short answers actually very profound in this particular discussion. Much of the discussion is me detailing my history with sexual abuse and with how the concept of "pleasure" has been so disturbed for me around food, around sex, and around life.

Dr. D: Let's start talking about the difference between pleasure and happiness, shall we? How would you make that distinction, if you were going to explain it to a 5-year old? Which is the one you would focus on?

MJoy: If i were explaining to a 5 year old, i would say that pleasure has to do with the senses...seeing, hearing, touching, tasting, smelling, feeling. But that happiness has to do with the soul or the heart.

Seeking pleasure / giving pleasure (when i didn't want to) has been such a huge issue with me. When i was growing up, i was sexually abused by someone who used me for his "pleasure." I know that that experience robbed me of a lot. I think i use fat to keep myself 'safe' from abuse and hurt now.

And i know i use food to feel pleasurable feelings - intensely pleasurable feelings. I am able to taste things others aren't. In chef-talk, i have an amazing palate. This has led me to become a chef and a caterer, whose food is 'oohed' and 'ahhed' at for the way i flavor things....BUT, i've abused that gift, seeking pleasure from food at all costs in a sick way.

Happiness is something i feel when i feel empowered...when i sing well, when i walk uphill or go shopping by foot miles away, when i have a great work out at the gym, when i look at myself in the mirror and like who is looking back at me. Happiness is something that makes my heart happy. Happiness comes from other people, too. Seeing my mom improve, seeing her become more independant and responsible for her health. Sharing a beautiful moment with Cliff.

Pleasure has become something that is private and sneaky and confusing because it often turns to pain.

Tying it in with sexual abuse - I know alot of women with sexual abuse issues often turn to food. I think food is very effective at numbing our painful emotions and our awareness. When we've had to withstand abuse, it allows us to fade and numb.

I grew up with boundary issues, obviously. i didn't know how to say 'no' or assert myself or not let bad people, bad things into my world. I suppose with food, it's been the same. I've had loose boundaries. I allowed the abuse to continue for so long.

I don't want it to continue anymore.

Also, with pleasure - one's life has to become pleasurable i think, if we are to give up our main #1 pleasure - food. So much of my life has been neglected at the cost of focusing on food. I would like to improve my home life - we have an old house that needs to be fixed up, my financial life - i'm broke, my career life - i barely have one, my sex life - my fiance is impotent (but i think i chose him for his safety)...we can try to have more sexual pleasure without having "sex".

Also, i think i feel badly about ME often, at the root of it all. I feel i don't DESERVE true happiness - money, career, etc... I have settled for a life of SMALL....and i've become BIG in body, instead of BIG in accomplishment or ACTIONS - I'm BIG instead of the BIG life i think i really could have. I'm so talented. I "should" have more and be more. I need to feel i deserve it. But i often don't. So i eat. And then i never focus on my life. I focus on fat.

Pleasure is a big, big issue.

And if i can learn to seek out those other pleasures and happinesses in life and give time to them - fix up my house, take a bubble bath, get busier on my career, go to the opera, etc... i think i will have more happiness in my life.

Binge eating does not cause happiness. In fact, it robs me of happiness. It does, however, provide a sick kind of pleasure, one I've gotten used to. It's abusing myself.

How can self abuse actually be ultimately pleasurable?

Dr. D: Thank you for this. I recommend seeking happiness, rather than seeking pleasure. Give happiness, as well. You are in a relationship with the food you eat. Choose foods that love you as much as you love them, and you have a marriage made in heaven. For now, bananas love you like nothing else can. Enjoy your time on the island.

~ ~ ~ ~

Very profound words from Dr. D.

How often do we seek food that doesn't love us? Foods that give us reflux or swelling or instant weight gain or fibromyalgia or diabetes?

Suddenly, it seems logical to start at scratch...with bananas. Dr. Graham says they are great for me and will be my ticket to freedom.

I'm tired of barking up the wrong tree, or endlessly seeking pleasure in food, to only get fatter, more unhappy and sicker.

If our food "relationship" is like a human relationship...why do we want to keep an old abusive lover around, who promises great things, but only delivers pain?

xoxo michelle joy

1 comment:

mikelle said...

mjoy...the babe from banana island! so excited for you - congratulations on making this commitment with dr. d. and OH YEAH - GO MOM!!!!! finally into rehab. what a miraculous recovery! yay!