It’s a sunny but chilly Saturday morning, here in the northern state of Michigan. There was a dusting of snow on the deck when I woke up, yuck. It’s April and we are all ready for the weather to break.
For my 45th birthday a few weeks ago, my family got me tickets to something called Bovine Therapy. They’re all coming too and we will have an hour to snuggle with cows! I’m really excited for this, but do wish it was going to be a little warmer today, the high is only 40.
My recent posts have been a lot about the AIP diet I’m on, or trying to be on. I figured I’d update and want to write about a big “A-Ha” moment I had yesterday.
The entire week was an AIP success, in my eyes at least. For the past several days, I’ve steered clear of gluten, caffeine, sugar, nuts, beans and legumes, rice, seeds, nightshades and a few other things. Caffeine and sugar are the big ones for me to give up- I have an addiction.
The first time I cheated was yesterday. It started with lunch. I had Panera and had peppers in my soup and parmesan cheese in my salad. Last night I had a Larabar (all natural ingredients but has cocoa and nuts), an oatmeal cream pie and 3 little Easter chocolate eggs.
My pain had been noticeably decreased the past few days, so I wondered if I would wake up today in more pain, but my hand is still about the same. I didn’t take pain meds upon awakening, that’s good for me. While I’m happy this “binge” didn’t seem to affect me, I’m eager to get back on track today. Additionally, I have been picking up ingredients here and there all week so I plan to make some yummy meals and sweet treats this weekend.
Nothing feels as good as eating an AIP compliant meal or dessert that I find absolutely delicious. I haven’t found a ton, yet, but feel like I’m adapting recipes to fit my liking and this is becoming easier the more I learn and practice. I was stoked to make a chicken and cauliflower rice dish with coconut aminos and ginger seasoning that tasted just like a yummy Asian dish. I had never cooked with spices like that before and was over the moon excited. I eyeballed the spices and when I made it again a few days later, I put WAY too much ginger. It was strong and not great, but you live and learn, right?
Ok, so back to my epiphany.
First, I feel that it’s important to say that for awhile now, I have a belief that the illnesses/sicknesses we have in our body is a direct result of suppressed emotions. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve looked at my inflamed hand and scratched my head until it was raw because I can’t figure out what I’m holding onto.
As I cut out sugar this week, I felt like I was looking at it like I look at alcohol. No, I shouldn’t have it- it will come with loads of consequences that aren’t really worth the two second taste of it. So CAN I eat it? Yes! Is it worth the consequences? No. This helped me especially when I came across unexpected goodies at work or home.
So, yesterday morning my sister and I were talking on the phone and decided to draw a card from our spiritual deck to give me a message for the day.
The card was called, “Let Go” and talked about letting go of addictions. I told her, “Hey that’s perfect! This means I’m right on track, I AM letting go!” Then I told her about how my thinking had seemed to change and I was able to think about sugar like alcohol.
Then she said something that I have never considered that absolutely blew me away.
“Isn’t it funny, how the very first coping skill, the first addiction, food, is now the thing that you are almost being forced to overcome now?”
My jaw dropped. Food has always been an issue with me, always. I found life hacks to get around this imprisonment, most notably having irreversible bariatric surgery ten years ago.
Immediately after the surgery, I felt a freedom I had never felt before. I no longer had to think about dieting or what I was going to eat- I simply couldn’t eat the things that were killing me, and it was an awesome feeling!
What I didn’t acknowledge is that transfer addiction is real, and I already loved my alcohol a great deal. With the stomach surgery, the alcohol effect is much more severe and it’s common for us to become alcoholics. And I did.
You know the rest.
Geez, everything truly is connected I’m realizing more and more. I think that as I purge caffeine, sugar, etc, I’ll be able to work through any emotional stuff that comes up.
I don’t know why this was so mind blowing to me, typing it out makes it seem really obvious, but it wasn’t. Not to me, anyways.
I mean, I’m working on my diet 100% because of my inflammation and the hope of decreasing and getting off the medication I’m on for RA. I hadn’t considered the mental and emotional effects.
I’m still trying to digest this and figure out what it means. I guess I really need to pay attention to what triggers me to cheat and go from there.
This truly makes me more confident that complete healing is quite attainable if I keep at it.