Having Ideas and Not Buying Them

Welp… Last night’s creation was not Crum-friendly. My parent’s didn’t care for part of what I made. I prepared tofu for the first time. Tofu is supposed to be really good for relieving symptoms of gout so I tried to make it with a mexican flare so that my dad would be more willing to try it. I didn’t think it was all that bad, although it was rather bland even with the seasoning. I loosely followed a Whole Foods Market recipe. I made a rice bowl that I topped with cheese, the fajita mix, plain yogurt and salsa. Image

My mom also informed me that she isn’t supposed to ingest soy products because of her thyroid problem (it’s either her medication or the actual problem that makes her need to avoid it). Oh well. No more tofu for those two.

I relaxed and watched some TV before I had my snack of Greek yogurt mixed with frozen berries and a pumpkin gob.Image

This morning I tried to sleep in a little bit before I rolled out of bed and put my breakfast together. I had quiche and raspberries with grapes along with a chai latte and peach tea. Image

I did my puzzles and then got to work on a few chores. After a while I made my morning snack and got to work on my transfer application for Carolina. My snack was delicious and it tasted like hot cocoa. I microwaved a serving of oatmeal using dark chocolate almond milk and then I added vanilla almond butter to it. Yummo!Image

I spent literally the rest of the morning working on my application. I still haven’t sent it in yet because I want to make sure I am happy with my short essay. I will probably send it in tomorrow at some point. I then did a little more sanding before I fixed my lunch. I made a turkey and pepper jack sandwich with peppers, carrots, apple, baked Cheetos and Greek yogurt.Image

I took my time eating and playing sudoku before I got ready to meet my mom at the Y! I ran two miles and walked half a mile before I did just a few sets of light work on some of the machines (arm press, leg press, back extension and abdominal machines). It felt great! We showered up and headed to Whole Foods. We got just a few random items and I got a little chocolate milk for my recovery that I had along with my snack of pretzels and trail mix before my first solo session with Lori.Image

Session with Lori

Lori began by asking me what things I wanted to cover during our meetings. I hadn’t really thought about it much because my dad told me we would probably just talk about my future plans. I mentioned that and then also added that I am still having a lot of body image thoughts that I am trying not to have. She talked to me about how everyone has thoughts and as we grow from children to young adults we start to pay more attention to our thoughts. “We all have thoughts, but we don’t have to buy them.” Lori really emphasized that statement and explained that our mind works to try and keep us “safe.” We have thoughts about ourselves to keep us happy and protected, but sometimes those thoughts that are perceived to be helpful are really harmful. She said it is ok to have thoughts about my body image, but to just acknowledge them and not listen to them (or “not to buy them”). I can think to myself ok, thank you for that thought, but that is not what I need to do.

Lori then had me do an exercise that required me to write down several thoughts that I have had throughout the week (many revolving around body image and a few about my future). We then talked about those for a few minutes before she asked me what advice those thoughts would give me if they were all coming from another person. That advice would have been that if I lost just a few pounds I would be happier with everything. She then had me write down all of the things that I value (health, energy, family, friends, Vinnie) and what advice those values would give me. That advice would have been that I needed to enjoy the foods I ate and not limit myself in any way so that I would really be living my life. She suggested the coping strategy of thinking about my values whenever I have a thought that isn’t beneficial to me.

Next she taught me a breathing exercise that she wants me to do every day. I am so sit in a certain posture and close my eyes while I really concentrate on my breathing. Every time I notice my mind wandering I am to refocus on my breathing. It was funny, I completed the exercise with Lori and I found myself thinking about trying not to think, then about what I am going to do tomorrow, and then I started to think about if I was sitting in the right position and that I couldn’t really be sitting in a wrong position because my butt is so big. I was able to refocus on my breathing after having all of those thoughts so Lori said I was doing it right.

After the breathing exercise we talked a little bit more. I mentioned how I felt like I always had to do everything to meet other peoples expectations because I was scared of what would happen if I didn’t. She then really pushed me to dig deeper by asking a series of questions following each of my answers. Some things were hard for me to explain, but I did my best. I think what I started to say was that I don’t want to live fear but then again I find fear a necessary emotion to have because it pushes you to work harder and it keeps you prepared. I also talked about how some days I just feel like everything is pointless. Why work hard to achieve something when you are only alive for 80 years, give or take? Motivation seems to go out the window and every little thing makes no sense to me. I don’t understand why things have to be so hard to do the things that we want to do and make things what we want to make them. The things I want in life just seem so far fetched and then I get to feeling like there is no reason for me to try. I want to do so many things, but they seem rather unrealistic. I feel like that whenever I think too much about things. I let my thoughts take over and I start to question the purpose of the world and maybe even life itself. I realize those thoughts are destructive and highly negative, so when I realize I am thinking like that I do stop myself. I have always thought like that though, even when I was very little. We just live in a world where we are so small and when thinking about our existence within the entire universe it seems unreal and like a mistake. Gahh, ok, I am acknowledging these thoughts and I am not buying them. Do you have any similar thoughts?

Sudoku has been a great way to keep my mind busy and away from thoughts about food, body image, my future, etc. Sudoku, you rock.

I wasn’t sure if I was making any sense when I was talking with Lori (or when I was typing all this up) but I gave it a try. Lori thanked me for being so open and willing to share my thoughts. I actually really liked our one on one session and I am glad that I have some things to really work on throughout the next week.

When I got home my mom had already started making dinner. it was a delicious meal filled with flavor. She made tilapia with the yummy yogurt-mustard-lime-green onion sauce as well as roasted brussels with sweet potato and roasted zucchini and yellow squash. Image

I feel like I can record today as being a great day! I let a lot out with Lori, got my application started, had a great workout with my mom, and did some work around the house. I also had some great eats!


8 thoughts on “Having Ideas and Not Buying Them

  1. Hi! This was a really enjoyable and interesting read. You definitely bring up some thought-provoking points.

    I LOVE Lori’s idea about considering how you would react to someone ELSE telling you the things you tell yourself. I will definitely adopt that into my daily life, as I think it’ll help me make better longterm choices. One thing I’ve noticed is that an ED turns me into a liar–I find myself telling people that I’m picky, or a vegetarian, or busy, when actually I’m none of those things. So many of my “brilliant ideas” are obviously very skewed.

    On the far-fetched ideas thing–I know that I don’t actually have a lot of life experience or years on you, but most of my friends, the people who I meet, and I have been out of college a number of years, and I can tell you this: We’re amazed at where we are. Some of the things that you imagine as impossible or as dreams for other people to reach are very much tangible realities in your near future. So many people I know never imagined themselves traveling where they’ve traveled, living where they’re living, or doing what they’re doing. The world is full of many wonders and surprises, and I ASSURE you that you will astonish yourself.

    Breathing exercise-I LOVE this. I never, ever gave meditation a shot because I figured I was way too antsy and easily distracted, but I can’t believe what a better mindset it’s put me in. One method I read about is how to handle an onslaught of thoughts and lack of focus. Instead of obsessing about trying to clear your mind, lightly acknowledge each thought as a thought. Imagine it as a soap bubble that you tap with a feather and acknowledge “thought,” then return to your breathing. You can even meditate, with humor and curiosity, on your thought tendencies, showing yourself patience and curiosity.

    • Oh my gosh, I so know what you mean by “an ED turns me into a liar.” I would say anything I could to get out of a situation that involved food.

      Those words are so encouraging! You are right that we can all be surprised by where we end up living or what we end up doing. The possibilities are endless! I guess this ED has made me feel stuck and now that I am taking control of my life I can turn ideas into reality.

      I have always been open to meditation, but I never actually tried it. I believe it can work, but I feel like I am too impatient. I am glad Lori taught me this though, I am determined to stick to it! That comparison is absolutely amazing! Acknowledging the thought and returning to breathing sounds like a great technique. Lori also told me to journal after the breathing exercise – about where my mind drifted off to and if I was able to easily return to my breathing. Does the strategy of acknowledging your thoughts as a “thought” followed by returning to your breathing work for you? Do you find it easy to just brush off those thoughts?

      • I do like taking the approach of being patient and amused by my thoughts during meditation, rather than getting frustrated with myself for not being the best meditator in all the land. So I mark thoughts as “thought,” then usually end up thinking about the human thinking process, the nature of time, and things like that. Because, if you notice, there are always multiple lines of thought running all at once, not just one. This, I think, at least bring my focus inward and maybe with time I’ll be able to focus on my breathing alone.

        Once I’m in a more inward state of mind, I imagine myself breathing in all the hatred, frustrations, and toxins of the world. Really, whatever negative emotions I’m feeling, I imagine myself connecting with all the people who have ever felt them as well, and breathing in and taking on those feelings for them. Then I imagine myself breathing out all the love, kindness, and empathy that I myself possess, relinquishing it to others. It’s a reversal of the more common “breathe in the good, breathe out the bad.” Good and bad is subjective and can be one in the same. Both are an opportunity to connect with others.

        When I’ve had enough of that, I start at my toes and relax my muscles all the way to the top of my head, one by one. If I rush through a part or forget my breathing, I go back and do it slower. This is a great way for me to remember to roll my shoulders down my spine and relax my jaw.

        Then, I think about the people in my life, and, usually starting with my most beloved, either say aloud or think, “May ___ enjoy happiness and the root of happiness. May s/he be free from suffering and the root of suffering.” I usually do my family, close friends, then acquaintances, then people who I struggle with, and finally myself. For many people I personalize it further, such as including, “May she be free from anxiety,” “may he find love for himself,” and so on. Since I meditate before bed, if nothing else I wish that someone I want to feel a connection with will “sleep well and wake up with peace in his/her heart.”

        Obviously I don’t follow any sort of rigid schedule or order. If I want to speak aloud, I do. If I want to relax my muscles first, then work on breathing, I do. I have never regretted a meditation session, and I loooove the idea of writing down where my thoughts drifted. For me it works to do yoga, meditate, then go to bed.

      • I love, love, love your process of meditation! Those are all great things to focus your thoughts on if you know you struggle limiting your mind to only concentrate on breathing. I’m sure that your practice of mediation has opened you up to be a more caring person since you dedicate a thought to all of the important people in your life. I think that is so amazing and I am going to work that into my breathing exercise!

  2. Wow lots of thoughts today. One thing I try to visualize when I hear the negative stuff is all of my animals faces when they see me after I come home from school everyday. Homer and Zoee greet me like I am a rocks tar. I am a rock star to them. That makes me keep on doing what I do, and you know what teaching is all about. So when I question, or feel insignificant, or haves bad day, I pull everything closer to me. And you know what? Homer doesn’t care , he is just there to love me. Good luck with your breathing exercises. It does take a lot of practice.

    • That was a lovely pictured you painted. I can imagine it now, Homer and Zoee greeting you with tremendous love. I think that you have a very special connection to all your animals. You seem to understand them very well and no matter what is going on in the world you can always count on them to be there for you, especially Homer.

  3. It sounds like you’ve got some really big questions! I think that you are definitely not alone in wondering about your place in the world. It’s a very normal thing to think about…I have been there myself, more the once. A book that I really enjoyed is The Purpose Driven Life…What on Earth Am I Here For? If you haven’t read it, you may want to give it try. Also, try to remember that you don’t need to have everything figured out yet. It’s ok not to be sure about your future. I didn’t even realize I wanted to be a teacher until I already had a degree in something else and then started working at Morehead. We grow and change all the time- even at my age! Sometimes I just have to tell myself to enjoy the moment and to be comfortable with the place I am in. The world is forever changing and I just have to learn to go with the flow, even though that can be VERY HARD for me. You will continue to learn and grow and one day things will make much more sense than they do now! I think you are a wonderful young lady with many wonderful qualities and I hope you will learn to see yourself that way too. 😀

    • Thank you so much! It is good to know that those thoughts are normal. It is also very reassuring to hear about your experiences with uncertainty about the future. I have not read that book, but I will look for it the next time I go to the book store! Thank you for the suggestion 🙂 Also thank you for all of the amazing support you have provided me and continue to provide me with!

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