Therapy Thursday

Hello hello!  Sorry for my little absence; I traveled back from Michigan to New York this week. I don’t find traveling itself stressful, per se, but I do have difficulty conceptually transitioning from one place to another.  This means that the weeks before and after I have to switch places are stressful for me, which just prolongs the whole ordeal.

I like new places though!  I like being on my own and figuring out how to navigate a new place.

Are you a travel lover or hater?

Sugar update: The experiment has been going well!  I have been working on consuming less sugar, not zero sugar altogether.  I think a low sugar diet might be best for me (at least low in processed/refined/added sugar).  I have still been enjoying a moderate amount of fruit, tea with stevia, and 1-2 servings of something that has sugar in it (like a protein bar or chocolate) per day.  It has actually felt like I have gotten rid of a burden, somehow.  And I don’t miss it too much, since I still let myself have a moderate amount!

Therapy Thursday

I know I went through a period where I didn’t really want to blog about therapy, and I will probably feel that way again someday, but at the moment, I do want to blog about it.

I feel like it’s a hallmark of my blog; it is, after all, in the title!

It was scary for me to “be on my own” for almost a whole month, without L.  I ended up calling her once or twice, as it was a difficult period for me in a lot of ways (breaking up with USB, dealing with my sometimes crazy family, applying to law school).  But at the same time, I feel like she is always in the background of my life — like I can feel her there, somewhere slightly distant, but not terribly far away, on the whole.  Just knowing that I have this person who exists, who does not judge me, who cares deeply about me is so comforting.

I’m someone who needs a lot of comfort in general.  I told L about one of my particular “rituals” today, which involves taking this tiny wind-up otter toy that I have (his name is Oliver Henry Hudson) on planes with me and winding him up when the plane takes off.  I have lots of little animals — a plushy key chain duck, a small cloth elephant ornament.  I find small animal toys comforting.  I also like to name things.  The elephant is called Leila Emlyn Giovanna and the duck is called Leland.

Maybe it’s odd or childlike, but I think that the way I look for comfort is a little bit heartwarming.  I find objects very meaningful; I cling to things.  I can typically explain when it is from and why it is meaningful.  My mother gave me my first set of measuring spoons for Christmas.  They’re black and silver and the measure amount (e.g., “1 tbsp”, “1 tsp”, etc.) is marked in colorful letters on the handle.

I have a feeling I will still be using them in thirty five years.   And my children will snarl at them and think they are old or ugly or outdated, just as I snarled at the plain blue plastic ones my mother has used since I was a baby.  But it won’t matter.  One day, I hope my children understand the importance if little objects.

I broke down with L; told her how sometimes I feel like such a child.  How this is the way my extended family sees me and I hate it.  I want to be grown-up and mature and kind, but I am afraid to step out of certain boxes I have lived in all of my life (particularly the “bad” box and the “mean” box).  I have always had a little mean streak, wherein I hurt other people’s feelings.  Most often, it is completely unintentional.  I tend to latch onto an idea or a word or a topic and never let go of it, even when it has become hurtful or upsetting or annoying to someone else.

I don’t want to be mean anymore.  But at the same time, I feel like I’m looking out at the world from below the flap of my trusty box and it’s scary — being inside the little box is comforting to me, and I seek out comfort wherever I find it.

I suspect that one day I will suddenly be ready and I will step out of all the boxes that I need to step out of when the time is right.

Until then, I have L.  I have my otter and my elephant and my ducks.  I have stories that I like to read and habits and ways of looking at the world that comfort me.

At the bottom of everything, I simply want to befriend people.  Almost every action that I undertake or every thought that I speak comes from a place inside me wherein I feel deeply lonely and want to make friends.  It’s funny, that I would be “mean” or “bad” and expect to make friends.  But it’s true, in a strange way.  It’s like I’m announcing my flaws and I want to be loved anyway.

Everyone just wants to be loved.

******

FYI: I’m trying to make the blog a wee bit more anonymous at the moment.  If you see a comment on your blog from “Run Write Therapy Life” or “CH”, it’s still me. 🙂

Sugar

Dear Sugar,

You know I love you.  I really do — especially in homemade baked goods, cereal, energy/granola bars, ice cream, and chocolate.

But we have to take a break.

I’m seeing someone else.

Okay, that was a lie.  I’m actually seeing three someone else’s: fat, protein, and vegetables.

And sugar, they are so good to me. They’re better for me than you are.  Our relationship has been fraught with violence and abuse: you make me breakout (which is especially bad given my general hormonal issues), you make me overeat (I thought I could just have a little bit of you and be satisfied, but you’re so demanding — you always say “more, more more”!), and you  make me a little lethargic.

It’s time for a change.  I want more energy.  I want a happier, healthier looking face.  I want to feel like my digestive system is squeaky clean (TMI?).

Moreover, I’m an athlete — I thrive off of running, yoga, strength training, and just generally playing/exploring.  And you slow me down.  I know that all the experts say “carbs before and after a workout”, but I just don’t think that it’s working out for me.  See, that means it’s not you, it’s me.

I hope that we can see each other again some day, but only a little bit at a time.  I want my clear skin back.  I want my marathon energy back.  I want to look forward to eating healthy meals and not dread it.

I hope you are understand.  Feel free to call/text/email me anytime.  I hope we can still be friends!

xoxo, Caronae

And so begins a little experiment: seven days sugar-free. At least, refined-sugar free.  Don’t murder me if I use a dash of maple syrup at some point.  But seriously though, I think something has been bothering my tummy, my body, and my energy levels lately, and I have a suspicion that this white powder (no, not the other white powder) is to blame.

I have been focusing more and more on vegetables, a little fruit, proteins (meat, fish, chicken, yogurt, milk, beans, tofu/soy, eggs, cheese) and fats (EVOO, coconut oil, nut butter, plain nuts, low-fat dairy, whole eggs, cheese, butter, avocados) lately and I love it.  I have lost twelve or so of then nagging pounds I’ve had hanging out since the hospital this summer, and would love to lose about five more to be at my happy weight.  I’m fine with the way I am now, to be honest.  I just want to feel like I can finally get a hold of my weight, for once and for all.

And I think sugar (or at least, excessive sugar), is standing in my way.  I am a woman on a mission.  A very determined woman.  Don’t get in my way. 😉

-A few notes: my goal is NOT complete sugar elimination, jsut serious reduction

Source

-I will probably use a little stevia and maple syrup

-I am going to reevaluate after seven days.

Good night all!

Do you have a healthy relationship with sugar, or are you one of the many people who struggles with it?

Easter Eater

Today’s Happy Note: There are so many!  Lying down in the park and enjoying the sun with friends was a highlight!

Yep, I said sun.  It was 72 degrees today!  This is quite nice for early April in New York City.  I like to think that the fact that this sunniness and warmth happened on my most favorite holiday means I’m a good person.  I don’t know how that’s logical, so don’t ask.  Even in the evening I didn’t need so much as a jacket.  Me likes.

I spent several hours in the afternoon with friends in Riverside Park.  It was plain old glorious.  I actually had spent most of the morning moping around because I was tired and none of my friends wanted to hide easter eggs; but I cheered up around one and went for a walk with some school books, snacks, and candy-filled eggs to give to people.  In the park I ended up running into some people from my floor and hung out with them and chatted, read, and munched.  Twas a very happy Easter afternoon, and I’m really happy that I was able to turn my day around like that!

After the park, I went to the most beautiful church in the world and marveled at how small, but also important, it made me feel.  It was a nice little spiritual moment.  I also read some psalms.

I strolled about two-ish miles in the park.  There is a really nice/rugged, but short, trail that I like.  I didn’t see any birds even though I was supposedly walking through a bird sanctuary.  Well, that’s a lie.  I did see obese pigeons and some scraggly sparrows.

Exercise: After my walk I came home and did schoolwork.  Eventually I went to the gym with my best friend Jonathon (the one who just started running outside with me!).  I got him to do intervals on the treadmill.  I wanted to do some HIIT, so here’s what mine looked like:

Minutes      Speed

1-10             6.0 mph

10-11          8.0 mph

11-12           6.0 mph

Repeat minutes 10-12 ten times (until you have reached thirty minutes).

This was perfectly tough!  This might sound weird, but sometimes I really like to count when I’m running, especially on the treadmill.  As a child, I used to count out loud during car trips, for hours at a time.  Then, when I was on 7342, for example, and someone else said something and distracted me I would get really angry.  But you already knew I was a weirdo…

I did about ten minutes of heavy arm lifting and them swam 3000 yards.  I used to be a serious swimmer in high school but don’t do it very often anymore.  It seems to loosen up my legs pretty nicely; I’d like to swim more frequently.

Eats: I took pictures of almost everything today, minus a few easter m and m’s or mini chocolates.  I had my share of sugar and chocolate and guess what?  It was so worth it.  And at the end of the day, when I tallied up my calories, I realized that I’d done a good job intuitively balancing things out with a smaller lunch and a produce-filled dinner.

Breakfast SIAB with mixed frozen berries, lite chocolate soymilk, acai protein powder, and spinach.  Topped with not-sweet-vanilla granola from galaxy granola and a few pastel peanut butter m and m’s for good measure!

Cadbury creme egg.  Tasty, but too sweet.  I would love it if they made a version with some real, dark chocolate.  Wow, I am officially not a kid anymore now that I have said cadbury creme eggs are too sweet…

Really random part 1 of lunch.

Slightly more random part 2 of lunch: small corn tortilla topped with Justin’s maple almond butter, mango butter, and a few spoonfuls of siggis blueberry yogurt (which works surprisingly well as a spread) and mini cadbury eggs.

Mini cinnamon roll.  First baked good I’ve had since before Lent!  I might have a cupcake or muffin tomorrow.

Easter Dinner!  It was quite simple, but I am really proud of it.  This is the first holiday meal I have ever done on my own.  I have helped my mom or other family members and cooked side dishes and whatnot plenty of times before, but this meal was all me!  I wouldn’t have served it to a table full of family members because it was so simple, but it was yummy and got the job done.  I would have liked to have another fun side, but didn’t want to have to cook and store four different dishes.

I made a massive side salad that probably would have served an ordinary family of four.  But they would have been veggie deprived, and I clearly wasn’t.  The salad had romaine, cucumbers, carrots, and Annie’s Goddess dressing.  Next up: plain steamed green beans.  The “main” dish: spicy turkey burgers!  With garlic hummus for dipping.  It was what I had on hand!

Easy 15 minute spicy turkey burgers

1 pound extra lean ground turkey (I used a hormone-free, free range 96/4)

1 large clove of garlic, chopped finely

1 tablespoon olive  oil

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon lemon pepper

1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (and/or chili powder)

Combine the garlic, oil, and spices in a medium glass bowl.  Add turkey and mash it all together!  Easy peasy.  Make sure spices and oil are evenly distributed and that the mixture is soft-ish.  Shape into four patties; about 3/4 of an inch thick. Place on baking sheet.   Broil for five minutes per side.

I almost forgot to show you the contents of my Easter basket!

Obligatory toothbrush, eyeliner, more candy filled eggs (don’t worry, I gave most of the contents of the many eggs away), duck gel gem stickers, solid milk chocolate duck, ducky shower sponge, toffee dark chocolate bar.

The note says “please decorate Herbert’s window, ps you can hide [eggs] for your friends, love mom!”  How cute is she?

Herbert says he hopes you had a great Easter and a lovely weekend and a nice week too!

Goodnight friends!