Feelin’ Fine ๐ŸŒป

When staying small becomes way too big to handle…

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It has been two years since I started on Lithium Bicarbonate for my mental illness: Bipolar 1.ย  If you have read my previous posts on body image and on mental illness, you will know by now that I was struggling against succumbing to meds due to the strong suspicion that taking them would cause a large weight gain.

Well, it has done just that.ย  I am larger now than I was when I was eight months pregnant.ย  I have gone up in size from a 4 to a 14.ย  Gasp!

Yes. Just, Gasp.

My body now is the stuff of my previous life’s nightmares.ย  So, why is this post entitled Feelin’ Fine?

Confused yet?

Well, I have changed folks.

It started when I hit rock bottom this time two years ago.ย  I had extreme anxiety for days and a panic attack that rocked my world and I was sure I was about to die.ย  I could barely let go of my husband Dean’s hand.ย  All I could do to feel better was walk, and poor Dean, suffering with a broken toe, walked with me, holding my hand.ย  I have the best husband in the world.ย  If you had seen me then you would not recognize me.ย  I was barely able to look up.ย  I was debilitated.ย  The stress in my low back was like a knife jabbing me.ย  Every thought spun out a new list of worries that multiplied.ย  I clutched Dean’s hand and he guided me gently along through the days.ย  I did simple tasks like pealing potatoes and hanging laundry.ย  That’s about all I could do without making copious, confusing lists and notes.

This was the point that I finally succumbed to medication.

Since then, I decided that it is far better to have a clear mind and psyche than it is to be small and trim.

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By my amazing sister Eva*

 

This has not been an instantaneous transformation.ย  It has taken hours and hours of concerted effort and two years of time going by to change my thinking.ย  I am doing this by reading books, blogs, articles, scientific studies and by listening to podcasts on this very topic…non-diet, body-neutral, non-fat phobic, Health at Every Size, Intuitive Eating by podcasters like Christy Harrison on Food Psych; Meret Boxler on Life Unrestricted; Chris Sandel on Real Health Radio; Summer Innanen on Fearless Rebelle Radio.ย  These people have helped me immeasurably.ย  As has my husband of twenty-five years.ย  He is truly my best, most supportive friend.

It hasn’t been exactly easy to transform my thinking one hundred and eighty degrees.ย  From a very disordered existence of constant striving to maintain a small, lean body where in almost every waking moment over the last 35 years, I was aware, concerned, worried about eating less and moving more (it was a full-time job to maintain the energy deficit that then felt normal).ย  I mean, I was eating low-fat while trekking in the Himalayasย while simultaneously battling a bowel parasite for jeezus sakes.

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I have become more peaceful by NOT doing anything to try to stay small.ย  I eat when hungry, whatever I want.ย  I drink when thirsty.ย  I move when it strikes my fancy to do so.ย  No schedule.ย  No goals.ย  No competitive work-out sessions.ย  No marathon-type activity in the off-ing to compulsively train for.ย  No $60 ++ per week of yoga classes, plus thousands of dollars for months of yoga teacher training at an ashram in the Bahamas (which in retrospect I now realize that I had done not to achieve Zen but mostly to achieve small-ness.ย  It was like going to a Fat Farm for me.ย  Okay, a Zen Fat Farm, if you will).

dancer on the fallen tree

I look back on my previous life and shake my head.ย  But it is all part of my path.

And, who cares if I am not small in size.ย  I am still ME.

My being is still here.ย  My me-ness.

You know me?ย  That person who loves an adventure;

a good doubling-overย belly laugh;

a deep talk solving the problems of the world, including what to do with your hair;

a great beach walk or rainy-day stroll;

a carefree dance around the living room or in a random cafe to some good eighties tunes,

a pint and a good cry????

That person is still here and that person is doing okay.ย  She’s just in a bigger, softer body and she is doing much, much better on the inside, and, thankfully, not doing those annoying hand-stands every five minutes.

prospect-handstand

One last one for the memory bank.ย  My son took this in Prospect, Nova Scotia, Canada.ย  The next time I asked him to take a picture of me doing a hand-stand was on the Keji Seaside beach, he goes, ‘Mom, that ship has sailed, don’t you think?’

Right on Buddy.ย  Gotta love kids.

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I would love your comments…

(The sunflower pic is from Google Images, all the rest are mine except the amazing Dragonfly which is by my eldest sister.)

10 thoughts on “Feelin’ Fine ๐ŸŒป

  1. Thanks for the very informative blog from 4-14. You did it! Congratulations! A true inspiration!
    Great wisdom from your “sun” for everyone!
    Keep the pen to the paper!
    Franny

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You are amazing โค Letting go like that can be soooooooo wonderful! Just realizing that you deserve mental wellness over being a size 4 is a huge deal. Good for you!! And also being mentally ill, I have been reluctant to take meds because I am so scared of medication in general. But you are inspiring me to realize I canโ€™t do this anymoreโ€ฆ.my panic attacks are so bad I feel like I am dying many times a weekโ€ฆand I canโ€™t do anything anymore. I think I am going to start my meds today (theyโ€™ve been sitting there for monthsโ€ฆjust staring at me, waiting for me to wake up! LOL). Thank you for the inspiration ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree. It is a huge deal, especially with the set of beliefs that I was carrying around since a tender age. I can’t comment on your particular circumstance, of course, but I saw almost immediate relief with Lithium. I am a believer now. I really hope you will find relief too. Panic attacks are no fun. Thank you for your wonderful comment, Jalynn, and I hope you are feeling much better soon!

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  3. Wow Morgan you always find a way to amaze me. I can’t imagine the stress you must have felt. Dean is a one in a million guy. You are blessed my sister. I am fascinated with the realization and transition you have come through. The remark ‘Mom, that ship has sailed,’ don’t you think is priceless?? lol. You were brave to let go and I especially liked how you explained about body image.
    Love you Morgan
    Eternally
    Amy xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Amy. I love your comments and observations! Yes, my son is priceless. Our children keep us honest for sure! It is so good to have let go. That was no way to live, in fact, it felt like torture now that I am on the other side and can see it for what it was. It is so sweet to not have the worries of smallness underlying my life. I don’t wish that shit on anyone. If we could ALL just find the beauty in whatever form our body takes. That would be something and would free up time to be true to our dreams.

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      1. So proud of you and the changes you have made. Not only did you make a difference for yourself, you made a difference in others lives. During your panic attacks would you have ever thought that taking medication would be an inspiration instead of an inconvenience. Bravo for winning that self reflection to move forward instead of letting mental illness get you. Instead we get YOU. Inspiring!!! Love you

        Liked by 1 person

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