When fear foods become favorite foods; my journey to weight restoration.

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* disclaimer! I am not a healthcare professional. I would highly advise  seeking out a medical help before attempting any method of recovery.*

Summer break is here!  What an incredible semester it has been! Out of every semester I’ve had in college I will say that mentally and emotionally was one of the most challenging!  Just before midterms I found myself completely overwhelmed between the stress of classes, a promotion at work, and health issues … my body had had enough! For the entire semester, Outside of school and work,  I found myself in bed either sick or in pain.  It was honestly like being inside of a mental prison.

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Earlier in the semester I had battled another heart issue that sent me to the ER. I later found out that it was due to an infection caused by part of a tooth left in my head by a previous dentist along with what is known as refeeding syndrome.  Refeeding syndrome is when someone with an eating disorder begins to gain weight and introduces new foods into their system. The body reacts in shock and various things can occur that can be detrimental to someone’s health.  For me, my heart felt like it was going to explode. Literally, it felt like someone reaching from my back, grabbed my chest and squeezed my heart. However, that’s the price I pay for hurting my body through malnourishment.  As I mentioned in my last post I was dealing with a lot of muscular issues, and I finally had to stand up to myself. I took a professor’s advice and dropped a course that was incredibly stressful which postedponed my summer graduation (for my AA). thankfully I did that because had I stayed with it there’s no way I would’ve been able to keep up with classes. To be honest, by the end of the semester I was so done with looking at books that it was hard for me to focus on my assignments let alone remember half of what I read. Thankfully, by the hand of God I made it through!

Meanwhile, I began to get really, and I mean REALLY serious about my recovery. After doing some research  on the topic, I came across an Instagram picture posted by someone who is been a huge icon in the recovery community, Miss Julia Grigorian from dropsofjules.com  in the picture she stated that she was going to do a blog post about the method that she chose for recovery and why she would definitely do it again. I quickly went to the post, read it, scanned over some of the other posts that she talked about that method in, and did a Google search  to find more information on the pros and cons of using it.  That method was the Minni Maud method.  The details  of this method can be found at your eatopia  . Anywho,  I was praying and I didn’t know exactly how to approach this. Due to years of restriction, my body had developed sensitivities to various foods like wheat, soy, etc. however, the night that I decided that I was going to do this, my neighbor came over and asked my  mom if she would like a pizza for my nephew and her.  She gladly excepted and told him what toppings she wanted. He offered to buy me some as well. I kindly turned him down explaining that I had food sensitivities (excuses excuses).

That evening, I was scheduled to talk with my dear friend Emily about weight gain and the side effects on her podcast.  Inside, I wanted so badly to be free. Here I was trying to recover and setting example for those in the recovery community as well and I could not even get myself to eat a piece of pizza! I had eaten a salad and was going to eat something a little heavier afterwords for dinner. However, I was really craving that pizza!  I was craving it so bad, I could almost taste the pepperoni and sausage! Anxiety set in  and I began to text back-and-forth with Emily to prepare for the podcast. I told her that I was dealing with the food fear,  she asked if she could call me, and when we talked she was so kind and helped to calm my nerves.  We went into the podcast, and prayed afterwards. When we hung up the phone, I went straight in to see a pizza delivered at on my kitchen table! The first question I asked my mom was if I could have a piece and she smiled really big and said , “of course!”  That one piece turned into 2 1/2 pieces of pepperoni and sausage pizza. For dessert, chocolate cheesecake! There, begin my true entry into real recovery !

In the days following that I found myself eating  500-600+ cal breakfast two  300+ cal snacks, 500 to 600+ cal lunches,  and 500 to 600+ cal dinners allll followed by 350-400+  cal desserts!  Or some days that I eat 3000 cal, some days that I ate well over that, and some days I just slightly under.  I’ll be honest, the weight came on really fast along with depression, headaches, and exhaustion.  My body was not used to having all those things and was quickly trying to adjust. I found out later in researching that the exhaustion and headaches are due to the body trying to heal.  I could feel an internal burning, like a furnace had been turned up inside of me. I found out that it was also part of recovery because my body had to speed up my metabolism in order to be able to fully except all the calories that were being taken in!  Finally, after just two weeks of doing the method, I had finally reached the weight that my doctor wanted me to be at, even a few pounds more.   While I am now currently technically weight restored,  certain things still are not functioning and the way that they should  (my period is still MIA), so I’m trying my best to stick with it. I will be honest and say that I’ve had some days where I haven’t had the 2,500 -3,000 cal  that I should still be having until that takes place. However, I’m finding that I have a lot more freedom mentally that I’ve had in years! While don’t do any exercises outside of what my physical therapist has prescribed for me,  I still enjoy food that I wouldn’t even touch when I was exercising !  I have returned to eating gluten-free because I feel that’s what my body needs.  With that I’ve decided to keep eating pancakes, high calorie salads loaded with goodies,  dark chocolate, lots of popcorn, gluten-free cake, and much more.  Since I’ve gone back to that the headaches have seem to go away.   That being said, I want to continue with this until I know my body is ready to move on!

For any of you are reading this, if you’re seeking out a recovery method, I highly recommend this one. It does require that you refrain from all exercise. However, you have to remember that in exercise you’re tearing muscles and your body has to repair them. So, if you’re exercising when you’re trying to recover and have nothing to repair your muscle  with, then you’re defeating the purpose of exercise and ultimately destroying your body. Something you might want to think twice about. Again I’m not a healthcare professional yet, I am going to school for that, and I highly recommend that you speak with your doctor before attempting this.

Now,  before I go I’ll share something I’m currently struggling with. While I have reached a good weight, I desire to be able to work out again. My physical therapist and Chiropractor want me in the pool  to help me regain balance and strength. Also, the strength exercises at my physical therapist has given me have caused my body to hurt at times.  I’m currently facing a summer where I would very much like some freedom in my body and be able to swim and work out again. I face the following giants in the way:

1.)  muscular issues. There’s treatment that I need that my insurance does not cover.  I currently don’t have the finances to cover it.

2.)  I need access to a good pool with good amenities such as a hot tub and sauna so that before and after I do swim therapy, I can treat my muscles with kindness so they can heal properly. A gym membership like that is quite costly.

3.)  my mom and I both work, however we are facing some financial difficulties. It’s not always easy to purchase things that we need on a daily basis.

Being said, I’m requesting prayer that the Lord either supernaturally heals me with that he provides the things that I need to get the treatment and the access to the facilities for me to be able to get my balance and strength back. Also, prayer for provision for my family and me. Ultimately,  I believe that someday I’ll run again. Please pray  that if the Lord wills, that He will release me to do so!

Another struggle a face, is body image. My body has swelled because of recovery and a lot of my clothes don’t fit me properly.  Please pray that the Lord helps me endure this and make it through to full recovery!

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Before Minnie Maud (left) Thigh gap After Minni Maud (right) Thighs touch, pants don’t fit, but definitely worth it!

Now, off to another amazing vacation! This time it’s the longest vacation I’ve had from school! Lord willing, it will be full of amazing adventures !

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Sweetness in bitter times!

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Mind crammed! That’s the best way to describe what I feel right now. Wow, this whole semester has been a total ride of faith for me. Between studies , blood testing, doctors appointments , MRI , house sitting , work… I found I lost the taste for fun in life. In a session with my counselor she asked me what I did for fun and I laughed ! So, she encouraged me to identify the things that I enjoy and make a way to do them…. easier said than done! However, I took her advice and decided to pray and ask God to open up doors for me to do things like reaching out to the ministry that I’ve been wanting to work with and support , and come up with new recipe ideas. Boy was He quick to answer! The following weekend I began a house-sit. Now, my blender at home had just broken and a lot of the ingredients that I need to make my recipes were running at an all-time low along with my finances. Fortunately, the people I was house-sitting for we’re very generous and allowed me to pick figs from the garden, get fresh eggs from their chickens, and enjoy whatever was in their fridge and pantry! Plus, they had a Vitamixer (morning smoothie heaven)!$! So… Off to work I went on studies and baking! The outcome? A recipe for cookies which I’ll share at the end of this post! That weekend I also decided to give myself a break and despite the physical pain that I was dealing with I sat down with the dogs and enjoyed a viewing of “Dirty Dancing!” It felt like being a kid again! I got to hang out with the most curious looking hairless dogs and a house full of loads of other animals (including snakes, turtles, frogs and fish)! It was like being on a farm! After the weekend was over, I packed up my things and headed home to face the week.
In the midst of studies I felt an urge to contact the woman who heads up the ministry I mentioned a few posts back! Now, it’s time to reveal the name of that nonprofit! If the shoe fits wear it right? Well, the shoe is called The Glass Slipper! It’s an organization that helps people who have been sex trafficked find restoration! From the moment that Donnie Moore had mentioned them at my church, I had totally fallen in love! Right there, the heart of everything I’m going to school for right before my eyes! Upon contacting her , she informed me that she and some of the girls we’re going to go to an A’s game that Reverend Moore had invited them to and they had a ticket that they would like to share with me! What an honor! I quickly accepted and that Saturday I went out to Oakland , met up with the girls and enjoy the game of baseball followed by worship and testimonies from players on both teams that play that night! Plus Donnie Moore and his team performed feats of Strength!

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That night as I walked away, all I could think is after seeing those women and knowing what they’ve been through… Seeing that there’s hope for them… It gave me hope! I want to do what the glass slipper does for women! The girls and I parted ways with a promise to keep in touch, and Lord willing work together soon on a project that is yet to be revealed.
On the way home I remembered that I saw a certain Greyhound sign from the freeway! So , I got off the freeway made an extra effort to charge my phone, and took a picture of myself in front of the very Greyhound station that I got off the bus at on January 11th of 2007. For the first time in almost 10 years I visited the very place that my mom welcomed me with open arms , coming out of a homeless drugged-out situation , smelling like trash, and coming down from my last meth high… I wept and thank God for delivering me!

20160910_184724Despite the daily physical pain that I deal with in the trials that I’ve faced… His grace is what has kept me from going back into the mess that I was! By His grace , I no longer have to pick up a pipe or do a line to find refuge from my trials. I can pray to him, I can seek His face, and I can trust but no matter what tomorrow holds, whether or not I ever receive the healing that my heart so desperately desires, whether or not I ever see any of my dreams come true… ultimately life is fading. All that truely matters is knowing that I’ve lived a life that brings His light to others…
That being said… Here’s some good news… Test results came in and… NO CANCER! Testing for various other things such as thyroid disorder and celiac , at least the heavy part is out of the way and off my shoulders! meanwhile, the battle with physical pain continues! My muscles acting up, along with having to visit the chiropractor several times having a hard time just trying to make it through each day I’m going to continue to trust the Lord! So, questions for you!
First off, while the eating disorder I’m currently recovering from is called orthorexia, which is what has led to a lot of my digestive issues , in stepping into recovery I’ve had to step out of fear and eat things that I before I would consider taboo… Are there Foods that you’ve ever considered taboo or been afraid to eat?
If so have you have your face your fear? How?
Also, is there something that you’ve been desiring to do but have let fear stop you from doing it?
finally, what are some things that you like to do that are fun and help you enjoy a break from the stresses of life?
All being said onto the recipe! Until I post again… God bless!

Almond Butter Cookies

1 & 1/3 cup rolled oats
1 cup mashed sweet potato
1 egg 2 egg whites
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
half a teaspoon of salt
Half teaspoon cinnamon
Half cup of Georgia grinders honey roasted almond butter
Two packets of Justin’s Maple almond butter
9 packets of Zing stevia

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Mix wet ingredients and dry separately, then mix together. Place spoonfuls (about 2-3 tbs full) of cookie batter onto a cookie sheet leaving about a 1.5 in space btween each. Place in oven for 15 min or until baked to your liking… Enjoy warm with some froyo or… Let cool and enjoy with a morning cup of joe!

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