Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Sometimes it Just Sucks

Today was a bad day. I'm trying to be better about owning my feelings so I'm okay with saying that today sucked. In terms of taking care of myself and staying on track and eating well and even working out, it was great.

But I also accompanied my in-laws to a horrifying appointment at UCLA to hear in excruciating detail the major surgery my mother-in-law will likely have for cancer that has spread from a spot on her lip to her jaw bone. The procedure is just terrible. I'll spare the details, but suffice to say it's a nightmare which involves a 10-12 hour surgery, a 7-10 day hospital stay, a year recover period and a 25-30% cure rate.

One of my favorite steps that I outlined to meet my goal of losing weight was "Talk or write about why I'm stressed and figure out how to make myself feel better without food." It was really helpful, today of all days, to remember that as I went about this horrible afternoon. It's hard to be motivated to eat anything after you sit in the kind of meeting that I sat through, but when you have a weird relationship with food, you'll use it anyway you think it'll make you feel better.

I recognized today of all days that I especially had to take care of myself in a way that would make me feel better and not worse. And I know enough to know that using food as a way to make myself feel better, never ever works. After the appointment, I drove on home, right past the In-n-Out Burger and made lunch (which I didn't eat at my desk!). I finished my work day and actually talked with some people about what was going on. I'm so concerned about being a "Debbie Downer" that I sometimes just don't talk about what's going on. But this is big and scary and sad and I do need to talk about it.

A co-worker asked me if I was getting the support I needed while taking care of my in-laws and being the one person there to make sure they knew what they were doing, asking the right questions of the doctors and surgeons. It made me realize that I don't even know what support I need right now.

I do know that I need to keep making myself a priority in order to survive all of this. And I'm happy to report I'm doing that. Yes, I know it's day two. I know this is day two of day two hundred thousand (give or take a few days). But right now, in this moment, I'm very much appreciative of the fact that I ate three great healthy meals, didn't work too much today, took time to do my own thing and went for a great walk where I could hear the waves crashing up on the shore.

It certainly helped the day suck a little less.


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