Hey now! I'm back! Blah blah blah blah la la - la la la la la! Words words and more words! Talk talky talk talk!
Whew! That felt good.
16 days. 16 images. A nice break, but it's no friend of easy to be visually interesting. I settled for a bit of mystery and some story. Sometimes I took photos of different things, different moments in a day, and racked my brain to choose one. Other days, yesterday, actually, I didn't take a picture until evening, and had to look around my room to find something worthy of sharing. The tricky thing was shooting something that conveyed the feel or spirit of the day. Not sure I got consistently got there, but I tried. I will get around to explaining what some of the images represent. (Perhaps.)
Please let me say thank you to the wonderful women who left comments and sent e-mail letting me know I was missed. Hari, you may live to regret your wish for me to use words again. :)
Not only did I take a break from words, but also from food. I did the Master Cleanse again, this time fasting for 16 days + 1 day of prepping my body for food by drinking the required orange juice. Day 18 I did more OJ in the AM, then developed the only lousy feeling I had the whole time by eating too many of the vegetables in the soup you're supposed to make and eat to break the fast. The book suggests sticking with the broth, but my soup was so good that I tore it up. Vegetables and brown rice never tasted so right. Natalie, who has done the fast numerous times, warned me not to overeat (she'd just made that mistake herself), and I thought I listened because I ate less than I wanted to (I'd wanted to eat the whole pot). I still overdid it, and Saturday night I had the gut ache to prove it.
Otherwise, it was smooth sailing. I was hungry some the first day or two, but by day 3 I was ready for the long haul. I felt better than I had in a long time. I planned to do the 10 days, but around day 8 I felt so good that I wanted to go beyond. A few days before, as I was at the checkout counter at Trader Joe's stocking up on lemons and maple syrup, an older black gentleman said to me, You're doing the Master Cleanse, hunh? I told him yes, I'd done it a couple of times before, and I plan to do it yearly at least. He told me he'd just come off 40 days, and that the first time he'd done it, he went 46 days and it cured him of ulcers. He looked incredible, his skin was the smoothest brown, his hair had shine, he was at a healthy weight for his build. He went on to say to me, It makes you not want to eat, doesn't it? It's true that it does. It's such a peaceful break from food obsession.
I didn't feel too sorry for myself because of my broken leg, but what sorrow I did feel, I mostly ate. And mostly in the form of these (the big bag, though. And daily). I allowed myself this indulgence, but I knew I would eventually have to clean up my act. I've written about my slippery eating habits before, and though I haven't kept up the good eats all this while, I'll never stop trying. Again, I've broken pesky food addictions. Plus, I've lost weight. I'd surpassed my 142 lb ceiling by 6 pounds. That in itself wasn't awful, but the fact that the few pants that I could fit had started to hurt, was. On the fast, I lost about a hard 12. I call it hard because my body had no interest in letting go of a single ounce. After eating a gabillion calories a day and lying on my arse every chance I got, my metabolism wasn't great, and my body went into starvation mode and hogged all the weight it could for about the first 6 days. Believe me when I say it's not a thrill to eat no food for a week and only lose 1 lb. In spite of my body's betrayal (I guess it had thought the same thing about me when I was gobbling all those chips), I pressed on, feeling entirely too energetic and vibrant to stop.
I'm changing my relationship with food, and while thinking about this I found myself watching "I Can Make You Thin" on TLC last night. Nothing new under the sun,* but I like that Paul McKenna, the host and guru, is tackling the psychological aspects of eating. I could so relate to the woman who'll be profiled in an upcoming episode. She called herself a chocoholic, and said she eats 40 - 50 lbs of chocolate a week. Who am I to judge? I've been eating my weight in potato chips. From watching the show, I decided to try his eating rules today. It ain't so easy to eat mindfully, without TV or reading, chewing each bite 70 thousand times, putting down utensils in between bites, eating only when I'm hungry (WHAT?!), feeling for my body to signal that I'm full. I've made it through about half of this:
It's cucumber, guacamole, baby heirloom tomatoes with French goat's milk feta (divine) and sunflower seeds, drizzled with lemon juice olive oil, and a bit of salt. The brown things are not cow cuds, but whole grain rice and seed crackers. Earlier, while sitting in silence and moaning gratuitously with every bite -- McKenna says it's important to eat with relish -- I had to grudgingly admit that I was full well before I wanted to stop eating. I've set the plate aside, am trying to resist nibbling from it as I walk by (again), and am waiting to feel hungry again so I can eat the rest of it. (Wait -- I think I feel something -- uh -- no. Not hungry yet. Damn.)
I took daily photos of my mug during the fast. I wanted to mark my progression. (Bubs had mentioned that I had myself a big fat face before I started. He said it more kindly than that, and looking at the pictures, he might have been right.) I'll post a few later in the week. Fat face or not, my hair can be downright frightening first thing in the morning.
Here's more food, because dammit, food is good.
*Is anyone else taking the New Earth class on Oprah.com? Did Eckhart Tolle's discussion on eating with consciousness resonate with you tonight?