Things I Forgot I Love

I know better habits have formed in the last 4 months: I microwaved a 10oz bag of Great Value chopped spinach. The Great Value was better than a few of the premium brands I’ve tried in the last month. Added a liberal amount of Hidden Valley Ranch seasoning, and a generous run of Sriracha on top. After eating, I felt full. I also got a variety of flavor. Had I never tasted french fries, pizza, or potato chips, this simple meal or side dish would be more than satisfying. I acquired a love for greens of all kinds because of my Grandma. It never occurred to me to think that greens weren’t delicious.

Then, it hit me: 500 or so calories for the day was unwise. So, I had an Olè healthy tortilla with smoked turkey and lettuce. 700. Bag of PopChips. 800. Really full. I put a can of no-sugar peaches in the fridge to chill.

Not that the songs weren’t already forming grooves from overplay in my head, but I listened to “Stupid Love” by Lady Gaga and “Save Your Tears” by The Weeknd on repeat while I ate.

I’ll have a bit of vodka and homemade sweet and sour later. I might make it to 1300 calories. Some people jab at me for claiming not to count calories while sometimes knowing how many I eat on some days. Because I don’t eat a complex series of foods, it is easier for me to do a quick count if I need to. Also, when people ask me what the calorie load would be, I figure it out. All that counting to be healthy would be on my last nerve very quickly if I felt like I had to do it to be healthy. I still think that most of us know most of the time if we’ve overindulged, whether it is food, alcohol, or redacted.

I’ll finish the day with at least 12 servings of fruits and vegetables.

I wasn’t “hungry” once today. I drank coffee, three kinds of broth, flavored water, tea, and one soda.

My secret? None.

Choose healthy. Less. Variety.

And don’t focus on food. If you need a list of amazing things you can do to distract yourself from your food obsession, I can do that.

I know this will get more complicated with more family members. That’s part of the challenge for all of us.

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I wrote the above post yesterday. When I went to donate plasma today, my iron was just a bit low. First, when I started donating plasma, my regular blood work told me that my iron level was very healthy. My numbers were all normal when I did my physical this year. The same was true during my first visits to donate plasma. Given that I’ve been taking an iron supplement and eating more iron-rich foods just to be cautious, this was a bit of a surprise. In short, I’m not 30 anymore. In case someone is about to send me a list (of do or don’t) about iron… I know. This is the sort of thing that I knew might come up with plasma donation, which in part, is why I never entertained the idea of attempting to donate as often as many people do.

When I decided that I was no longer fat, I knew I’d have to learn life-long habits and tactics to stay healthy. This is part of the process. I’m lucky that I don’t have to donate plasma to earn enough money to eat. I’ve talked to several people in that situation since I started donating plasma. My heart hurts a little bit for them.

There are success stories among them. One middle-aged man I talked to used the monitoring process to stop smoking. He then began to eat a regimented diet and lost 75 lbs. In his mind, donating plasma saves him 2-3 times what he earns through donation.

An additional note: because of a horrifying morning at work, I didn’t eat. It almost got the best of me. Because I’m accustomed to it, I forget that my job is very physical. Being ‘thin’ in this environment requires more vigilance from me. I’m still adjusting. I know I can’t get back a few years, but it is stupid of me to have failed for so long.

I’m not sharing this picture to be vain. A co-worker told me to take a picture and look at my arm without flexing. I did. And it surprised me that it was my arm. I did the same with my arm on the way home that day, too, because I momentarily didn’t recognize it as ‘my’ arm. It is a bit ridiculous so don’t think too poorly of me for sharing it. A co-worker also pointed out that the pants I transitioned to are suddenly and surprisingly baggy on me.

Looking at my arm led me to keep touching the sternum bone that was hidden for me for a LONG time.

I laugh if I think about it too long, because a part of the authentic me was hidden and buried during that time too.

Love, X

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