The Foodie Blogroll

Behind brown eyes...

Hope you're all having a good day so far, even though it's only the morning.  As a subscriber to many blogs, one of the one's I look forward to most is Angela's blog, from Oh She Glows.  I get her email every morning at 7:07 am, two or three minutes after I step out of the shower.  This gives me something to read while I eat my breakfast.  The other morning, her blog entry really hit something in me.  Last week I started writing a blog post that I've been wanting to talk about for quite some time and have avoided writing about out of fear and judgment from others (especially people whom I know in real life that read my blog).  I've tried writing a blog about this a couple times now, each time, erasing the words that I've written down.  This morning however, after reading Angela's latest post... it inspired me, and motivated me, and made me feel that it would be okay to share my story with you all, in hopes that hopefully it'll help with some of my struggles but also inspire others as well.
I'm not sure how I'm going to do this post, if I'm going to post my story all at once, or if I will do it over the span of the next few days... as I feel like I want to actually talk a little in depth about it, and not really cheat my story out.  I don't know how many people will read it, I don't know who I will inspire or who I will be judged by, but ever since I was younger I have always found it releaving to write my feelings down.  This is one subject that I haven't written about, out of fear of even admitting it to myself.  There are not even many people I have told this to, because truthfully it was such a time of weakness for me, I'm a tad embarrassed as well so it makes it a little harder.

To start off this story... I've mentioned a couple of times that I was on disability.  This is where it all begins, give or take a couple of months due to memory.  I believe it started at the end of my first year of university when I started getting these weird feelings all over my body, my neck, arms, and back were in constant pain.  This went on for quite sometime realizing that there actually may be something wrong and I'd actually need to see a doctor.

I spoke to my doctor quite frequently, her never believing me and thinking that it was all in my head.  This went on for quite some time, I then had a lot of tests done, blood tests for MS, gout, lupus, arthritis, diabetes, and a few other things that I cannot remember.  With time my pain was getting worse... I'd sometime lose complete feeling in my arms (where I wouldn't even be able to hold a pen... I could simply describe it as pins and needles feeling, but 10x worse), my back would be in excruciating pain where I wouldn't even be able to bend over, I wouldn't be able to roll over onto my other side when lying in bed, or I'd barely even be able to walk to the washroom, my neck, was just screwed up all together.  Due to being in pain a lot of the time, this led to really bad insomnia, which later led to depression, and with the depression, my anxiety got really, really bad. 

After some more months passing by, I eventually started taking anti-depressants and anxiety pills.  Once the "diagnosis" had been given, I started doing some research.  I had heard of fibromyalgia before, since my aunt and one of Jordan's friends had it, also since I was aware of it, I always seemed to tune into the fibromyalgia commercials.  After reading numerous articles, blogs and forums on the subject I seemed to notice certain patterns to reduce flare-ups; food.  There were a lot of articles that stated acidic fruits caused flare ups (and there was no way I was giving up my pineapple, oranges, lemons or limes), cutting out beverages that contain high-fructose corn syrup (I cut out pop from my diet when I was in grade 9 so that wasn't a problem, however I noticed a lot of the juices I liked to drink contained HFCS), avoiding alcohol and caffeine (this wasn't a problem, coffee makes me ill, and alcohol is consumed on such a rare basis it really didn't matter), foods with aspartame (this wasn't a problem either... until a few months later which I will further discuss), sugar, fructose, and simple carbohydrates, yeast and gluten, dairy, and a few others that I cannot recall at this moment.

After reading all this stuff, I knew that my diet wasn't on par, and that perhaps it really was affecting my health.  One of the first things I cut out was all grains; my rice, pasta, bread, cereals, everything... (yes, I was very ignorant and uneducated the time, and thought that all grains contained gluten... it wasn't until I really started reading more blogs that I became aware of these grains), and also cut out juice completely.  This is where my story with disordered eating comes in.  After cutting out the grains, I started getting scared to eat a lot of foods.  I became skeptical of a lot of foods and was scared that perhaps these foods were causing me to be in the pain I was in.  I started writing everything I ate in a book so that I could later evaluate what was eaten and how I felt that day, what I noticed, what pain trends there were etc...

Once I started writing down the foods that were being consumed, I also noticed something else... there were a lot of foods in my diet that really shouldn't be there.  So, onto cutting more foods from my diet... which also led me to start measuring my foods.  I remember sitting in my nutrition class and my professor asking if we'd ever measured our cereal and or pasta before.  My answer was no, especially growing up in an Italian/French family, pasta was something I ate on a regular basis, and could wolf down a huge serving of, I'd never thought of portioning out my pasta before, and cereal wasn't something I ate on a regular basis, until a couple of months later.  I started measuring a lot of food, one of the first things was popcorn... yes, how ridiculous does that sound?  I would restrict myself to one cup of popped popcorn a day.  Seriously, one cup of popped popcorn, what is that a whopping 14 kernels?  Ridiculous.

I no longer ate processed food, so even eating at restaurants became challenging.  This is when I started to blog.  It allowed me to try out new foods, experiment with foods, and get ideas from other bloggers.  Blogging at the time saved me, it allowed me to be creative, it allowed me to experiment, it opened up a new array of ingredients that I'd never even heard of before; millet, chia seeds, grapeseed oil, bulgur, guavas (which I will never consume again), spelt flour.  I even started trying foods that I never would of imagined putting into my body; asparagus, green beans, black beans, lentils, sweet potatoes, kale, spinach smoothies, etc.  I also started pairing flavours together that I would never imagine myself doing, or making dishes that I'd never think of, avocado pudding?  Spinach/kale smoothies?  Plain yoghurt as a dip?  Cinnamon and chickpeas?

Food had saved me, but slowly it started to ruin me.

I started baking and cooking a lot.  However, I was also restricting a lot of my food.  One meal that I used to love to make was chicken/shrimp fried rice, after that, I would make fried rice but this time, the vegetables would stay separated from the rice, until they were done cooking, and then I would add the rest to the rice for Jordan to eat.  I would make meals like that all the time, but changing it so that Jordan would get his grains and me not so much. 

I then started to notice something else... I was losing weight.  I really liked this, because I was never happy with my body.  I was always self-conscious of my stomach, I always felt as though it was huuugeee.  I started looking in the mirror all the time, I started weighing myself, and the jotting of my foods continued.  I then started eating a lot less too because I noticed my weight was going down, I wanted to see even more results faster.  With this however came mood swings, really crazy mood swings.  The mood swings I'm sure were partially due from my lack of sleep, since my flare-ups and pain weren't getting any better, my anti-depressants were making me feel like a zombie, and well my diet truly wasn't well rounded.

My diet at the time, if memory serves me right would be something along the lines of:
  • one cup of soy milk + banana + 1 scoop of protein powder for breakfast
  • protein bar - snack
  • 2 clementines or other fruits such as cantaloupe/pineapple and cottage cheese for lunch
  • my oh so huge and filling one cup of popcorn for a snack
  • then some random "stir-fried" vegetable dinner with no grains
... as you can see, I really wasn't getting a heck of a lot of food, vitamins, proteins, fiber... really anything.  This went on for a few months.

In April of 2010 I moved back home.  I really wasn't doing a lot of stuff at home.  At this point I was incredibly depressed, I cried all the time, I was in pain all of the time, and just hated waking up in the morning because I knew it would be the same thing the next day.  I never saw my friends.  I would sit infront of the tv watching The Food Network dreaming of what desserts to make.  I'd play with my cat.  And I would spend a lot of time in the kitchen (at all hours of the day, whether it be 10:00 am, 2:00 pm or 3:00 am, if I was awake you could guarantee at some random hours I'd be in the kitchen whipping something up).  However, while "baking" my desserts, I never tried any of my desserts (I think this is why I'm such a good baker now, is because I never tried my desserts so I really needed to make sure that others would eat it... and to my surprise they always got gobbled up).  I would only "try" my desserts, I'd take a bite here and there.  Truthfully at the time, my blog was such a lie, but it allowed me to cover up my ED.  "I swear I eat, I have evidence look at my blog".

My diet got even worse when I moved back home.  My breakfasts were even smaller than they previously were, however, I started to throw in some cereals so I would get my fiber.  I was noticing that... well, I wasn't going to the washroom regularly, where I was going once or twice a day... I was going every 2-3 days.  Yes, I might of added cereal but this was still the only grains I was getting into my diet, and yes fruits and vegetables have a lot of fiber but so do grains, so I started drinking Metamucil religiously, once when I first bought it, then it went up to twice a day to sometimes three times a day as I would want to "flush" everything from my body.  My breakfasts were now yoghurts with no fat, and added sweeteners, with a whopping 80 calories per 3/4 cup (however, I would only eat 1/2 cup of yoghurt).  I would top my yoghurt with 1/2 cup of bran cereal which gave a whopping 80 calories.  Woo, breakfast being the most important part of the day, I was starting it off with less than 200 calories, it's a wonder that I was so exhausted all the time.  I then started chewing lots, and lots, and lots of gum to deter me from eating (yes, these were highly sweetened gums as well, usually bubble gum flavoured to be exact).  I then started getting hooked on powdered drinks (since I "couldn't" drink juice since it contained HFCS, I thought sweeteners would be okay, also, these only had 5 calories per package, yay, another way to lose weight, it was either powdered packets, or artificially flavoured fruit waters (diet-only since they contained 0 calories).  For dinner I would binge on either ice cream, or popcorn.  Also, I would drink between 13-16 cups of water a day, yes I was a waterfall. That is pretty much what my diet was looking like, other than if my friends wanted to go out for sushi, where I would binge, and binge and binge.  I guess wanting to prove to my friends, that yes I was skinny, but I still ate like a tank, and I'm assuming subconsciously refueling my body from the nutrients, calories and fats that I wasn't receiving on a daily basis.  (To see that written on the screen... oh my goodness... what was I thinking...)

At this point, I was seeing quick, quick changes in my weight, almost a pound was lost every 1-2 days, I was loving it.  It started to become this game in my head.  I started weighing myself a lot more frequently too.  If I would eat fruit I would look up their calories to see how much I was getting into my body.  No, I wasn't looking at the nutritional value, only calories.  I would feel okay eating a whole 1L tub of ice cream, but sitting down and having a smoothie or a bowl of fresh fruit seemed ludicrous to me.  I went from 140 lbs, down to 116 lbs in 7 months.  I remember in April I was 116 lbs, then, in July... I went down to 106 lbs.  Every time I looked at the scale and saw a lower number I couldn't wait to get to the next "lower" number.  The number became so incredibly important.  The lowest I "achieved" was 101.7 lbs, I really was happy, but... I started to notice that I was having a lot of problems.  If I got up from the couch "too quickly" I would get super dizzy and black out for a few seconds, I was sleeping about one hour every 2 or 3 days with I imagine micro-sleeps thrown in randomly, and really, I was incredibly lethargic, other than being in the kitchen doing some baking/cooking that is the only exercise I did during the day, other than walking up and down the stairs to go to the washroom.

I started getting a lot of comments from "friends".  Girls would tell me "wow, you look so good Sam!", while guys... which even to this day it still stings but I know deep down my friend was just saying it out of concern.  My two friends and I went for sushi lunch and I remember saying "I can't wait to eat, I'm so hungry!", and one of the guys responded with, "yeah, you look it".  I was so hurt, truthfully, it was one of the most hurtful comments I'd received and I didn't quite understand it... or I was in denial of it at the time.  I remember sitting at the table, and honestly... I don't know if I'd ever eaten that much sushi before (I would always eat a lot when it came to all-you can eat buffets, but this was ridiculous) with an additional six scoops of ice cream at the end.  Oh, I wanted to prove him wrong.  After his initial comment, and a further comment of the leggings I was wearing, telling me I shouldn't be wearing them since the crotch didn't fit properly... oh I felt like I had succeeded.

Those two comments were stingers yes, but then I also received a comment from someone in Jordan's family that truly killed me.  I was told that I "need to start eating because my organs were going to fail".  I took this to heart, I remember telling Jordan just how hurt I was, and being a good boyfriend he stuck up for me, and yes, just like I'd done on so many occasions brought up the fact that I do eat, and I have my blog to prove it.  Deep down, I knew it was the truth though... which is why it hurt so much. 

Even with all these comments, and looking in the mirror and not recognizing the person in the mirror I continued.  My doctor at one point even looked at me and said, "Sam, I can see your bones that's all I'm going to say", because even after numerous visits I would tell her the same thing, "I eat ALL the time, you should see the sushi I had yesterday!"  I still wasn't happy.  I might of been skinny, something I looked forward to my whole life, but I still wasn't happy.  I weighed myself all the time, worried that from the night to the morning my OUNCES would of increased, that I should of had one less bite of ice cream than I did, that my clothes weren't fitting, and even when I went shopping the XS wouldn't even fit me, I was losing a ton of hair, my hair was becoming incredibly thin, etc, etc...

I had people who were concerned, yes, it's not that I had no one around me, trying to tell me that I had a problem, I was in denial, "I eat so much, I'm just not gaining weight!"  I looked gross.  I look at pictures now, and honestly... I don't know what I was thinking.  I was a bridesmaid in my aunts wedding (I had to delete all the pictures I had with me because it hurt so much that I'd let myself get so wrapped up in this world), I remember walking up the stone path to get to the wedding blacking out there, but having to act like everything was okay, when it sure as heck wasn't.

At this point my baking had started to change too.  Butter was bad, very, very bad it contained fats.  Butter was replaced with applesauce.  Eggs also contained fat (not only did I cut out eggs from my baking... this is where my preliminary veganism started, as I'd already cut out cows milk months and months before).  Eggs got replaced with yoghurt (because at the time I wasn't aware of flax eggs).  My baking was just different, tasty yes, but... not the same.  I started experimenting with more "weird" combinations.

I was still eating fish, but other than the fish everything else I ate was vegan.  Life was sucking. 

I remember I started my first show in October, and would go crazy for the cakes, really is that a shocker? I needed fat more than anything.  I forgot to mention, I was always incredibly cold.  Even in the summer, I would wear sweat pants, sweat shirts and sit by a HEATER.  Yes, this is even with my house being disgustingly hot (where my friends would come over and sweat just sitting on the couch) because I didn't have air conditioning, but I was still cold.  Surprisingly, my iron was only about 2% off from the normal persons iron, so this is when I started experimenting with spinach smoothies, it helped, iron was back to normal.

This bad thinking, poor eating, scale weighing, Metamucil intaking (which I then started hiding and drinking in my room because my mom had approached me on a few occasions saying that "Sam, people who drink those all the time have eating disorders") went on for a couple more months.  In December of 2010 (yes, just a few short months ago), my mom told me she was taking me to the hospital to speak to someone about my ED.  I denied it, there was no way I was going to listen to my family members and listen to specialists talk about me, try to help me and make me feel like I was on Intervention, there was no way.  From that day on, I made a conscious effort to change my diet.  My mom had been comments more frequently, as was my dad, but that last move, it did something, a light bulb in my head went off.
Me at a wedding, at 102.6 lbs (yes, I remember the exact weight, I was at this weight for a few months)... you can really see how skinny I was, especially my collar bones.

My New Years resolution was to put on weight and to work out.  I did.  I got an idea in my head, and I knew I needed to stick to it.  Yes, this may be how my ED started in the first place (I got an idea of my head of foods I needed to restrict to help one problem... which then slapped in the face because it just created more).  I wrote down goals on my blog, as well as some even more personal ones down on paper and knew I needed to make a change.  It helped, good or bad when I get an idea in my head I need to go through with it.

I started doing Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred video, every single day.  I also started eating a lot more food, fats, sugars, real, non-artifiicially sweetened foods, cut out the Metamucil, gum, and powder/sweetener drinks.  I started having oatmeal for breakfasts, and smoothies.  Having stir-fries with lots of tofu and vegetables and eating real snack.  I noticed that not only was I putting on weight, I was gaining muscle.  I remember one day I put on a pair of pants and they no longer fit the way they were fitting.  I'd lost a lot of weight... yes, but I also went from having DD36 sized breasts to 32A/34B breasts, having a butt, to no butt, having muscle to not, so when I put on my pants and they were tight I was ecstatic.  To this day, I still wear all of my jeans from my "skinny days", and they still fit.  I may 15 pounds heavier, and at my healthy-weight, but the same size pants fit, however, I've also had to buy a few new pairs.  It just goes to show you that weight really is a number, not a size.

I was noticing that not only were my pants getting tighter, I was no longer blacking out or getting dizzy.  My anxiety wasn't there, and with my anxiety not being there, a lot of the things I did that were due to my OCD also are no longer there.  I wasn't in pain anymore, even though I started making my own breads, eating rice/other grains on a daily basis and a heck of a lot of it.  I wasn't in pain, and yes, I was working out.  (I didn't really touch upon this at all during this story, because I feel as though I want to do another real-honest entry on my fibromyalgia + working out).  I felt really happy.  My confidence was real, and I really was starting to feel good about who I was.

As soon as that switch went off, there was no looking back.  The calorie-counting stuck honestly... for only about two weeks, the scale measuring stopped (I weigh myself about once a month now)... but really this was the hardest habit to kick.  I went to a 98% vegan diet (I say that, because, I do allow myself to indulge in sugary treats if I want them, or some ice cream from time to time.  If there is one thing I learnt over the past few years, it's that, denial is what led me with an ED.  I'm not going to restrict myself from something I'm craving.  I went too long doing that, and being unhappy.  I follow a vegan diet almost to a tee, my baked goods and cooking are always vegan, and I don't feel like I'm "losing out" on anything even though I'm not eating meat, drinking cow's milk, having real butter, or eggs for breakfast, but sometimes I just want to let go of my day-to-day diet and let some full-fat creamy foods into my body.  I won't feel bad about it, and I won't deny myself it anymore.  If I felt I was "denying" myself meat, eggs, dairy etc, I'd eat it, but I've become a very good cook and can easily replicate those "tastes" and "flavours" through vegan cooking so why not.  I do the body good, and I do the Earth and it's creatures good).  I love fats, avocados, legumes (especially chickpeas), oils, etc... I do not fear them any longer. 

I can honestly, and truly say that right now, I am at the happiest I've been in a long time.  I remember having feelings of depression from as young as grade eight, which the majority of those feelings stemmed from my unhappy body.  I might of suffered with fibromyalgia, gone on disability, been a moody son of a beeotch, suffered from an eating disorder, but I'm so thankful it happened.  I'm happy that I can actually talk about it now.  I'm happy that I didn't suffer from it as bad as I thought, and that I was able to turn my life around so quickly... I mean sometimes if I'm feeling anxious, of course old habits seem to come to mind and slip up because it just seems easier, but I know deep down, it's not healthy, it's not right, it wasn't fun and I don't ever want to go through that again.  I love my body now, I love working out, I love looking in the mirror and knowing that I love myself with the exception that I still don't like my stomach, however, it's not because I think it's fat... it's that it's not muscular enough.  I'm not looking at that however as something I need to restrict from my diet to get a leaner stomach (I eat dessert at least once a day, and that is going to continue), it is something I need to work on physically through exercise!  I went from not being able to barely get off the couch because I would black out to now biking pretty intensely for an hour every single day, walking, being able to run and not feel like it took every single ounce of my being not to die, etc.  Life truly is great, and I may of had to go through some struggles and loss to get to where I am but I wouldn't have it any other way.  This illness I went through made me stronger, happier and more confident.  Blogging has helped, because it also introduced me to other bloggers that I could read their stories and know that it does get easier and you can change.  One of the first things I did to get over my ED was I emailed a fellow blogger who suffered from an ED.  I wrote her a long email, and she was the first person I admitted I had a problem to, I couldn't tell my family, my boyfriend or my friends, but telling someone anonymous, who had gone through the same, who hopefully wouldn't judge me I felt safe.  That was the first step, and since then it's only gotten easier.

What was the reason behind this post?  Well, last week I had posted a picture on my Facebook and someone with responded with something along the lines of "you're so skinny, eat a cookie".  The truth is, now I eat cookies, and I eat a lot of them but I'm still skinny.  I responded to her a few days later in a private message just saying that, I know you weren't saying it maliciously, and you really haven't a clue (since it's not something I broadcast or have really talked about up until now) but that I suffered from disordered eating.  She felt horrible, but that wasn't the reason why I wrote it to her.  The reason is because... if there is one thing I learnt through this experience, is that we truly don't know someones story.  We don't know what's going on in their head, we cannot understand anyone else, and sometimes we cannot even understand ourselves.  Who are we to judge?  Why judge the girl with the skinny collar bones, pelvis and stick thin legs?  Why judge the man on tv who eats 5000 calories of food a day?  Why judge the man picking through the garbage looking for remnants of food?  Why judge the lady with the walker who's smoking a cigarette?  The answer is we shouldn't be.  I try really hard now a days to not do so, sometimes it's hard, I mean when it comes down to it, we are humans and it's only human nature to judge, but I try not to make crude remarks or rude thoughts about people before I speak to them.  I suffered a lot of pain, and comments from friends, family as we as strangers, "did you see how skinny that girl is?" (of course I did, I look in the mirror every morning, I see my bones sticking out, I see how hideous I look, you don't need to point it out... but overhearing that comment, it also helped).  We don't know who is suffering from what, we also don't know why, we are all human, we all make mistakes, we all suffer from things from time to time, or something happens that is not in our control, but trying not to judge others, it really does go a long way.

Just as a side note... I would often listen to the song, Behind Blue Eyes - The Who...

No one knows what it's like
To be the bad man
To be the sad man
Behind blue eyes

No one knows what it's like
To be hated
To be fated
To telling only lies

But my dreams
They aren't as empty
As my conscience seems to be

I have hours, only lonely
My love is vengeance
That's never free

No one knows what it's like
To feel these feelings
Like I do
And I blame you

No one bites back as hard
On their anger
None of my pain and woe
Can show through

But my dreams
They aren't as empty
As my conscience seems to be

I have hours, only lonely
My love is vengeance
That's never free

When my fist clenches, crack it open
Before I use it and lose my cool
When I smile, tell me some bad news
Before I laugh and act like a fool

If I swallow anything evil
Put your finger down my throat
If I shiver, please give me a blanket
Keep me warm, let me wear your coat

No one knows what it's like
To be the bad man
To be the sad man

Behind blue eyes , to remind myself that... no one did know what it was like "behind brown eyes" (in my case) but it's because I never shared my story, I never saw a specialist so I didn't open up, I only told a few friends about it, and that's only recently really.  If you don't speak up, if you're not honest, if you don't admit you have a problem nothing is going to change, you're going to remain where you are.  It's up to you to make a difference and to realize that you are worth happiness, and that you are beautiful no matter if you're a size zero or a size 6, it's just a number, and if you're healthy, it's all that should matter.

Me at about 106 lbs, you can really see here how sunken in my face got... 

This is my story.  I've been blogging for almost two years now.  What started out as something that was suggested by a friend to cure boredom, turned into something that saved me, that almost ruined me to saving me again.  I've read numerous stories of other bloggers who have suffered from ED's that have motivated and inspired me, as well as dozens and hundreds of other people and I thought that I would get my story out there.  If I inspire, or make awareness to even one other person it would mean the world to me.  It saved me because truthfully my organs more than likely were going to "shut down" if I didn't stop that downward spiral of horribleness.  It was hard to write, and truthfully I debated it for a long time.  As I said, I'd tried writing my story before, and always deleted it, I guess I wasn't as ready as I thought.  This time, I know my story is real, it's true, and I want to help others the way other female's stories helped me.

Since then, I've spoken to a few people about what I went through, but not into as much detail as I did here.  It's nice to finally have my story written down, and to see and remember what I went through, and to know that I really have come a long way.

One last note: I've noticed especially lately how a lot of other bloggers out there who claim to be healthy-bloggers, when truthfully, it feels how blogging was to me; a mechanism to cope with ones ED.  They talk about the recipes being low-calorie, fat-free, so healthy,  non-guilty (I do use this saying from time-to-time but it usually incorporates desserts that are full of good fats), some vegan bloggers who are now even blogging with vegan and gluten-free recipes, to me this isn't right.  There's enough people who have suffered are currently suffering, who hid behind their shadows, or are still hiding behind them and promoting one's blog as "healthy" when truthfully a lot of us readers can see through it just saddens me.  It makes it seem alright to eat low-calories, no fat foods and yes, it's something we should watch but not obsess over.  These are just my thoughts... as I know it's hard to get out of that mindset but it's hard enough to get over an ED when you probably are food crazed and look for other bloggers as inspiration and when you get spoon-fed these recipes that look amazing and also have no fats or anything in them, it just it hurts to see that.

I had subscribed to a lot of bloggers but the past few weeks I've unfortunately unsubscribed to quite a few blogs.  It's nothing against the people, because just like reading a book, when you read someones blog everyday you start to learn who they are, you learn things about them, etc... I just, I didn't feel right reading certain blogs anymore.  With that this is my story, and I'm leaving you a not-so beautiful picture of myself before gobbling down that really odd-flavoured cupcake.

Not the prettiest of pictures, but, 
you can see here my face is a lot fuller and not crazy-skinny looking.

I don't have a question for this post.  
I just want to leave you all with something to think about...
of course something that we've all heard 100 x before,
"Never judge a book by it's cover"
"Before you criticize someone, you should walk a mile in their shoes".

- Samantha


Anonymous said...

Thank you for your story.. It mirrors mine in so many ways. I've started and quit blogging for the same reasons. I want to be ready and honest when I blog. For now, I'm taking one day at a time and though it isn't easy, I'm so much happier than I was before.

Samantha said...

It's funny (well not really) but the more weight you lose the more unhappy you get. When you start to put on weight, and eat more, you're actually getting your proper nutrients so it's a wonder why we start to suffer from an ED in the first place. Good luck with your quest, and hopefully you'll be able to start blogging freely and honestly. My heart goes out to you and your journey <3

Erik said...

Wow, that's quite a story. I am on the opposite end of things - I've been heavy much of my life. I've lost weight and gained it back plus extra several times. The last time I got to within my 'healthy weight', people started telling me I looked too thin. I didn't believe them. I thought I could easily stand to lose another 10-15 lbs to get to my ideal weight. Now I'm back on track to lose weight again. I was at my highest ever a couple of years ago. I knocked 30 lbs off and have kept it off. Now I'm working on the rest. Down another 23 lbs with a good 75 to go before I reach my healthy goal weight. Learning to rethink food and its impact on my life has been difficult, but I've found so many good sources of healthy eating information out there. Knowing others struggle with food as I have is a good thing to know. We're not alone, whether we be to heavy or too thin, we need to learn to be healthy, regardless of our final weight. Thanks for the story, it's inspiring.

Samantha said...

Erik, thank you for sharing your story, sorry it's taken me so long to get back to you. I read your story once you commented, but I've been so busy with work I didn't get a chance to respond.

It's nice to hear other people's stories about weight when it comes to the opposite spectrum, most of the blogs I read of people suffering with food struggles are people who are eating too little.

I cannot personally relate to you, but I can emphasize with you, as my mom has been on the bigger side and has struggled with her weight since she had my brother and I. I see her weight fluctuate all the time, she does really well, and then stress from work, and other problems in life attack and the weight gets put back on. It's a vicious cycle whether you suffer from eating too much or suffering from eating too little of food. But you have to take everything with a grain of salt, and you need to work hard and realize that your life is important and you are worth having a great, long life!

I wish you the best of luck with your journey and hope that you will reach your balance with food, and the other triggers that offset the weight.

<3 Samantha

Anonymous said...

I recognize a lot of your behaviors in my own, which I guess isn't surprising: in the quest to lose weight we end up discovering many of the same tecniques to stave off hunger. I'm so glad that you managed to recover so beautifully, you are an inspiring message of hope! I'm still on the road. I know I want to recover, to reject the nasty, oppressive ED persona that's sucking life and joy out of me, but I'm not quite there yet. I have good days and some days of out-of-control negativity. And of course, even though I know how destructive and desastrous it is on my holistic health and all the components of my health (body, mind, spirit, emotion) I can't reason myself out of it. But I have come a long way, and I do have hope that I will be able to embrace myself as I am and love myself, and actually treat myself with that love, the love that God, my friends, and my family have for me. I have hope, and that's what gives me courage to get up in the mornings.

Thank you again for sharing your story, you have inspired me, and who knows? Maybe this is my own "anonymous letter" to a blogger that helps me turn my life around.

I also want you to know that I am following your blog. Your recipes and pictures are so beautiful. I doubt I'll comment much, or if I do I will not be anonymous anymore. I wish you all the best and many blessings in your life.