Knowledge is Power...or is it?
Do you know the saying knowledge is power? I think most people do. I've been thinking about that a lot lately as it pertains to my life and my world. And I have to tell you that, as a recovering perfectionist, I'm not sure I completely agree with it. I'd rather it was something like knowledge can be powerful, but it can also be overwhelming. Or, something like that--I'm sure a more talented writer than myself can coin a phrase that rolls off the tongue in a more flowery, poetic way.
Over the past week and a half, my husband and I have been doing a detox. Let me tell you, this detox has been nothing short of phenomenal. The instructor, who I consider to be one of my closest friends, is one of the most knowledgeable people I have ever met on the subjects of nutrition and health. Not only is she knowledgeable, she is supportive and understanding. Over the course of ten days, my husband has lost 8 pounds, and I think I'm somewhere around that total myself. I didn't weigh myself before this, so I'm truly not sure of the exact number. I do know that my love handles have lessened, my pants are much looser, and my bra cups even have a little extra wiggle room in them. I also have to say that I have never really been that hungry while doing this detox, which is pretty phenomenal since some things like this make you feel like you'd give anything for a cheeseburger.
Today, we are ten days in and I'm beginning to think about what my life is going to look like after the twelve days of the detox, and can I just tell you that I am completely and utterly overwhelmed?? This is through no fault of the detox or the instructor. She has done an absolutely amazing job educating us and helping us to understand what is nutritious for us and why. She has even been realistic about the fact that a lot of us will not stay eating from the "detox only" food list that we have been using for the past ten days. It is clear to me [and probably to everyone else around me] that the problem is absolutey, positively ME.
I probably should back up a bit and explain. [Warning, you are heading into my thoughts and its not always a pleasant place to be.] As I'm thinking about the days and weeks after this process, I'm first thinking about how much better I look when I see myself in the mirror in the morning. I'm not going to lie, I don't love my belly or my love handles or the fact that sometimes I change out of a shirt that I have in my closet because I don't like the way I look in it. Then I think about my future health. I understand how healthy I could be and my family could be if we continued eating like this more often. Then I get confused. I think: maybe I could add some cheese back in. [Oh, how I miss cheese.] But then how often do I allow myself to eat it? What will that do to my future health? Do I really need to do that? Can I restrict myself if I start eating it again? I even wonder if this is just food addiction talking. Am I trying to justify eating things that are unhealthy for me?
For most of my life, my understanding has been that vegetables, fruits and meats are generally pretty good for you. There are a few other foods that I always thought were pretty healthy as well: eggs [true], nuts [kind of true, depending on which], and yogurt [not true at all from what I currently understand]. Things truly not on the healthy list that I wish were: cheese, veggie dip, and gin & tonic. Feel free to judge me. I do.
You know what has been bothering me the most, other than the fact that I've basically been misled my entire life? I have no clue how to proceed from here. How do I feed my four-year-old some of these things knowing that they are not great for her health? How do I eat some of these things knowing they can cause negative health effects down the road or how good my body can actually look when I'm not eating them? I understand at this point you are probably thinking I should just eat things in moderation and get over it. Everyone always says it's just about balance. [Is it just me, or are skinny people always the ones who say that?] It's not just about food, either. This is just what I'm currently going through. It's the same with every situation. It's everything. Everything in life.
I sent my husband a message earlier: I'm having a bad day. I don't know how to find balance in my life.
Because guys, as a recovering perfectionist, I am realizing that all of these dang choices we have to make in life [and in our kid's lives] are so freaking overwhelming to me. I live in constant fear that I am doing something wrong or making incorrect choices and I worry about those hurting us down the road. I listen to a podcast on parenting and think about how I need to be more patient when my daughter is asking questions about why I'm asking her to do something, or eat something, or not say something. And I am immediately disappointed in myself for how I've been handling it. For the times when I'm impatient and tell her to do things just because I said so.
When I do 'get into' things, I feel like they sometimes suffocate my life and that is the only thing I am really doing [or the only thing that I am doing well] for that period of time, until I realize that I have really been slacking on some other facets of my life and do some crazy catch up and focus on that aspect only to lose sight on the first one again. I get myself back to exercising four days a week. I get behind with keeping up the house. I start keeping up with the house and picking up a little each day. I start a detox because nutrition is 90% of the battle. My kitchen becomes the only organized place in the house. I overwhelm myself with thoughts about what the heck I'm going to cook for meals anymore and how to balance this when I'm done learning about how our bodies can't actually handle a lot of the foods that we are 'feeding' them. I take a photography class. My daughter watches too much television or plays alone too much. I play with my daughter for a day. I come home to a house that's a mess and think about my overwhelm with dishes in the sink. I'm behind in my class. I yell at my husband because I'm mad at myself that I can't handle all of this.
I think you get the point. Every time I think I'm doing something pretty well, something comes along to tell me I could be doing better or worse, that I should, do better.
It comes down to this: I don't know how to do all the things. I don't know how to stop suffocating myself and my life with all of these thoughts about how I'm not good enough. Because I truly want my best life. I want to enjoy it. Live it to the fullest. Be my healthiest. Grow. Love. Learn. Connect. I want to tune out the noise. Or maybe I want to be able to take it all in and choose and find a balance and move on.
Can you relate? Share your thoughts with me in the comments below. I love discussing ideas with my people.