Addiction 101 – When Food is not just Food

March 14, 2010 in Anna's Process Blog

It started with a piece of cheese.

Yesterday as I woke up, I was going to eat breakfast. I ‘asked my body’ what it wanted and the ‘reply’ I got was ‘cheese’. See I ‘love’ cheese, and I always got a stomach ache from eating rich cheeses and dairy products such as ice cream, so it was like a specific point and example of self-abuse and self-interest, where I ate cheese even though it gave me a stomach pain, with the justification that I was allowed to, because it is my body and I decide what I do with it and it is only a little cheese and it tastes so good that I just can’t help myself.  This whole thing fast becomes complicated and a whole world in itself – because besides being type A blood type and therefore being predisposed of not processing dairy very well, in addition I was lactose intolerant as a child, supposedly because my mother, who gave birth to me at the age of 42, ‘ran out’ of breast milk when I was an infant. So I did not eat or drink anything containing dairy until I was 12 and she decided to test out if I was still intolerant. Up until then I only had access to dairy when I sneaked my way to it. So I would eat ice cream at a birthday party without my mother knowing it, and two hours later break out with hives all over my body. Or I would steal a big chunk of cheese from the fridge and keep it  hidden so I could eat from it when I wanted to. So it is sufficient to say that cheese has a special place in my heart. I am telling this story to share how easy it is to dilute oneself into believing something is an act of innocence – when in fact a lot of manipulation and deception has gone into it. After what happened yesterday, I am pretty sure that it was not by body claiming that it required cheese and that it was a thought that I interpreted as the body speaking, so that I could justify for myself eating cheese.  Anyway, I ate the cheese, just a little bit I told myself. With two pieces of dried toast. Afterwards I got a stomach ache, almost as on schedule, maybe because I felt guilty or for making a big deal out of it – What is really interesting is what happened following the ‘cheese incident’ the rest of the day yesterday and today as well. I experienced the most difficult day so far of keeping my diet, not overeat and not eat from desire for taste, memory and so on. I started making excuses and stepped over the boundaries I have set for myself. In return I felt guilty and my body felt very uncomfortable, heavy and aching. Today I have even considered smoking a cigarette. Last time I did that , it did not take me many hours before I did smoke the cigarette and soon after that was back on my 20 + a day. So I haven’t and I noted this for myself as I had the thought. It all started with me allowing myself to eat a piece of cheese and it has obviously very little to do with the cheese itself. It has to do with who I was in that moment. The day before yesterday I experienced a release and I trusted myself, to simply eat, instead of having to restrict myself according to specific rules and so I expected that I would be able to do the same the following day. It was almost like an arrogant moment of believing that I now have full control over my actions. Because I clearly don’t. And it is not because I am not able to Direct myself in the moment – it is because I have been living this for so long, for so many years that I have created myself around it, I  have created a relationship to food, to eating, to smoking, to consuming that is not based on nurturing my body, but on satisfying ideas of satisfaction, of taming and obeying fear and desires – of everything else than being Here. And this is not the first time I have experienced this – and I am not the only one who has experienced this. It is a classical fall for addicts. Once you are over the worst Jonesing, which is mostly physical uncomfortability where you have to simply focus on not consuming your drug of choice, it suddenly becomes more easy, like a breathing space, where things are going well. The thing that I have experienced in stopping addictions and cravings, is that after a while, I get used to this ‘new way of living’ – it is suddenly not new anymore. I do not have to push myself to keep the diet or to not smoke.  It is simply a matter of not doing it. For many people, this is where they fall in. When I stopped smoking the first time, I started again after 21 days. All it took was one thought, that I diluted myself to believe was innocent. ‘I’ll just have one cigarette’. So this is the point, where I cannot expect anything of myself. It is still a matter of moment to moment Self-Honesty. And this, by catching myself doing this, by slowing down, not judging and actually seeing what it is I am doing – I can flag all of these possible ‘pits’ for myself, so that I do not have to fall on my ass every couple of days, just to pick myself up again. Why was it the cheese that made me break the deal? Because cheese in my book is not just cheese. It is a symbol within my mind of how I treat myself with something that I am deprived from, a speciality , a luxury, where I am independent and do what is Best for me – Only that is how I created it in my delusion as a child, because it is not what is best for me – it is self-abuse and I did it, because I believed I was treated unfair, that there was something wrong with me, that I was punished because I was not allowed to eat what I wanted to. So it has become a symbol, twisted and distorted, no longer with any relation to what it actually consist of and what is Common Sense. This is how we fuck with ourselves. How we walk into, defend and justify situations and experiences, that is not best for us and certainly not what is Best for All.

Mind & Body – Detox and Deconstruction

March 11, 2010 in Anna's Process Blog

So Im now a month into, a little over a month not smoking and on you can call it rehab in terms of eating with my emotions, eating to get high, eating to get energy and basically stimulating myself to get energy and to… well thats what Ive Realized after I started the diet and stopped smoking, because I have constant craving for smoking, eating, speaking, watching, basically anything that can give me the sense of being filled up or filling myself up, anything that is not just me Here keeping occupied, and its interesting because Ive noticed that there are like specific points, where I wanna smoke, it is particularly if I get stressed or if I get scared then I wanna smoke. Which could signify that that is where Ive not been able with stuff myself and have used cigarettes to control my reality and to give me a sense of comfort and safety within my world. So… something I find interesting is that when I first stopped smoking and I went on this eating rehab, detoxification programme, I thought that it was only gonna be a face or a while and then I would be able to go back to my habits, and Ive that thats not so that this is a complete change of, its basically the beginning of a complete change of who I am, which is going to have to Stand. Im not saying that I might not eat differently at some point, but at this point, what I realize is that the way Ive been attached to eating, the way Ive been eating, the way Ive been drinking, the way Ive been stimulating myself, is so completely engrained within me, where Ive diluted myself and been dishonest with myself and made excuses and justifications so I cant possibly go back to just eat what I want to, because its not what I want to. How I taste, what I feel like eating, feeling of hunger, of thirst its not real. Its not based on the body saying: I need nutrition now, I Require fuel to be able to function. So Ive basically fucked up my whole physical system in terms of making it into a mind-fuelling system, which we obviously have in other perspectives as well, but this is like very specific, like I said: eating with my emotions. And even now after a month, I find it extremely difficult and Im surprised how difficult it is. At the same time, Im determined. Im going to, Im going through it, Im walking through it, Im doing it but every day I Realize something about how intense and how attached this system is within me. I dont even know who I am, because how can I know who I am, when I experience a craving for something and it gives me a stomach ache, and its basically not optimal in any way for body, how can I say I know who I am, I mean I know who I am as an addict, I know who… I know what satisfies my addiction. I know what my addiction requires, to be able to sustain itself, because thats the tricky part it is to, for the addiction to sustain itself, its not to actually get rid of the craving. I realized earlier today as I was scratching a mosquito bite, that its basically the same principle the more you scratch, the more it itches.

Quit Smoking & Stop Suppressing Myself

March 3, 2010 in Anna's Process Blog

I’m here to talk about my experiences with stopping smoking and how I have used smoking as one tool to completely suppress myself and create a system of suppression within me and how I have been dealing with that since I stopped smoking. So I stopped smoking a month ago and it has been quite a horrible experience in terms of all the stuff that has been coming up, together with stopping smoking. Like… singular experiences or like… individual experiences and emotions has been depression, sadness, anger… desperation and then these two major, general categories almost, that I will call: One is Self-Pity in which all this emotion fall under and the other one is… In a way I can call it anxiety or fear, but its more specific than that, because its a specific experience from when I was a child of being not safe, of being unsafe, of being uncomfortable and not being able to pinpoint whats wrong with the world. An experience of being all alone, of not having any connection… even now as I am speaking, the emotion is coming up, so what I’m gonna do is, I’m just gonna put… that’s the only, the only Solution I have found, at all, so far in all my years of working with myself, is to put my feet on the ground, to feel my feet, to feel, not a connection, but just to feel my feet… and to Breathe. So… and its not a matter of having to meditate or stop talking or anything, just like: Okay, now the emotion is coming up, I stop and then I continue. But this overall feeling of not belonging, of something being off, in the world and in my world and… I mean, I’m still in the process of investigating how and to what extend I have suppressed myself and how it has been working, but this feeling, this particular feeling is one that I can see and experience, re-experience, from when I was quite a small child, like 3,4 years old. So okay, so I stopped smoking, while I was in an agreement with Matti and we stopped smoking together and it was like a spontane(ous) decision, but its something that Ive been working with for a while like: Okay, I’m gonna stop smoking at some point because I’m…. I could see that I was very attached and very committed or dependent on smoking. So I stopped and I was surprised how the part of, actually not smoking, was not as difficult as I had imagined, because its just a matter of not smoking, not smoking and especially when you, if you can keep your environment without cigarettes, its fine. I mean, here where I’m living, a lot of people are smoking, most people are smoking, so that was just a matter of… that’s just how it is. What I found surprisingly difficult was like I said, all the emotions that came up and I have, since I stopped smoking, several times gone into a mind-possession, mind-fuck, mind-trip that lasted for several days, where I was basically just crying the whole time, feeling sorry for myself the whole time, beginning to get paranoia and I mean, I cannot say with absolute proof that this is caused by me stopping smoking, but its very definitely linked, to this experience. So initially the point for me was to stop smoking all together, not start again and it was something I was doing within my Agreement and then the Agreement ended and I was like: “Huh, so what now?” – and I decided that I was gonna not start smoking again. Then after 21 days, I had another of these ‘self-pity-parties’ with myself where I was crying and feeling sorry for myself and not being able to do anything… and I talked to Esteni and she said something that was very interesting: that the whole thing, the whole emotional reaction was about not getting attention and not being recognized for having stopped smoking. And in that I very quickly started smoking again, realizing that it had in fact been dependent on other people, again – and basically just justifying for myself: “Oh, I might as well just start smoking again”, and: “it’s been 21 days…”, and “I don’t need to stop” and… but as I was smoking the first few cigarettes, I kept getting a headache and I did see the link: “Okay, it’s peculiar that I’m getting a headache as I’m smoking” – and I was wondering about this whole point of having brought the suppressions up that, that I was now re-installing the suppressions with the cigarettes, basically opening a system up and saying: “I’m not gonna participate anymore” and then – basically ‘giving up’ because of these emotional experiences and being overwhelmed by that, not believing that I’m able to stop it for myself and then start smoking to ‘close’ the whole thing down again . So – as I started smoking again, it was quite amazing to see that everything became calm, everything became smooth – I was in ‘control’ again. I was able to work, I was effective, I was not emotional at all. If I became emotional, I was able to stop it immediately. Still thinking, still thoughts, but not as ‘insane’ or, not as obsessive as it was when I was not smoking. Then at some point I had another headache and… well, I was talking to Bernard about it and he said: “well that’s suppression” – and I realized in that moment that it made complete sense – I mean this whole ‘line’ of events that had happened, wherein I… basically believed that I wasn’t able to ‘cope’ myself and deal with myself… without cigarettes. I’ve been smoking since I was twelve and besides cigarettes, I have within this process found using food, using specifically other people, being in a Relationship, entertainment in the form of television, movies, what else? Thinking obviously – to suppress myself. And I am closing in on myself from the perspective right now, of not being able to do that anymore… and having to and being willing and allowing myself to Face this point and…. Yeah, so after three days of smoking again, where it was wonderful and I just went back, as if nothing had ever happened and I’ve always been smoking and… ‘the good old days’, ha ha – so I stopped again last night and what I found, what I have found to be extremely fascinating is that these experiences that I experienced as I was stopping came back immediately: Depression, sadness, feeling sorry for myself, desperation, anxiety, not belonging, not having connections with anyone, being isolated. So… this is where I am. I’m going to walk through this point and I don’t know what’s on the other side… as I am looking at it now, it’s the point of for the first time being comfortable with just me. Not requiring anyone or anything else to make who I am, to make me safe, to give me stability, to hold onto and actually Allow myself to be that stability be that Support – because I mean how else? How am I going to exist, without being dependent or anything or on other people, if I’m not able to… basically live with myself? And trust that whatever comes up and whatever happens, I trust myself to Direct it and to deal with it and to Face it, be Self-Honest and to not suppress or hide myself.

Self-Transformation Log # 1

March 3, 2010 in Anna's Process Blog

Day: 33 (aproximately).

I will be sharing my process of self-transformaton through documentation and blogs. Every sunday I take a picture of myself wearing the same clothes in the same spot and the same time, to follow the changes I undergo as I transform myself from a automated organic robot – to a Self-Willed Equal of Life on Earth.

Stopped smoking 01 February and began the physical transformation a couple of days later. Started smoking after 21 days, quit again after 3. I have changed my basic habits down to the water I drink. Most of all, I have discovered how addicted and attached I was to the comfort and control of all these addictions.It is also surprising to discover how I was more or less addicted to all of this -

Sugar

Coffee

Fat

Eating when I want – what I want

Water

Relationships

Sex

Thinking

Smoking

Salt

I have been completely wrapped in excuses and justifications and lies I told myself. I had locked myself down completely. In the end I was not even aware what I was doing, how much I was eating, smoking, drinking… until I started gaining a lot of weight.

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