Thursday, June 09, 2011

More on yesterday's post (180.4)

Yesterday I wrote "Being fat is what I know.  Being thin was the anomaly."

I've been noodling that thought in my head ever since. 

When I lost weight and was thin, I thought at the time that I felt more like myself than I ever had for all those years I was fat.  I felt like I'd finally been freed from the demons of being overweight, and I was then free to be the real me, instead of the me hiding under layers of fat.

Now I just don't know. I think "being fat is what I know" is a cop out.  I think it's more of what Geneen Roth says about being fat and being obsessed with diets and food.  It's a cover for what's really going on inside me.  If I'm occupied with this body stuff, then I don't have to look at and examine the real issues.

Not that the weight isn't a real issue.  Clearly, it is.  It affects every single aspect of my life.

But I didn't regain weight because food tastes good. I use food like a drug; I'm self soothing, self medicating, and self sabotaging.

As I thought yesterday about the benefits I experienced from being thin beyond the clothes and how I looked in the mirror and in pictures--it has to be about more than just looks, right?--I realized that what I miss most about that time in my life is running and exercising regularly.  I spent a good deal of time taking care of myself, of announcing to myself and to the world that "I'm worth it!"

I lost that when my dad got sick in late 2009, and especially in 2010, when so much of my "free" time was spent taking care of him and his concerns.  But dad's been gone for over six months. I gained 10 pounds while he was sick; I gained 20 pounds after he died.  I didn't go back to taking care of myself when I didn't have to take care of him anymore. 

So what's holding me back now?  Why can't I make the time to take care of myself?  Do I feel like I don't deserve the care and attention?  Why did I feel like I deserved it in 2007-2009, but I don't now?

I have no idea.  More to explore.  This stuff is hard.


Laura N said...

Vickie, would you be willing to email me privately what medications you take? I know that not all meds work for all people, but I have been struggling with wanting to go back on something because I'm not feeling right again, but the usual antidepressents worry me becuase they caused me to gain weight in the past. I don't know if what I'm feelig now is still the comedown from vacation (possible) or if it's that my brain chemistry is whacky again after being off meds for a couple of months.

I know you don't share that info on your blog, for good reason. But I'd like to research what you are taking and talk to my therapist and psychiatrist about if it would work for me. We seem to have a lot of traits in common, and I wonder if what helps you might help me. I just know that traditional antidepressents don't really "do it" for me. Even when I took them, I felt depressed a lot and then add the weight gain on top of it, and it was worse.

I'm also concerned about my "runaway thoughts" that I commented about on your car wreck post. I don't think that's normal. I want to ask my therapist about it today. I would love to have that just go away!

Anyway, I hope you feel comfortable enough to share that with me. I will delete this comment after you get it. And I won't share your private information with anyone. My email address is

If you don't want to share, well, I'll pout and stomp my foot, but I'll get over it. :)

Vickie said...

Actually, somewhere back there in my archives, I did post what I take in comments. I tend to put those types of things in comments so they are not findable by most search engines.

My psychiatrist says the best way to describe myself to another doctor (when they ask) is to say I am very Atypical Bipolar. If they need more information, I have them call him. And actually he called my ob before I ever started going to ob. And they talk.

Currents meds:
Trileptal 300 mg 3x per day (anti seizure) (I am on it for its side effects. I think it helps me with sleep, anxiety, even ness and I think it also helps with weird neurological things like hearing sounds in motors)

Doxepin 10mg 2x per day (tricyclic anti depressant) (sleep and even-ness)

The first one I have now been on for years. The second one started this spring.

I think this about my 10th or 11th try at meds. I am guessing at that number, but I think it is close. I am sensitive to side effects. I have NO side effects with either of these meds.

My psychiatrist is a lot like me. He is a vegetarian. He is a big yoga person. He believes strongly in keeping things simple. He is proactive. He is reflective. He believes strongly in working with a good therapist (mine is one of his favorites and she sends him updates or calls him).

he believes that all those traits I listed in the last paragraph have a LOT to do with the total person.

He is the best in my area. He happens to be from the middle east.

Vickie said...

did you have a typo in your email address? I tried to send you a note, and it didn't go through.

Laura N said...

thank you, thank you!! Your psych sounds amazing. What a blessing. I haven't found a great fit yet for my psychiatrist. I've only met with the one at my therapist's office once, and we decided to be on nothing for while. My previous psychiatrist was ok, but very quiet and I didn't connect well with her.

I hear sounds in motors too and it drives me nuts. I know of NO ONE ELSE that it bothers, except me. And now you. I have to have air filters on (fans) in all our rooms or else I hear everything, and it puts me on edge.

I have read more about bipolar disorder and think that I really fit in a sub category of that--that's what I went to see the doctor for a couple years ago, she said I wasn't bipolar, I agree. But we didn't go further than that. I read about Catherine Zeta Jones' issues in People mag, when I was getting my hair done before vacation, and I could see myself in a lot of what she described. Lower highs, but milder lows, but not typical depression, and not typical bipolar.

Brain chemistry is nuts.

Thank you again for sharing. Appreciate it.

Vickie said...

Have you been on your gmail account recently? middle says she thinks gmail might have been the system they took down around the end of last year. She might be remembering wrong, but one of the systems was deleted and everyone had to start over.

Laura N said...

yep, I'm on gmail every day. comments to my blog go to my gmail account.

try my work email if gmail's not cooperating. I use that one for personal emails, it's not a problem since we are self employed. My "boss" doesn't care. :)

Vickie said...

it went through the second time I tried. let me know if you don't get it.

Vickie said...

The sounds in motors thing has been going on my whole life.

My psychiatrist says for me to think of it as a very smart brain that can pick up patterns others do not hear.

My brain then translates them into something from my past which is familiar to me.

The air system in his office is african drums. One of the floor fans in our house is the mormon tabernacle choir. Etc.

The earliest one I can remember is the vaccuum cleaner motor singing to me - I would hum along.

I am not particularly musical by the way.

He says I should never think of it as 'hearing voices' that are not there. I am hearing real things. They are just things others would not notice.

My ability to turn that off, before meds, was dependent on my stress level.

This sounds thing totally went away with my first med (Trileptal). I have just had a couple isolated instances over the years since starting this med. If I had a whole day of it back, I would call him immediately.

What also went away (with first med) was a very odd little brain blink that used to happen to me many times a day, every day. It was a feeling like I was just about to shut off (like a computer shutting off), but then instead of shutting off, it was just a quick blink. A nano second.

At the time, I thought it was all neurological and the meds had fixed it. Then I saw a House (TV doc) episode where they thought someone had total recall, but it was actually the result of Anxiety. In other words, the person's anxiety was so high, they remembered everything. I can see anxiety being the root of my issues too.

Vickie said...

and in that House episode the sequence in that person's brain was
ocd (total recall)

my therapist says it is always that order.
ocd comes from anxiety,
anxiety comes from fear.

(obsessive compulsive disorder)

Vickie said...

I do not know (specifically) when the fear with cars approaching me from behind (seeing them in the rear view mirror) went away.
I do not know if it was linked to

listening to books on CD in the car
lower anxiety level

I just noticed it was gone.

Vickie said...

And I know you (laura) are using a psychiatrist for meds. I am just noting here for anyone else reading. I started with a GP trying to work with me. He very wisely sent me to my psychiatrist (after several med tries). When I got to my psychiatrist, he told me my GP had me in the totally wrong class of meds and if I had toughed it out and tried to stay on them (through side effects) I would have been much worse, not better. And even with my psychiatrist, and in the correct class of meds, we still have had to make changes.

In my firm opinion, we all need to be seen by a therapist and have our meds regulated by psychiatrist.

I think it is a specialty.