Hello there, it’s your former self, talking.

Some people look at me with glasses of admiration:

‘Oh, look at how thin she is’,
‘I wish I could be as dedicated to working out as her’,
‘I wish I could walk into a store and not need to try on clothes’.

[all three of the above statements have occurred at least once to me]

Others see me through shades of concern:

‘You are looking very thin‘,
‘Your arm is about half the size of mine’,
‘I am scared to hold you too tightly… I might break you’.

I have developed a very standard reply across the board.
I nod and smile. 

All in all, I respect and enjoy receiving these compliments and concerns. On the one hand, I do work hard in terms of exercise. My overall health is greatly important to me, and therefore having someone notice my attempts is definitely not something I can say is… upsetting. Similarly, to know people are genuinely worried or concerned does present a nice… calm feeling in me, I must admit.

But… then I saw this picture:


My reply: No. No, she would not.

If I look at myself, circa 2003, I would probably look at myself now and think: but… why?
This fact haunts me.

I remember myself back then: a young, full-of-life, little girl in love with dolphins, Backstreet Boys and doing make overs. A little girl who’s all-time favourite pass time would be to curl up and watch a scary movie. The girl I was would look at the girl I am in a bit of shame. But hey… I look at me in shame.

Wait – stop.

I feel this post is about to snowball… so I am just going to give into the hodgepodge of it all.

[one: dairy?]

I just admitted my own shame. Yep. True story: I could be a lot happier. Lately, I have not been feeling all too… happy, with my choices. First, I have not been feeling overly satisfied for the last week in terms of food. Later at night, I become insatiable, my cravings escalate… it’s over-all a very uncomfortable feeling. Then, I’ll eat… a lot and feel bloated or uncomfortable and completely full of regret.

I will note that in comparison to most, my idea of ‘eating a lot’ is probably very small. It usually is still with a restrictive mind-set in place. However this does not mean it is not a lot for my body. Typically speaking my food choice of binge is Greek Yogurt, which I think is starting to have an adverse affect on me. Lately after eating yogurt, only feel bloated and more hungry. So, my plan is to reduce my dairy intake. I do not think I am intolerant, but I do not feel the best after. Nothing drastic. Just less emphasis on dairy, and more on lean proteins and healthy fats.

I am pretty against (right now) refusing to eat X, Y or Z because my ‘body can’t handle it’, because in the past I have said this with out a genuine reason. However I truly feel that limiting my dairy intake might be a good idea. I eat a lot of dairy and I think it is biting my in the bum.

[two: choosemyplate or harvard?]

As I have mentioned in the past, as much as I wish I could just eat and not care, I do like a somewhat systematic approach to my diet. I do not think it should be stringent (though I do have issues in making it a lenient endeavour), but I do like to try to mentally balance out my diet for optimal health.

In an effort to do this I turned to the following

It isn’t working. I’m sorry.

I can not explain why it is failing me, but in following it has led me to where I am: unsatisfied and bloated.

So, instead, I’ve decided to make a switch:

What’s the difference?
First of all, I much prefer the divisions of meats and fish from nuts and legumes. The nutritional profiles for these two food groups, in my opinion, are vastly different. To group them all as one can get a bit confusing. I mean, in theory you could eat… all of your ‘protein’ servings from chicken, and not get the added fibre, iron, healthy fats… etc, you would get from nuts and legumes.
I also like the fact that it does not specify now many servings of vegetables (my plate says 3 cups), grains (7 oz) or oils (6 tsp). This is mostly my thoughts about vegetables.  I think it is much more … nutritionally rewarding to not sit there and count out how many cups of broccoli you’re eating.

The whole approach to this form of diet seems a lot less stringent. Instead of giving specific serving sizes, it just informs you how many times a day you should eat them. The plan does go on to say that a serving size of meat would be about 3-4oz or half a cup, dairy serving would be about 3/4 a cup to 1 cup (for lower fat varieties), 2 oz for nuts and legumes and so on.

Finally, I like the additional add ones (exercise, vitamins, etc)

All in all the approach seems a lot more realistic to follow.

[three: hello there, it’s your former self, talking]

For a moment, I’d like you to ask yourself:
‘Would 10 year old you look up to you?’

If the answer is no, make it yes.  Right now I know my 10 year old self would not look up to me. I know I need to make it so.

I need to make it so.



7 thoughts on “Hello there, it’s your former self, talking.

  1. Caitlyn, I think it’s nice that you speak so honestly about your struggles. It can be so hard to find that balance and that too is what I am seeking. I am loving myself everyday. I try to see myself through my daughters eyes and that helps. My body is strong and healthy and gave me a beautiful daughter that was able to breast feed her for 16 months and this to me is amazing. I am 15 pounds lighter now than when I got pregnant and I think a lot of it is due to my mind set about myself. I am proud of myself everyday for working out eating right and trying to raise a daughter with the same healthy habits. Self love is a work in progress, but I thank my body everyday for the strength it has.

    1. Thanks for the comment girl!
      You’re words are inspiring. I am so happy that you have had a beautiful daughter! And I am confident you’ll raise her to have an amazing outlook on health.
      Keep strong girl <3

  2. Beautifully written girl. I’m so glad that you are able to see this and to come to terms with it. Sometimes it takes us coming to terms that we need to change in our minds even though people around us have seen it for a while. I’m here for you if you need me!

    1. Wow! Thank you so much for your kind words.
      It is hard. A very long and often stressful process. I’ve gotten better and fallen so many times. But I find I feel the best when I admit truths, not only to myself, but to those around me.

      Thank you! I’m here for you too if you need me :)

    1. Oh of course! :D
      I actually got the idea scoping out archived Post Secrets. One read: “I sometimes look at pictures of my 22 year old self and think about how ashamed she would be of who her 32 year old self was”. Or something to that extent.
      I feel sad about it, but it is true. That little girl would no look at me and think great things. She would look at my through sad eyes. Hopefully not for long.

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