Thursday, June 16, 2011

Preparing to transition

For the past three weeks, I have known that I will be transitioning back to regular food beginning on Monday June 13th. I have gotten slowly closer and closer to my goal, and decided to transition on June 13th even though I will not exactly be at my goal because I wanted to make sure I had a full month of eating "regular" food before beginning my pre-doctoral internship on August 10th. The transition process takes four weeks, and each week a new food or set of foods is introduced so that my body can slowly become acclimated to digesting solid food again instead of just the shakes.

I have very mixed feelings about going into transition. On one hand, I'm extremely excited. I am very close to my goal, and I know that with the remaining time I have on the shakes with the weight loss I will have during the transition period itself, I will be at my goal in no time. However, the part of me that has found great comfort in not having to worry about what to eat or when to eat it or even having to prepare food is very nervous. It's very easy to think it's been three hours, it's time to eat again, pull out a shake, mix it, and drink it down. For the past year, my routine has been that simple. With the introduction of food back into the equation, I now need to think about meal planning, grocery shopping, and time for food preparation. I also need to think about planning food that can be easily packed to travel with me during the day so that I am never without the food I need to sustain me. Right now, this feels very daunting.

In my waking hours, I notice my anxiety in little ways. Being aware of food on a more heightened level is one, and an underlying sense of buzzy anticipation is another. I even experience this anxiety when I'm sleeping. Fears and worries about transition have crept into my dreams, and have made it difficult for me to have a solid night's sleep for easily the last week and a half. I have nightmares about eating the wrong food or regaining the weight so quickly I can't stop it from happening. I just hope that I can find a routine to settle into that allows me to keep myself satisfied and with the proper nutrition to keep myself nourished without becoming crazy or obsessive about eating and food.

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