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My Journey

Piecing Reality Together

Monday, November 11, 2013
Written by:
Christy Johnson, Ph.D.
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My celiac disease diagnosis in July 2012 came as a shock.  Discovering my weight had dropped to 109 pounds, later dropping to 104, stunned and scared me, especially when accompanied by a significant bone density loss.  My other seemingly disconnected symptoms only made sense in hindsight.

Unfortunately I rationalized my symptoms.  I told myself:

  • Our new scale doesn’t work.
  • Our old scale doesn’t work either.  (Both scales registered the same weight, not surprisingly.)
  • Clothing manufacturers must be offering vanity sizing, labeling clothes smaller than the actual cut.
  • My bras must be stretching out.
  • I don’t have a real memory issue or brain fog, I just have too much on my mind.
  • Maybe my skin issues and protruding veins resulted from aging.
  • I must resolve whatever emotional issue causes my binge eating.
  • I “get away” with eating so much because of my inherited high metabolism.

I focused on my binge eating as the problem, never suspecting an inability to absorb nutrients in my small intestine caused physical starvation.  Of course I targeted the eating behavior since I knew nothing about celiac and didn’t exhibit the more classic digestive symptoms which might have helped my doctor pinpoint my condition.  Although I’m fully aware what happens to each of us ideally suits our soul’s purposes, I wish my diagnosis hadn’t taken so long, taking such a toll on my body.

My last post Inner Expert encouraged you to know what you know when it comes to who and what might help you when healing.  However, sometimes your own stories, fears, and preferences cause you to distort reality.  Now I realize I didn’t want to know my weight, not wanting to face the number reflected by my binge eating.  Now I see I didn’t want to remain my normal size 6 or 8, I secretly enjoyed wearing a 4 or 2 or even less.  Now I understand why none of the therapists’ or healers’ suggestions for why I might be binge eating made sense as conventional wisdom pointed toward an emotional cause, not a physical one.

Gently pay attention when things don’t add up.  Kindly and compassionately question what you tell yourself, especially when it comes to historical hot buttons or blind spots.  Unfortunately addressing reality only works when you face it first.

Ever told yourself a convincing but erroneous story?  How does courageous honesty with yourself feel?

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