Wednesday, March 3, 2010
I've been going to Acupuncture for almost 6 months now. Last month, I had a re-evaluation that showed a 55% overall improvement in my symptoms since I started. We've worked mainly on stress relief, chronic pain, management of anxiety. I'm happy to report I'm more relaxed, I sleep better and I'm weaning off my anxiety medication.
We have talked about working on my eating disorder but hadn't really started treating it until last week. My eating disorder is actually a food addiction. My Dr. did his internship at an inner city hospital treating Meth & Heroin addicts with acupuncture. With success. So last week, we decided it was time to make this the primary focus of my appointments. The addiction points are in the ears as you may have gathered from the pic. So last week, he did 6 points in my ears. Interesting sensation. The day he did it, I didn't feel any difference in my cravings. The following two days, they felt somewhat reduced. I went back on Monday of this week. He did 8 ear points. I could tell something serious was going on in my body from how I felt as I lay there. I felt as if my body was curled backwards in a circle, almost like I was laying over a big medicine ball. Those disjointed feelings always indicate that the flow of energy has been out of whack. The result was so radical, I am still shocked.
Let me back up to a typical night with this food addict.... Generally, Bianca and I eat dinner together, I put her to bed and then the binging begins. But even before the binge, I'm setting it up in my head. If there are leftovers from dinner I leave them sitting out on the kitchen counter. While I'm in the kitchen, I'm mentally and visually scanning what will be part of the night binge. My mind is fully occupied with this. If there are leftovers that are getting old, I know they will need to be eaten because I can't possibly let them go to waste. Waste is a huge thing for me with food. (Long complex explanation but basically I attach human qualities to food and it pains me to "reject" it by throwing it away.) After Bianca is in bed, I go back downstairs and immediately immerse myself in the binge. Starting with the leftovers if there are any. Followed by whatever else I'd planned or I find as I go through my routine. I continue until I feel "done" which is an ambiguous feeling. "Done" can mean I just feel like I've had enough...something hit "the spot" or I just plain feel sick. It may mean I can't seem to fill the emptiness so I give up and go to bed. It can mean it's late and I know I need to get some sleep. It could be that I'm overcome by disgust and remorse. Whatever the case, "done" is generally unpleasant.
Now let me tell you about Monday night, after Acupuncture. Bianca and I stopped for Chinese take out because it was really late and I knew I would not have time to cook the meal I planned. Chinese is something I never save leftovers of because it does not reheat well, IMHO! So normally, I would leave it out and consume it after B is in bed. Instead, this night, I ate most of what was on my plate and I felt pleasantly sated. Bianca finished and I threw everything leftover in the garbage. Including the heinously irresistable little fried dough pillows from heaven that are rolled in sugar and melt in your mouth. Right in the garbage, no second thought. As I cleaned up from dinner and threw away the leftovers, I had no thoughts of food. There was no scanning, scheming, planning for what was next. There was not a care of food. Before I went to bed, I had a small sugar free popsicle while I was using the computer. There was no need, no urgency, no addictive behavior associated with it. It was a full 180 experience for me. And one I loved. I felt so free of the prison of addictive thoughts and behavior. I can only hope this is what's in store for me as I continue the acupuncture treatment.
I didn't expect it to last since we're just at the beginning stages. Yesterday was not as good as Monday but not as bad as my typical behavior. Today, I feel the real urges coming back. I'm okay with that, though. Like I said, I didn't expect it to "stick" yet. I've only had 2 treatments for a problem that's plagued me for a lifetime. But it's a promising start.