Ever since the honeymoon, my life has been entirely out of control. My eating is out of control. My lack of exercise (ie, my laziness) is out of control. My caffeine consumption is out of control. Even my personal reading is out of control.
How, pray tell, could reading be out of control? Well, when you've devoured nine of the ten incredibly poorly written Southern Vampire Mysteries (aka the Sookie Stackhouse Books, upon which True Blood is based) in less than a month, something is dreadfully wrong. And as I sat at home, post-Memorial Day barbecue, with the 9th Sookie Stackhouse book in one hand and a red velvet cupcake in another, trying to ignore the empty photo picture frames and newly framed art lying around our floors from our half-done decorating attempt, I had to finally face the fact that something is truly off-balance in my life.
Since the relief of the wedding, I've been trying to hold on to the honeymoon feeling. I've been taking an extended "I deserve it" holiday from life, ignoring work and personal responsibilities. I've been overdosing on every type of consumptive addictive product, both food and brain related. I'm willfully ignoring substantive options like delicious summer fruit in favor of stuffing my face with cream cheese red velvet icing. I'm turning away from house chores or even quality literature (like Her Fearful Symmetry, which is reproachfully staring at me from the table) in favor of mindless book crap. I seem to prefer this crap reading to any sort of personal improvement project, including posting our wedding items for sale or sorting through home items (like mismatched silverware) we need to take to Goodwill.
It's easy to lounge here in the lazy mess of the mindless consumption. But it also makes me feel gross and out of control. I've been feeling more and more out of control for weeks as I make half-hearted attempts at eating healthy foods or doing Serious and Important things which I then happily sabotage at 3pm with a cookie or a visit to a fluffy-but-addictive website. I tell myself that "next week, I'll be better." I tell myself "I deserve it, the wedding was so stressful and you haven't recovered yet from your adventurous but non-relaxing honeymoon." Perhaps, but there's also way too much of a good thing, and that's clearly the territory I'm wading in right now.
So how do I wrest back control of my life from my baser self-sabotaging instincts? My normal approaches aren't working. I'm ignoring the 6am workout alarms. I'm eating the lunch I packed and then still buying decadent snacks from the store in our office building. I finally turned to Jason and asked him for help, because I had to recognize that I can't do this alone, at this particular moment. Or rather, I could do it alone, (heck, I've done it before), but I would really really really appreciate the help and support. There's both a relief in knowing I have an amazing supportive partner and a sense of frustration that I can't seem to get started on my own.
This week, we're planning our meals together and keeping each other accountable. I felt very virtuous turning down office candy because I felt like I had to be accountable to our joint effort and joint promise. But it still feels huge. It still feels insurmountable, even though I know the first week of sensible living is always the hardest as I readjust. And I feel grumpy because, quite frankly, I like crap food and crap reading (in small, regular, quantities they are a relief and a joy. Right now, they're just rotting my intestines and my brain.)
I know I'm not the first person to wrestle with newlywed weight gain (which is less of a problem to me than my unbridled obsession with baked goods) or general malaise. But my malaise isn't due to post-wedding boredom or lack of purpose. I have so many work, personal, home, and blog projects that I barely know where to get started. So, instead of trying to fix everything (which is simply impossible and probably contributed to my continued out-of-control lazygirl excess) I've decided to tackle just one issue this week. For me, I'm dealing with my eating habits (or lack thereof). And actually, I can't even think about it as a week-long project, because even that feels too big right now. So I'm breaking it down into teeny little baby steps of productivity. Meal by meal. I can't think beyond today and I can't think beyond the today's "don't eat cookies" food goals and that's how I'm dealing with the crushing weight of all my unmet goals and the oh-so-tempting crap that would happily suck me into a vortex of out-of-control living.
Have any of you dealt with clawing out of this post-wedding lazy malaise? What worked? What hasn't? And for everyone in the process of clawing themselves out of the vortex, feel free to share your victories, however small they may be. Because I'm discovering that the baby steps count in a huge way. For me, I'm still cheering about my breakfast of oatmeal and a half-cup of berries. It may not seem like much, but it's one meal down in this lifelong battle for balance, health, and sanity.