How I stopped binge eating.

born into the light | Lacy Young

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.- Anais Nin

I slept like it was the night before a test last night. I woke up at 3 am when Ned’s feeder went off and was in and out of sleep through the wee hours of the morning. I had just drifted back to sleep when my alarm went off at 5:30 am. I got out of bed to stumble the 6 steps from the bedroom to the kitchen in our RV to turn off the alarm with a focused thought ---- ‘I am worth it. I am ready. Let’s do this!’ My desire for the life I want was (IS) so much bigger than my desire to slip back in between our toasty flannel sheets.

I dressed while peeing, brushed my teeth and rinsed my face. In the dark of the morning I sat at the front of the bus on our couch wrapped in blankets and wearing mittens feeling like a huge success. As I sat up straight and readied myself for meditation I realized that I’d conquered two of my (former) beliefs that ‘I am not a morning person and I hate to be cold.’ I giggled at myself as the guided meditation began. An hour later with my eyes still closed I could feel the light of morning all around me. I placed my left hand on my chest and with tears rolling down my face I gave thanks for all that I’d just seen, experienced and created in meditation.

I continued through the morning as planned. I smooched Cliff who was now awake too, made my morning elixir, sat with him in the living room talking about the day ahead. I then once again braved the cold to go outside and workout among the trees.

It is time for the next chapter. It is time for change. It is undeniable. It is happening and has already happened. It is.

The last time I had this feeling was 2012 when I stopped binge eating.

I was in Hawaii dog/house sitting for a new friend. I remember being excited to have a space to myself so that I could eat and drink whatever and as much as I wanted because after all, I deserve it! I went to the best local wine/ fine foods store around and bought a bottle of wine, a bottle of champagne, a 6 pack of beer, my favorite vegan cookie, tortilla chips, gourmet salsa and nice dark chocolate. I opened a beer and unwrapped my lemon poppy seed cookie. I wrapped the cookie in foil and placed it in the oven to warm. As I took my first sip of Negro Modelo I was awash with disappointment. Why wasn’t this fun? Why didn’t this beer taste like freedom? I pressed on thinking that maybe I just wasn’t in the mood for beer. When the cookie was warm I pulled it from the oven and unwrapped it like a package on Christmas morning. THIS was going to be amazing. I was going to eat the whole thing free of guilt and I was going to feel SO deliciously full that all my sadness and uncertainty would go away (at least for a little while).

I remember looking at the cookie there on the counter feeling that something was different. Why wasn’t this working? I knew before I ever tasted it that it wasn’t going to give me the love that I was looking for. I knew that only I could do that. I took a bite and started to cry. It was perfectly crispy on the outside and chewy in the middle just like I liked and it was ALL-wrong. I ate half of it and felt empty. I finished the beer and my heart and stomach began to ache. I tried the chips next, then the chocolate. I opened the wine and took a sip straight from the bottle. Everything tasted like bitter disappointment and a waste of money. I felt trapped, anxious and unsure of what to do next. There were so many feelings bursting from me and I felt like the world was closing in around me. I wondered if this is what a panic attack feels like?

I laid down on the floor curled in a ball alongside the dog and cried. I asked for help. For direction. For something to help me move from this consuming feeling of doom. I was replaying a movie montage of the most tragic and disappointing moments of my life on repeat. Comfort food and drink had let me down and I was left to feel and fully experience every excruciating sensation.

When I couldn’t cry anymore I peeled myself from the floor and asked the dog if he wanted to go for a ride. His innocent eyes and wagging tail exclaimed, Yes! Please! I got lost twice trying to find the grocery store with the most local and organic produce but finally found it. I came back and juiced enough for three days and sat down at the desk with sticky notes. I wrote down, ‘I will drink juice for the next three days.’ ‘I love my 153 pound body.’ That was my goal weight at the time. ‘I am safe to feel my feelings.’

When I was hungry or sad or angry or frustrated or disappointed or anything negative I did one of a few things… First I always took a breath and said, ‘Lacy, you’re going to be ok. This is ok. YOU ARE OK.’ Then I would shower. Or take the dog for a walk. Or stand outside and feel the sun on my face. I juiced almost exclusively for the next two weeks and not because I made myself or decided I'd suffer through. I did it because I wanted to and because each time I drank a juice I felt GOOD about myself. I felt the old story changing. I could see my future and that horribly sad movie montage lost it's power over me. Self loathing was being replaced with self love.

That was it. I was changed. I never binged again. The ability to successfully binge has been stripped from my being. I was no longer afraid to feel my feelings. I had grown in the darkness and been born into the light once again. I allowed myself the time to move from rigidity and fear into a safe and fluid space. I stopped looking and responding outwardly and embraced inward work. I allowed myself to see the truth that I was enough, always had been and always would be.

This next chapter of waking early, meditating and moving my body in a pleasurable way is me showing up for the life that I want to live. This is full out living. This is joyous living. This is creating my days.

I am sharing all of this with you real time to invite you to join me. I will be waking early and meditating, then working out 6 days a week for the month of March. I’m giving myself the gift of a month of inspired action. No excuses. At the end of the month I’ll circle back with what I’ve learned and decide where to go from here. A month feels really good for me. You can do a month too or start with a week. It’s totally up to you. There are no rules here. Just go with what feels most light in your body and go with what feels like a combo of scary/ exciting. That's when you'll know you've found it.

What step can you take to actively create your days? What kind of life do you want to live? Who do you want to be? This is the way change happens. You make a decision and then take steps that support that decision. My desire is to live a life free from suffering and to embody the WHOLE HEALTH that I am in every breath I take. My desire is for boundless energy to do the work that I LOVE in helping others find their way and tap into their infinite wisdom and potential.

Proclaim it today. Share here in the comments if you feel moved to or email me here. Let’s hold each other in the light of our desires! Let’s support each other to be our highest selves.

We can do this. YOU CAN DO THIS!

To freedom, Lacy

P.s. Just as I was about to publish this I had this overwhelming feeling that I needed to check my phone. My dear friend sent me a text to say that three years ago today we were in Hawaii together. FULL ON GOOSEBUMPS. She was the one who introduced me to the friend that I dog/ house sat for. I went to Hawaii for some space, to make some decisions about my life and marriage and to learn how love myself. It was a truly difficult time and without my having to say anything she could sense that everything was shit and so she got on a plane to Hawaii and we spent a week together in a fancy hotel, driving around the island, devouring The Hunger Games series, drinking umbrella drinks, eating 'slightly expensive blocks of cheese' dinner and candling each others ears in the hotel room (thank god we didn’t burn the place down). We lovingly call it our “friendlymoon” because people kept mistaking us for a lesbian couple on our honeymoon. I’m forever changed for having been truly loved and seen. It was a week after she left that I had my moment in the kitchen with my former favorite lemon poppy seed cookie. I’m reminded that change starts with love and can’t help but feeling like all we did together and her presence there the week before gave me the strength I needed to move through the darkness. Thank you, Leigh. Thank you forever.