This weekend I escaped to Sea Isle City, New Jersey to join my family at the beach and bask in the long awaited sunshine. Lesson #1: I hate the sand. Lesson #2: Natural sunscreens require you to intensely reapply. I am burnt to a bright red crisp because I failed to do so.
Today my sister and I remained at the shore after my parents and younger siblings left to get in a few extra hours of sun. We also stayed later because we wanted to grab dinner at Yvette’s Cafe, a little spot in the mall of Stone Harbor, which is only a bridge plus an island away.
Crab and Roasted Red Pepper Soup: super delicious.
In terms of food, this weekend was a little bit rough for me. It’s hard for me to go with the flow when I don’t have all of my tools (good knives!) and happy foods at my disposal. I did plan ahead by bringing salad supplies, canned sardines, and coconut flour strawberry cupcakes, but I wasn’t prepared for the impromptu ice cream man at the beach, or the long, hungry period of waiting for my sister to get ready to go to dinner.
Nicoise Salad: not so delicious.
Planning to go to Yvette’s was difficult because I didn’t want to be too hungry when we got there, but I didn’t want to be to full, either. So I ate an extremely light lunch and by the time we got to Yvette’s I was starving. Beyond starving, actually. I should’ve eaten those damn sardines. But of course, I wanted to save my appetite. Sometimes that can be my downfall.
Although I’m in active recovery, I find that relying on others for meals and meal times can be extremely anxiety provoking for me. All day I was racked by thoughts of when we would get to dinner, how I would eat something decent at the beach, would I choose the right thing when we actually got to dinner? I hate being away simply for this reason; it fucks with my eating schedule. Even though I’m doing well in my recovery, I still need to be able eat something decent when I’m hungry. Even though I enjoy eating out, I need to make sure I’m eating enough throughout the day so that I don’t feel deprived.
I am so angry about the frustration that this one, single event has caused me. The anxiety. The tension. The worry. The fullness. I can’t just “eat something” beforehand. I can’t just wait and go happily along when someone else is ready. There is no compromise when my needs aren’t adequately met.
Although I’m doing well, and although my needs are not greater than anyone else’s, I am still extremely sensitive to my nutrition needs. It’s something that I can’t play around with yet. It’s not something I want to play around with. I feel as though my sister was not sensitive to my needs and I therefore suffered as a consequence. It’s not her fault that I had a roller coaster of a day, but she sure as hell didn’t make it any easier by taking her good old time to get ready and getting annoyed with me for not enjoying my meal.
I didn’t like what I ordered and ended up getting extremely full from a single serving of ice cream for dessert. It felt like bingeing. And I felt stupid for continuing to eat the ice cream, but I couldn’t throw it away as we were literally driving home from the beach. I finished it, but I still feel gross because of it. A grossness to which my sunburn and sheer exhaustion are also adding their fair share.
Mint chocolate chip ice cream: a good idea in theory. Maybe a better idea several hours after dinner instead of several minutes.
Tomorrow will be better. I believe that. Perhaps this is just a wake up call that not everything is fine and dandy in the wonderful world of recovery, especially when I’m taken out of my comfort zone.