Detox your mind
I call this the hot phase – where food becomes the all-consuming thing in your mind. It becomes this obsession nearing the same energy as OCD. It circles and as hard as you try to resist, it keeps coming back. Distraction is a means that does not work anymore, your obsession is caught in your frontal lobe pinging back and forth. This is where discipline enters the game. It is between me, myself and I. Who will be the winner of this battle? These are the moments when I can tell where I stand with my mental health. When healthy this point is a struggle and annoying – when I am unwell these are the deciding moments to throw the idea to the wind. Just like battling OCD has a lot do with drive and discipline this has too. I was told OCD is like a lane groove, slowly it is ground-in. Imagine an Ice skating rink or cross-country skiing. In those ever-growing number of circles you make, the groove intensifies, gets deeper, gets more prominent just like OCD. Unfortunately, it is not as easy to eradicate as the groove in the ice. It takes determination. You have make a new lane groove, which your mind must travel in.
Entering phase two is not so bad, the itch becomes this mere spec for you that is ever present in everyone else. In this phase, you garner the insight. You start seeing the flaws of others. Their inability to commit or their chase for food, fixes or whatever else. Sometimes I cannot help but smile when I see another individual succumbing to an OCD habit. Not because I like to see someone suffer. It is more a smile of achievement to myself. My OCD was all about hiding, not letting anyone see how mad I was. I tried to hide it. I was determined everyone in the public transportation could see I was behaving oddly. Now I can acknowledge it in others without it bothering me. Believe me, there are many that do not realise they are entering deep waters and slowly a lane groove is formed. I still remember how much work it was to form the new one. Yes, it takes great conviction but it is worth it.
I still go to dinner to socialise despite fasting. You’re probably wondering why? I enjoy the presences of people; The conversations and I find I am by far more focused on what they have to say as they have my undivided attention. No food clogging up my mind. I am trying to really aim my focus on the present and what I am doing at that time. I lived in my past or in the future far too much. To be able to be happy, experience life to the fullest your focus has to be in the here and now. I have lived very isolated life for periods of my life. So, I cherish the moments spent with others. Every day I go out there and try to make the best of it. I do not want to wake up one day 40 years from now thinking I should have.
I also enjoy cooking for others when fasting. My personal rule is do not test the food. So, all the seasoning is done only by smell. I pour my heart and soul into it. I bend my face towards the pot and the cloud of smell encases me. It is just me and the waft of my dish. When you are struggling with mental health problems it enchases you, albeit not in the same manner. With the dish, there is love, excitement, passion. In the case of problems, a lonely dark street all by yourself that when you let it consume you will only devour you entirely. Sometimes these situations even get the best of me. But as Aaliyah once said “And if at first, you don’t succeed. Then dust yourself off and try again”.
And if at first you don’t succeed. Then dust yourself off and try again