Practicing Vulnerability: Journals Unedited

In the last couple months, I have been journaling every day.  I absolutely love to write and when I do, time stands still. It has been the first time that I’ve been able to really make sense of my thoughts and to truly access that deeper level that has been buried or numbed for so long. Most of my blog posts take fragments from my journal and are edited to suit an audience but every now and then I want to share with you the dialogue that comes straight from my heart.  My journal entries, completely unedited.  Here is what came up this morning…

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Date: Friday, April 11th, 2014
Time: 12:30-1:30pm
Location: NYC- Meatpacking District: random table and chair outside Gaslight
I decided to stop and sit in the action of the city to do this morning’s journaling.  With the exception of the cigarette smoke that’s reaching my health bubble, everything is pretty perfect.  I just had a casting at Milk Studios so I’m looking pretty top notch as well. I like being alone in a big city occasionally.  All sorts of energy passing by as I peacefully sit here and write.
I want to feel like New York is as magical as if I was sitting in the middle of Paris or Barcelona.  And it is!  It can just be hard to recognize when you feel like it isn’t going anywhere.  When you live here it is really easy to take for granted the fact that I’m living in the most beautiful part of the most amazing city in the world.  How lucky am I?!
I really don’t need much to make me happy.  Getting good sleep, getting up and ready for the day, and getting out into the world is so fulfilling.  What I’m doing right now is what I hope to be doing forever.  And its so great to know just how little I really need to be happy. A journal, a pen, a roof over my head, food to eat, and love and support around me.  I could really make that a reality anywhere.
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It’s truly a great day in NY.  The first since I’ve moved here that was really suited to sitting outside and writing.  I have a feeling that Spring will be when I fall madly in love with this place.  As I’ve been spending more time out and about, meeting people and being present, I’m reminded of how many wonderful people are out in this world.  It’s a true shame that we don’t get to meet all of them but I trust that the universe brings together the right ones. 
I’ve been really wanting to be my true, authentic self more lately.  I notice that I still wear a lot of masks and that I want nothing more than to totally strip myself of them in all arenas. The thing is, I know I’m a beautiful, passionate person worth of love and I truly believe that I’d find even more support and much deeper connections if I could just find a way to cut out all the bullshit.  All of the caring what people think, trying to please everyone, and anything I do that suggests I’m trying to be something that I’m not.  I know I’ll get there.  I’ve already come so far and I know it’s just a matter of time.  I’m just going to try to be more aware of when I think I may be faking or trying too much and to make some positive shift.
(My friend) Julia is staying with me and she’s just so real. So able to be vulnerable and not concern herself with what I think when she tells a story.  She seems to just be really in tune with herself which I admire.  For so long I numbed myself to all my emotions so I can’t expect to start feeling and being completely in tune with them right away.  It all takes time.  It’s a journey much like mine with food.
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I’m beginning to get a lot more comfortable with being hungry.  I’ve found that now that I’ve told myself that being hungry is ok, I’m a lot less frantic about the concept.  I can relax and live more, knowing that I don’t have to plan every move around my next meal.  Knowing that food will always be there and that I won’t starve.  It feels really freeing.  And I think that’s gonna be the key to being able to tune out the thinking about food all day thing.  Because when I know its ok to be hungry, I can forget to worry about it and in turn focus on living fully during the remainder of my days.  When its not a constant concern, I’ll be able to forget about it- which for me is the ultimate goal. 
To only think of food and eating when my physical body tells me it needs fueling.  That would be a true cure for me.  The goal of all of this.  To take all the power away from food and to view it strictly as fuel. Be someone who “forgets to eat” or who finally views eating as another normal daily task like going to the bathroom or sleeping. Something we think about when our body alerts us to its necessity and that we don’t think about when it doesn’t. That’s how I define being cured from food addiction.  That’s the END!
I think I’ve always had a hard time determining what the goal was.  What to strive for at the very end of all of this.  What I can tell people to expect when they can finally conquer all of this.  Being the kind of person that can have a box of Cheez-Its go stale in the cupboard or find a bag of peanut M&M’s that have expired in your pantry.  
And fortunately through all of this I’ve managed to become super passionate about health and nutrition as well.  Thinking for so long that they were two completely related concepts but really they’re quite different.  I’m glad my comfort eating led me to thinking nutrition was the answer because though I’m realizing that it isn’t, I managed to gain an extreme love and passion for quality, real, whole foods in this process of self-discovery.  And that is truly invaluable!
  • Jessica Perez

    That’s where I’m trying to be at this moment. To just stop thinking about food the whole time. As you said, to not plan my activities around food. I want to be able to live my life without worrying about what i’ll eat or if I will eat exactly what I want. Sometimes, whether we like it or not, I believe that involves having food that is not the mosy “optimal”, due to the circumstances. But this has helped me not worry, or beat myslef up about having some corn tortilla my friend’s mom made, or a small ice cream…if I strictly reject these, then it’s like a punishment when I do choose to eat it, and it’s as if I “allow”–or rather force sometimes–myself to eat those foods because I “oh, haven’t had it in forever”. I guess what I’m trying to say is that restriction for me is not healthy in the long run, it just pushes me down a spiral of compulsive eating…and that’s not healthy mentally nor physically.
    I really enjoyed reading this :)
    P.S. I’m sorry but I was wondering….did you ig page say plus size model before? Not that I’m portraying it as negative, but that it was inspiring to see you trying to be healthy in a true sense :)

    • http://www.danikabrysha.com/ Danika Brysha

      Hey Jessica! I love everything you said and can relate on such a deep level. I think any feeling of deprivation often leads to rebellion which is what screws a lot of people up in the first place. The whole diet/binge cycle leaving us feeling empty and then needing to find that fullness again. I think it works differently for each person but I have certainly found the same benefits in consciously “allowing” foods that I have told myself were off limits for so long because it makes me less crazy about them when I feel like I can have anything and everything and can trust myself not to get out of control It’s so great to hear from others who are struggling through a similar journey.

      As for my IG, I really battled back and forth with whether to leave the “plus size” up there. I have absolutely no problem being called “plus size” (I actually use the label when I tell people what I do because it always sparks conversation) but I really try to pride myself on being authentic and I wear a size 10/12 these days so I felt like I was using it as a facade in a way. I am however considered a plus size model so it wouldn’t be fully inaccurate. PSM’s start at a size 6 in the industry! More so, I just don’t necessarily agree with labeling people based on their size or looks or whatever it is. I also see how it can be empowering though. Ahhh, it’s a never ending back and forth in my head about this subject. I will definitely take your point to heart though and consider adding it back. Have to think it over :)

      Thanks so much for your feedback!

      • Jessica Perez

        Ohno I didn’t mean to say that you should add it back. Like you said, labeling people based on their looks is not the way to go. I was just curious, but it’s fine if you decided to remove it, I was just wondering if I had read it right lol. But you are inspiring, thanks again for the post!