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Doing it My Way

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by Diane P.

I have been using the Overcoming Overeating approach for about three years, very successfully. On March 8, 1996, I was diagnosed with Diabetes II (too much insulin spilling over). The doctor told me I had to go on a DIET. Crying the whole time, I began explaining that I had promised my little girl that I would never go on a diet. The doctor asked me, "What little girl?" and said, "Please calm down." I explained the OO approach to her and she suggested I see the nutritionist the next day. The doctor told me we would try it my way for three months and if it did not work, we were going to do things her way. The way she saw it, she was responsible for getting my sugar down. However, I was and am REAL clear that it is totally my responsibility. She heard me when I said I was not getting on the scale because my sugar level needed to come down, not necessarily my weight.

I went home, picked up a past OO newsletter and found the phone numbers of two dieticians familiar with this approach. I picked the woman who had two names, like I do (Marianne Evans-Ramsey). I called her and was so relieved when she agreed that the sugar level was my responsibility to bring down. She gave me specific instructions about how to gather information about my diabetes in an ongoing way, how to note how the foods I ate affected my sugar level. All of a sudden I had some mastery over what was happening to me; I simply checked my sugar level four times a day. I noticed that at certain times, certain foods affected me differently than at other times. Then I was able to make choices about whether I would risk raising my sugar or not. It was similar to observing mouth hunger and stomach hunger, choosing based on the information I have about myself at a particular time.

Soon, from observing myself, I knew the difference between a sugar level of 282 and a sugar level of 113. I didn't know that before; I didn't have the information. I can now tell my sugar level without checking the glucometer, but I still check. Now I speak to Marianne once a month instead of once a week. I have also changed doctors. I've found one who is committed to my health and understands that I am a patient who has taken responsibility for her own diabetes. His job is to give me information concerning the tissues affected and the level of my diabetes. He is convinced that whatever this approach is, I should continue it. He and Marianne are in communication. He does not ask me to get on the scale; weight is never discussed, only my diabetes. He is committed to my not having to go on medication or insulin and so am I.

I have two professional partners who are assisting me to control my diabetes with food and without dieting. I am so grateful for this work. IT WORKS.

P.S. Recently, I decided to hire a personal trainer to assist me with body movement and teach me how to use the equipment I see in the gym. He immediately told me how he would give me assistance with my diet. I explained to him that I was hiring him solely for the purpose of body movement. I thanked him for his willingness to provide me with information, but informed him that it was not necessary because I do not diet nor will I ever diet. I also informed him that I am diabetic and in the process of gathering information about how body movement as well as food affects my sugar level. I requested that he assist me in learning about body movements that would lower my sugar level. He was delighted; he even called me two days later to see how I was feeling. We've begun our twice weekly routine and I am having a great time.

I have learned that I can stand up for myself without taking away the other person's dignity or opportunity to contribute to me. Once again, when it is clear to ME that the issue is not my weight, my conversations with others reflect that. Regardless of what the culture says, I'm clear about what I say. Today, I listen to myself and trust myself.

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