Week 21 & 22: Being a Bonus Mom, Nutrition Nerd and Enjoying Farmer's Markets

This is the first week that I have really felt Dillon moving around in my belly. She is napping most of the day, but when she is up I can really feel her. It’s a strange sensation. Feeling someone inside of you kicking and punching away at your organs. My step daughter, Lyla, thinks it’s as amazing as I do. We sit and push on my belly until we feel her move. I have a lot of gratitude for these special moments that Ryan, Lyla and I have before Dillon comes into our family.

I never thought I would be in a situation like this when I was growing up and dreaming of my family. Having a stepdaughter involved in my life, with her mother not being very positive or supportive of Ryan and Lyla’s relationship. Ryan and I have to work very hard and as a team to make sure we make Lyla feel included and just as special to us as Dillon. Lyla refers to me as her Bonus Mom, not Step-Mom, because we feel it has a more positive affiliation for Lyla. Lyla will be 5 in December and Dillon will be here in January. I am happy to say that as of right now, Lyla can’t wait to meet her sister, play with her, help her eat, change and grow. It’s a beautiful thing to watch a child have so much love for their sibling.

Now for some nutrition knowledge I have gained over my last class, that I have been dying to share with anyone that’ll listen. I learned all about CBT this week, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, and how it affects so many people when it comes to eating healthy. CBT has a lot of factors to it, but it is all meant to help figure out the psychological aspect of what is making people stay with their poor unhealthy eating habits. CBT is a type of talking therapy, recognizes how your thoughts make you feel and how it affects your eating choices, helps create a helpful/realistic way of thinking, it helps with positive management of harmful behaviors, and it will in the end change your thoughts and actions into positive ones.

I feel like this was the biggest challenge for me in the last 9 years, while I was trying to live a healthy lifestyle without these nutritional guidelines. My thoughts and feelings have always been the deciding factor for my eating choices. When I first started I would give into my candy and unhealthy habits whenever I felt down, depressed, anxious, bored or stressed. It took me years of my own self awareness to change those habits into healthier ones and stick with it. Now I am to a point where I can recognize the thoughts or feelings I am having and how they are influencing my eating decisions, so now I can make the right choice in those tough times. I had no idea until this lesson that CBT was a thing or that I wasn’t the only one that was affected by it when trying to lose weight and be healthier.

I wanted to share this because I do think it is the biggest factor for why most people don’t or can’t change. It all starts from within each one of us. We all have the same negative thoughts running through our head, so it’s time to stop self doubting and start believing we are worth the change.

I believe that when I started my yoga practice I really deepened my control for food cravings. Learning to take deep breaths, to pause to make a food decision. It really did change the way I ate.

I have been going to a lot of farmers markets and farms in the last 2 weeks. I want to get to know the local farmers more and support their business. I appreciate all the local and organic farms around Columbia MO that do this for a living and attend the markets for the community to enjoy. Last Saturday I got some local goat cheese, purple potatoes, purple peppers, organic eggs, fresh basil and dried apples. My goal is to try and buy my week’s worth of veggies from the market. I know it’ll be trial and error at first, and hopefully I don’t waste any produce but I think it is a great habit to incorporate into my life. I want Dillon to know the importance of eating a local, healthy and nutrient dense diet. I believe this comes with me showing her how not preaching.

All in all, being a Bonus Mom has it’s ups and downs. When looking at your diet and lifestyle to make a change, think about the emotional process as well. If you ever want to join me at the farmer’s markets just contact me! We can go get great fresh produce and have a cooking party! Dillon appreciates the wide variety of produce. I take my Nutritionist Final Exam this week so wish me luck!