Vacations Used to Stress Me Out

I went to Lake of the Ozarks on a family vacation recently. It was a restful, rejuvenating vacation because my kids are finally at ages where it felt like a legit vacation rather than parenting in another place.

Vacations used to stress me out — but it wasn’t just because of all the diapers, blankets, pacifiers, plus managing the chaos that tends to come with interfering with a young child’s routine.

It was also because of the food.

For me, the prospect of a vacation — particularly the kind that involved swimsuit wearing — was a first-class ticket on the express train to CrazyTown.

Starting weeks (or even months) in advance, I’d obsess about what to eat and what not to eat, imagining how it might impact the way I’d look in the swimsuit. Then there was the vacation itself; I’d be consumed with the urge to eat all the yummy foods I’d tried to deny myself and guilt over the prospect of “ruining” my hard work.

That all changed when I became an intuitive eater.

I don’t stress about vacations anymore (beyond the normal craziness of trying to do all the laundry, finish all the work, and attempting to ensure nothing rots in the fridge in my absence).

Now, I eat what I feel like eating before and during my trip. I exercise because it feels good, not to burn calories. (This week it was lake swimming every morning.) I show up in whatever bathing suit fits well and feels good. I come home and eat the foods I normally eat.

Most importantly, I fully sink into being present on my vacation because my mind isn’t preoccupied with my weight.

Do I notice I might have put on a little weight during my trip? Sure. But it doesn’t send me into a shame spiral like it would have in the past.

Instead of believing the thoughts that tell me it’s bad to gain weight and that it’s something I need to fix, I can pause, remind myself, “That’s the old story, but I don’t believe that one anymore,” and move right on with my day.

If you want to be more present on vacations but you’re not sure how to get there, I’d love to help.

Leave a Reply