Today’s post is a little bit different than anything you guys have seen before (& I would absolutely LOVE your feedback to know if this is something that you guys want to see more of in the future!).
This post is my first ever Q+A!
Basically, what I did is assemble a lot of the questions that I get asked regularly & that I felt would be beneficial to answer in a permanent blog post so that you guys always have somewhere to refer back to! Feel free to keep the questions coming & I will keep track of them as they come in so that if you guys are interested in another post like this one, I’ll have tons of question inspo!
Without further ado, LET’S GET RIGHT INTO IT! You guys might feel like the questions are random, because they really touch on tons of different topics from health & wellness to fitness to eating disorder recovery to relationships/family, restaurants, makeup, clothing, lifestyle, beauty, books, self-care & more, but I really hope you enjoy this post & that it answers some of your questions!
Q: Are you afraid to relapse?
A: Yes, I am. It’s a constant fear that I live with every single day & I don’t know if it will ever fully, fully go away. BUT, it’s something I’ve learned to deal with. The risk of relapse is always there, especially when you start to see real physical changes in your body, when your “skinny” clothes no longer fit or are harder to zip up & when people start to tell you that you look great & healthy. Your ED wants you to interpret all of those things as signs of failure and lack of commitment & dedication. The only way to avoid giving in to the demons & the voices is to develop coping mechanisms to interpret those things as POSITIVE steps towards gaining your life back. You have to teach your mind not to sweat the small stuff. Physical change is good. It’s beautiful. Your skinny clothes no longer fitting is an opportunity to go out & buy a new wardrobe. And looking great & healthy means you’ve made progress, that you’re strong, that you’ve regained control over your mind & body & that you’ve realized your worth & that you, like anyone else, deserve to live a life free of monsters, demons & negative voices, triggers & anxieties.
Whenever thoughts of relapse come on (& I won’t lie, they do, every now & then), I remind myself why I chose recovery in the first place & I reflect on all the beautiful things that I have gained on my journey, everything that I have learned, how much I have grown as a person & how healthy & happy I feel & it helps me come to terms with the physical changes that recovery entails.
It also helps to remind myself of what life was like with ED. I think of the heart palpitations, the fainting spells, going to bed at night & fearing I would die in my sleep & that my family members would have to suffer another horrible loss. I think of the deprivation, the food schedules & times, the obsession with all the food I could not eat, the isolation from friends & family, the cries, heartbreak, screams, yells, hospital scares, my bony frail body. I think of how shopping was always a chore because nothing ever fit me, how it took me an hour to find a comfortable place in bed at night where my bones weren’t protruding. I think of the constant lower than normal body temperature that sometimes prevented me from even leaving my house. I think of all of these things & literally ask myself if I want to go back to them & suddenly, the idea of relapse goes away. This is not to say that the fear is permanently gone. It still lingers & comes back to haunt me every now & then (less often than before), but with time, the mind work is getting easier, the thoughts are easier to get rid of & resist & LIFE IS MORE & MORE BEAUTIFUL EVERYDAY.
Q: Do you ever wonder if your life would’ve turned out differently if you hadn’t gotten sick?
A: All the time. But, I’ve also had to do a lot of mind work to teach myself that wondering what could’ve or would’ve been & dwelling on the past is useless. It brings me nothing but fill my mind with questions, doubt & regret, all of which are feelings that I have done so much hard work to get rid of on my journey towards recovery, health & positivity.
I often wonder why my life took the course that it did & why I’ve been faced with so many traumatic events in the past five years, from losing my mom (who was also my best friend) to cancer to never grieving her passing until recently, to developing an eating disorder & almost letting it kill me & to simultaneously be going through an end to my marriage. But, I’ve also learned that the saying that everything happens for a reason (as cliché as it is) is very true & that I must embrace every challenge, obstacle & hardship that G-d has thrown at me, find the good in it (even if it’s just a little bit & learn & grow from it. This is the approach that I’ve chosen to take on life as I recover from my eating disorder & it’s the vision that I hope to live with for the rest of my life.
Q: Aren’t you married?
A: Yes, I did get married. But, unfortunately, sometimes things don’t always work out as planned or as we would’ve hoped they could. In life, we must accept that we can’t always have control over every situation & that ultimately, learning to cope with that & most of all, accept that it’s a reality, makes us stronger, wiser, more courageous & allows us to be more in tune with our emotions. It also gives us the opportunity to grow as individuals & to learn more about what we want from life & from our relationships.
I haven’t really spoken about this on social media up until today, so this is a HUGE step for me but I felt like it was time to let you guys in on this detail of my life. I’ve gotten so many questions surrounding it & kind of avoided them until I felt the time was right to come out about it. So here I am.
Q: What are my top drugstore makeup must-haves?
- Rimmel ScandalEyes Waterproof Eyeliner in Kohl Kajal.
- Pharmaprix brand cotton pads (I use these to remove my makeup after the gym & to apply my toner).
- Pharmaprix brand “beauty-blenders” or makeup sponges (So much cheaper than the actual Beauty Blender brand & SO MUCH BETTER, not even kidding!!!).
- Burt’s Bees Eye Makeup Remover Pads (Made with kiwi!)
- Burt’s Bees Makeup Remover Wipes (I don’t use these regularly but they are always great to have on hand & they come in a variety of scents & target different skin concerns).
- Marcelle CC Concealer & Corrector.
Q: Your significant other gets frustrated your weight loss goals; do I have any tips for dealing with this?
A: My first tip would be COMMUNICATION. Ask your significant other to explain to you WHY it frustrates him/her. Is it because he or she doesn’t have the same goals? Is it because he or she is worried that your goals are unrealistic or that your behaviours are dangerous or detrimental to your health? Getting to the root of why the frustration exists will help you both work through it as a couple & find a way to be more in tune with each other’s needs & wants, be on the same page & support each other.
Once you’ve found that middle ground, I would suggest implicating your S/O in the things you do to achieve your weight loss goals so that it could become a collective effort & goal. Have fun with it! Cook, workout, grocery shop, & do health & wellness research & reading together. Be open & honest with each other, share your progress with one another (& also your setbacks/challenges) & always make sure to prioritize & value each other’s HEALTH first, because without health, you don’t have much else.
Q: Do I have eyelash extensions?
A: Nope, I don’t & I never have! I’ve contemplated getting them but something always holds me back! I think it’s the fear that it will permanently damage my real lashes (although I know that some places use very high-quality products that aren’t supposed to do that). I am honestly blessed with pretty long natural lashes, BUT I ALSO HAVE A SLIGHT OBSESSION WITH MASCARA. It’s the one makeup product that I cannot leave my house without applying (I legit don’t recognize myself without it). I’ve tried TONS of mascaras & have LOTS of faves, not to mention, it takes me about 10 minutes per eye to apply it… NO SHAME. I’m also a huge fan of applying it to my bottom lashes.
Some of my fave mascaras are:
- Benefit Roller Lash Curling & Lifting Mascara
- YSL Volume Effet Faux Cils Babydoll
- Mac Cosmetics In Extreme Dimension Lash Black Extreme (Waterproof)
- Benefit They’re Real
- Tarte Lights Camera Lashes Mascara
- Buxom Lash Mascara
- Guerlain Maxilash Intense
- Lancome Monsieur Big Mascara
- Benefit Better Than Sex
Q: Do I get lip injections?
A: Nope, I don’t & I’m honestly PETRIFIED of the idea. At the moment, it’s not something I would consider doing, although I am a huge fan of any & all lip glosses/balms/lipsticks that will temporarily give me that “JUST INJECTED” look… I’ll stick to the temporary stuff (for now, at least!).
Q: What are my favourite restaurants in Montreal?
A: As you guys can probably tell, I don’t eat out THAT much (because I’m CLEARLY REALLY INTO THE HOMEMADE VIBES), but when I do, it’s usually sushi (because it’s really something I can’t make at home… well I could, BUT IT’S A DAY JOB).
My fave sushi spots are Maiko Sushi, Saint-Sushi & Tri Express. I’m also a sucker for Sushi Shop takeout every now & then!
I also LOVE Jatoba, Milos, Fabergé (BRUNCH ON FLEEK), Kazu, Olimpico (for delish coffee), Copper Branch & LOV!
There are tons of new spots that opened up while I was sick that I have been meaning to (not to mention, DYING) to try & I will obvs update you guys once I do!
Q: Are my sister & I twins?
A: No (I WISH!), we’re not (But I get this ALL THE TIME!). Believe it or not, we’re actually six years apart (I’m a 90’s baby & she’s born in 96!). The worst part is, people always think she’s the older sister… You’d also never believe we’re six years apart because of how close we are. We’re literally best friends & I don’t know what I would do without her, especially in the past two years. She has literally been my backbone & has been there for me every step of the way. YES, we do fight, but we ALWAYS get over it. We can’t go more than a couple days without talking & giving each other the silent treatment is SO FORCED. I simply adore her.
Q: Where did I go to law school?
A: University of Montreal!
If you’re considering law school & you plan to live in Quebec after getting your degree & writing your Bar exam, I strongly recommend doing law school in French! It will really help expose you to the French language & legal terms & it will make your practice in Quebec SO MUCH EASIER. You have no idea how much easier it made my life (& my job) for the 2 1/2 years that I practiced so far, to be able to know & understand all the legal terminology in French! (Even though English is my first language, I actually found that at times, I was better able to express myself in a legal context in French, simply because I did all my studies in French!).
It will also make you an asset to law firms when you start applying for jobs, especially if English is your first language, because then you’ll be able to say you’re perfectly bilingual!
Q: How often do I drink Kombucha?
A: I drink Kombucha (almost) every day! Some days, I’ll drink a full bottle. Other days, I’ll drink half & save the rest for the next day. It really depends on my mood / how thirsty I am & whether or not I’m having it with a snack. I’ll usually get through the bottle quicker if I’m eating with it.
There is nothing wrong with drinking it everyday & it will bring tons of benefits to your life, so long as you don’t notice that it’s causing any particular personal issues to your body (i.e. bloating, gas, etc.). If you think it might be, try to reduce your consumption or cut it out & see if the symptoms you were feeling are reduced/subside or entirely go away!
Q: Do I drink soft drinks?
A: Nope! Soft drinks are something I cut out from my life at the young age of 12 years old, believe it or not. When I was way younger, I used to be obsessed, LIKE LEGIT OBSESSED, with Coke. Suddenly, one day, I decided that I would stop drinking it & somehow, I stopped. & I never looked back.
Lord knows that had I not cut soft drinks out back then, I sure AF would’ve done so now as I’ve adopted tons of other healthy lifestyle changes, but thankfully, that’s something that I did a long time ago (& if you still drink ‘em, it’s 2017, my loves… I don’t mean to be rude, BUT IT’S TIME TO CUT THEM OUT OF YOUR LIFE & YOUR DIET!).
Q: What’s my go-to drink at parties/weddings/restaurants/outings?
A: I’m not huge on alcohol & I never was. I simply don’t enjoy it. BUT… SERVE ME A GLASS OF WINE & HECK YES. I’m more of a wine gal & to be precise, a white wine (& rosé, sometimes) gal. Red wine legit gives me headaches & puts me to sleep, so I tend to stay away from it. My all time fave white wine is Kim Crawford Sauvignon Blanc (& my fave rosé is Gallo!).
If I do have a drink, I go for tequila shots OR a gin & tonic! (BUT LET ME TELL YOU… this is rare. I’m also a lightweight, so that certainly doesn’t help my case!).
Q: What are my fave activewear brands?
A: OH BOY. Where do I begin?! I get my activewear from LITERALLY ALL OVER THE PLACE. Some of it is really expensive, while other items are super affordable (& cheap, to say the least… but you’d never know!).
Lululemon is obvi my go-to (I mean… I’m a BASIC MTL GAL). I also absolutely LOVE Aurum, Shop DYI/Strut This/Phat Buddha/Noli Yoga/All Fenix (all of which you can get in Montreal from Finish The Outfit FIT), Adidas, Nike, Forever 21, Old Navy, Koral Activewear, Calvin Klein, Aritzia, Champion, Outdoor Voices, New Balance, H&M (For tight tanks, especially!), Alo Yoga, Fabletics & sometimes, Victoria’s Secret!
Q: Where do I do most of my grocery shopping?
A: For fruits & veggies, I generally go to Provigo or IGA.
As for all my natural/organic food products/supplements/vitamins, my go-to places are Health Tree & Tau! Sometimes, I will find certain products that I get at health food stores at regular supermarkets (AT A CHEAPER COST), so I totally recommend checking at regular stores first & then only buying at health food stores, if you must!
I also sometimes (but less often these days) order some stuff online that I can’t find in Montreal, from websites such as Vitacost, LuckyVitamin or iHerb!
Q: What are my fave self-help/health/wellness books?
- The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fuck by Mark Manson
- If Our Bodies Could Talk by James Hamblin
- The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle
- Rising Strong by Brené Brown
- The Universe Has Your Back by Gabrielle Bernstein
- Anxiety for Beginners by Eleanor Morgan
- Fat For Fuel by Joseph Mercola
- Body Love by Kelly LeVeque
- The Gut Balance Revolution by Gerard E. Mullin
- Clean Gut by Alejandro Junger
Q: What’s my favourite perfume?
A: I have two!! I can’t choose!
- Nemat Fragrances Amber Roll-On (I have been buying this for AGES).
- Gold by Commodity (literally the CLOSEST thing I’ve been able to find to the Amber Roll-On, but in a spray version!).
Q: Do I wait before I have breakfast after drinking my lemon water?
A: Yes, I usually have my lemon water around 6:45-7:00 AM & I have breakfast anytime between 8:00-8:30 AM.
Q: Why didn’t I do inpatient treatment to recover from my eating disorder?
A: Inpatient treatment was something that was offered to me (unfortunately) because of how severe my situation was & how much danger my health was in. But, I made the very difficult decision of deciding against it because I have severe anxiety surrounding hospitals & public healthcare institutions. When my mother was very ill, my family & I basically lived at the hospital for about two months. We took turns sleeping there & we were by her side 24/7.
Going back to hospitals always brings back heart-wrenching horrible memories for me & triggers a lot of anxiety. I knew that accepting to confine myself to an institution (which I’m sure would’ve ultimately allowed me to accomplish recovery, as well) would perhaps make my situation worse before it got better because I knew I would have a hard time adapting to living an environment similar to the one that I lived in when my mom was sick.
It was difficult for me to make the decision to do it on my own, at home, of course, while being followed by a dietician, psychiatrist & physician, but it was a conscious decision that I made, as I was afraid of what the alternative entailed. I wasn’t in a place where I could allow myself to get any more anxious, depressed or afraid.
TBH, I was also afraid that being surrounded by other people going through the same or similar struggles to myself would backfire & would only fuel the fire more.
Q: Where do I get my brows & nails done?
A: I get my brows done at Lyne Giroux in the West Island by Kamal. I have been going to her for years & I literally do not let ANYONE ELSE go near them!!! I’m slightly obsessed with her.
As for my nails, I get them done at QSpa in the West Island, as well & my two fave technicians are Jason & Don.
KAY my loves, that’s it for today!!!!
Please send me your feedback & let me know if you enjoyed/liked/found this post useful & DM me more questions & most importantly, PLEASE DON’T BE SHY!
I love you all & I’m so thankful to have each & every one of you on this journey with me!
SO MUCH LOVE FOR YOU ALL.
<3 <3 <3 <3 <3 <3