Friday, January 28, 2005

Learning to Eat

Where to start? I have struggled with my weight and feeding my feelings since I was a teenager. I remember once getting so skinny that I looked anorexic and I was so pissed that even though I had lost the weight, nothing had changed in my head. I was so disappointed that I hadn't become someone else....I was stuck with me.

My weight has yo yo'd for years. Through all these years of obesity I have never had a doctor tell me to lose weight. Until this past September. I was in the hospital for testing for 10 days and a cardiologist comes to see me. She asks me when was the last time I weighed 160 pounds. After my initial thought of telling her to f off it took 5 minutes to figure out it had been 12 years. When I whined that, because of my illness, I couldn't exercise and therefore couldn't lose weight, she told me that with everything going on in my body the one thing I could control was what I ate.


So this past Christmas I told God - okay I don't know what issues are lurking underneath all this flab but I am willing to shed the weight to find out. Please hold my hand as I do so. I do know that being molested at 8 years of age and raped at 17 plays in there somewhere. I do know as a recovering alcoholic that sugar is a trigger for me. I know that, in the long run, it won't matter if I die fat one day. I doubt there will be anyone at my funeral saying, "Gee, too bad she never lost that extra 60 pounds." But I do want to get to the bottom of things. Finally. I am finding that by not feeding my feelings I am feeling things much more......I am way more emotional and that is a vulnerable place to be.

I am losing my perfectionistic attitude. You know the one where the first day of the month is a Monday and it is the perfect day to start overhauling your life? You last one day and chuck it all because you can't get through it in perfection? That attitude. Learning to see my spiritual life as a process has helped me accept that all of life is a process. Even learning to eat.

It's always been a dangerous thing to have junk food or pop in this house. Much like alcohol had been, this food called my name until I ate it all. Now I know I can have it if I want but if it is all gone before I get any - if I really want some I can go to the store and buy it. That probably sounds pretty silly but it was a revelation for me. It has helped tame that ever present panic to eat it all right now, before it is all gone.

It's a very different place to be. Looking at what is going on underneath the surface of my physical body and knowing that as I courageously do that the excess weight may disappear. For so long I thought it worked the other way around.

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