Really? This? Again?
What. The. Fuck.
I thought I had this all under control a couple of years ago. This business of listening to my body and reacting appropriately to the signals it was so lovingly giving me. The method I spent years learning to put into practice, thanks in no small part to Geneen Roth, and a very fabulous therapist who subscribed for the most part to the Church of Geneen Roth.
But. Ugh. Here I am again, like it or not. And may I just clarify for anyone who was unsure: not. I do not like it one little bit. Three years ago, I had lost 40 lbs naturally, gradually over about 6 months, and without so much as a whisper of the word D-I-E-T. A four letter word, if I’ve ever heard one. I was sitting at a very comfortable size 12. For me, that’s about 185 lbs. It’s a weight that is maintainable over the longterm for me, and as such, I happen to think it’s a very good weight for me. I had achieved this weight without consciously trying, and I didn’t obsess about my weight one way or the other. Hello!?! Can you say breakthrough? We are talking Kodak moment of the psyche! Then my fucking back injury happened, I became immobilized, dealt with chronic pain, and my weight went up.
At first I put on 40 lbs in 6 weeks after I’d been put on Effexor. Take that, pregnancy weight gain! Ha! Even when I was pregnant with twins, it took me 9 months to gain 80 lbs, so 40 lbs in 6 weeks was no small feat. All of a sudden I looked like the Stay-Puffed Marshmallow Man. Not pretty. Not pretty at all. Over the next 2 years flat on my back (and not in a good way), I managed to put on another 10 lbs, just to round it out nicely.
Get it? Round it out? (What can I say? I don’t get out much.)
It horrifies and disgusts me, this extra weight I’m packing around. I don’t like the way I look, I don’t like the way I feel, and I’m constantly embarrassed by my body. I’m trying to start learning to listen to my body again, but it’s hard to trust when I listen and end up eating three iced croissants followed by a box of donut holes for brunch. And tonight my family celebrated the twins’ birthday. I was full before dinner even started – full of decently healthy stuff too: veggies and dip, multigrain tortilla chips and homemade guacamole (fantastic, if I do say so myself.) But I still ate pizza, because I was supposed to. I left 1/4 of it on my plate, but I was still so stuffed as to be uncomfortable. I completely skipped the 2 deserts that followed, and I felt good about listening to my body on that one.
After dinner, I started having awful stomach pains, because I overate so badly. And now, after having gotten naked for bed, I can see in the mirror just exactly how horribly distended my belly is. I look like I might give birth to an alien at any moment. Unfortunately, there will be no such easy way out on this one. I can’t just Sigourney Weaver my way out of this conundrum.
Clearly I need to make better friends with my body. I know from my past experience that when I am constantly trying to escape my body, it holds onto weight differently than when I appreciate and love my body for what it is and what it has done for me. I know any doctor will tell you different, but I do know my body well. And I know that when I am at peace with my body and my weight, and also better to take care of myself and respect my own needs, my body does not feel it has to protect me from everything. And the layers of protection gradually melt away.
The challenge now: get myself back to a place of love and appreciation for a body that I currently do not like or respect, between my weight and the constraints placed upon me by my injury. So here goes a big ol’ nuthin’. I’ll keep ya posted.