After yesterday’s negativity I have been trying to get back on track, go back to the relatively good place I was in before I started doubting myself. Today I am at home after a late(ish) night. We went out for dinner, I ate dinner, didn’t finish my pudding, it seemed ok. This morning I ate eggs for breakfast because that is what I thought my body wanted but now, at lunchtime, I am trying to decide if I am hungry again. Yes I could eat something but is it real hunger or is it “I am alone in the house and deserve a treat” hunger, is it “my stomach feels a bit iffy so perhaps I had better eat something” hunger, is is “I’m bored, what can I do?” hunger. How do I know? And why does looking at myself in a mirror, not liking what I see, make me doubt my own internal hunger mechanism? Why is one related to the other? Well it isn’t really, apart from if, like me, you’re a recovering over eater, food obsessive, body conscious person.
So what do I do? Do I go and eat the food I have already mapped out to eat in the cupboard? If I don’t do that I am denying my hunger and go back into the dieting mindset? I know, I’ll wait for twenty minutes and measure my hunger then. In the meantime I shall have a nice glass of water and see what happens.
I’ve been reading about shame and a lot of what I read focusses on body image, how we see ourselves, and beat ourselves up because we don’t measure up to the perfect images in the media. The messages are (and always have been the same): it’s not the images, the body shapes and sizes they portray, that are wrong, it’s us that are wrong for not fitting into that image. Now if we’d only spend money on the latest diet book, follow the latest trend, we could look like those impossible airbrushed images and it’s only down to our laziness or greed that we are not able to do that.
Now as a woman who has spent her whole life living with a message of what is missing in my life I find this ridiculous but, of course, ridiculous for everyone else rather than me. I could spend the rest of my life beating myself up, wondering why I don’t look like Helen Mirren in a bikini but this is just repeating my go-to message: there is something wrong with me. But what happens if I throw out that message, what happens if I focus on all the things I am rather than all the things that I am not? I know it’s easier said etc but I have do something different, more sensible than I have been doing so far. I don’t want to just ignore the bits I like, but rather focus on what is good, what I like, I want to give up my focus on the negative which seems to impact on virtually, no, come to think of it, it impacts on every part of my life: me, my children, my partner, my home, my work etc etc It needs to stop, I need to stop, enough.
So I am perfectly imperfect: I am good enough, I fit just right in this world, and won’t hear anything else.