Diets are better done in secret. Maybe. I’ve been pondering this thesis today after a woman who works upstairs poked her head in and asked if I was dieting. Not so abruptly as that implies, but she wanted to know if she could put things in the freezer like what I had in there – a little frozen, “diety” macaroni and cheese. I said, I was, “a little bit.” And she said that she was starting a group with a cousin to lose the last 10 pounds she put on after she got married. I do, like I always do when someone tells me something I don’t know how to respond to (or if I think they’re putting me on since she was pretty slender to begin with), I laugh. I laugh until they bugger off, basically. But it got me thinking, as much as I appreciate online support and expressing what I’m doing and journalling and blogging and all of this, I really don’t do well with human interest in my weight loss process. Not live and in person support and encouragement.
It feels way too much like judgment even when you know that there’s nothing in their words that implies anything other than support and encouragement. It’s immediate projection. They are immediately “over-hoping” for me that “this is the time she gets it.” OR I imagine them thinking back to the other times I’ve said I was dieting and viewing me through that lens of someone who is constantly trying to manage their weight.
I think I like to…I know I like to have the appearance of a swan, all grace and a sangfroid demeanor at all times, completely unflustered by anything negative in the world, and utterly free of those creepy, smelly, difficult emotions that you other people have. It feels like a big sloppy weakness. The thought of tracking calories and minding myself with other people, particularly when the other person is just a few pounds away from her goal, is just completely unappealing.
I don’t think this necessarily has to be a lonely process, doggedly pursued, for a goal that is, in some facets, very superficial. But it is a fragile process in the first few weeks. Sometimes it feels like an ill wind will blow me into a cheesecake if I’m not careful with myself. I don’t know if I’ll make all of this work or if the pounds will come off even if I believe 100% and do exactly as the plan says I should. If someone out there knows of a group that doesn’t feel that way online, doesn’t have those components of judgment and expectation and ceding control of what has to become a private, but deeply rooted compulsion to people I don’t necessarily know or trust – I would love to hear of it.
For now, popping in and reading and posting on SparkPeople is enough to remind me that I am in a giant (HAR) wave of people who are struggling in the same direction, separate from them but among them. I like knowing that and forging ahead.
Time to apply my ass to the stationary bike.