I am feeling infinitely better than yesterday. Yesterday was not a particularly amazing or good day for me, so I suppose today had a wide berth to end up tolerable. It did. I did.
Things I figured out today:
I don’t really like Qdoba. If I’m going to have a big, ricey, beany, gloppy burrito, I should have something I like, like Chipotle and for the time being, I don’t like any of it. I just find Qdoba sorta extra dry and salty, somehow. Extra gloppy. An imposter perfume. Of course, hindsight’s 20/20 and I never can tell how little I care for something until after I eat it. But this is a fairly consistent reaction.
Tonight for dinner: little hamburger sliders, carrots, grapes, and some lemonade and maybe some sugar-free pudding. Nobody’s calling it health food, but maybe that helps. What feels good about it is that I made it myself at my house. I was considering when it was exactly that I got so fucked up about food. I’m sure it had something to do with my mom going back to work and we were alone in the house a lot of the time, and re-cemented in my head when she got sick and puberty had its way with me. Food was and is omnipresent. It’s necessary. It can’t deny you or react in anyway to you other than complete acceptance. And people were not really accepting me all that well then, which I was struggling to understand. How there were groups of kids that you couldn’t belong to and they were doing things with each other and they were really excited by their lives. My being excited by my stories and the things I was reading was not something I knew how to express to these people. And the whole cycle of having cans of frosting or cake mixes and hiding them beside my bed (which was terrible and bizarre) was only terrible to me in my guilt that I would get in trouble for it. Not because, hey, you don’t need to eat that.
I was alone, felt alone, and eating really massive amounts of terrible food every so often made me feel like I was satisfying or short-circuiting all these emotions and all this stuff happening around me. That if there was a problem, I was fixing it, though after a while the reasons became really vague and obscure and the distance between the want arising and the need to answer the want immediately and with complete fanaticism was almost indivisible. Jokes about being tubbier and my inherent shyness added to it. That sense that I was weird. Really weird. Not just movie weird, but in some way socially broken, didn’t help. And for a long time, still, really, I take pride in being on that other wavelength. I wasn’t like a hipster. I wasn’t doing anything and what I wasn’t doing, nobody was watching. Reading Christopher Durang plays in the library for hours, waiting for a ride home, writing (sometimes), my few junior high friendships dissolving for reasons I never understood, nursing a Dr. Pepper, thinking about people as though they were conceptual, feeling funny and generally good but that everything that my classmates were experiencing was coming to me. Just later. When I had properly earned it or when they got down the special jar of futures. It was ego, but I didn’t see it that way. And food was just the way the days passed. Meals marked time. Snacks helped the time between meals speed up. Whatever impulse I might have had to speak out about what I wanted or needed or my anxiety, food took care of that at the same time. And then all of a sudden, this was my thing. Not reading or creating or using my intelligence, just consuming and planning consumption. Bitterness and joy and every emotional hangnail. Until, random realization that this is my life: unacceptable, I want love and marriage and moving out and writing and happiness and not this one box staring down at a computer and a plate which leads to a random thrust towards not eating like a maniac, end up eating 10x worse.
It just…you want to say, well, don’t do that anymore. And so far, that’s the only advice I know that works. See what you don’t like and don’t do that any more. See what you like and do that. Don’t ever let it come back and don’t ever give it up.
So I asked myself when it was that I felt like I was eating healthfully and well and didn’t have these compulsions to eat outside of meal time, to gorge, to go nutty over food in an obsessive sort of way. And obviously, it was way back when I had no say in what I was eating. When I had breakfast provided, lunch served, dinner a great surprise and delight and we’d run outside and play again maybe we’d have a bit of popcorn before bed.
So here’s the plan at the moment. Buy vegetables. Make meals. Eat them. Go take a walk (we took a nice one today) and track it on SparkPeople. Track the food, too, and water. And let the tension go. I’ve worked hard today, cleaning and getting rid of old things that used to mean things, but don’t anymore. Old clippings about the Goo Goo Dolls, a whole tray full of random makeup, lots of strange papers I held onto as if I was someday going to back and take notes on my education. Did tons of laundry. Still tons more to do.
Self-care. When you’re unable to do it, you just need to do it. When you reject it, that’s when you have to do it. You have to destroy any other option but stopping the processes that seem inherent and saying HEY! What do I really need and want not just right now, but tomorrow and later on and if I want a clean, restful house (I do.) and if I want to get over my driving phobia (I do.) and if I want someone who will find all of this both silly and loveable and as important as I do (I do.), I cannot play computer games and eat burritos and complain.
If these are my goals, I either work towards them or I don’t and I give them up.
I don’t want to be given up on, so goals, let’s just go.