Load Spring, Please

Raise your hand if you are done with cold weather and precipitation that’s frozen. Now put it down before anyone else sees you. My poor blue minivan has a white salt crust on it that is probably eating the undercarriage to rust. (I’m a poet. Yay.)

Poor van…

I have had a sore throat for over a week. I’ve been to the “doc in a box” and to the general practitioner. It isn’t the flu and it isn’t strep, so there isn’t much I can do other than wait it out. What a bunch of crap. I’m assuming if there were a little humidity, this wouldn’t be an issue.

I know most people say that above the neck, you can still work out, but heavy breathing really aggravates the freshly swallowed glass sensation and I just don’t want to feel it. That’s not my primary reason. I haven’t been working out because I don’t want to make time to do it. I want to figure out this direct sales job, handle my body issues, and be the best mom and wife in the whole wide world while being the most awesome girl boss ever.

I have a problem that is with what I put into my mouth more than how I move my body. I can eat a box of cookies by lunchtime and not be hungry for lunch or dinner later in the day. Or I can eat 3 square meals and then get into the cabinet and whip something up that’s bad for me in just a few minutes. I’m an amazing cook and pretty good baker. I’ll totally brag on that.

I’m finally doing something about the problem at hand. The hard part was naming the problem. Binge eating. I have great cholesterol, blood sugar, and blood pressure every year at my checkup. Except I’m obese. Yeah, I’m not overweight. I’m obese.

I know how to eat healthy. I enjoy an array of fresh and unprocessed foods. Dieting, I feel deprived. I go to a store, drive thru, or find a recipe to make something at home. I get stressed out and feel like I “need” something and no matter how much I eat, I feel more and more hungry. I know all the tricks: drink water, use fiber, and eat things with a low glycemic index. None of that matters when I’m on a binge and I feel like shit about myself, so I just feed the monster. Then, my brain starts to ignore the message that I’m full.

I have been on some form of a diet all of the time since I was around 8 years old. I never had a severe problem with disordered eating, so it wasn’t a real problem. I had a negative body image for most of my life. One time, I was trying clothes on and casually said I could stand to lose a few pounds upon trying one of her pants on. A relative replied to me, “More like 15-20 pounds.” I realize that comment said more about her than me. Now I do. I was in my 20’s and I hadn’t transitioned to grown up sizes, yet. I wasn’t eating more than a meal a day unless there was an occasion. I smoked cigarettes and I would work out in front of my TV after my daughter went to bed. I was 150 pounds and I wanted to be 135 on my 5′ 7″ frame.

Like I said, finding the name for what was wrong with me was difficult. I’ve been as much as 215 lbs and as little as 160 over the past 10 years. I’m an inch shorter than I was. My weight fluctuates. My stress levels fluctuate. I searched deeper into what I was doing and why I had so much trouble with willpower sometimes vs others. I found “binge eating” was the name of what I’d been doing and it wasn’t necessarily about willpower.

I got a book about it and I’m still not 100% immersed in recovery. I put the book in my purse the other day, but not until after I placed paper over the cover of the book so others around me couldn’t see what I was reading. It is a source of shame that’s even deeper than the way I feel about my outward appearance.

The most important change is that I’m not dieting anymore. I base some of my worst eating habits off of the thought that “I’ll be fat whether I eat the doughnut or the veggie omelette.” I’ve always been fat, in my opinion. That’s got to stop. My goals for this year include a more positive opinion of self no matter the size and I’m trying to get there.

I’ll let you know how I feel when I finish the book. The author directly says it could be six weeks or more before I’ll see results, but that really is a small time period compared to spending the next years of my life not eating because I hate my body, but because I understand what it needs.

Have you ever sat and thought about how words from you or others have affected your sense of self? I implore you, on International Women’s Day, to tell a woman something you like about her that isn’t about her physical appearance. Don’t forget to reflect on yourself, though. Think about what you really like about you and don’t forget to appreciate it and embrace it.

Thanks for reading! I’m always up for comments or questions. If you want to know more about my jewelry selling, my facebook page is @KeepWithJennDesi. I actually have been enjoying it so far.

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