I was losing the battle with binge eating at the start of this month. I was eating completely out of control and I was starting to panic that I was on my way down a dangerous path that would find me back at 130 kilos (286 lbs). I could see it happening, but I couldn’t do anything to stop it. It’s a horrible feeling.
Do you know what really helped me start to turn things around? I realised that I need to stop hating my body. It turns out that the more I hated myself, the more I wanted to punish myself with food.
A few weeks ago I stared at myself in the mirror for a long time and told myself that I am OK as I am now. I do still want to lose weight, but I am OK now too. This isn’t the first time I have tried this, but something sunk in this time.
I was putting a lot of pressure on myself to drop a lot of weight before going on an upcoming holiday and part of the chat I had with myself in the mirror was about this holiday. I told myself that it didn’t matter if I was 5 kilos heavier or 5 kilos lighter on holidays. I am OK as I am now and I deserve to have a fun holiday no matter what size I am.
I’m not a good example of body positivity by any means… I still grab my rolls of fat and screw up my face in the mirror and I still get frustrated that I can’t fit into cute clothes, but I am working at it.
It’s the 24th August and today you would be turning 54. I think you would be happy to be turning another year older and having had another year with your family. You lived for your kids and you would use your birthday as an excuse to cook us all a roast beef with yorkshire pudding and gravy. I would try and make you your favourite sponge cake and you would tell me it was amazing, even though we both knew it was pretty average.
You didn’t care about getting birthday presents and always told me not to waste my money on you. So on your birthday this year I wish I could tell you just how very much I miss you every single day. I know you always thought I was so independent and that I didn’t need you. I thought that too. Oh god, I have never been so wrong about anything in my whole life.
I wish I could tell you that I need my mum.
I need my mum to care about my boring work problems, to text me to remind me when my favourite shows are on, to let me know when Target has a sale on and to make sure I go to the doctors when I am sick. I need my mum to sew the buttons that come off my tops, make me soup when I am tired and text me to check that every flight I am on lands safely. I need my mum to buy my favourite foods for when I visit, send me flowers to make my day and to turn my electric blanket on so it’s warm when I go to bed.
This is a photo of you on your last birthday here with us in 2013. You had just finished chemotherapy and radiotherapy and I was so proud of you. Going through those treatments with the added complication of bipolar disorder was too much for anyone to have to take, but you did it because you wanted the best chance to live and be with your kids. Thank you for trying.
Love ya mum.
A lot has happened since I was last blogging regularly, before my mum died. Though it also feels like life has been standing still, but I think that was just me trying to hold onto my old life. In a way I think that I have been resisting change because I hated every new thing in my life that my mum wasn’t here to experience with me.
I hated when I got my hair cut and my mum couldn’t see it, I hated when I bought a new rug and I couldn’t show my mum, I hated that I couldn’t tell my mum about my new job and I hate that my mum has never seen the apartment I live in now. I just hate that my life has to go on without her.
It’s been almost 17 months since she passed away and I still reach for my phone to call and text her and it still takes my breath away when I realise I can’t. I honestly can’t believe that it will be like this forever.
Part of the reason I started blogging again is because I need a place to talk about my mum. I don’t want to be depressing or have a pity party, but I don’t have anyone else that I can really talk to about her. I don’t have much family, and since she passed away we haven’t exactly got closer… I feel like I am losing her more and more each day and I want to talk about her so that I can keep her with me.
Me, mum and my little brother at the snow many years ago. This photo really sums up my mum’s dry personality and makes me smile 🙂
I had a really bad weekend of eating. I don’t mean that I overindulged a little bit too much… I mean that I ate myself into a pit of misery and self hatred. I can see now that I was putting too much pressure on myself to lose weight and have been teetering on the edge of a major binge for weeks.
I was obsessing over food, feeling grumpy and deprived and my body physically felt tired from the lack of food energy it was receiving. I spent way too much time thinking about how I could ‘survive’ our office drinks and paella party on Friday night. About an hour before the party I caved in and decided to just relax and enjoy the delicious food and wine. Well, that decision sent me directly to the cookie jar where I tried to secretly shove biscuits into my mouth without my colleagues seeing me.
Once I started eating, I couldn’t stop for the entire weekend… By Sunday night I felt completely out of control and I knew that I needed to make some changes.
I realised it isn’t so much about changing the way I eat, it is more about changing the way I view myself. If I can be more accepting of my body and the way I look I won’t feel quite so desperate to OMG.MUST.LOSE.WEIGHT.RIGHT.NOW!!! If I hate myself less, I will treat my body better. Hopefully.
This doesn’t mean that I have stopped trying to lose weight. It just means that I am trying to be OK with myself as I am now and understand that if I make consistent healthy choices I will eventually get to where I want to be. It’s hard to accept that weight loss will be slow, but I am determined to break this binge/starve cycle I have been in for 30 years.
I think taking that pressure off myself has helped because I already feel a little calmer about my food choices this week.