Tainted Love


strong woman

 

I’m  not really sure when the love/hate relationship began.  It seems like it’s been there forever, but surely when I was two it wasn’t present.  I am aware that by kindergarten it was firmly in place.  Somewhere between birth and the tender age of five I fell into the love/hate thing.  Always aware, always conscious that I  . . .was the fat girl.

I look back on pictures of myself in kindergarten, and know that my brothers tormented me calling me fatty fatty four by four.  Seriously,  I was a pretty average sized kid – but solid.  I’ve never been skinny, or  a waif.  By fourth grade I had pudged out to butterball proportions.  Indeed I became the labels that I was taunted with.

You know, it affects you hearing those names.   That old saying “sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me”.   That’s a big fat hairy lie!  Words hurt far more than being beaten with a cane.  Words last a lifetime, being beaten with a belt or cane, or switch only lasts a short while.  Bruises heel but the word scars cut deep.  It was enough to perpetuate a lifelong struggle with weight.

Regardless of other issues of dysfunctional family life, or abuse, over eating became a self medicating action.   Think I”m lying?  Watch a kid that’s upset inhale a ton of sugar then buzz around until they literally crash.  Talk about setting up your system for problems.  I developed a sweet tooth at a very early age,  Sugar is one of the most addictive substances on earth.

Anyway, the love/hate thing: it’s a total mental game that I play with myself.  I try to avoid the scale because based on where the needle lands, I will either be ecstatic if it drops down even a fraction,or crushed if it goes up a fraction. How many of you know that is a poor indicator?  Do you know the average woman’s body can fluctuate as much as 6 pounds within 1 day?  That is a roller coaster set up for disaster.  I weigh myself once a week.

I think many women, especially American women battle with the love/hate relationship with their body.

I have decided that it’s time to settle things with myself.  There was a time when I felt good in my own skin.  I felt confident, I felt strong, healthy, alive and energetic.  Age of course has bearing on all those things, but my goal is that feeling I had;  a feeling of confidence, of knowing that I was capable.

If you’ve ever watched any episode of Biggest Loser, you know the contestants  biggest battle is in their mind.  We play these horrible mind games on our self.  We tell our self we can’t .  We tell our self we aren’t worthy.  We tell ourselves we aren’t good enough.  We tell ourselves – we aren’t pretty enough, smart enough, rich enough, tall enough, and a whole slew of other things of why we can’t have the good things in life.  Talk about a self-defeating attitude.

I refuse to engage in the self-defeating mind games any longer.  Instead of why I can’t, I ask myself why and how I can.  I preach myself encouragement.  Yeah, you may have noticed a few rounds of encouragement on my blog here, thanks for joining me for the lecture.

I’m not making any land-speed record for weight loss, but i am making progress.  Slowly but surely.  I fear it’s slower than a turtle but there is progress never the less. the biggest progress is on the inside.  Stopping the self-defeating track that has played for so many years.

I Know I spend a lot of time discussing weight loss also, there’s a reason for that.  This is the  biggest issue, my biggest battle that I face.  It’s like I can tackle pretty much anything life throws at me.  Reworking three years of work that someone destroyed – yeah, I didn’t give up.  Handling multiple roles in life – not that I really have a choice there.   Being responsible and teaching my children to be responsible adults – well I don’t really consider that an option either.  But this weight thing – it has kicked my butt for years.

NO  MORE!  It’s going down!  This last outpost for the love/hate relation is going to be destroyed.

Why is it such an issue in my life?  As I figure out the answers to that question, the walls come down brick by brick.  Sometimes we have to understand how the wall was built-in order to destroy it. I’m laying siege to the last bastions of  ‘fat chick’.  She’s not bullying me anymore.  She’s not ruling over my body anymore.  Like the metamorphosis of a butterfly – I kind of look at this soft exterior I currently have as a sort of cocoon, a chrysalis that houses the  emerging beauty of renewed life.

Yeah, yeah, yeah,  – why do I get so metaphorical?  Because the manifestation of the reality of who I am is only an internal vision right now.  Despite the lack of youth, despite the fact that I’m not going to have anymore children, despite my battle scars of stretch marks from the children I have, this chick is going to rock this joint!  I’m going to be the bet ME I can be.  Never going to look like Taylor Swift – I think she’s too skinny anyway.  Despite what my husband desires – I”m never going to look like Valerie Bertinelli because  – well, I just don’t look like Valerie Bertinelli.  I am a one of a kind original, made in the USA, unique and valuable being.

OH, and I’ve figured out a thing or two over my time on this rock.  Like, the inner voices lie! I don’t know who planted that track there but I’m ripping it out one paving stone at a time.  No more love/hate relations with my body.  I’m going to own it!  That’s right , you heard me inner fat chick – you’re going down!

What things do you struggle with?  Do you have a bad self-image? A love/hate relation with some part of your body? Or your whole body?  don’t be shy, speak up.  Together we are stronger, and speaking up shuts up the self-defeating talk.

Write on my friends, write on!

 

 

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4 comments on “Tainted Love

  1. I highly recommend the book, Growing the Positive Mind, by Dr. William K Larkin. This is a fascinating look on positive psychology and cognitive restructuring, and he gives really easy, down-to-earth ways of doing so. Even though I’m fairly a positive person in life, this book has revolutionized my thought process and I haven’t even done the exercises yet.

    Good for you, Ellie! I hope you succeed. You are right. “Sticks and stones…” is a lie. Words hurt IF we let them. It’s about learning how to shrug them off and focusing on what makes us feel good, and doing the right thing regardless of what others say or think, is what matters.

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  2. Make it happen! I’m rooting for every bit of success. Sometimes the bricks take chipping, other bricks will require a sledgehammer to remove, but they WILL come down. And I’m pacing you on this, so you’re not alone. Recently made the same decisions in my life and can’t wait to fut the fat chick suit in a box that sinks to the bottom of the ocean. You will rock this. You will win. We will prevail and enjoy brighter days unencumbered by numbers that will no longer have any power over us. Go! We’re with you. 🙂

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