The Who, Chicago, 1975
I’m going to use March to get to know my body better so I can understand what it is trying to tell me. All this fat is a message from my body and I need to learn to understand it so I can work toward the healthy me.
Each and every day and night, my heart beats and pumps blood through my body; my lungs, kidneys, liver and stomach work every day without any supervision from me. They keep my body functioning and I finally have realized their true wonder.
In the past, for a variety of reasons, I came to think of my body as my enemy. In spite of the way I treated it, my body continued to take care of me with little complaint. Any complications that came up with my body, in spite of the terrific stresses I asked it to survive under, have been minor. Somehow, I lost sight of how much my body was doing for me on a daily basis and forgot that of all my friends, I could always count on my body.
How did I treat my body like an enemy? I did not have a full length mirror in the bathroom. I never saw myself naked. This was by design. I hated seeing photos of myself. As if the photos were lying and this was not how I was treating my body. I shopped for clothes only on the internet . . . that way I didn’t have to see myself in the dressing room mirrors.
In the shower I had lots of negative self-talk. I filled my mind and my body with this poison on a daily basis.
My body withstood this neglect and abuse, and never let me down. My heart is still pumping, my lungs still breathing, and other parts seem to be working well. It sent me a message with high blood pressure, but I was able to make it “shut-up” by giving it some pills. It tried to tell me how disconnected I was from it via depression, I tried to make it “shut-up” by dosing it with antidepressants. It tried to reach me with various infections and conditions, but I always treated the symptoms and never assessed my relationship with my body.
I did make some changes along the way. I quit smoking. I quit drinking soda. On the other hand, I often tried to make my body “shut-up” by going on a diet or working out to “punish” it for the crime of not being beautiful and to “punish” myself for my excess. Over the years I’ve been to Weight Watchers a number of times, followed a low-fat diet, tried Atkins a couple of times, plain calorie counting, and others. I was never able to stick to anything for more than a year and always gained weight plus back. I finally threw in the towel and just started eating to get into a bliss zone with sugar-salt and fat.
I’ve been doing my healthy eating within a set calorie range and logging my food for a year this March. I am off the sugar-salt-fat night time eating and binge eating merry-go-round. I plan to eat this way for the rest of my life because I feel so good. I feel like my new way of eating has given me my life back. I enjoy working out (I know, what?) and am in love with my yoga classes.
As I listen to my body, some of the messages are tough and I don’t want to hear them. But if my body and I are going to be good friends, I need to hear what it has to say. We won’t get fooled again.