Recently I went home to Aus for a holiday with my family. On the flight over I wrote this post which had me in tears on the plane. I haven’t re-read it but think I need to post it.
It’s time to face some truths:
I don’t know. I don’t know a lot of things. In fact the list of things I don’t know would reach dizzying heights. I don’t know the capital of Mongolia, I don’t know who the 3rd PM of Australia was and I don’t know the name of my fathers grandfather.
But these are things that I can look up, learn and remember.
What I can’t look up, learn or remember is how to live my best life. Sure, I can read books and research the internet and remember happy times, but those things haven’t worked yet and I don’t know how to make them work.
A couple of years ago, I lost a lot of weight. A lot. A whole person of weight. I thought it would bring me happiness. I thought I would find self confidence, learn to like (or possibly even love) myself and maybe, I would learn to open my heart to others.
But it didn’t do any of those things for me. It got me healthy, it got me fit but it teach me how to be me. I used to look at my before and after photos and I could SEE the difference but I didn’t FEEL the difference. I couldn’t relate to the “after” person at all because to me I was still the same fat person.
Now, I’ve gained half that weight and more self loathing than ever. I am sitting on a plane to go and see my family and have almost had to talk myself into going because I don’t want to acknowledge that the last time some of them saw me I was many kgs lighter. That I’ve become that cliche of someone that lost a heap of weight but couldn’t keep it off.
I tell myself although I’ve gained weight, I’ve also gained strength. In some ways that’s true. My back pain has been addressed (turns out it was really just me not feeling my feelings) and I am certainly more self aware about how I feel. Moving to NZ has also given me insight into my work and career skills. I’ve learned a lot about what I’m good at and been pleasantly surprised at this knowledge and the respect I have gained in this role.
So, back to the original don’t know. I don’t know how to live my best life. I obviously still want to lose weight but I realise that life is about so much more than how I look. It has to be. Here’s some other things I have realised:
I have pushed people (men) away because I think they cannot possibly like me. The physical me. Even if I let them get close, I lose respect for them because how could they like someone like me. I’ve been using a dating app recently but I never let anyone get close. I have a photo on there of my face that is half decent and it makes me feel like a catfish. So I post a full length photo so they can see what they would be getting. Except they would never get it anyway because I wouldn’t let them.
TV is not my friend. I come home from work, turn the TV on and then the rest of the evening is a combination of food and TV.
I don’t know how to love myself. I don’t know what that would take or how to achieve it. I am constantly surprised that I have friends or have the capability to make new ones. If I can’t see anything worthy in myself, why would/should anyone else?
Here’s some things I do know:
Writing this post is a signal of strength and I want to build upon that. I’ve been at the bottom of a well before and I have learned to recognise when I’m heading there again. I have recognised that and will fight my way out. There have been a lot of suicides of public figures recently as well as a work colleague not long ago. I know that as bad as things get, I can’t do that. Years ago, I sat in my car, in a closed garage, and fought with myself between turning the car on or going out into the fresh air. Every day, we all have that choice and every day we have to make that decision.
Food is not my friend, my comforter, my ally nor my nemesis. It is just food. It provides fuel for my body. It does not make me feel better, cannot make me feel guilt and it can’t make me love myself.
Loving me should be an honour. Loving myself is not proud or shameful, it is how I’m supposed to live life. I used to say that when I was out running I would tell myself not to worry what people were thinking as they couldn’t think any worse of me than I didn’t already think about myself. I should turn that around. I should be my own cheer squad. I always felt that meant being egotistical, rude or a wanker but there’s nothing to say I can’t do it with humility.
I read that now and think, if I had read that on the net I would be cheering the author. So here’s me cheering me. I still have a lot (A LOT) of work to do, both physically and mentally but I think realising what I didn’t address previously is a pretty significant step. Maybe I’ll always be a work in progress and I’m OK with that. I was never that great with the idea of perfection anyway.