Sunday, August 15, 2010
Learning to eat and other things
It can be a bit odd to read someone saying 'I'm learning to eat.' It could be taken in many different ways. One of which, perhaps an accident which made them unable to feed themselves. But for me, there are at least two different things this means for me; easily combined into one.
When I was younger, I loved to eat. I took pride in the amount I could eat. Remember when you would go to restaurants with your parents or grandparents and they would tell you to 'clean your plate' or 'have one more bite', then you could get dessert or at least praise for cleaning your plate.
I had a love affair with food at a young age. I also had grandparents who were amazing cooks. Also, they would buy ice cream, chips, cookies (or make homemade cookies)...cake, homemade bread. I had so many unhealthy options....all of which I loved. I also had grandparents who expected you to eat. I still get 'the looks' if I go down to Grandma Smith's and do not eat lunch. I eat at odd times anymore due to my job. If I'm not hungry, I'm not hungry.
Eventually I was sick of being 'chunky'. Over one summer I went from 140 to 125, and eventually by my senior year I dropped down to 110. I started working out; doing crunches, squats, and push ups 2 times a day. I also helped on the farm with unloading hay, etc. and milking. I looked good. (or so people said).
But then, a feeling of having lost control over my life and soul lead me down to a path that involved something called 'ED'.
Bulimia took over my life.
And the thing that makes me so angry, the thing that some people just do not understand...I was NEVER proud or gloating of my bulimia. I was self-conscious, embarrassed, and overall ashamed. Eventually my daily ritual of getting 'rid' of my supper turned into me also getting 'rid' of my lunch (at school).
I know people talked...hushed whispers no doubtfully exchanged in my art class or at the lunch table.
The thing that makes me sick is how twisted people can be. There was another girl I know of, for sure, who was bulimic. She was part of the 'in' crowd. So people were concerned over her...wanted to start an intervention. Were shocked and upset.
Me? I'm made a mockery? Two people, same thing...yet popularity and notoriety gives one support and care while the other is made to feel like a rotten soul of nothing?
Funny thing about ED is that ED is not a thing to care of race, age, sex, looks, or financial stability.
People also start for many reasons...some for control, others for fear of weight...and I'm sure other things as well.
Fast forward to several years later. I'm not 'suffering' anymore, but still have the guilt when I eat. Over the past years, the little tendrils of depression have snagged me more than once.
Eventually I landed a job that made me feel at home. People who didn't seem to judge me and my every move. I learned about food; organic, local, sustainable...have been able to try various fruits and veggies. Also, really awesome cookies for $.99 cents.
I think on top of everything, getting more comfortable in my own skin. Finding acceptance, battling depression and loneliness...eventually weight that was so hard for me to keep off without obsessive tendencies crept back.
I, somehow, still fit in the same size pants...so it's not a question of that. They might not have as much give tho.
Now I'm back in the 120's...a place I hadn't been in since '00/'01 or slightly earlier. There is a mixture of emotions with this. People say I'm so 'skinny' but it is hard to believe that when you do not 'see' it or 'feel' it.
It's hard to feel comfortable when one has battled so long and hard with themselves. The only way for me not to have excess weight is to eliminate many of the foods I enjoy and go back to manual labor on a farm and obsessive exercising. I lost my weight first before acquiring ED...so I don't feel ED kept the weight off. My lifestyle has changed tho. And my genetics are as such that if I looked at a 24 layer chocolate cake, I'd add on 24 layers to my ass.
Eat Pray Love is a movie I saw last night. Granted Julia Roberts has NOTHING to worry about in the weight department; she gave me some motivation. And really, common logic is that anything in moderation is ok. I would probably feel MORE fulfilled in my eating if I ate something truly enjoyable for my meals vs. settling. Texture, color, flavor...it's all part of it.
I made a breakfast today for Bill and myself. Hash browns and sliced sweet mini peppers, along with a couple divina tomatoes. Garlic and Herb and Garlic and Bell pepper spices added. Lightly scramble eggs until they are cooked enough you can dump them in the mix (the eggs are also seasoned). Cheese-Wildflower Cheddar and Parmesan...sprinkle on top. I noted on how the cheddar is difficult to cut 'against the grain'...it was beautiful. The colors...yellows, reds, browned potatoes...the smells...the bits of color from the herbs and spices.
The texture of eggs, the slight crunch and chew of potato. Crispness of pepper slices, the melting goo of cheese that gives a zing to your tongue. Garlic...my most favorite cooking spice. (or herb?)...the colors and texture...and the sweet grape jelly on a dense slice of wheat bread...combine those flavors with the others and you truly have a dance party.
Maybe a stray cat hair or two...but that just makes it even better.