Saturday, November 14, 2009

Hunger

I hunger for a normal relationship with food.

Just that sentence says a lot.The fact that I have a relationship with food. I'm not sure everyone does. Do people even think about it?

I'm jealous of a lot of guys I know. They eat because they need the energy, it's time, or they feel like it. Food isn't loaded with emotional depth and heaviness. Food is food. Wouldn't that be nice?

I wonder what normal people think when they sit down to a meal. Because I'm thinking, "Ughh, don't make me do it." The nerves rage, the anxiety flares up and I'm left at the table like a stubborn 6 year-old who doesn't want to eat her dinner.

I wonder what it feels like to be full. To eat and stop eating and think nothing of it. I wonder what it feels like to not count the bites that enter my mouth. To not think so hard about each calorie. To let food be food. To eat and move on without thinking continuously about what I ate for the next 2 hours. I wonder what it would be like to not count other people's calories, "Two egg salad sandwiches, Naked juice, pumpkin pie: at least 900 calories." That's not normal.

I know this isn't normal. I know I wish I was different. That point within us that is supposed to be similar in all mammals that says, "I'm full"? Yeah, I don't know where that is. It's like a rackety train, whizzing by, and I'm trying to jump on the "Full" car, the one where I'm supposed to land, but rarely do. Too often, I miss and get crushed underneath the train. Or get tired and watch the train pass on by. Either way it amazes me that for some people the act of eating doesn't involve the risk of jumping on a moving train. They just eat and that's it. No stunts necessary.

I wonder if I even enjoy the taste of food. I wonder what my favorite foods are. I like some things for sure: cereal, pb&j, and mac and cheese. I like kid foods. But often, someone will comment on what I'm eating and ask, "Does that even taste good?" as they turn up their nose. And I've had to say, "I don't know." Food hasn't been a source of enjoyment for me for a long time. Eating is what I do to get through the day.

This morning Liz, my yoga instructor, said, again, yet it still seems to intrigue me, "Trust the earth to hold you." HA! Yeah right. Sure, I can lay on a mat in a warm, safe room and trust the earth to hold me, but I DO NOT trust the universe too much for me outside of that room. I wish I did. It would make a good mantra.

If I trusted the earth to hold me I wouldn't manipulate my body to look how I think it should.
If I trusted the earth to hold me I wouldn't think so hard about food, because well, it's not necessary.
If I trusted the earth to hold me I wouldn't hold the burdens of the world on my shoulders, as if they are mine to fix.
If I trusted the earth to hold me I would relax more, breathe more, laugh more, and sleep more. I would do things just because they are fun.
I would linger a little longer.
I would sleep in.
I would be more present in a life that too often seems to weigh me down and beat me up, the problem is, I'm usually the one doing the beating.

Last night Ben and Ashley helped me sort out my thoughts again. They help me get the gremlins out of my head. If the gremlins stay inside, they do a lot of damage. They need room to run. They need to get out. They need to stay out.

There always seems to be "something" I'm thinking abuot, "something" that is weighing me down, "something" that takes me out of life and into my head, "something" that I can't seem to stop thinking about and can focus on little else. Sometimes it's the eating disorder, sometimes it's my questions about God, lately it's been a lot of anger towards men (a whole 'nother blog), sometimes it's questions about the future. These lingering questions make me uncomfortable and they take me out of living my own life.

Ashley made the preposterous suggestion, like she has before, "What if you didn't have to have the answers to all these questions in order to keep living?"

Why is it so difficult for me to accept that I can't be perfect?
Why can't I say, "I don't know and that's okay"?
Why am I often stuck on "something" that keeps me from living?

I hunger for peace and contentment.

I can make mistakes.
I can do the next right thing.
I can trust my body.
I can enjoy food.
I can ask for help.
I can learn how to eat.
I can learn how to breathe.
I can embrace simplicity.
I can nourish my body, mind, and spirit.
I can pretend I am normal, even when it feels miles away.
I can trust the earth to hold me.

Amen.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hey Heather, I've just now started reading your blogs and thoroughly enjoy reading them. I have one question tho.... What do you believe? Do you believe in God or in heaven?
I don't want to pry or sound rude in any way, I'm just curious.

Heather said...

Hi there. I would be thrilled to answer your question, but I have no idea who this is or where to answer them...