Surfacing, after decades of panicked flailing under the black waters of delusion, finally gasping and gulping mighty lungfuls of freedom and clarity, I find myself not only redefined, but understanding the problem and the remaining consequences of those years spent anesthetizing myself with food. The consequences, for me, are many many pounds of fat, clinging to my frame.
Though my abused 'inner self' battled my dazed 'outer self' - and won, for a time - the inner is healthier now, it's sane. One particularly ugly dominating beast has been removed from my mind and heart.
I'm overjoyed to be above the surface again. I'm delighted to find that the only ramification has been this, a situation which I can reverse. Thank God I didn't turn to drugs, sex, or crime, or permanently harm myself or others. Humble appreciation to God, too, that I now recognize my present self-created physical condition for what it is, simply the result of overeating, not some divine punishment for a life of weakness.
Facts are facts. I put the pounds here, I need to get them off, for my health, so I can be around to see more of this life, God willing, and the lives of those I love and will love. I look at it as a sort of cleansing ritual, a barnacle scrubbing, the removal of unwanted weight which drags and strains. It'll take time and tedious effort, but the relief will be magnificent.
Lately I've noticed my emotionally-trained responses, the ones to which I'd become addicted. Currently, I find myself naturally changing gears when I think about eating something, even meals. "Am I really hungry? What have I eaten today, do I need more? Maybe I'm just thirsty." For the first time there is a mindful process going on, one that is asking questions, that is thinking about the effect my over-consumption has had on my body, both inside and out. It has become reasonable to make choices based on my knowledge of a healthful human diet, rather than on what can be tastily stuffed into that now vanished void, that never satisfied emptiness which caused clenching, confusing anguish, the void that never filled. Only the space under my skin filled, stretching it out and out and out. The void wasn't real. The food was. And the consequential fat remains.
"Heightening our awareness is the most effective tool we can use in dealing with any addiction to injurious habits. For example, if we are interested in giving up overeating, we can heighten our awareness of exactly what it is that we are doing to ourselves at all levels, from social to cellular." ~~ Tom Crum
Somehow I managed to do just that, become aware. It just sorta happened. Grace of God over time.
For the first time ever, I don't feel panic, or crazed determination to lose weight. I feel like I do when I have any job in front of me: prepared, and ready to go to work. I don't hate my body anymore. It has served me well. Four kids, 51 years of pain-free mobility, flexibility, and freedom. It's withstood the abuse rather well, all things considered.
Now that my mind and heart have healed, it's my body's turn.
And what better season than summer to begin a noble task?