My thighs rub together.

I feel a bit defeated.   I struggle with food , I  always have .  We have a love  – hate relationship and  rarely manage to create a harmonious balance.   5 years ago this week,   I embarked on yet another  ‘  diet ‘  –   ‘  new start ‘ –   ‘  regime ‘ ,   whatever you like to call it .    It felt different to other times , it had an energy and vigour behind it which I rarely managed to summon.     It took me on a roller coaster journey for the last 5 years.  I lost all my weight in the first year;   6 stone.  I kept if off for 2 years but in the last 2 years I have slowly but steadily put around 3 stone of it back on.   Still 3 stone down from my initial beginning ,   but it is the depressing merry go round of my life,   I thought at 40 –  I had actually managed to nail the whole yo-yo’ing , overeating , restricting thing to a structured and healthy place.      I journeyed through devout religious devotion incorporating the Overeaters Anonymous ‘  higher power ‘    and have been back in and out of that & sugar abstinence.

 I gave up my religion and experienced a catastrophic faith shift ,  of which I am still picking up the pieces .        But now,    sitting in this global pandemic ,   of which fear and anxiety are rife ,   I am a food catastrophe.    I feel calm ,   contained and riding the storm of these times yet I am out of control in the one thing in my life that need reins.

I literally can feel the weight creeping round my bones,    softening my ribs and shoulders ,    cushioning my stomach ,  my thighs rub together,  yet still ,   I eat.

I know that the whole Overeaters anonymous thing works for me,    I know that yes I am rather insane around food ,    that I  seem powerless to halt the crashing tide,    But something prevents me from being able to commit with my whole heart to the program.     I think it reminds me too much of religion,     the same core rule books,  learning the same things over again and repeating them to others and in your mind ,     I listen to others and hear the buzz words of ‘  truth ‘   , ‘ in the food’    &. ‘ acceptance ‘  and I just feel irritated,     I think perhaps I am irritated with myself that I can’t just be allowed to do this on my own.     And yet ,    I still have the optimism to believe that I can .

I know one thing,    I don’t want to eat sugar.  It’ s really bad for you and it causes cancer. But If I eat sugar ,   then I just want to eat more,  so the only way is abstinence from sugar.       I did that for many months alone but something always breaks me , normally a holiday ,   a break from the norm ,   an ice cream on a hot day ,    a desire to bake.  The whole tantalising sensory experience of baking is something I have never been able to   step away from .

I feel defeated .  I struggle with food.   We all have our battles I guess.

Shifting shadows

Leaving your faith is a massive thing.  They say the spiritual path is one walked alone and today I think I realised what people mean.    When you have a collective faith , you are walking with others,  there is comfort in conformity .

I felt sorrow in my heart today when I left my 3 close christian friends.   Nothing has been the same since I confessed that I just don’t believe what I once did .   There was a loneliness,    a longing ,   for things to be what they were –   I could sense the tension in some of our conversations as they struggled to grasp where I was.

The thing is ; I don’t know where I am &  I don’t mind .    That’s what’s hard for them perhaps,   that ‘  sure and certain hope ‘   is not for me what it is for them.

To step out of the community that you’ve built yourself within is a big leap.   It is at times liberating and wonderful and at others , like today ,  simply sad.    What once was , will never be again .    The shared convictions held so much ,   they were perhaps the glue and without it things become loose and rather lost.   I think when a friendship is built on something ,   it is almost impossible to shift the foundations.    If I had always been a ‘ non- christian ‘  friend ,  it would be normal –  but it’s the land in between where the foundations are damaged  &  shifted .

Now I don’t know where to go to seek friendship.   Nothing feels right. Old  school friends are far away ,  those  which span decades ,  so precious but so rare to behold their sweet company .    Different sets of friends that you cling to ,     to keep that part of yourself alive,   that era of youth where things were wild.   Yet now,   those friends perhaps have changed or grown in ways different to you and they just don’t fill that hole.  Work friends,  keep their distance in many respects ,   where does the line lie?

My husband ,  I am coming to appreciate , after 18 years ,  is my best friend.   At times ,  I literally hate this man with all my being ,  but you know what,    It is about being known and loved for all you are and all you’ve been .   Pot head,  fat ,  thin,   bible basher, anxious agoraphobic ,  arrogant know it all ,  lovingly humble & angry .   To be known on all these levels –   to be able to be what you are at the time you need to be it ,   to not have to conform to any label or box .   Surely that’s friendship.   To hate and then to love.

I am trying to vanquish the hating part.    Eviscerate the ego.