I'm reading a book right now called Angry Fat Girls. I haven't gotten very far, in fact I'm still just reading the Author's Note. I'm still in Roman numerals territory! (You know how, before the "meaty" portion of the book begins, the pages are numbered with Roman numerals? Yes, that territory.) The author is basically writing about her blog and, I suppose, how she came to write the book, though I haven't gotten to that part yet.
Anyway, she's mentioning relapse triggers and she refers to some comments she got on her blog - one woman mentioned she was betrayed by a family member, one talked about being alone on her birthday. Let me tell you what my problem is here, and let me tell you why I think I have the problem in the first place.
I understand the concept of triggers, I really do. But I have a hard time accepting that they apply to overeating. Why? Well, probably because I don't allow that for myself. In my opinion, if I overeat today it's because I made a conscious choice, not because something bad happened to me so therefore I have no control over myself. When I look at it like that, it seems so ridiculous. If none of my friends call me on my birthday and I eat an entire pint of Ben & Jerry's ice cream that night, is that my friends' fault? Of course it's not. It's my fault for choosing that tub of fat to comfort me. Because let's get something straight here: I could very easily have chosen to run a few miles, or take my dog for a walk, or watch a funny movie, or lament to my husband. Instead, while I am totally compos mentis, I decided to weigh down my sorrows with something like 60 grams of fat and 1200 calories.
It's much easier to point that finger, of course. I'd love to not have to take responsibility for gaining weight some weeks, it would make me feel much less stupid. But if we keep saying, "You know what? I'm not going to wear that coat today," eventually it becomes a whole lot easier to make bad choices. If we never have to look at ourselves in the mirror - at what may be a fat, bloated face staring back at us after all the beer we drank, or the belly that hangs over the top of our once-loose pants - we'll just become very comfortable being the victim.
But why would you want to feel so powerless? Why is that a more acceptable option that looking at your chubbly face or your muffin top and saying, Shit, this is all me! Isn't that just so much better? Maybe not on the surface, but if it's nobody else's problem that means that only you can change it. Scary? Hell no! You are in the driver's seat! You get to do whatever you need to do to get to your destination. You get to map out the route that gets you there in the healthiest, happiest way, and no one can get in your way. No one will cut you off, no one will cause a traffic jam, and no one will go too slow in the left lane. You've got open road, my friend. All you have to do is make sure that you have a full tank of gas, wiper fluid, and your iPod. And then you just gotta GO.
And if you decide to make a pit stop and you add an hour to your ETA? Well, own it. Maybe next time you won't stop so damn long.
And with all of that said, I'm choosing to eat a wonderful Father's Day feast today at my in-laws'. My pit stop, if you will. ;)
Happy Father's Day!