When you no longer believe that eating will save your life when you feel exhausted or overwhelmed or lonely, you will stop. When you believe in yourself more than you believe in food, you will stop using food as if it were your only chance at not falling apart. When the shape of your body no longer matches the shape of your beliefs, the weight disappears. And yes, it really is that simple.
The above excerpt from Geneen Roth’s Women Food and God reaches to the depths of my core and resonates with me in the most intimate of ways. I read this book several months ago. I felt as though it truly broke through to the often ugly and painful truths behind food/weight issues. (I have not found many food/weight books to be helpful at all, but this one was different, for me. I would definitely recommend it.)
Geneen Roth writes about using food as a way to keep from feeling pain, “…my resistance to the pain was worse than the pain.” Life is full of difficult seasons. We all walk down less-than-desirable roads at several points in our lives. For me, I developed a habit of turning to food when I felt “exhausted or overwhelmed or lonely”. It all started in college, when I was busy and attempting to navigate through an entirely new chapter of life. I was carrying a good amount of baggage (Don’t we all?), and when life got a bit too intense, I would hit up the nearest drive-through and drown out the noise of life. Food became a constant for me. Resisting the pain became preferable to feeling it. And eventually, years later, after all the numbing, I looked in the mirror one day and did not recognize what I saw. I continued down that road for quite some time, using food to resist pain, to keep myself removed from reality.
So far, my weight loss journey has been filled with both good and bad days. Some days, my motivation is sky-high, and I am fueled by the decreasing numbers on the scale. I love creating and making healthy meals and snacks and counting my calories and feeling on top of the world after a sweaty workout. On the other hand, some days, the magnitude and length of the journey ahead are almost too much to bear. The idea of this being a lifestyle change is, at times, comforting, but it is also terrifying. What if I just want to go back to the way things were? What if I want to sleep in and not have to be intentional about EVERY SINGLE THING I put into my mouth and not have to schedule my life around my workouts and not have to say no to certain friends or certain events? What if I want to flip the switch back to the off position and not be present in my life?
This week has been somewhat tough. I am not good with uncertainties, with not having all the answers. Some days, I feel as though food is my only chance at not falling apart, like Geneen writes in her book. I don’t want to have to deal with the (inevitable) difficulties of life, so I jump in my car and head to the nearest drive-through. I admit that has happened this week. I know that food is not going to save my life, but some days/hours/minutes/seconds, it sure feels like it will. I know that the choice is up to ME. I decided a few weeks ago that I am absolutely, 100% worthy of the best possible life. So for now, I am putting one foot in front of the other, working toward believing in MYSELF more than I believe in the food, and knowing that every good choice (as difficult as it may be) is undoubtedly worth it.
Despite a not-so-stellar week, I am still here, and I am not going anywhere. Being honest on this blog through the ups and downs of my journey is going to be one of the biggest factors in keeping me on (or at least closer to the) track. So I will see you tomorrow for Friday’s Weigh-In (whether I like it or not…)!