Today I think of the commercial that starts out with “97% of women have an I hate my body moment every day”, today and most days that was me. Today was a “bad body day”. What exactly is a bad body day you may ask. Well it started off with not feeling good in the clothing I was wearing. I was going for a walk in the park with my friend and therefore I wore tight workout clothing. Pants, a long sleeve shirt and a pullover sweater. I felt the pants were tighter than usual. I felt the shirts were tighter than usual. I felt my skin against my clothing in an awkward and uncomfortable way. I felt like my stomach has grown and is protruding more. I felt my butt got bigger. I felt like the clothing seemed a bit smaller. When I have these kind of days the mirror is my enemy yet I can’t stop myself from continuing to look into it with disgust. Looking in hoping something else will appear magically. A new body. A “good” body”.
Generally when I have a hyper focused body day something else is up. Something else like anxiety about something that I’m not dealing with. I think today is about my new job that I just accepted that comes with a lot more responsibility than I have had up until this point. It’s a management position. I’m not longer “just” an employee. I’m anxious about it, but dare not express that to anyone. I’m excited about my new position as I know it will all be fine in the end and I know I will do my best and a good job it comes with some anxiety. It’s a big change after all. I feel with this new job that I should be this perfect person – more so than ever now and that I need all of my sh** together RIGHT NOW. Which is unrealistic I know.
I’ve also been experiencing compliments and congratulatory messages because of this job which you would think is a good thing but it’s a rather weird feeling for me. It’s hard for me to accept compliments and sit with those feelings and respond appropriately. I am always so worried about what others will think of me so this job sort of feels like a spotlight and I’m hoping I will live up to some people’s expectations.
So when I think about all of the above, my bad body day is probably all the craziness that is flying around inside my mind most minutes of the day and instead of thinking about all of that because it seems weak and silly, I deflect and think about other things like my body. Especially since most of the above is anxiety and it’s harder to control and change that then it is to control and change the way I look. Even though I know the real issue below the surface is more about my lack of self-esteem and confidence, it doesn’t make it any easier when my brain has tricked me into believing that my body is the problem and not my brain.
It’s days like today that drag me into emotional eating to try and soothe all of the above. Today I engaged in just that. I gave myself the excuse to be able to go to Shoppers, I had to mail something. I knew that by going there I would be able to purchase chocolate and I knew that I had time before my partner got home to be able to eat it and get away with it and no one – well now whoever reads this – to know it. So I did just that. I bought a king size caramilk bar and 2 small bags of mini eggs and ate them in secrecy. Glad I at least got that much out of my brain as the guilt and shame and embarrassment on top of all the other anxiety above is a lot to handle. Not something I’m proud of, not something I want to do, not something that has made my stress less, however, I did it.
It’s times like these that I really have to dig deep to look for any sort of progress that I’ve made even if it’s teensy weensy. I didn’t have multiple chocolate bars, or a full-out binge, I didn’t go and order a bunch of fast food, I didn’t take home a large bag of chips or popcorn and eat it all to myself and I didn’t let it stew inside my brain in secrecy.
While today wasn’t a “good” day, it was another day in recovery. A messy one at that. “They” say recovery is not linear and holy F are they right. Some days I feel like I’m on top of the world and I’m coping positively and picking up the things I have to cope in a positive way, and some days I lose the battle in my own brain. If I was talking to a friend, I might say, you are having more days now that you are winning the battle than you are losing, so that’s progress.
Thanks for reading. ❤
Signed, a very vulnerable person who is trying to see through the darkness.