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Safety is my keyword, financial mostly, but I realised recently also emotional. Safety to be the person I want and need to be. The emotional safety in my body is manifesting in me eating shit foods in full knowledge of what I am doing in terms of putting empty calories in my body. I've only just realised I've been doing that for safety.
Fat = Safety
The fatter I am, the safer I feel. By staying fat/getting fatter my world will not change and I shall be single. I know how to do single, I do it very well, I enjoy it and it’s a state I feel comfortable in. Despite doing masses of work on my self esteem, body issues and slowly moving away from the mindset of fat equaling safety I’m simultaneously entrenched in the idea that I'm too fat to love or receive romantic love. Which is of course actual bollocks.
Thin = Lovable.
I know this is bollocks, but still it clings on. Thanks to a lifetime of films, advertising, media, catalogue models and my mum's dieting when I was young (no one could blame her for feeling that she needed to diet, it was everywhere in the 80’s) the idea of thin equaling beauty therefore being lovable is ingrained like a fossil into my brain. Reading books like Sonya Renee Taylor’s, The Body Is Not An Apology, have started the rewiring process and now I have different positive narratives to relate to. Despite these efforts to disrupt the bad thoughts, my inner critics have sneaky ways of messing with my feelings of worthiness.
This is mindful eating right?
The critics are currently flipping the script on mindful eating, overriding new systems with strange new reasoning. Under this new rule, eating ‘bad’ food while being aware of why and how you’re eating it is mindful according to the inner critics. I know I’m in a bad emotional eating mindset, but I’ll eat it anyway. That's ok ‘cause you ate it mindfully. I'm mindful that I'm shovelling Doritos in my face because I'm lonely, so that makes it okay to eat it because it's mindful. Got it. I think this could be better defined as self harm/self sabotage eating.
My trusty inner critic 90’s girl gang - The Heathers
The Heather's are in a smackdown battle with my self-loving, mindful brain trying to convince it it's okay to eat rubbish on any given occasion. Resulting in a feeling of body safety. Safe from a disruption to routine, to the life I have, the choices I make, my relationship with my daughter. A new romantic lead in my life would disrupt all this. And for some reason the Heather's think this is bad. Same old, same old is good.
Change is bad. Keep her fat, nothing will change, we’ll carry on as we always have.
Stay fat, you'll be safe from shit men.
Oh, while we’re at it, let's also feed in negativity about men, and how they are all shit; only like thin women; compare you to porn stars; they’re all rapist, murders, violent, sexist and misogynistic. Again the media, tv and films are not forthcoming with much to contradict these notions. Because of this I’ve been making efforts to visualise good, amazing men, and I know that there are many around but I’m mostly surrounded by amazing women and It's really hard (nigh on impossible) to imagine men zesty enough to match up to what they bring into my life. To my eyes, women are just straight up better. So my brain keeps me fat to allow me safety from any unworthy men while also making me feel unworthy of the shit men too. It's a bloody conundrum for sure.
Time to redefine safety for The Heathers.
I can provide financial safety and ease for myself and my daughter.
I can support the people I want to support.
I don't need to be fat to be safe.
I feel good in my body.
I love what I see.
I talk nicely to myself.
I feel good in clothes and if they don’t fit properly it’s the clothes, not me that is the problem.
I have denied this to and for myself for many years, because I’m supposed to be ok being single and because I regularly get coupled-up people telling me I'm so lucky to be single…
I want to belong to someone, to be in a gang of two, supporting each other, having fun and loving each other deeply. And never wasting a second thinking about my weight ever again.
Jill's words have me lost for words. There's very little to add. Only to observe.
What is the place where YOU feel safe is?
The thing that holds you back from moving forward in your life and relationship with yourself, other people, or anything. If it’s food, then maybe this blog post will help shift your perspective on how you look at your weight as a measure of worthiness instead of something that needs to be controlled for someone else's sake (including yours).