September 23, 2014

Eating Your Feelings

Ever heard the expression, "Eating your feelings?" I have. Not only have I heard it, but I've lived it. There are different ways to do this.

I struggle. As most do from time to time. I've struggled my entire life with my weight and feeling good about myself. I was a chubby kid and didn't really grow into my body until I was around 16. Everything seemed to shift to the right places about then. But just because the outside was more shapely doesn't mean the inside had shifted with it. Regardless of how your body looks on the outside, it doesn't always mean those images are felt on the inside.

And so those negative images lived on. I married. I had children. And my body continued to change. I continued to abuse it because my life was bad. And I could take my anger out on myself. It was easy to gain weight. I chose food to fill a void.

When I was 30ish I had a life changing event. I almost died. I had two surgeries within 16 hours to make sure that didn't happen. It was just before Christmas. As I was healing, my body started to change again. And I wanted to live differently. I lost 10 pounds due to being unable to eat much after surgery. I wanted to keep it off and I wanted a better version of me. A healthier one. Inside and out. So I started walking...

Pretty soon, walking wasn't fast enough. So I started incorporating running along with walking. Before I knew it, I wasn't walking anymore, just running. I would run 4.5 miles 3 days/week and 6 miles 2 days/week. And I would force myself to just walk on Wednesdays (because I really wanted to run), with Sundays being my rest day.

I was addicted. But you see, when I was running, I still was eating my feelings. Just in a different way. Ever heard of a runner's high? I would reach it. Frequently. And I wanted more. I didn't have to think or feel when I was experiencing it. All my feelings were pushed aside. I could just be. And I could go on for what felt like forever.

I started incorporating strength training. I lost a lot of weight. By the time I stopped losing, I was 12 pounds lighter than when I was in high school. But I didn't feel good. I thought if I could just lose a little more, then maybe I will feel good.

I felt tired all the time and I realized I was too thin for my frame. I gained back about 9 or so pounds and I felt great. On the outside. Here I was, in the best shape of my life and I felt awful. Why? Because I kept eating my feelings. Stuffing myself.

Years and years of gorging myself on my feelings, never sharing them with anyone. A person can only take so much. They will burst. And I did. And it changed the course of my entire life.

Then I started eating my feelings again. Because I felt like a bad person. Ugly. So I ate. And I ate. And I gained every pound back. All of them. Plus a couple more for good measure.

My life changed and I adapted. And I started to like me. On the inside. And I lost weight again. And I felt better. I felt good. Healthier. Inside and out. But the cycle keeps shuffling through. I've abused my body again.

I need to take care of me. I will never be as small as I was 14 years ago. But I wasn't healthy then so that's okay with me. I will be healthy, inside and out. My weight still fluctuates, but I go off how I feel and not how I look. If I feel good that's what really matters.

I now realize that I am worth it. I am worth getting to know me better and loving me. All of me. I know where I need to be to feel like me. Inside and out. I've suppressed all these feelings for so many years. Now they are pouring out of me. I am looking at them. Examining them. Accepting them. Loving them. And trying desperately not to eat them. Some days are better than others. =)

It doesn't matter what size you are. What color your hair is. What color your eyes are. How full your lips may or may not be. What matters is that you are healthy. Inside and out. Healthy comes in all shapes and sizes. And healthy is beautiful.

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  1. I can totally relate Laurie! I have been on the dark side of this for a few years now and I know it is not about the weight. Good for you for being honest and getting healthy <3

  2. Thank you Kristin. I think it has to start with being honest with yourself and accepting you for who you are. Only then can we make changes where we desire. It's nice to know that others can relate. That is one reason I have decided to give the blog a make over. Sometimes we just need to know others get it. Thank you for taking the time stop by! <3


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