Risk Day 12: Kick the “Diet”

I have a stomach condition. As a result I spend everyday, several times a day thinking about the food that I’m eating, how much, what’s in it. I’ve become a master at reading food labels. And you would not believe how many things have onions in them.

It seems like I’m always developing new triggers. I’ll figure out one and then I’ll feel great for a few weeks only to find my symptoms coming back. I know stress is a huge factor in my condition and am hoping that when I am done with my very stressful job this summer that some of this will be remedied. But in the meantime I’ve been experimenting.

The experiment today was to stop regulating so much and just focusing on eating when I’m hungry. Crazy concept, right? Eat only when you are hungry?! Stop eating when your not?! Crazy. Unheard of. A little scary too because the shadow of the chunky girl who lives down deep reminds me of what happened the last time I listened to my body and not books, as though my prepubescent self snacking on anything my hands could reach is still who I am.

I felt pretty silly that I had to consciously think about changing my “diet” to just listening to my body. But then I realized that I’m an American woman, which basically equals that I can’t trust my body to know what’s right for it. Society has not taught me that level of understanding. Rather society has taught me that I have follow this plan or that plan in order to be healthy, thin, attractive.

And so here’s the rant. I do apologize, but I have to get it out of my system. Please skip the italicized if you just can’t handle the angry. It really pisses me off. I mean why is it that my friends and I find ourselves trading tips on our latest dieting technique? And why is it that I can go into one store and be a size 6, then try on jeans at another store and be a 10, but then try on a bridesmaids dress and be a 12?! What the hell is that? And why have we woman tolerated it for so long? We need to revolt! We need to burn our jeans and demand the same easiness that men get! We need to fight the institution that keeps us down!

Thank you for obliging. Rant officially out of my system. But there is truth in all that. For almost 20 years I have not trusted myself when it comes to food. I reach out to different books in the hopes of unlocking some secret to my giggly thighs and why, no matter how many squats I do, they move like jello pudding pops.

And then another risk happened. Or rather a mission of sorts perked it’s head up. I want to love my body. And not just the “I think I’m pretty cool” kind of love or the “I’m kinda cute” love (both of which I do feel). No, I mean, really love. Like passionate love, like how you love your dog kind of love. I want to love all the organs that make me tick, my toes for helping me walk. I want to love my body in such a way that I feel so damn lucky to get to spend the rest of my life with it. I want to enter my 30’s loving myself so hard that other people are jealous of the relationship we have.

So while all this started as an attempt to counteract a constant upset stomach, what has developed is an all out love fest. And while I may fall off the wagon, I’m determined to keep that wagon close by, cause I’ll be climbing back on.

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