Monday, November 14, 2011

The mysery I cannot solve

I walked into church yesterday to find that the speaker was  . . . my yoga teacher (apparently I don't check the schedule ahead of time or read the newsletter very carefully).  I adore her so I was excited to see her at the fellowship and to hear her her speak. Our Unitarian Universalist church does not have a regular pastor. Instead, we invite different speakers each week, each one delivering a topic that serves to help each of us further our own spiritual journey. Although there is certainly something to be said for having a permanent pastor to deliver a cohesive series of sermons, I sure learn a heck of a lot from all the different speakers. I really look forward to going to church, which is more than I can say for the first 36 years of my life. Anyhow, Kathy spoke about Ayurveda, an ancient philosophy of healing. She talked a lot about food and the five elements (air, ether, water, fire, earth), but don't ask me for any details beyond that. It was interesting, though (or at least the parts I could grasp).

As I sat there listening to Kathy talk about the mind-body connection, I kept thinking, "Why can't I make that connection? What is wrong with me?"  I go to Yoga, I go to the gym (I can last an hour on the adaptive motion trainer these days), and I try to take care of myself. It always comes down to my eating. Why do I try to pretend that I can somehow trick my body into not acknowledging buttered popcorn and the like? I eat a ton of fruits and vegetables. However, I also eat junk. On Saturday, for example, I went to Weight Watchers and then went to a craft fair at a local high school. There was a bake sale there as well. There, on a cafeteria table at the back of the gymnasium, I spotted them. Chocolate chip cookies.  Only a buck for six of them - plus, it was for the debate team so I had to help the kids, right? I started eating the cookies as soon as I got in the car. I mean, it didn't feel self-destructive at the time. I just really like baked goods.

On Saturday night, the three of us went to a hockey game (we have a local USHL team). The kid had never been to a hockey game and I wasn't sure how she'd fare. I almost told her to bring her DS because I figured she'd get bored. However, she was totally into it. She sat in her dad's lap so she could see better. Also, she farted in his lap at least half a dozen times. I just think it's nice that he has something to share with the guys at work when they ask, "What did you do this weekend?" Anyway, back to the game. There were four guys sitting in the row in front of us. I don't know what their relationship was, but we guessed they were all related. All were huge. The kind of huge that spilled over the back of the chairs and caused my 6'3" husband to have one knee in the aisle and the other in a neighboring county. I was in a similar predicament, but of course I am much shorter. I watched the four gents eat nachos and hot dogs with the works. True, their intake is none of my business. But I just kept thinking, "Am I really any different? Do I treat my body any better?" Also, "I'm pretty sure one of these guys is always in the seat next to mine when I fly."

Last week I watched an episode of "I Used to be Fat," an MTV program that follows recent high school graduates as they try to lose weight before going off to college. In this particular episode, the trainer kept telling the trainee, "You have to figure out why you gained weight. There has to be a reason. Otherwise, you'll just gain it back." I have often struggled with this concept. I am not aware of any major psychological wounds that should cause me to overeat. It's true that I have never had a lot of love for my physical self; I have generally felt betrayed by my body. I have a host of medical issues (autoimmune stuff). I miscarried four times. So yeah, it's hard to be in my own fan club. But, I don't like to look for excuses for why I can't lose weight and keep it off. I talked to my OB/GYN when I had my annual physical recently, and he helpfully suggested that I "eat smaller portions." Well, thank you, I never would've thought of that! As an aside, he also told me that with my bone structure, I'll never be model-thin. I always thought "big-boned" was a euphemism for "fat," but there it is.

At the end of the day, I still don't know why I indulge in self-sabotage. However, I'm going to try harder to remember that I do have control over this. I decided to start working on the control  issue yesterday. I took A and her friend to a children's museum for the afternoon. I took them to Dairy Queen for ice cream on our way back home. I didn't order anything for myself. For whatever reason, I am incapable of ordering some small low-fat frozen yogurt and finding a way to be happy with that. I'd really rather have a brownie sundae with hot fudge. There are no in-betweens with me, mister.

I'm so tired of failing. I feel like Oprah. I'm fat, then less fat, then fat again. My mom called and diplomatically asked me what size sweater she should buy me for Christmas this year. Poor P is my Stedman, trying to decide whether or not to offer me a Kit-kat from the Halloween candy bag. I get tired of fighting this thing, but if I don't . . . before I know it I'll be at a hockey game, spilling over the back of my chair, telling my neighbor that I sure hope the team scores six goals so that I can get a free taco.

1 comment:

Sammy said...

I have several close friends who were in the same place you are describing. And all of them were helped by attending OA meetings. I wonder if you would give something like that a try. Sometimes white-knuckling it just doesn't work, or it works for a short time only. Perhaps OA or something like it could help you do it differently.

In any case, good luck. :-)