Grinning Like A Fool
Today started with a headache, which is rare for me, but soon after I took some caffeine I was feeling AWESOME. And by awesome I mean I felt how I wish I would feel every day. I was in a great mood (it made my Monday feel like Friday), my kids were in a groove getting ready for school and were feeding off my good mood, and I got a few precious hours to myself before going to work. I had a few cups of coffee, which I noticed killed my appetite, but since I had time to spare and didn't have to eat on a schedule, I decided to practice one of the principles of Geneen Roth's program, and waited to eat until I was honesty hungry. I was scrolling through Facebook when I saw an article about the only 2 yoga poses you ever need to do for mental and physical balance, and I did those two (the squat and the hang are the two poses for those who are wondering). By trying those two poses it warmed up my muscles and I decided to try some yoga poses I'd written down before Christmas and only done once. Those poses were just ok, some hit my sore spots and some didn't, so I searched online to find poses. I shouldn't find it humorous but I do, my search bar read "yoga poses for obese beginners". 😊. And to my delight, there was a handful of results. I watched a YouTube post from some guy from Australia show non weight-bearing poses for obese, beginners, or those with joint issues. Check, check, check. After 45 minutes of breathing and stretching, I felt pretty good. There were still some tense spots, but I haven't stretched in so long. My neck was so stiff it was ridiculous.
At work, I buzzed around with this ridiculous lilt, almost floating, smiling like I had a secret. I even did some deep cleaning and organizing that's been needed for a few months. My space is so uncluttered now, it feels refreshing. And as I was walking around grinning, I realized what the feeling I was feeling, contentment. And the reason I was feeling that way is because I gave myself permission to feel that way. For today, I really didn't think about bashing myself because of the size of my gut. And I didn't feel guilty when I ate not one but THREE packages of Zebra cakes through the day, even in front of others. Instead of feeling bad or ashamed about eating that I felt totally fine. And that there was the ticket to the precious feeling of LIBERATION!!!
I felt more appreciative of little things today, a kind gesture from a favorite customer of mine, some promising news about our trip to California next month, even the taste of strawberries made me feel good today; when you haven't had a strawberry in a few months, they taste like summer.
Today's content vibe made me realize that Geneen is right, being more aware as I go through my day makes me see that there are so many sensations other than food that are enjoyable. Still, I did take pleasure from food when I ate those Zebra Cakes, and late morning when I ate a Red Baron French bread singles, smothered in cheese and reeking of delicious garlic. I took pleasure from food, it is allowed, and I'm not a bad person for feeling that way. In fact, I think I'm a freaking rock star. I haven't felt this good since I was loosing weight with the illusion that my life would magically be worry-free, pain-free, and unicorns would ride the waves of my joy. Losing weight didn't give me those things, my life was still my life, only I had one less coping tool to use because if I ate something that gave me pleasure, I equated it with being bad or a failure. I'm not happy because I'm eating Zebra Cakes and pizza, I'm happy because I took the charge out of those foods. Normally, if I would have taken a treat to work, I would eat it all in one day (even if it makes my stomach scream for mercy) because my mind is still the child living in unstable, poor) circumstances, I would have been thinking that I needed to eat it all because I can't bring it home, or that I have to eat it all because I can't have the temptation hanging around because I'm not supposed to want to eat this, or because I'm always chasing that not enough feeling. I need to eat this, and I need to eat all of this or it won't be enough and I'll just crave it eternally. When I was 5 and getting ready for kindergarten my mom would try to train me to eat faster, so that when I finally went to school, I would have enough time to finish my snack. Back in the late 70's, that snack was a couple of graham crackers and a carton of milk. Yuck. But all summer long I'd be forced to sit at the kitchen table, my mom watching me like a hawk, an egg timer set for five minutes. When I'd be eating too slow she'd shake my plate and tell me, "they're going to take your snack away and your tummy will be growling all day!" I understand she did this out of concern and love, and in reality, I was always allowed to finish my snack in the coat room, but since that time, I've always had issues with there being not enough. And it doesn't just apply to food, if we are running low on paper towels I stress out well before its warranted. If too many bills come in at once, even if we have money to pay them, I stress out that it's such a huge chunk gone and we won't have enough if something happens out of the ordinary. It goes on and on. Food is how it manifests most prominently but it isn't alone in my neurosis.
Today I wasn't stressed. Maybe it was the yoga, maybe the caffeine or the new super B complex vitamin I started taking. Or maybe it is that I am finally finding me under all the other noise I used to let burry me. Whatever the case, I am enjoying unearthing the mystery.