My husband and I have this thing we do at night before bed. Not every night but at least a few times a month, we'll watch The Office on DVD. We have the whole series and have watched it many times over, but for some reason, we just never get sick of it. One night, while we were deciding which season to watch I told him to just pick the disc that was already in the player, sure that we'd enjoy any of the episodes on it, "Path of least existence" I mistakenly added. And we both laughed at my Freudian slip.
Indeed, I do tend to seek out the path of least existence. I don't like conflict. I don't like exerting physical effort. I don't like pain to any degree. Maybe I'm just a powerderpuff. Maybe my coping skills for that sort of thing just never got developed. When I do exert myself I feel fine, good even, especially mentally, and truth be told, even physically to some extent.
The kicker is this: Not doing anything physical makes me ache too, just in a different way. I feel stiff, my muscles complain at the mere onset of doing something physical. I feel weak and old. I think that probably feels worse than muscles being sore after a good strength training session, but it's been so long I can't remember! Sheesh! I feel like the Tinman before he got his oil.
So, while I realize I'm the only one who can change it, there is a delicate balance and a mental fencewalk that must be resolved. Not getting set back into "diet" mentality but trying to make healthier choices because it'll make me feel better...my brain is hard-wired for one or the other, on or off, good or bad; caring all the way or not at all.
I think I have made great progress with the food demons and I feel like I have a fairly normal relationship with food these days. Sometimes I completely forget what it felt like to be so food-focused all day every day, and that is a HUGE statement right there. I can have sweets and goodies around me and actually forget they are there! Coming from where I was, that would have been a huge stretch of imagination to think that could ever happen, but here I am. I have every opportunity to eat all of that but I don't even think about that kind of food that often. And when I do, like twice a month when my hormones are whacked out, I simply have what I want and move on. One moment or one day or one meal doesn't lead to more. In fact, if I have a sweet treat or overindulge in fatty/salty stuff, I usually end up feeling bad physically so that the next thing I eat tends to be the complete opposite. My body knows what it needs, I just wasn't listening before; I was feeding my emotions not my body.
I think the tricky part is in the ideals and how I need some kind of boundaries but not so structured or stringent that I will judge my actions as innately good or bad. That's what got me in trouble in the first place. Example of my idealistic thoughts, I am eating pretty good, but if I wanted to really be "good" I should be eating kale and broccoli. I'm not eating those things so I am not the best little eater I could be. I am not good. I am bad. This type of thinking has gotten me nowhere. Over-complicating things does not work for me. Neither does eating things that I don't like just because they are healthy and good for me. I can do it for like, 2 days tops. So if I begin to do better things for my body/health, I have to make sure they come with an internal reward, not just a pat on the back because I did something someone else would approve of. Exercise should not come with bragging rights, but I feel proud when I do it, like I did "the right thing"so people won't judge so harshly for being fat because "I'm working on it."
Maybe I'm too hung up on the mental stuff. Maybe I should just shut up and do it and move on. I know I would feel better, not that I feel superawfulterrible but I could feel better. I have a lot of excuses that I allow to get in the way of that. I am, perpetually, seeking the path of least existence and it's not really all the rage. Taking care of myself, in multiple different realms, needs to be more of a priority than it has been recently. I can't be good to anyone else if I am always drained or trying to numb myself or stressed to the point of not caring.
So there is a proclaimation if nothing else. I am good at both the proclaimation and the 'nothing else' part, but maybe, just maybe, if I keep my focus on my needs for a bit, I can take one step outside of that path of least existence. My only plan is to start, nothing more defined than that, nothing structured or given a value of goodness or badness. I will make an effort to feel better than I do right now. Maybe that's all anyone needs to do.