The smell of cinnamon and spices wafts through the house. Toasting hot cross buns in the oven beckon with their warm promise of tasty comfort. The chocolate Easter eggs lay hidden in the wardrobe, ready for the Easter bunny to deliver to the kids tomorrow morning. This is Easter.
I haven’t lost any weight recently. I’m back in the 70’s for no reason I can determine. I’ve been “good” for almost fifteen weeks and my patience is wearing out. I want to eat hot cross buns, I want Easter eggs, I want to eat whatever I want and not worry about it any more.
I know this sounds like standard deprivation dieting talk. You see, these are the thoughts that every person who is “watching what they eat” has. They just don’t usually talk about them – especially if they have been celebrating the fact that they are finally healed and the dragons have been laid to rest.
But I don’t believe in happy endings. I know that two steps forward precede a step back. But I also know that a step back precedes two more forwards.
There is no healthy eating fairy that waves her magic wand and heals all wounds. There will be days when you would give anything to fall into the oblivion of a carb/sugar binge and then get back on the wagon (restrict) the next day.
So I ask myself “what is it I really want?” I want to not feel fat, not feel sad, not remember the pain of the last two years. But that is what I don’t want. What do I want?
To be lean, to welcome sadness, to use the pain of the last two years to create beauty. And I know that eating food that harms my body will not get me closer to that goal — it will move me further away.
I have been haunted by dreams that disturb my sleep — failing my course, trying to help J.’s parents but not being able to find them — the familiar “I’m not good enough” routine.
And I know where it’s coming from. I have been writing in earnest, describing my past life in great detail. The images and thoughts take me back to that time and place with brutal realism. I am picking at the scabs on my wounds and watching them ooze blood, the fresh pink skin is still not healed enough to be exposed.
So instead of eating, I write here. I tell you my truth. I cannot guarantee that I won’t succumb to the lure of the Easter bunny, because I can’t guarantee anything any more. I just know that feeling these things, naming them and revealing them in the light of day, takes away the urge to find a way to become numb.