I have come across the question of the ages…
You might think that it’s “How do we obtain world peace?”
Or “What came first, the chicken or the egg?”
How about “Why don’t men replace the toilet paper roll when it’s all gone?”
Okay, well, that is a close one… but still not it.
The question of the ages is this:
Why do we go on diets?
I mean, instead of just doing this whole Intuitive Eating thing? And just eating when we’re hungry and eating what we’re craving… why diet?
Okay, yes, I know the obvious… we go on diets to lose weight.
But I mean, why are we so pushy? So… rushed with them?
Because of time.
You have a reunion coming up at which all of your childhood buddies will be there.
You are going to be in a wedding in a few months at which a photographer with a very high resolution camera will come and take LOTS of pictures of you wearing a (very likely) extremely unflattering dress.
You gained twenty pounds over the winter and the warm weather is coming and you won’t be able to wear any of your spring clothes.
THAT is why we diet. Otherwise, we’d probably be more comfortable taking it a little slower. Being a little more “real” about it. But we care so. very. much. about our appearances so we rush about and restrict ourselves and guilt ourselves and hate ourselves and then love ourselves and then hate ourselves again and we are just… miserable.
And while I will openly confess that I am terrified that the warm weather is coming close to me and I quite literally cannot fit into any of my shorts or capris… over the past few days that I’ve embarked upon this new path with food (Intuitive Eating) I have fully enjoyed living without guilt and self-loathing and anger and frustration and fear (well, there’s been a little bit of fear, I’ll admit that…).
In lieu of those feelings I’ve had some pretty cool conversations with myself:
January, your childhood buddies will love you and your laugh and your smile and your jokes and your stories no matter your size.
January, no one is going to care about the pictures of you in that bridesmaid dress. The bride will only look at herself every time anyway. (Besides, no one looks good in a bridesmaid dress.)
January, you can just go to Goodwill and drop $20 for a “new wardrobe” until your weight has gone back down a bit. You’d spend $20 at Target in a snap anyway; it’s no big deal.
I’ve been able to tell myself wonderful, uplifting things instead of constantly “You shouldn’t eat that” and “Why did you eat that?” and “Great, now you’ll be a fat lard for summer.”
I’ve been able to say…
You are loved.
Tell yourself that right now… regardless of what “issues” in your life make you feel the opposite… close your eyes for just a moment and tell yourself ten times… slowly, emphatically. Speak it into your soul. Ask God to say it to you.
You are loved.
God, you are a God of compassion and mercy, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness. Psalm 86:15