Disclaimer: This post contains themes of like skipping meals, and the unhealthy desire to be skinny. I am not saying that being skinny is wrong, I am say the way I went about it IS.
How are you?
So I know this post is very late but listen, but here it is! If you’re a bit confused, the first part is here.
In the last episode, I talked about my story and gave a general overview of where it all began. Today, I’m going to speak about my relationship with food.
I don’t think, until now, I’ve ever had a good relationship with food, I used to see it as something that made me gain weight so on the days I went without it or ate little of it, I felt happy. I used to feel a certain novelty in being able to say I skipped breakfast or I hadn’t eaten lunch. I’m skipping ahead though, let’s start from the very beginning.
When I was very little, my parents told me that it used to be a struggle to feed me because I was very picky with what I ate (I don’t remember this) however that changed and I loved food, but not regular food, unhealthy food. I started eating a lot, and then I started eating, not because I was hungry, but because I was bored and I would eat big portions so obviously I was going to gain weight and I did (I remember this).
I wasn’t obese or anything but I was chubby and visibly bigger than all of my friends, well not friends, I didn’t have many friends in primary school (lol). Most of my female peers were slimmer than I was so that obviously didn’t really help my self-esteem. It also didn’t help that the popular girls in movies and TV were usually skinny and pretty with long hair and I wanted to be popular, so you can imagine I wasn’t exactly pleased with my chubby nature. I wanted to be skinny but I don’t remember ever actually doing anything to actively get me there.
The skipping meals didn’t start until boarding school, at the time I didn’t skip them because I wanted to lose weight, I just skipped it because I didn’t like the food they served so I lost a lot of weight, I lost so much weight. I wish I had a picture but I only have one picture from back then and I don’t even know where that picture is but I was so skinny then (I looked sick, it doesn’t look like me at all) and what is funny now that I think about it, I didn’t know I was skinny, I still thought I was chubby.
I don’t remember when I actively started skipping meals to lose weight, I think somewhere between The Netherlands and Scotland. I would skip meals and try to eat smaller portions and then binge on unhealthy food and feel guilty, it was just that never ending cycle. I didn’t see food as something that nourished my body or helped me grow, I never really saw it as a positive thing. I thought “healthy” meant “few” so the less calories I ate, the better.
This bring us to the beginning of last year when I started hanging out more with my friends, the thing about living with people is you get to see their life habits, habits like what they eat and in my case how much they eat. It made me extremely self conscious when my friends would eat half their meal and say they were full when there was me who was still hungry after eating the whole thing. This, interestingly enough, had never been a problem for me so I had no idea how to deal with it. What did I do? I tried to cut down on my eating which as you can imagine just left me hungry and wanting to snack on just about anything and everything, so now not only was I not eating enough nutrients for me, I was also filling the gap with a lot of snacks. I eventually realised that everyone has different needs and everyone has different food habits, that does not necessarily mean that mine are bad. What is good for the goose does not always have to be good for the gander.
My relationship with food is a lot better than it used to be, I try to eat when I am hungry and I try to eat enough to fill me. I try my best to watch what I eat and make healthy alternatives instead of just cutting it out of my diet completely. I try not to beat myself up when I binge on unhealthy food because I know now that this is a process and Rome wasn’t built in a day.
I’m doing these series just in case there might be anyone who could be going through their own health process right now and I would like for them to know that they are not alone and that this is a journey, everyday will not go exactly as you plan it and you need to learn to forgive yourself and let go.
I hope you enjoyed this and I’ll see you next week.
Have a blessed day,
Lots of love,