Last night was the first time I left my apartment since John and I took Louie to the vet Thursday morning. It has been a brutal week. I cried so hard and so much Thursday night for Louie and for everything else I’ve held inside for the past several months that I had a headache all day Friday and slept most of the day.
I am an open wound right now, feeling all of the feelings. Pain, sadness, fear, disappointment. Everything sets me to tears. I feel so raw and so emotionally spent but I am trying not to close myself off. I need to talk about Louie. I need to talk about my fears of uncertainty in my finances and finding another job. I need to talk about my sadness and loneliness in living in this apartment. There is so much I need to grieve right now and Louie opened the gate for me.
While sobbing late Thursday night/early Friday morning, all I kept saying is, “This hurts so much right now” and “I am so, so sorry.” The apologies felt like they were all for Louie and me not getting up early enough the day before he died to take him to the vet then and spare him all of the pain and anguish he experienced Wednesday night, but I think some of those apologies were for myself and how I’ve shut myself off and pushed away my feelings and treated my body so poorly over the past year (and maybe most of my life).
Last night, my friend Sia and I met up at Atlantic Station to see the Bradley Cooper/Lady Gaga remake of A Star is Born, which I thought was really good. They had great chemistry and both have great voices. I like the more dressed down Lady Gaga so much more, for sure, but she is an amazing performer no matter what.
After the movie, Sia and I went to Cafe Intermezzo for dessert. I have lived in Atlanta, on and off, for nine years now and I had never been to Cafe Intermezzo, which is just like, “Wut? For real?” I got a chocolate chip cookie dough cheesecake and Mexican hot chocolate and Sia got tiramisu and an iced cappuccino. (I guess my Starbucks coworkers and I were wrong, iced cappuccinos do exist, haha.) My cocoa was tepid but I loved the vanilla and cinnamon in it. The cheesecake was okay. I wish I’d gone with key lime cheesecake, my usual pick of cheesecake or pie or cupcakes, because you can never go wrong with key lime, but oh well.
Sia took the above picture of me last night which leads to the prompt in today’s entry from Beautiful You.
When a woman criticizes herself in front of you, don’t join in. Instead, celebrate what you love about her or tell her just how wrong she is. When you are inclined to begin your own body bashing, stop yourself. We do ourselves and others a disservice when we allow these critiques to carry on.
This is such a timely entry because when Sia sent me the picture she took of me last night, soooooo many thoughts went through my head. Some of them included:
Oh my god, I am so fucking fat now.
That’s it, time to reinstall MyFitnessPal. Obviously I can’t be trusted to eat intuitively.
I have got to lose weight before I wind up over 300 pounds.
How the fuck could I have let myself go like this?
I am huge.
Okay, time to start walking again tomorrow. Three miles a day, no matter what.
I cannot continue to look like this. This is awful.
I just sat and observed these thoughts. Did something about me change in regards to my self-worth in the 50 pounds I gained? Would it further diminish if I gain another 50 pounds? How can I continue to grow and learn in the intuitive eating process if I don’t actually really try to trust myself and allow myself to eat without shame?
I want to enjoy my life. I want to go walking because I want to get out of the house, get some fresh air, and feel warmth and flexibility in my muscles. I don’t want to be 60 years old like my mom or 70 years old like my mother-in-law and still be so wrapped up in my weight and size. I don’t want to give a shit if someone sees me for the first time in a year or more and is horrified about my weight gain or says/thinks, “Bless her heart, she’s so big now, what happened?” I don’t want to be so obsessed with calories, I don’t even remember if I enjoyed my food or not.
I am smiling in that picture because I felt some happiness and joy for the first time in days. I spent a fun, relaxing evening with a best friend who does not judge me for my body or how I eat or whether or not I exercise. She told me last night, “Follow your bliss.” I was happy to be spending time outside of my apartment where the air feels so heavy and thick with sorrow and loss right now. I was happy to be distracted from all of the grief I’ve been experiencing. I look tired but only because I have been all week.
I so want the self-criticism to stop. I want the shaming to stop. I want the fear to subside.
I want to trust myself and the process and that I am doing the very best I can in the situations I am in at all times.
But these thoughts are like the hopelessly tangled mass of Christmas lights we pull down from the attic around this time of the year. I have to slowly follow where the thoughts began and patiently untangle them. This is frustrating – maddening, even – but necessary.
I can’t walk away from this mess of tangled Christmas lights because to untangle them is to heal. I won’t ever fully untangle them in this lifetime but I can get them untangled just enough to give myself a chance to thrive, to really live my life, and maybe even to glow.
I am so fucking ready to glow.