I’m just not that into you

I’ve been having a pretty good week. Riding this wave of contentment has felt great. I haven’t been looking for reasons to be dumpy, and when some reasons have presented themselves, I’ve dismissed them and moved on. I’m not sticking my head in the sand, I’m just comfortable with not letting anxiety and depression take hold of me. It’s been great.

But it’s funny how it can sneak in a back door, when you least expect it.

So there I was, minding my own business, working on a Christmas present for my dad (I’m giving him a framed family portrait of our whole family – but having to Photoshop some people into it, which is somewhat time-consuming). I was browsing through old photos so I could find the people I need and I stumble on an old portrait session of myself with my mother. And I was thinner. And pretty. Wow… I was so pretty.

Now, two things happened:

  1. There is a really great picture of me with her, but I didn’t want her in the photograph with me. At all. Like….not.even.a.little. So I pulled it up and removed her, digitally. Which kind of messed with me.
  2. Spending that much time on a picture causes you to actually *look* at it for a while. And the whole time I’m looking at my face thinking, “You were perfect back then. Look at your face shape and your eyes and your lips. You were stunning.” Were. Was. And then….that messed with me.

And so the pain took hold. And for a while I was stuck with it. I was remembering how painful that visit from my mother was. I was remembering the emotional turmoil I was in. And then….I was remembering how it felt to feel pretty and desirable. To be fair, that picture was taken only 15 lbs from where I’m at now. But those 15 lbs might as well have been 150 lbs last night.

I remembered the mistakes I made that led me to disordered eating. I remembered the damage I caused my body. I remembered the damage I caused my soul. I started recounting all my mistakes. Friends I lied to, horrible things I said to myself….the selfish way I neglected my husband and child. I knew, in my head, that the girl in that photo wasn’t better than me. Actually…she was way worse off than I am. But she was me. And I am her. Last night, I just couldn’t escape that.

I went to bed and had very restless sleep. Sometime in the wee hours of the morning, I had a nightmare. Among other, very personal things that happened in the dream, there was an ugly little tar-covered demon chasing me. I kept trying to get away from it, but it was always right there, just reaching out to get me. It was scary. And sad. I woke up screaming and terrified.

I was awake for a while after that. And thought a lot of about what that dream meant. And it occurred to me: that demon was *inside* that girl in the picture. But not in me now. Sure, I have to be vigilant against it. If I let my guard down, it’s too easy to slip into bad habits. But that thing isn’t in me now. And it’s clear that I don’t want it.

I did fall back asleep, finally. And woke up this morning feeling a little relieved. Although it was scary, my subconscious was reminding me that I’m not in that place anymore. I’m just not that into you, Bulimia.

And then, I was reminded that I was beautiful, and real. And human.

It’s probably a break through for me. I was able to feel the pain, and move on without it. That’s a big deal in these parts of the world. It feels good to be able to move past it. Yay for me.

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6 thoughts on “I’m just not that into you

  1. Your strength, determination and focus never cease to amaze.
    Rock on, flame.

    “beautiful, and real. And human”
    Damn. Right. the best of all worlds.

    And if I may be so bold, have a round of milk. On me.

  2. First, I LOVE the new look. Very sharp!

    Second, kudos to you for feeling the pain and moving past it! You are strong, wise, and truly beautiful.

    Third, isn’t it nice to count El Guapo among your regular readers and commenters? He has a way of making people feel good about themselves–it’s one of his many talents.

    • Thanks! I like it, too.

      One of my closest friends said that progress is made in the little things. Small changes that amount to big ones down the road. This seems huge right now. So I’m excited to see the difference as all these little ones turn into bigger ones.

      Lastly, but not leastly, yes – it has been wonderful to get TWO new readers/commenters. El Guapo does say all the right things that help encourage and empower me. That is, indeed, a talent that many people could develop. But you have a way, too. And that’s been paramount as I have struggled in recent weeks. Knowing that there are two people who don’t know me, personally, and can see the light inside me that I can’t quite make out right now… that means the world to me.
      It’s serendipitous the way the right people find you when you need it most. I’m truly thankful.

  3. Yay! I saw that you were following my blog and thought I’d come look at yours. And I felt pretty comfortable at “your place.” Felt familiar. And then I saw you were pals with two of my oldest (yeah, it’s only been three months really) and dearest (I’ve never met either of them but feel they’re my big, overprotective blog brothers) friends.

    Sorry. That was as hard to write as it probably is to read. But my intentions are real. Nice to meet another new friend. Chin up on your new level of awareness. Please send some of your enlightenment my way. Oh, and I’m going to find you on Twitter. And Kwyj, you need an account there.

    • Thanks for stopping by! I did peruse your place a little, but didn’t get the chance to comment. I’ll be back tomorrow!

      Brian and Guapo have been just a pleasure to connect with! I can appreciate your friendship with them. It’s been a short time for me, as well, but I always look forward to reading their posts and getting the feedback on mine.

      I do still struggle, regularly, with my nemesis, Bulimia. But the more I call out the challenges and remove the veil of shame, the easier it’s been to deal with.

      I’m still a work in progress. 🙂 I’ll visit your blog tomorrow and leave you some thoughts. Some of your posts were serendipitous to me.

      Thanks for connecting!

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