I hate food, that’s why I am fat!

I know what you are thinking, how can you hate food and be fat? Surely I am fat because I love food and I can’t stop eating it? But that isn’t the case. I don’t get excited by the thought of a nice meal out. I don’t sit down and enjoy a home cooked meal. I eat because it keeps me alive. But I do enjoy junk food. I do enjoy sweets, chocolate, cakes and crisps! That is all I want to eat and so I am fat!

I have a very bad relationship with food. I am uninspired and it bores me. Each week when we do the food shop I’m not filled with excitement about what we can make for the week, I’m filled with dread of having to come up with something. So we eat the same things as that is all we know. I don’t get inspired by cookbooks either. It all just looks like food I won’t enjoy. I can’t get excited about a sauce or a pasta dish. I only get excited by sweets and chocolate. I only enjoy junk food. But that isn’t right. So because I don’t appreciate a real meal, I feel I have to have some sugar or junk each day (even crisps). I say that I can’t eat real food and true I can’t eat a lot of fruit but everything I eat is so bland, I turn to the junk to get some enjoyment out of food.

I need to learn to appreciate food and enjoy real food. I need to fall in love with food. I need to learn to cook and be inspired by real food not junk.

Even food I like I don’t get enjoyment out of anymore. My husband tells me these foods that he is excited about and I’m just meh! That is why I am fat! I only enjoy chocolate and sweets and so eat them a lot. For me it’s either salad and fruit or chocolate and crisps. But what about everything in between?

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A letter to my fat self!

Here I am half way through the week of a new diet and yet again I have fallen at the first hurdle. I was stressed yesterday so struggled to stay on track and then today I am bloated and have bad water retention. This happens each time and I get sad and then eat even more. I am so fed up of being 3 stone overweight but I just can’t seem to keep the momentum going of losing weight! Hubby suggested that I start with apologising to myself about the weight so I thought I would try writing a letter to myself like I did before so here goes:

Dear Jen,

My first instinct is just to tell you to stop eating through your emotions and problems but I know it isn’t that simple so I won’t. I know it annoys you so much when other people say that and then they tell you to stop making excuses. But I understand your bad relationship with food. I know that it’s not really food to you. It is a reward for a hard week at work, a way to relax in an evening, a way to be sociable with your friends, family and husband, a way to suppress those horrible emotions, and most importantly a way to make your stomach feel better. I know you can’t tolerate the feeling of being hungry at all as it makes you feel so rough and eating helps. Eating little and often is the key but I know you struggle to come up with what food to eat and so just eat junk or don’t eat at all and feel ill. But it’s ok to feel like that, don’t beat yourself up about it.

I know you are finding it hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Whenever you lose a big amount you then fall down and it all comes back on. Trying to imagine being skinny, with a baby and a house is just the hardest thing ever. If you were going to fall pregnant then it would have happened already surely? But you need to stop thinking like that. You need to realise that losing weight is what is going to help you have a baby and make you a happier and healthier person. I don’t know what I can do to help you see that. It is the same with the safety seeking behaviours, you need to realise that stopping doing those will help in the long run. But they both feel like such huge tasks that it is easier for you to just not do them and try and carry on with the way things are. It is easier to look for other things to do, or to sit in front of the telly stuffing your face than it is to get up and do the things that are going to help you. I know that you feel stuck where you are. Stuck without a baby. Stuck being fat. Stuck in living in a flat for the rest of your life instead of having a nice house with a garden. Just stuck in general. I know your husband feels the same way to. Everything that you want is out of your reach.

You need to realise that you don’t have to eat like food is going out of fashion. Just because you have decided that you aren’t going to diet on one day, it doesn’t mean you have to eat everything in sight. It isn’t the last time you are going to eat it! You also need to realise when you are really hungry and when you are just craving something nice. You need to learn when you are full up as binge eating is just making you fat and ill.

Just keep focusing on those reasons why you want to lose weight and why eating those yummy looking things are just not worth it in the long run. You’ve got this. We’ve got this.

Love, your internal thin girl xx

I’m in charge 

I realised this morning that I have been struggling with my desire for control recently. Not to the point where it has affected my mental health but I have definitely been feeling it. I want a baby so much and it frustrates me that there is nothing I can do to control that. No matter how hard I try to will myself pregnant, it will happen when it happens. In fact, trying that hard makes it less likely to succeed. But it goes so against my nature to ‘just let it happen’. So when I thought about getting a house it felt like something that I could control. I changed my job (as I have said before) and am on probation for six months so we have had to take a break from trying for a baby. This seemed like such the perfect opportunity to look for a house as we could buy a house and move in and then have the baby there. I have been worried that I would be stuck in a two bed flat for years and years so tried to control that situation. If I got a house first then I would be all set for when my magical two babies arrive. But of course, I may never have children and I could be in a home that I am not happy with without those children. I need to just let these things happen in life and use my secondary control to cope with them. Rather than worrying about housing etc. perhaps I should concentrate on something that I should be able to control which is my eating habits and exercising? I need to stop blaming external factors as the reason I don’t do these things and just do them. 
I’m annoyed at myself for slipping back into my bad ways of thinking but I have caught myself before it got too bad. Perhaps that is what is holding me back as well? I need to believe in myself, believe I can cope and believe I can achieve everything I want in life even if it doesn’t go exactly the way I have planed it. 

What is holding me back?

I’m lacking faith in myself. That’s the issue. I don’t believe I can live without doing those safety seeking behaviours. I don’t believe I can cope with the anxiety and uncomfortable feelings. I don’t believe I can lose weight and get fit. I don’t believe I will ever have a baby as I don’t believe I will fall pregnant. I don’t believe I know what I’m doing at work. This is not thriving like I should be. I don’t know why I can’t get over this last bit. I guess it’s because every time I try to stop the safety seeking behaviours I feel so uncomfortable that I quite straight away or I don’t even get as far as not washing my hands etc. What is holding me back? Laziness?

Why do I put so much on myself?

That’s what my husband asked me whilst on holiday and it got me thinking. I want everything to be perfect and don’t like it when it’s not. I’m on holiday and I got really bad stomach ache. Quite like I did when I was sick back at Christmas. It caused a panic attack which hasn’t happened in a while. I realised it’s because I’m on holiday and want it to be perfect. Everything is about being perfect.

I started writing this when I was on holiday but never finished. I am back at work now but yesterday I wasn’t well. On Saturday I ate far too much and my stomach rejected it. I spent Saturday evening and Sunday morning on the loo! I then spent the rest of the day in bed. So today it is Monday and it is my fist time being at my new job whilst not feeling that well. Of course I wanted to stay in bed this morning and not come to work. I wanted to run away from the uncomfortable feeling of the tight stomach, headache, feeling weak and hot and cold. But I didn’t! I know I am lethargic from being in bed all day and I am not going to let it get the better of me. For a minute I started to obsess. I typed into Google ‘lethargy symptoms’ but stopped myself before I began reading it. I don’t need to look it up to make myself feel better. I don’t need to try to work out why I feel ill, I know why. So I stopped that obsessing in it’s tracks and got on with things!

I have to realise that I am putting far too much on myself expecting everything to be perfect and to feel perfect. It just doesn’t work like that. No one is perfect (apart from my cat!).

Laziness – is there such a thing?

I once read an article that says there is no such thing as laziness. If you come across as lazy, there is usually a reason why you are avoiding something. I have been known for most of my life as having an excuse for everything, but what deep down is the reason why I don’t do the things that I know are best for me?

Pretty much anything that takes me out of my comfort zone makes me procrastinate and find thousands of reasons as to why I can’t do it. This never affects me at work, (where I thrive on a challenge) but when it comes to doing something that will make my life better (such as exercise!), I just shy away from it. If I don’t get instant rewards and gratification then I will avoid doing the task required, or at least not carry on if I ever manage to actually get started. Take losing weight for instance, I have a really good week and only lose 2lb. For me, I struggle to see that as a good thing because my stomach is still larger than I want it to be or my trousers are still too tight. So instead of getting the fight in me to carry on, I take the flight option and run away from the task. Whilst I know there is a reward in the long run, if at the time the reward seems low and there appears to be a low risk to my life if I don’t do it, then I simply won’t do it. I struggle to see the reward as it is far in the future and it’s a difficult challenge so I just don’t do it. At work I get the satisfaction of having completed something difficult and, at my current job, the gratification of my boss and my colleagues. But the only person who would be grateful if I lost weight is myself. The only person who loses out if I don’t, is me. Same with challenging the black and white thinking and working through the avoidance and safety seeking behaviour list. I am the only one who will benefit and I don’t praise myself for doing the little things. (side thought – perhaps I should allow myself a reward like a spa day or something once I achieve a certain weight or a certain number of things off the list?).

Perfectionism is a big part of it too. I don’t want to purposely make myself feel uncomfortable. I want to feel perfect all the time, in fact my anxiety disorder and my life has been about making sure I feel perfect. I know in the long run it will make my life better but from this side of things, it all just seems difficult and scary. Doing these things I am not very good at means risking failing. They are a huge task to me and so why would I risk doing something that could make me fail when I could do something else instead? But then I am not being perfect by not doing it which makes me miserable!

There are some tasks that I (and everyone else) just don’t want to do. Things like cleaning the toilet or doing the washing up. But you do it because otherwise it just won’t get done. But when you have someone around who will do those things if you don’t, (in my case my husband), then you are never going to do them! I tell my husband this all the time. If I have done some cooking or something and haven’t done the washing up straight away, I will get round to doing it as there is no way I am going to leave it there. But he gets impatient and so huffs and then does it for me. I know he thinks he is helping but he is also the person who gets annoyed that I don’t do it and calls me lazy. I am never going to be the type who gets up and does chores straight away but I will do it if I have to!

The final reason that contributes to my ‘laziness’ is just being so damn tired. Everyone has every day struggles that make them tired but add to that the constant battle to try and control everything and you have a sleeping machine! My husband says I am lazy because I struggle to get up in the morning. But honestly I am in such a deep sleep that I don’t hear alarms and it takes me nearly an hour to wake up! It’s not because I am lazy, it is because I am so tired all the time (even when I go to bed early), that when I am finally asleep, it’s hard to wake me.

What are your thoughts on laziness? I think it is a term used to describe a lot of other things going on that make you give up the fight. I’m not trying to make excuses for the fact that I don’t do those things, I just know that if I treat the real issue rather than the symptom (being lazy) I will get better. I think labeling myself as lazy is also very external. Understanding the reasons I make myself lazy and doing something about them, is very internal.

Isn’t life confusing?!

Isn’t like confusing?! I am just coming out of a period in my life where I have been in limbo. My job has been shifting from the small town in Surrey to having to work in London and that is not something I want to do. It has been good for challenging my emet but not good for spending time with my family and trying for a baby (both stress and being too tired when I get home!). I like stability. I like to know where I stand in life and what is likely to happen next. I am risk adverse. I want answers to everything in life. I need a reason why. Now this is a typical thought pattern of someone with anxiety. My main issue is not being able to predict things and not being able to accept that some things are grey, not black and white!

Just recently I was offered a new job that would mean I wouldn’t need to commute to London. I was so excited and accepted it as soon as I could. However, my body decided to play tricks on me and I was six days late for my period! My husband and I have been trying for a baby for a year but decided when I was offered the job that, providing I was pregnant that time, I would take the job and we would have a break until I have at least passed my probation. So naturally, I got stressed about needing to come on and so it was late. Bring on days and days of knicker checker and peeing on sticks! It wasn’t until I decided that I would take the job either way and just deal with not having statutory pay that I came on. Anyway, I digress. My point is I spent the whole time looking for the answer and getting stressed that I wasn’t getting one, which was only holding the answer off even more!

Why do I do this to myself?

 

Why do I do this to myself?! Why