Recovery

Juggling Lightning

“If you want your soul to dance in the clouds, at some point you will have to juggle lightning and taste the thunder.” – Christopher Poindexter
 
This quote expresses is a knowing that “before and after” photos don’t share.
 
Anytime I have waded through photos of other’s transformations, whether physical weight loss, plastic surgery, recovery from drug addiction, or of a house that has been “flipped,” I think to myself, “I want that — and, I want it in one hour, in between commercials, like the TV shows imply. After all, if it’s on TV or on the internet, it’s true, right?
 
Yeah, it didn’t happen that way. As a result of trying quick fixes in order to release the entrapment of my own flesh, and not succeeding, I felt like a tragic failure over and over again.
 
A couple of years ago, I considered admitting myself to an expensive inpatient treatment program for eating disorders. I couldn’t stop eating for the life of me, literally. What would I do? The thought of suicide was persuasive. I loved to eat large quantities of food so gastric bypass surgery was off the table. Fuck that. Now what?
 
Thank Goddess for my experience in the rooms of recovery where I learned the phrase, “One day at a time.” Thank Goddess that there are other people who have walked before me who have shown me that it can be done. They showed me through their experience that I could stop eating compulsively and release sugar and grains from my body, one meal at a time.
 
The weight is being released slowly and surely. I have no thoughts of, “YES! I lost 10 lbs since yesterday…oh, shit, now I have to keep up this horrifying pace to make sure it doesn’t come back on” — a common occurrence when I would restrict and exercise obsessively.
 
I could never keep it up. More failure and self hatred enshrouded me. Every day.
 
Eventually, I surrendered to being “A Goddessy BBW – Big Beautiful Woman.” I even had nude photos taken of my goddess form. They were beautiful, and I still found ways to hate me.
 
Strange to me, I never had a problem getting a date or sex, no matter how close I got to 300 pounds. Actually, it was easier when I weighed 300 pounds. Men would flag me down while driving on the freeway or stop me in the store for my phone number.
 
I remember thinking to myself, “What the fuck is wrong with these guys who like fat chicks? Are they sick, or something?” — pure projection of how I felt about myself.
 
There were occasions when potential partners who jived with my personality would mention my weight as a barrier to continuing a relationship with me. I would feel humiliated and heartbroken, vowing to never talk to them again. “Fuck them!,” I exclaimed.
 
There is a saying in the rooms of recovery, “Most people will adjust their actions to match their goals. Addicts will adjust their goals to match their actions.” That would be me, the addict, rejecting awesomeness so I could do whatever I wanted.
 
Embracing ample sex as a BBW was, for me, a mixed message. I used it as a way to affirm that I was ok to continue on with my disease. After all, if somebody wanted me sexually, I must be acceptable as a woman.
 
The further down the hole of despair I slid, the more I needed to be affirmed through others that I was ok. Friends would say, “You’re beautiful, inside and out.” I wished I could see it. Another obsession.
 
Eventually, the lines of my values were blurred to the point that I was crossing other people’s boundaries and couldn’t stop. I wanted to get my fix. I wanted you to fix how I felt about myself. Sound familiar? I learned there is a term for this, “Co-dependency.”
 
I sought and found a relationship that was delightfully, sugary, syrupy, sweetly mutually codependent as fuck. It was glorious, romantic, playful, amazing, fairy-tale story-ish…until it wasn’t.
 
My dis-ease was alive and well. This disease is a Hungry Ghost. “One is too many, and a 1000 is never enough.” He couldn’t feed my need to be affirmed. He tried his hardest. Believe me, he was really good at it, too. I never met a more loving, accepting human as him. He loved me more than he loved himself. He was a mirror to my disease in all of it’s manifestations.
 
The biggest clue that he couldn’t satisfy my Hungry Ghost veracity was when I noticed that I had gained fifty pounds in six months — even with all of the love and acceptance that he was willingly, abundantly sharing with me, I was eating out of control and trying to control him to ensure that I would get my fix of love, all of what he had to offer.
 
I had a “rock bottom” moment, actually a few…more like a, “I jumped out of a plane from 50,000 feet in the air without a parachute, landed in rocks, and bounced a thousand times” rock bottom moments. The bottoms came, over and over again. Until, one day, I finally stopped digging.
 
To be continued –

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