Finding the 'True Me'/Detaching From External Mirrors
I haven't written a blog for a long time. I decided rather than writing a blog because I 'should' (timing wise), that I would only write a blog when I was 'inspired'. Consider me inspired today.
The last time I wrote a blog, it was about my stubborn need to gain a lot of weight in order to gain a respect for my body. I thought I had learned all 'my lessons' when it came to my weight gain. However, my lessons were far from over.
It's a funny thing to all of a sudden be able to play out your life with a different lens - almost like you get to wear a mask or costume that is different than who you really are, and then play out your life again and see how people treat you NOW. You are the same on the inside, but not on the outside. How much does this change your experience?Tremendously! And though it has been really interesting to experience the world reacting to 'the bigger me' in a different way - whether it be family, friends, colleagues in the spiritual world, clients, or MEN - yes, I happen to be single as of this moment - the 'lesson' that has come forth time and time again is LOVE YOURSELF UNCONDITiONALLY.
Not only has my learning been about respecting my body and what I put in it, but it's also been to realize that if you rely on any outside sources to mirror to you whether you are deemed acceptable or not, you are bound for low self-esteem to never have its chance to be cured. Relying on the 'external mirror' as SAM calls it, keeps you constantly at the mercy of others. And to be at the mercy of others for who you are, is a ridiculous way to live your life. It's a known fact - not everyone is going to like you. Not everyone is going to understand you. In fact, some people may hate you, whether they are justified to have those feelings or not. The one person who will never fail you, who is always there for you, who should always be accepting of you, is YOU. We all know this in theory, right????
AND YET, we live in a society where we are constantly programmed to put more energy and attention towards what others think of us, than what we think of ourselves. We present ourselves based on how we believe we SHOULD be presenting ourselves. After all, if there are so many opinions about how a person should look or behave throughout society, the masses must be right, correct?
The only person who can really know who you are, is you. Do you feel you have an intimate enough relationship with yourself to know who you really are, without your image being influenced by others? Being single with this weight gain has probably been the best resource I have had with which to learn my lessons on detaching myself from the external mirror. I have discovered that there are some men who really love bigger/overweight/curvy/pick your word women. In fact, they CHOOSE those women over fit women. Who knew??!!
And of course, there are other men who prefer women who are fit/slim/model-like/pick your word. Well, when you are online dating, all men have access to you and your pictures - the men who think you are disgusting, lazy and fat, and the men who are attracted to you and treating you like a goddess. I have had a few men in the last couple of years who I went on a few dates with, break up with me because I wasn't their 'body type'. This I expected. What I did not expect, was to have the opposite experience. I was lucky enough to date a man for a few months who was absolutely in love with my overweight, BBW body. He worshipped my body, every last flabby inch of it. He called me a goddess. All of the mind programming I had growing up about what was attractive and acceptable, was blown away by this one simple expression of truth by this man. In fact, he admitted he would be less attracted to me if I LOST weight. Are you kidding me? Now that's a new one.
And that was the point. In that moment, the epiphany hit - if I rely on what others think about my body in order to feel good about myself (men being the external mirror in this case), I'll never be happy. I could feel safe as 'the goddess' only to lose some weight by choosing healthier foods and then become 'too thin' for my suitor's liking. I could lose the weight now, attract a man who likes 'curvy but not fat' girls, only to have him be less attracted when over a year I gain a few of the pounds back. I never thought that I was seeking out a healing agent for my self-esteem through the acceptance of others, but I was. Sure, I know all of the talk - "Love yourself! Embrace your inner goddess! Be you! Who cares what others think about you!" I knew that this was the way to an unshakable self-esteem. When I was curvy but thinner, I thought I had unshakable self-esteem and that I had built it within myself.
I was kidding myself. I had found self-esteem because I was more accepted by others when I was thinner. Which meant, my self-esteem was riding on other people's opinions as the external mirror all along. When I gained all the weight, and had different reactions from everyone, I began to realize how embarrassed I felt to be at this higher weight. Why would SAM suggest that being this weight could teach me so much? 'Being fat' was damaging my self-esteem wasn't it? Then the epiphany. What self-esteem? My self-esteem had been built on sand. Sand that could be built up or blown away easily in the wind based on who was judging me in the moment.
So NOW I see why SAM said it could teach me so much. Treating my body with more respect and dealing with my sugar addiction wasn't the whole battle, it is only a slice of the huge pie. I now, as this 'fatter, less acceptable being', have the opportunity to discover myself as I am now, and love myself, regardless of what others think of me. NOW I can actually learn what it means to not care about what others think. To explore fully in reality that 'you will never please everyone all of the time', was an important path for me to walk these last few years, especially while being single. To realize that for some men, if I got to a healthier weight, they would find me unattractive, was MIND BLOWING, considering what societal mirroring teaches us.
So if I lose the external mirror, I am left with me, myself and I. Me, myself and I are a work in progress. Sometimes I look at my overweight body and see its beauty and curves. Other days I see it and loathe that I am not my skinnier self. I have discovered that I am neither one of those images in my mind. The 'true me', the weight that I would easily be able to keep stable because my lifestyle changes would be consistent, is yet to be born. I don't know what weight I am going to end up being. I know it is less than 285 lbs and I have already lost 10 pounds simply by avoiding wheat. I know that as I continue to make other diet/food allergy changes (sugar replacements, gluten replacements, no corn, no dairy) that more weight will fall off. I need to make these changes for my health, not vanity. But I am not rushing it. The mistake I made last time was becoming paranoid about food - 'good food' and 'bad food'. No 'bad food' came near my mouth for two years. This time, I need to choose to go gluten-free because I know for me, it helps me be more clear-headed and less tired. I need to make the changes to improve my inner health, not for attempts at outer acceptance.
The journey is taking way longer for me to get there than I thought. I resist going fully gluten/sugar/corn/dairy-free 24/7, 365 days a year because it still makes life difficult when I am cooking family meals, eating with others, and when I am dating. Ever try going on a first date with someone who watches you in horror as you order your 'gluten-free, sugar-free, corn-free, dairy-free food?
When Harry Met Sally - her order right before the 'fake orgasm' scene
Waitress: Hi, what can I get ya? Harry: I'll have a number three. Sally: I'd like the chef salad please with the oil and vinegar on the side and the apple pie a la mode. Waitress: Chef and apple a la mode. Sally: But I'd like the pie heated and I don't want the ice cream on top I want it on the side and I'd like strawberry instead of vanilla if you have it if not then no ice cream just whipped cream but only if it's real if it's out of a can then nothing. Waitress: Not even the pie? Sally: No, just the pie, but then not heated. Waitress: Uh huh.
I still am transmuting all of the rigid beliefs I have about 'being healthy' from my days when I was 145 lbs. I know my 'true me' isn't that girl either.
And the biggest realization? That's okay. It's okay that I am still learning lessons to do with my weight - my weight has been my Achilles heel since my teens. It's okay that I am still not willing to change my diet to honor all of my food allergies/intolerances 24/7, 365 days. Every day that I substitute a food I can tolerate that is healthy, and let go of the offending food that made my body tired, itchy, blotchy, bloaty...I am one step closer to success. It's okay that I am a practitioner who helps other deal with their issues, and yet I still struggle with 'an issue' so much myself. It's okay, because I am human. And in this human game, we are here to learn. And learn I am doing. I will learn what my true food and exercise lifestyle is, learn how to live it every day without feeling like I am on a 'diet' or giving up anything, and slowly but surely, I will discover the True Me. One step at a time. Here's to the journey, and all the negative beliefs that will be left behind.
Until next time,
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