Tags: food

treelights

Being less involved

I see how my life revolves around my relationship with Tony. He is my friend, my partner, my confidante, and my family all rolled into one. He is also a project, a fellow student, a co-conspirator, a dissenter, a lab partner, a child, and a mother figure for me. He's probably more things, but this is just off the top of my head.

A lot of the time, it's good that I have so much going on with the one relationship I have actual, steady access to. Not so when it comes to food behaviors though.

Tony and I have downward spiraled with our respective and joint food addictions. It's to the point where I need to put my conscious connections and understandings ahead of my marriage in order to get out from under the bulimia and compulsive overeating that has become rampant here.

It means that after building up all these codependent and interdependent relationships with him and with "our" food, I need to stop seeking the benefits from those ties, and return my focus to just being me by myself again, particularly around food decisions. It's the only way I am finding that I can tune into my healing signals anymore. The white noise of this other relationship has become too perfect at drowning out my common sense and healthy cues.

These have all come into a space of jeopardy from obscuration:

Healthy cues
Common sense
Personal improvement and perspective
Personal meaning and purpose
Control of physical inflammation
Regulation of anxiety
Connection to my path
Self-esteem
Outside interests
My place in a bigger picture

I *do* have the power to decide for myself what goes. I journal and it reminds me of what I'd otherwise be lost without inside myself. It shows me how much I'm forgetting just to show up each day for this escapism and bonding with food.

I see that putting in place solid boundaries is the simple answer, for my eating and for my over-enmeshment. Lucky for me, I am not feeling depressed about this extreme aspect of our lifestyle because I no longer believe it is truly out of my control, even though it has been out-of-control to live with. I know that if I pay attention to what *I* want rather than what feeds our food addiction and joint food lifestyle, I will feel effectively motivated to make better decisions-- decisions that choose common sense and health over this scarily bulletproof level of denial we've got going. I have the resources to take it hour by hour if that's needed. I don't have anything else I have to do for awhile, and I can utilize this time to quit feeling guilty, and instead, weed out compulsive thoughts and emotional triggers as they come up... I want to firmly take the helm back in this dept of my life.

I see I need a goal to envision for why I am making changes to such a longstanding, routinized situation that is tied to such a needs-based, encompassing relationship. I think the goal that most motivates me for today is just to not have this ongoing shame and worry going on in my head anymore. I do not want to lose myself. For a long time, I kept trying to convince Tony that "we" needed to work on this issue, and I think that developed it into a sort of game we have played. We'd stick to various plans until one or the other of us would capsize the plan with a guilty rush very similar to junkies relapsing each other on drugs. It has reached a point where I finally see I need to take myself in hand *outside* of trying to work on it as a household.


The other motivation I have for today is to replace whatever emotional 'fuel' I'm getting from compulsive food decisions with noticing what actually makes me feel happy and good. Like this morning, I am keeping a little list of these easily missed moments that might otherwise drift away from my conscious acknowledgement of their worth and my own enjoyments:

**Gypsy (youngest cat) climbed up onto my shoulder this morning and we proceeded to nuzzle each other's faces over and over. She would've been camped up against my neck all morning happily but my shoulder got sore from making my arm someplace for her to perch on. While it lasted, it made me feel freaking adored by a very small, cute and pushy gremlin of a cat.

**I sketched a picture of a human hip bone onto my calendar, took a picture, and sent it to my brother (et al) saying "June 7th is on my calendar" next to "Adam's hip day" because he's getting another hip replacement surgery. It made me feel very happy to be in a place of relative harmony with my brother (and for my family to publicly see this too) since yesterday's bout of texted honesty between us. He immediately responded positively, and it shows me he is feeling good about our heart-to-heart texts clearing the air as well.

**The giant male kitty who came around when Gypsy went into heat came by the deck looking for food today. He peered in the cat door by my feet, and I did my best to channel Cecily, who would sit for hours smoking and reading on her deck while strays came and got to know her because she was so mellow and non-confrontational with them. He walked right in and ate out of our cats' food dishes, knowing I was there next to him. Afterward, he went back out the cat door, but groomed for a little while-- a sign he was feeling more comfortable around me.

**I'm writing about the food issue, a thing I don't like to talk about because of the history and shame. It makes me feel more honest to not care that my happy things may sound small or that my food problems may sound big. It is what it is, and I'm better off acknowledging it, so writing this makes me feel happy and good too.