One Day I Will Rule the World

World Domination, Babies and Middle Eastern Dance

November 3, 2011

Chewing it over

When I’m feeling down, usually the first thing to go is my appetite. And it’s been kind of a low week, so I’ve been kind of fighting with food all week.

And also fighting with Ian about food. I mean, not fighting, fighting. Mostly nice (for me) fighting, because it’s totally nice to have someone in your life who cares enough to notice when you don’t eat. But also annoying fighting because there’s just so many issues about food here, you know. And sometimes, when I’m feeling already a bit down, avoiding it just feels like self-defense: “Oh hello food that is trying to make me cry or choke me. Excuse me, I have some other important thing to do.”

It’s a bizarre thing to have a compulsion (or aversion, I guess) when you have come far enough to be aware of your compulsion or aversion. Because when you recognize yourself doing something destructive and you say to yourself, “this is that thing you shouldn’t be doing” and then you do it anyway, then you have this perception of yourself as doing it on purpose. You say to yourself, “you knew what you needed to do and you didn’t do it. You just want to be sad, you want to fight with Ian about it, you are just doing this for attention.”

Well anyhow, I had a slightly more compassionate thought today. I likened eating to sex. And I thought, you know, you might have many, many experts tell you how valuable a healthy sex life is – but if someone had negative experiences with it and then at a time when they were feeling vulnerable about it, you said to them, “You’re supposed to do this thing. You know you are and yet you’re not doing it. So you must want your marriage to fail,” you would be a destructive asshole.

It wasn’t a really profound epiphany, but it was enough for me to resolve to try to quit saying things like that to myself.

I also say, “I thought you got over this,” but then I remember that that period of “getting over it” was brought about with the kind of willpower that I seem to think I’m supposed to be exerting now – by sitting alone at a table with a plate of food, sniffling and coaching (/berating) myself into eating one excruciating bite at a time, because I was pregnant and it was something I just had to do or else I was the worst mother, ever.

So, fuck that. Maybe it’s not surprising that I’m not over it. And, probably, as long as I keep treating myself with hostility over it, I’m going to continue not being over it.

You know in regency romances when the Hero has a finicky appetite, but he has a family cook who’s been around since he was a child so she mothers him and frets almost exclusively about how to tempt his appetites? Yeah, why can’t I be a Regency-era, upper-class, bachelor gentleman with a fully devoted embodiment of the “old-retainer” trope.

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  1. Alison

     /  2011-11-04

    Awww, Megan, if I was there I would totally make you something full of love to tempt your appetite. But I’m not, so I can only send you long distance love. Hope you feel better soon.

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