Here’s how out of whack my body image is at the moment…right now I’m feeling big and gross and fat because the Evil Scale God has decreed I am a fat pig who put on 10 lbs due to periodic binging in the past month or so.
I saw Lynn this morning, for the first time in about a month. She said I looked great.
One of the office ladies saw me in the hall and out of nowhere said, “There she is. Miss Skinny.”
But the scale says I’m a pig and therefore a pig I am.
When I binge I want to be invisible, or at least have people around me pretend that I am. I like to binge at work because I’m invisible there anyway. This is why I prefer to binge on weekdays when hubby isn’t at home and why I try to scrupulously hide the evidence. I’m not deranged enough to believe that if the crumbs aren’t there it didn’t happen, obviously the stuff is IN MY BODY, but at least no one else has to know, especially not hubby.
Unfortunately, when I binge the sugar is effectively a drug to the point that like any junkie, I nod out and don’t always have enough clarity to do a thorough clean-up.
When I got home last night after picking up a new batch of fruits and veggies to go with my Whole30 and renewed commitment to staying out of the shit, and there in the freezer was the open pint of ice-cream that I hadn’t thrown out before hubby got home. Right then I got the “oh shit” feeling, because there’s no way hubby hadn’t seen it…it wasn’t one of his flavors, and I could only hope he’d ignore it and I could dispose of the evidence and go on in peace.
As I say of my work situation, the worst part of working in a minefield is you never know WHERE the mines are. When hubby made his nightly call to check in and say I love you, he asked me what happened the night before, and I said, “nothing” and he said, “I found a piece of cookie.”
Then he thanked me for buying an ice-cream flavor he liked, but of course I’d already chucked the remainder of the pint, to cover up and because I can’t handle having it in the house.
Luckily I don’t think he’s even noticed the rise and fall and rise of the yogurt raisins, which he doesn’t even like, but which are in the fridge in a clear plastic container and which I can’t keep my paws off once the “switch” goes on.
Anyway---I just felt this overwhelming horror and embarrassment and shame. Deep in my soul and gut. I wanted to hide, cry, lie, deny, make it not have happened, but the cookie was there. Like track marks.
So I went in the other direction and told him I’d binged my brains out and more or less dared him to make any judgments. Because here’s the thing…he’s proud of my weight loss and how I look, but as I’ve mentioned before, he wants me to be able to eat “normally,” or at least to be able to go sponteanously eat out without it being a THING. He KNOWS I identify as an addict when it comes to food, he is a recovering drug-addict/alcoholic….he works in a fucking detox, and he wants me to be able to eat sugar and stop. Yeah, well, so do I. This is the same man who got all pissy at me for moving my own goal posts so I could get down to my “trophy weight” of 131 and NOW that he’s face to face with the “real me” I need help?
He then suggested I see a therapist, and for some reason, much as I know it comes from love, I found that really humiliating.
I’m just in pain and self-hatred and shame about being this fucked up after this much time.
Shame goes way back. When I think of shame, I think about times I was embarrassed at school over saying something stupid that I thought was all smart and cool, but wasn’t. Or being caught without my homework, or busted reading in class because I was bored with whatever I was supposed to be learning.
Shame is about people looking at me and seeing me. Shame is about being exposed. Shame is having nothing to hide behind. I am an ego-maniac with an inferiority complex. You know how much I love being onstage at the Mint or flaunting my erudition or matching Yanni snark for snark, but when I’m exposed as a bad singer or caught with my hand in the literal cookie jar, it’s just a big red ball of pain that starts in face and spreads outward, and thanks to dear old dad and his food obsession, there is nothing I am as ashamed of as my body itself.
Even in its much improved state---it’s not enough. I want to show off in clothes that make me look good, but the remaining fat still horrifies me. So much progress, I know…but so much shame about the remaining fat and the behaviors.
And for hubby to know and make me look at it….like the bad dog with poop, you know?
I know that denial is bad, but he was happy to be in denial while I was gorging my way up to 191…why bring it up now?
Maybe the problem here isn’t shame, maybe it’s anger. Right now I’m angry at my husband.
But that’s another emotion and another essay for another day.