Well hello there.
It’s been awhile. You see, I’m having some trouble putting myself out into cyberspace these days. Even on social media I rarely say much of consequence.
But that’s bothering me some. I tell other people to be brave, to speak out, reach out… but I don’t. I hide.
Here is a little piece to rectify that. Something I’m struggling with:
When I was a teenager I developed anorexia. A size zero wasn’t thin, I was still fat, the label was wrong, etc. It took a long time to recognise it, and I’m very fortunate I wasn’t one of those who were taken by it.
When I got hit with fibromyalgia at 18, my life changed in drastic ways. One of them meant I could no longer go to the gym for three hours a day. I started gaining weight. I fought it, I tried not to eat, I changed my diet… but still I gained. It was like my poor starving body decided it would never starve again.
Now, in my 40s, it’s virtually impossible to lose weight. The only time I have in the last five years was when I had a total breakdown and stopped eating hardly anything. Suicidal depression was what it took to lose weight.
Needless to say, that’s not a great solution.
I now have a kind of body dysmorphia. I have no idea how big I am, or what I really look like. I see pictures of myself and if I look fat, I recognise myself and hate myself. If I look okay, I don’t actually understand that it’s me in the photo…there’s a disconnect, like someone else is standing in my place.
Last week, I admitted to my wife that I thought I was too fat to fit in the shower, that there was only just enough room. This is illogical (there’s room for two, with space) but I can’t wrap my head around it. I know I’m obese… even if the clothing size says I’m only slightly above the national average. Even if there is room in the shower. Even though my wife tells me otherwise.
I’m not looking for compliments or reassurance. I’m writing because these things don’t get talked about, and I’m fully aware that so, so many people deal with this same issue every single day of their lives. I believe talking about things opens them to the light and can help remove some of the stigma. In a time where people are being shamed publicly for being different, when intolerance is at a terrible high… we need to make an effort to understand and help each other.
So. That’s my little piece of honesty for the month.