Sunday, November 24, 2013

The Yo-yo

This story is as long as my adult life.
I don't want to bore myself or anyone else to death so I start with the basic facts:

  • I have an obsessive personality.
  • I have eaten and starved myself alternately since I was 17.
  • I don't make any apologies for that.
  • I am not going to negotiate on it either.
(That's the end for those without time on their hands.. read on if you don't need to hang out the washing or something)

I believe that there is something on that gene that also has alcoholism on it that triggers the obsessive thing. 

I do not need to keep the fringe on my carpet perfectly straight, however when a 'thing' climbs into my consciousness, it takes over. The first I remember was a passion for cats, then birds, then African Violets, dress making, patch working, 3D crafting in an online environment, ....

My eating is very closely linked to that darn gene. It isn't that I just eat too much. It is that eating is very tightly wound into the obsessive behavior.

For example:

  • Do you need a packet of twisties to have a bath? I don't have a packet of twisties every time I have a bath - but I think about having one every time.
  • When I eat a Kit Kat, I first trim the chocolate off the ends, then the sides and finally I snip layers off as I eat down the KitKate rod. All done with my teeth the same way I have done it my entire life.
  • If I eat instant noodles, I have to have two pieces of bread underneath. I cut the corners off the bread-a corner at a time- and wind noodles with each corner. Then the remaining straight edges. And finally into the soft bread.
While these might just seem like habits, I don't enjoy eating a Kit Kat or noodles if I don't eat them this way. I would rather not eat them at all.

So agreed? Obsessive?

When I was pre-teen, Dad called me Fat Annie. It was a joke. 
I was thin.
But by the time I was 16 I was puppy-fat. I was on the receiving end of a chant 'stand-up-straight-pull-your-stomach-in'. I don't for a minute think they realised that this was creating an issue.

So in 1981 I stopped eating anything except the dinner that Mum cooked. And an orange. I got down to 47.5 kgs. I looked fashionably thinner but not anorexic. But I still had huge hips, bad belly, big bum... so I suggest that there was anorexia in my head.

I looked pretty good but the chant didn't end. You see the chant was about posture but I didn't get it.
All I heard was fat Fat FAT FAT FAT

So I started eating again. There hadn't been any reward in starvation. It started with a packet of chips. I would crush them into the finest crumbs and eat the crumbs on the back of a wet teaspoon.

Ever since then I have been on and off the crash diet. 

Plenty of people, ever so wise people have, do and will point out that it obviously doesn't work, so stop doing it and try something else.

'Try Exercise'
Ok it's too hot, it's too cold, it's dark, it's raining and I get hay fever. I don't care that someone will judge these as excuses. They are my reasons. I am not changing my mind.

However I could hope that the obsession button is triggered and suddenly I have to walk in the rain. It is possible.

I loved the gym. I really did. It appealed to everything obsessive in me. I set a goal. I beat it. I put music on and I walked until it was done. I picked a faster beat and I walked that fast. And then a faster one.
But I do not do classes. That has nothing to do with the way I operate. It exposes me to things I don't want or need. I do not want peer group pressure. I do not want to puff in front of other people. I do not want to be measured against someone else's goals. 

This is so clear cut to me, I can not understand why anyone feels there is a need to try and persuade me. 

But the gym cost money. Moving into one income and all the kids meant the gym had to go. I thought once I got my APS6 I would be able to resume, but that chair has been kicked from under my feet.

'Don't think of it as a diet, think of it as a change of lifestyle'
Blimey - think of eating Kit Kats without biting the ends off first? You have to be kidding. I can't have a new lifestyle because this isn't a lifestyle issue.

Blah blah blah. I have gone on long enough.

I am back on the crash diet. I am exercising control. I am obsessing about it. I will be successful because I know I can do this.

I may keep the weight off for a while. I hope to get enough money to return to the gym one day. I am hoping Mark will enthuse me to walk more often.

But there is a good chance I will put it back on one day. If I was an alcoholic, then I would have to face it and say 'no more alcohol' and every day I would say the same thing. But when the food obsession is yours, you have to face everyday saying have this much and no more. You can't close the door on it. You can't empty the house of food.
Several times a day you have to flirt with the addiction.