For about five years now, I never get sick.
At the most, I will have a day or two when I can feel that I am fighting something off. I up some supplements, and I always win.
Not this time. For the first time in about five years, I have a full blown something or another. It started in my throat and is now in my head and muscles.
I am grouchy, to say the least. "I do not have time for this" is what comes out of my mouth. As if anyone has time for this!
My point, though, is that I am sure my sick-less streak would have continued had it not been for my recent confession about falling back into bad, "eating" habits. I put "eating," of course, in quotes because those habits really have to do with NOT eating. Or not eating nearly enough.
I was not giving my body what she needed and she could not fight off a simple, Autumn cold flu thing.
My post about eating disorders got a strong reaction -- here, on Facebook, on twitter, and in my inbox -- so I know we need to keep talking about this.
I thought we should back up and try to see where this begins.
I have told this story before but it bears repeating.
When I was almost four, I remember the exact moment my first diet was initiated. It was after dinner, and I had had one cupcake. I went in for a second, as I always had before, but suddenly, I was told "no."
Apparently, the look of consternation that my four year old self displayed was enough to take down an elephant in the wild.
How do I know this? Because this story became an oft repeated segment of our family mythology. It was told to elicit laughter. It was a "funny" story.
But at the age of four, I was being told that That eating was an impulse that needed to be curbed. Eating leads to unwanted results. That my very healthy body was not good enough and never would be. That there were and always would be things about myself that were detestable, embarrassing, laughable.
For those of you out there who saw themselves in my confession or one similar to it, I want you to think about this:
How was food treated in your family of origin?
Think about your mother's relationship to food, but also think about your father's relationship to food and, probably more importantly, think about how he treated your mother and other females around him and the whole food thing.
Did he encourage diets? Did he talk about other women's bodies in degrading ways?
Was your mother always complaining about herself?
What was dinner time like?
Spend some time journaling about all of this.
I know for a fact that I am not the only woman in the world whose first diet was at age four. I know I am not unique.
(Photo & Text Copyright: Christine C. Reed, blisschick.net, 2009)