Sunday, October 3, 2010

Stuffing it down

I've been eating...a lot...

I know this place it's very familiar and even in an fairly safe place such as this it pains me to admit it. My child hood was less than stellar. At my Mothers house food was scarce, not because we were poor but because she was too drunk to shop or cook. When she did cook it was damn near inedible. Her husband at the time was a tyrant, abusive in many ways to all in the house... At that time police were not required to take action in domestic cases so every time they sent us home for more abuse, I ended up trusting no one, and realizing that help was coming from nowhere.

When things got intolerable(he knocked my mother unconscious and set her car on fire to name a few), I begged my father(and his new family) to let me live with him and finally I was old enough to decide who I wanted to live and convince a judge and I moved in with my dad (about 12 years old), I hid food under my bed, in my closet etc. and ate as much as I could every chance I got and got hell for it when caught. It was both to make sure I got enough and to numb what I had been through. No one really understood it was just something they thought that had to be brow beaten out of me. To say the least I have had issues with food since but in recent years, probably the last 10, the issues have been a low hum, easily managed.

Every once in awhile, BAM, it rears it's ugly head.

I know why I am doing it, I know basically how to stop doing it..and I have been pulling out every tool in my toolbox...but then I sink back in. Why? It feels good. It gives me something else to think about. It numbs the pain. It makes me feel productive(the cooking not necesarily the eating). As odd as it sounds it gives me control over something. It's my attempt to pretend it's all not happening.

It didn't work when I was 12 and it's not working now.

It's just one more thing to worry about. I feel like I got derailed by last month. It's so strange. I knew it wasn't going to work, but I wanted it to work so badly and after much thought and some journaling now I know why. It's not just that months failure. It's the fact that each failure extends the journey. A journey I would much rather put behind me. In fact if I could wave a wand and make it go away I would. So starting to "try" again means that I can't pretend this isn't happening to me. I know how silly that sounds...but a part of me thinks it should have gone a different way, and if I just try hard enough I can meet up with that other me, on that other path and join her, putting all of the horror and dissappointment behind me.

I mean is this really what happened to me?

This is happening to me. This is happening to me. This is happening to me. Maybe if I say it enough I can accept it, and stop trying to stuff it down with donuts, crackers, cheese, strawberry rhubarb pie and slice after slice of bread. This is the hand I've been dealt and it's shitty.

Maybe the next hand will be better.


Mad Hatter said...

Hi Jennifer...Thanks for your comment on my blog today...and for this honest post. I can see I am not alone in the traumatic childhood dept - I'm sorry to hear that things were so rough for you at such a young age. I really get what you're saying here...I've been eating a lot lately myself. And staying up late browsing the net, looking for I don't know what - answers, comfort, relief?

I understand your need to believe that this is happening - after 9 years TTC, most of which I spent in denial, I absolutely get it. And yet. How about an edit? "This is happening to me today." As you say, the game is not over and there will be another hand dealt, and I am really hoping that you get a full house of more than chickens and cats. :)

cgd said...

Wow, you have certainly been through a lot. No person (no child) deserves that and you certainly didn't. It does make sense how your issues with food started and why they have resurfaced. Does writing help you with this? I know it can make things feel more real. Just know you are doing the best you can with really crappy circumstances.
Hoping for so much more for you. Love to you.

Anonymous said...

I had a less-than-stellar childhood, so I sort of get where you are coming from. I am so sorry that these issues are resurfacing now while you are going through infertility. You are doing so well, though, just be recognizing it. I think knowing and understanding what you are doing is sometimes the hardest obstacle to overcome. I'm thinking of you, and I'll continue to be here to lend my support.

Sending love.

bunny said...

Oh sweetie, I am SO sorry. But also so amazed at your excellent understanding of yourself and of your motives and behaviors. That shows how much you've been through and how strong you are. I know I felt some similar stuff when we started trying again. (And, like you, I was soooo hurt when my first pre-surgery cycle didn't work.) It's just impossibly hard.

Augusta said...

Oh lovely woman. I can relate to so much of what your write. But first, I just want to say that you are so strong for having survived. It's amazing that you did, instead of walking to the river and drowning. You are strong.

You already know this, but I like thinking about how eating is an attempt at self-care. You are hurting so badly right now. And like a good mother, you are trying to help the little girl inside find some comfort.

I've had a less-than-stellar childhood also and survived it by eating. I have worked my entire life to find balance in the eating department. I'm better at it now, but I feel vulnerable in times of difficulty or crisis.

It sounds like you need a trusted friend right now to envelop you. I hope there is someone near you that you can spend time with and find some grounding. And I hope you can forgive yourself for eating.

Jennifer said...

Your comments make me cry with relief at being heard and understood. I am a lucky girl to have found this outlet and support. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Misfits said...

I am always impressed to know someone who has managed to become an amazing person despite the crap that's thrown at you. I can only relate by the eensiest bit, but I know small ways where I had to make a decision to survive really bad situations. I know it takes an incredible amount of fortitude and guts, and you have both in buckets. I am incredibly proud of you. This food blanket is hard to shrug off, especially if it's covered in cheese.

Also wanted to offer up my email auntmisfit[delete this all in the middle, because really, what bot out there would take all the time to process this crap, and who really wants to have an inbox full of M@le enhancement meds email, right?]at[delete this bit too, but just a note to say that I do permission based email for a living so I care, clearly]gmail(dot)com.

Lifeslurper said...

Hey Chickn:

I'd have to reveal how long I've been battling my own BMI to really show I understand so much of what you have written. It's too extensive a topic to do justice to in one comment, but I do believe there are answers to learning to live with an abusive past and a stressful now while managing to stop trying to blot it all out with food. For me it mostly started with realising there was finally a rock bottom and no one was going to get me outta there but me! Sure it takes work and consistancy and lotsa help...but it can be done. The point where I said "ENOUGH!" and finally meant it, was when my weight loss began. With almost 15kgs down this is my biggest BMI decrease since it first increased. Sure there's a long way to go, but the success is potent and so too is that sense of 'control' that IVF has never allowed me. Apologies for all this talk about *ME* but I just wanted to demonstrate I was doing more than talkin' the talk. There is a way for you....of that I am sure!

LS x

Melanie said...

Chica, I wish I could reach out and hug you. While we all have our dysfunctional ways of dealing with our demons, I know food issues add an additional burden because of the shame associated with weight. As if you don't have enough shame with the IF shit.

All I can say is that I hope you can forgive yourself for the lapse and get back on the horse again. Shove the demon to the background where he belongs and make yourself do the things that don't feel as good in the short term, that actually feel completely WRONG.

When I am depressed, all I want to do is sleep. I could sleep and sleep and that makes me feel unproductive and shitty and my depression continues and I sleep even more. The only thing that stops the cycle is to do the EXACT opposite of what every cell in my body wants to do.

But maybe you don't need my pep talk. I mostly just want to hold your hand and tell you that you mastered your demon before and you will again.