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Friday, January 13, 2012

I hate my body! - part two

When I wrote the blog post yesterday I was not looking for sympathy, but rather trying to instill a little empathy for those who struggle daily with their own bodies for whatever reason.  Women especially tend to be pretty judgmental of one another and I do not see that as being very helpful to anyone.  One of my favorite Facebook pages posted a picture the other day of a group of young women where only their legs were showing.  The photo was part of a photographer's group of artistic photographs.  When I looked at the photo I saw a very beautiful image representing powerful women, that was how the image spoke to me.  I was saddened to see the number of women complaining about the photo.  The jealousy was literally dripping from their comments.  They were so wrapped up in their own body issues that they could not just sit back and enjoy the beauty before them.

So that was why I started the post yesterday.  To show people that everyone, no matter what their size or shape, has their own body issues.  Some are superficial and falsely hoisted upon us by the main stream media and their advertisers.  Some are serious medical issues, and most are some combination of the two.  In response to my sharing my body issues with the world I received some comments on my Facebook page that I wanted to address, but I knew that to do so on Facebook was going to take too much space and time, so I am writing again to answer those comments.

Two wonderful women responded with their stories of finding a diagnosis for their eating issues and I believe that what they shared may have some validity for me as well.  D.C. wrote of how she had suffered for years with doctors telling her it was "all in her head" because the doctors could not figure out what was really wrong.  That has been my experience all my life, doctors have never been able to figure out what was wrong with me and that could not possibly be their fault so it must just be "all in your head". That might have been an acceptable response if they had ever done any actual tests on my digestive system, but they never did.  They never ran a single test on my digestive tract.  When I was hospitalized last year was the first time anyone had ever even taken an x-ray, and they still did not do any other tests on my digestive tract.  Oh they did ultrasounds and tests galore on my reproductive organs, which I have never had a single problem with, and gee they didn't find anything there.  Surprise, surprise, NOT.  I was livid!  I went to the hospital because I was having an extreme anxiety attack because I was unable to eat!  My stomach was knotted up so tightly I could hardly even drink liquid.  At this point the sympathy "morning sickness" I was experiencing was in its fourth month, so what little I was able to get into my stomach came back out just as fast.  I was scared!  As I said, on a good day I take in less food than your average 3 year old, and now I wasn't even able to eat that much.  I spent 25 years living with severe chronic depression, wanting to die every single day.  I had finally beaten, clawed and scratched my way to the light and I finally really wanted to live and enjoy what was left of my life more than anything, and I was convinced my body was not going to let me.  The doctor at the hospital told me that until I went two weeks without consuming any solid food at all they were not concerned.  That's nice asswipe, I am glad you are not concerned, cause I am freakin terrified here!  The only thing they did for me that actually helped was to give me a muscle relaxer and an anti-anxiety medication.  To make a long story short (I know - too late), my husband was the one who finally figured out what was actually wrong.  It turns out that I had herniated my stomach muscles when we had moved the body of our very large, dearly deceased dog, the strain on the muscles was pressing on the stomach and that was why I couldn't eat. 

But back to the two women who came on Facebook and suggested that the cause of some of my issues could be due to a gluten intolerance.  I truly appreciated their sharing of their stories, and I do believe there may be something to their suggestion.  The problem with this idea is that, as I mentioned, I don't like food very much to start with and about 60% or more of what I am actually able to eat is wheat based.  So the idea of giving up wheat products is actually scarier than the pain I already have learned to deal with.  I am a picky eater, always have been, and I am lazy.  I have accepted that, and I am okay with it, most of the time.  I am scared to death that I will find that I am actually allergic to wheat and I will have to find enough to eat without it.

But honestly my biggest problem with eating is simply stress.  And the older I get, the worse it gets.  I just don't deal with stress well, physiologically.  Psychologically, it doesn't really bother me very much, my mind is able to process it fairly well and move on.  But my body doesn't bounce back as well.  Everything gets tied up in my stomach and stays there.  My ex-husband used this to his advantage for years, by the time I finally got away from him completely I was down to 89 pounds!  I have tried all sorts of ways of dealing with the stress better, from meditation to bio-feedback, nothing helps.  I just can't stop the way my body reacts, no matter how much I want to, no matter how much my brain says, this is no big deal we can get through this, my body just says "fuck you" I am taking the day off from functioning and there is nothing you can do about it.  So I have learned to cope as best I can.

I am extremely lucky in that the wonderful man I married 9 years ago does his level best to protect me from stress whenever possible.  But there is no way to eliminate it all.  I am trying to desensitize my self, that is part of the point to this blog and the Facebook page, it allows stupid people to bring small amounts of insignificant stress into my life.  By overcoming the little stresses of being insulted and attacked by people who have no importance whatsoever, it allows me to try to strengthen my defenses slowly over time.  I am not sure how much it has helped in my ability to deal with the stress, but it has strengthened me in my resolve not to tolerate such behavior from anyone.

So while I was not looking for sympathy, I do hope that I made someone think about how they view other people.  When we live our lives in judgement of others we deprive ourselves of the beauty in life.  Too many people think that if someone else doesn't look like them, think like them, believe like them, or act like them, then they are automatically somehow bad, or less of a person in some way.  This is not only bullshit, it is destructive, and not just the the person being judged, but to the person doing the judging.  You can sit back in your comfortable house and decide I am just a self-destructive, whiney bitch who doesn't know what she is talking about.  Or you can accept that everyone has their own issues in life, and when you get down to it nothing really matters except that we are all human, and everyone of us has the right to live their life however the hell they want and as long as it doesn't infringe on your right to live your life your way, it is really none of your damn business. 

As a child I was taught that the Christian religion teaches that "let he who is without sin cast the first stone" and "judge not lest ye be judged".  I do not know if these are actual passages from the bible, but I know they were stressed greatly by my Uncle, the Bible Baptist minister.   I still live my life by these principles even though I am a devout Atheist.  And I find it very sad that those who claim the loudest to be Christians today seem to have forgotten these simple tenants.  It is time for everyone to say "ENOUGH"!  I refuse to continue to be part of this madness any longer!  My self-worth is not tied to the degradation of others!  I accept that everyone is different, and that is a good thing!  Just imagine how boring this world would be if everyone was the same, and just who would get to choose the one person we would all have to be like anyway?  My GAWD!  What if Newt Gingrich gets to choose and we all have to be bigoted, self absorbed, moronic asswipes like him!  Does anyone really want that?!?  I sure as Hell hope not! 

So live and let live, and try to remember, you do not have to live up to anyone's idea of who or what you should be, you only have to love your self and when you can do that you will see it is pretty easy to go through life without having to put other people down so that you can accept yourself!


  1. So well written......Thank you so much...I enjoy your page of laughter daily, often sharing with others, and I admire your do, perhaps unknowingly, give strength to others by sharing this. What a wonderful gift! Thank you, Deb Payson

  2. Mother-I truly hope you can overcome your tummy troubles enough to be able to eat enough to stay healthy!! You said so many things that I think about daily!! I too was a "Member" of a Southern Baptist Church for several years when I was a child. After I got old enough I realized what a bunch of self-righteous (sp) sel-absorbed, self-serving asswipes they were. While I do still believe in God, I worship Him from my home, in my own way, in my old worn out clothes. I can remember always feeling "less than" when I was with those people from church. Well, now I have a saying for people that treat another human being that way or make someone feel as if they are not good enough...I don't know what God you serve or worship, but mine does not treat people that way or allow them to be treated as "less-than" anyone or anything!! Love to you Mother for bringing warmth and humor to some cold and hurtful subjects!!