"There's no off switch in my mind for food."
My husband and I were idly flipping through channels on t.v. and happened to watch an episode of a show called Heavy from A&E. The premise of the show is featuring people who are extremely obese and the first six months of their recovery. This episode featured a man and a woman who both went to a sort of recovery center, complete with psychotherapy, coaches, nutritionalists, personal trainers in a beautiful rural setting. Basically, it was a rehab. And I thought, how interesting that they treat these people as addicts because that's what they are.
My heart grieved for the two people; I felt so sad for them because their road to recovery will take so long. It puts my own journey in perspective. I need to lose 75 pounds and it will take time, but they need to lose hundreds of pounds. I can't even imagine how hard that will be, and I hope so much for them that they will be successful. Yes, I know people may say that since they put themselves there, they deserve to have to climb out of their hole. But imagine that eating is a compulsion--something you can no longer control. Many people may say that you can always control your circumstance and I admire their strength and will. But people fall into traps: alcohol, drugs....food? It may sound silly, but isn't compulsive eating as life threatening and deadly to the extremely obese? The poor woman on the show had already had a stroke and she was still young. There's all sorts of deadly side effects for obesity: heart disease and heart failure, diabetes, high blood pressure, blood clots, depression, etc.
To be completely honest with you, when I think about my own perceptions I realize that I have never expected to live a long life. I have always pictured myself as obese and somewhere along the line, my brain just passively accepted that I will not live as long as I should because of the health outcomes that come from being obese. I feel now that part of my wanting to lose weight and get to my goals is not just about fitting in, looking better, or even taking control of my addiction, but creating a longer and more healthful life. I want to be healthy. I want to claim a better life for myself. And while I accepted the negative passively, I have to chose to actively adopt a healthy lifestyle. I accept.