I don’t particularly make New Year’s Resolutions. My personal experience has been that if I want to fail at something, I should pick a day that everyone in the world is aware of and announce my intentions for all to hear. Any time I do that, some inner-5-year-old REBELS like crazy. I find myself enmeshed in this weird attitude that hollers, “Who do they think they are to have expectations of me? How dare they tell me what to do? I’LL SHOW THEM!!!” And then I quit doing whatever it was I was doing.
It’s just as highly productive as you’re imagining right now.
But last year I’d spent several months thinking about Geneen Roth, and Intuitive Eating and all that jazz. It had been rolling around in my head for a while, and sinking into my brain in bits and pieces. (I call this process “percolating.” Any time I have a new idea, a new theory, a new decision to make, it has to percolate for a while. I have to roll it around in my thoughts, like a shiny new marble, getting to know its shape, its texture, its weight. It has to seep into my brain and my emotions until it feels like it’s coming from inside me, instead of like some external thing I’ve put on.) (I know that sounds weird. Just go with it, ok?)
And last year, it just so happened that right about the time I finished percolating about all the Intuitive Eating stuff, it was my birthday. To be precise, it was the day before my birthday on the morning that I woke up and said, “Yes. Yes, I definitely do want to do this.” So I started on my birthday, which happened to be my 33rd – which was a significant birthday for me.
See, when I was little, we weren’t a particularly religious family, but I was FASCINATED by religion (still am, to be honest). I read various stories from various religions, but Christianity was the most accessible, just based on my extended family. I remember the year my mom was 33, realizing that she was the same age as Jesus when he died. That stuck with me, because even though 33 seemed far away as a kid, I knew that it wasn’t really OLD in the relative sense: I knew it was actually really YOUNG. (I breathed a secret sigh of relief when my mom turned 34. Why, YES, I WAS a dramatic child; why do you ask??) (True story: on my birthday, I called my (formerly Catholic) dad and announced, “Hey, guess what!! I’m the same age as Jesus when he died!” Dead silence on the other end, followed by incredulous laughter and his pronouncement, “God, you’re so weird, Marste.” :D)
ANYWAY. All that to say that 33 had some MEANING for me, ok? So, what the heck, I figured. I’d change my entire way of looking at food: I’d stop dieting, I’d eat what I wanted, I’d probably gain weight while doing so (*gulp*, but all the books said it was likely in the beginning). It was time for my old, neurotic self to die, and for a healthier mind to be resurrected. Being the same age as one of religion’s Big Kahunas just seemed like a freakin’ sign, ok?
(I swear, lightning will strike me dead any minute for comparing myself to a godhead! Dear Mom, I leave you everything I own.)
Hm. That actually got a lot more religious-y than I meant it to, especially considering that I’m not religious at all. But I DO still find myself fascinated and enthralled by the scope of the stories, and drawn in to the metaphors and metaphysics of the whole thing. (I actually do believe in god. I just don’t necessarily think any one god story is better or worse – or truer or falser – than any other.) (Yes, “truer” and “falser” are TOTALLY words.) (At least they are NOW. The English language evolves, people!)
I did really well last year. And this year I percolated some more, rolled around a new thought (more or less since January), examined a new idea, and tried to decide if I was ready for that next step, or if it was too soon and would just make me crazy (again). But I decided I was ready: last year I worked on a healthier MIND. This year I have 2 goals: a healthier BODY, and to finish a book. The latter is something I won’t talk about a lot here (I don’t think), but the former is the one I was the most concerned about.
And this is getting WAAAAAAY too freakin’ long, so more later. In a Part 2!!!! (Maybe Friday. Or Saturday.) (Or maybe Monday. Heck if I know.)