L9P Community Post: Julia Werth
Lane 9 Project’s May 2018 Writing Prompt: It was supposed to be easy…
It was supposed to be easy. It really was. It was just a snack, not even a full meal. How many times in my life had I simply grabbed two pieces of bread, popped them in the toaster and five minutes later found myself happily chowing down on peanut butter toast?
Hundreds, but not today.
The idea of untwisting the bread bag seemed infinitely harder than the 10 miles I had run that morning. Despite the hills, getting lost and the return of the summer sun I would gladly lace up my sneakers and head out for another jog than face the idea of eating.
Well, perhaps it wasn’t the eating itself, more the consequences of it.
Eating that piece of toast would mean taking in calories. More calories would mean more weight (or at least not less weight). More weight would mean I was fat. And fat would mean…
“Fat does not equate to good or bad, ugly or beautiful, worthwhile or not,” the words of my first therapist popped into my head.
Believing her was supposed to be easy. I could think those words, say those words, even tell others those words when they struggled with restricting or purging, but truly believing them? Truly looking at myself in a mirror and seeing what my mind had defined as “fat” and not thinking “bad, ugly, worthless,” that was another story.
It wasn’t easy to change years of relentless thoughts that assured me if I were skinnier — just weighed a little bit less, had slightly smaller legs, wore a smaller size — then I would be good, beautiful and worthwhile. I would be satisfied with my body and I would certainly make peanut butter toast without a tear in sight.
It wasn’t easy to push all my plans for being so-called pretty away and put my health first. It wasn’t easy, but it was possible. It all started with getting up, facing my fears and untying that bag of bread.
Five minutes later I was nibbling on my first piece of peanut butter toast. It hadn’t been easy, but that didn’t mean I couldn’t do it.