When I ‘were a lad’ I was stick thin. Painfully thin. I had a metabolic process you could cook meat on, I burned hot and could eat anything I wanted whenever I wanted. Yes, it’s a standard story I know but I always thought I’d be stick thin forever and, shudder, longed for a time when I’d have more meat on my bones.
Skip ahead to puberty and, along with developing breasts which I’ve mentioned before and now believe was some form of physical manifestation of an internal longing, my wonderful metabolic rate hit a brick wall.
Cue many years of drinking copious amounts of alcohol and not caring about the human frame, and I pumped on the weight, It was the nineties and I had a good job, so I could afford the nicer (and fattening) things, and I didn’t give a rabid rat’s arse about the state of my body.
Then, around the 2007/2008 time, Sarah re-emerged internally. And she wasn’t happy at the state of the body and what drab-me had done to it. Plus, as is standard with our generation that has everything and appreciates nothing I was going through the ups and downs of depression and impending middle-age crises. So I started to turn the huge oil tanker I was becoming, dropping red-meat, cutting back on the alcohol, eating lots more veg and the like.
And the weight came off, my figure started to look less like a pear and more like just a stocky bloke who had eaten a football at some point.
But here’s the kicker. Since I’ve embraced Sarah and all she stands for I’ve started to experience what could be seen to be an eating disorder.
What the hell?
Every time I look at something a little bit naughty, a cream cake, that fifteenth pint (cough) I get a pang. I’m actually looking at meals and berating myself in terms of dress size. I can finally fit a 16 (yeah, I end up looking like a sausage but at least a sexy sausage – see eating disorder for details) and every tiny bit of excess fills me with guilt.
And that’s not a good thing.
Could it be that I’ve simply shifted the inherent guilt within? Instead of focusing on the frankly mad guilt of not being a ‘real’ man, I’ve moved all those energies to worrying about her figure, about keeping those legs trim and attractive, about being able to suck in the middle-age drift enough to get a 1950s style voluptuous figure with appropriately large child-bearing hips.
I chose the fun pregnant Sarah picture as the featured image of the blog for a good reason – since I’ve lost the weight I haven’t bothered to work the muscles of the stomach, so I can very easily pull the spare tyre in before the corset is tightly bound, but when I don’t have the corset I can tense *outwards* and et voila, Sarah is six months pregnant. Yes, that is my stomach in the photos and again that’s a source of guilt.
But the reason for this blog entry was to talk about this weird compulsion I now have to watch the food – it actually takes the fun out of eating because I am literally always thinking of keeping my dress size down and I’m also very bad at letting myself have a treat, with the proviso I throw myself at the gym the next day and teach myself a lesson by cycling 20km on the machines and then swimming half a mile.
Is this the way women feel every day? If so, wow – society truly is unpleasant towards those of the fairer sex. That constant guilt over what you eat in order to present a more attractive figure seems self-destructive. And on that note I’m off to the kitchen to cook some food. And then off to the gym tomorrow to keep the girlie proportions just about right.
Stay beautiful sweeties, and don’t let society beat you up.