I dieted to feel a sense of belonging. To fit better, to be more accepted and to be taken more seriously. I dieted to prove myself.
I guess I felt that if I will have the "perfect" body people will love me more, that somehow I can fix myself and become more popular, loved and successful.
I tried to fill the void, to claim back the sense of control, to feel whole.
But in fact, it was just breaking me more, making me more vulnerable, more dependent and afraid of being myself and put myself out there.
I started to seek validation in others and felt trapped in a cycle of not being good enough, so I don't deserve the life, partner, a friend I wanted.
I guess it all started in 3rd grade in Summer camp, where I was told by my two roommates that I cannot be in their secret club because I don't have such a small bottom as they do.
Back then I didn't put any thoughts into this but as now 35 years old I can vividly remember the room, the situation, their name and also how I felt when they said it. Alone. Broken. Sad.
Fast forward a few years, my mum passed of cancer when I was 15 I didn't have a role model in my life, that someone who would teach me how to love and respect myself the way I am.
"I kept seeking a sense of belonging."
I was taught to be careful, to always think twice to not stood out from the crowd and somehow was always underestimated in what I can do.
I felt no one was believing in me and I had to always prove myself.
Years went by and I found that food, nutrition and psychology are my passion. I decided to become a Nutrition Therapist, that way I can help people to do what I struggle with all my life, to feel whole, beautiful and happy.
My sense of needing to belong somewhere and prove myself grow into finding the perfect way of eating. I already knew that I am not good at starving so I embarked on a life quest to find the perfect diet where you can eat everything and still love the weight and be happy.
" Every time my life has taken a spin I turn myself to find the perfect diet "
Every time my life has taken a spin, a break up with my partner, a new job, a new place to live a new partner, moving to other side of the planet, establishing my new career, making new friends, every time I felt the need to belong, I turn myself to find the perfect diet.
Because if I will lose a few kg, people will like me more, they will take me among themselves, I will have more success in my job as I will be taken more seriously, you name it...
I tried them all, Paleo, Keto, Intermittent Fasting, GF, Vegetarian, Plant-based, superfoods, overexercising ...
Every time I lost a few kg I felt on top of the world. I felt admired and I had a false sense of belonging.
But then somehow I always gained the weight back. I felt like a fraud and I felt an even bigger urge to prove myself. That I am worthy, that I am good enough.
So it started all over again.
"When I gained the weight back I felt like a fraud and not good enough."
Until I found Intuitive Eating.
Not until I saw how this was breaking me peace by peace, taking away my confidence, my happiness, my life. I wasn't thinking about anything else than food and how to make it work the best. I thought that it is all my fault. That i am not trying hard enough, that tghere must be the perfect diet out there that will solve all of my problems.
Luckily the day we have decided we will want to start a family one day everything changed. I saw my body, not as a vessel, but as my home and as a home of my future child. And I promise myself to treat it with respect.
"I saw my body, not as a vessel, but as my home and as a home of my future child."
Soon I saw my body changing, in a good way. It lost its tension, its anxiety and kind of felt calmer and softer while being stronger than ever before.
My fear of letting myself eat everything and gaining weight slowly disappeared as I stopped obsessing about food and all of a sudden my cravings stooped.
"I felt in control, but without controlling myself."
I listened to my intuition, ate when I was hungry stopped when I was full, allowed myself to feel satisfied and seek pleasure from eating and most importantly I felt in peace.
No foods were off-limits and at ina same time it seemed that I was making better choices than ever before.
How is this possible? I asked.
"I simply let my body guide me, something It wanted all along.
I healed my inner child and my relationship with my own body. "
My life has expanded.
I feel calmer and stronger than ever before and now a few years later, when I hold my daughter in my arms I thank myself for taking this step and allowing me to love my body unconditionally and let it t love me back.
And you can do it too.
With Love Vera