It’s hard to put a date on when I started making the shift from dieting to(ward) loving my body. (Goodness knows I didn’t hop straight from one to another!). I’d say the easiest turning point to mark, though, is when I started seeing a nutrition therapist who focused on intuitive eating.
I walked through her doors almost five years ago. And after three weeks, I was pretty sure I had the hang of it.
Oh, how I look at my self of five years ago with loving bemusement! While it’s funny, in many ways, to think that I “got” the concept of loving my body and intuitive eating in only three weeks, there is a kernel of truth in it.
No, I didn’t totally “get” the whole concept and implement it flawlessly. But what I did do was feel that shift inside – that something else was possible.
And sometimes, that shift is the real product of loving your body, even more than implementing any particular changes.
What’s Also True
The other thing to know about my process is that it’s been long. I don’t think we say this enough. While I did feel that shift after three weeks, that wasn’t a final change. Maybe it is for some people, but it definitely wasn’t for me.
Nope; I went back to dieting then came back to intuitive eating – and then did that again, and again and again. Sometimes I still think about it now, and it’s not hard to understand why: not only has that been the paradigm of my life, it’s the paradigm of many of our lives. It’s what we hear from friends, see on TV and learn in school.
Every Day is a Winding Road
Looking back from the vantage point of almost five years, I can tell you two things: (1) I never thought I’d make it this long and (2) I sure have a long way to go. Because, every time I learn something new about myself, it’s like I turn another corner to see a new part of the path that I never even knew existed.
Although sometimes I wish I could go back to my three-weeks-in experience of feeling like I “get” everything, I ultimately appreciate that loving my body is a (probably lifelong) process.
Just like I always want to stay curious and engaged with the people I love – my husband, friends, family – I want to stay the same with myself.