“I Feel Fat!”

“Oh, God, I ate all of that.  I just feel so fat!”

Fat is not a feeling.

And I’m so fucking sick of hearing people claim that it is!

Think about it.  We have sadness, happiness, joy, fear, anger, rage, confusion, agitation, despair, jubilance, anguish, compassion, defeat, glee, foolishness, hatred, insanity, misery, loving, panic, optimism, regret, shame, and thousands of other beautiful words in the English language one can use to describe how they’re feeling.  However, most individuals at some point or another have appointed “fat” –  a greasy, porous substance  – as a feeling word.  And it’s simply not.

Eckhart Tolle talks about unconsciousness causing suffering and pain in an individual.  Well, I believe the expression “I feel fat” is one of the most unconscious, trance-like utterings on the face of this earth.  Repeated over and over, it is used by many to a) cover up how they’re really feeling about consuming food and feeding themselves and b) fit in with an image-obsessed culture, which isn’t really cool to begin with. 

So what are you really avoiding when you say it?  Are you feeling physical discomfort?  Are you feeling guilty because you ate more than is socially acceptable?  Are you fearful of judgment by your waiter or dining companion?  Or is it deeper issue?  Do you feel like it says something about your character?  That you are inherently sloth-like or lazy?  Is it indicative of something you are too afraid to go near?

Sadly, most people will never approach this kind of mindfulness.  But it is this kind of tuning-in that facilitates growth about both physical and emotional appetites. 

When I was stuck in this trance, when I was sick with an eating disorder, it was about the fear of being “too much” in general.  Anyone who truly knows me knows that my emotions naturally run high and I tend to be passionate about causes and people.  And I feared that was too much for others.  So my eating behaviors were indicative of such: I starved myself to have no emotions, no passion, no space to take up.  Starvation numbed the “too-much” ness I feared.  But it was a lot easier to just say, “I feel fat.”

Do me a favor.  As this week is National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, take a second after your next hearty meal and ask yourself what you’re feeling.   Don’t use food as a way to check out or disconnect.  Tune into yourself and be ok with whatever you carry with you.  Cause guess what?  You’re not feeling fat.

(Image provided by Google Images.)

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