I talk facetiously about Little Kitteh all the time, but courtesy of a new-again book, I am starting to think more deeply about what that’s all about. As you know, Little Kitteh is my Inner Brat – in transactional analysis, my inner child, in psychology, my id– my impulsive self, who is in total check in virtually EVERY aspect of my life… EXCEPT my physical health.
I’ve known for a long time that one reason Little Kitteh puts up such resistance to being reined in for food is because she is under lock and key in most (all?) other areas. So that’s not news.
But I started re-reading a book called The Solution by Laurel Mellin. I read this book ages ago–kinda–I’d say 20 years or more? And I was intrigued but frankly what the book could use is a writing coach. I bet Ms. Mellin is fantastic to work with, but she goes in circles in the book and it was VERY hard to get through. I read it, gave it to my mom to read, and forgot about it–until my mom returned a giant stack of books to me a year or so ago and tossed that into the pile. I put it in the stack of Diet/Food books I would re-read and review on this blog and last weekend started through it again, vowing to read one chapter at at time at MOST and go very slowly to be sure I understood what she was saying.
The first part of the book introduces her concept: all weight problems have their roots in six causes, for which there are six corresponding “Cures.” The second part of the book… introduces the six cures in more detail, with real life example patients pulled from her practice, but not enough detail to really work with the cures yet. I’m on the first Cure now, but still in this section. Next, (I think?) we go into even more detail about each one, perhaps even enough to use them. To say this is annoying is a vast understatement, but I am very interested in using them this time.
From what I see, we use Journaling and “Feeling Letters” to deal with old baggage and move forward. I did not want to do the work last time–most especially because I was already irritated after reading the book, and because I thought then that I already KNEW what my baggage was (and I was too young and dumb to understand that KNOWING your baggage and DEALING with your baggage are worlds apart)
I will say, I do see myself a lot in the example she uses in the current section. It’s a husband and wife pair, the husband is tightly wound at work, comes home and eats all night and sits on the couch. The wife never had a weight problem until she started staying home with kids and had no more structure in her life. I can identify with both of those factors a whole heaping lot.
And the first thing she asks you to do is to remember the last time you were IN BALANCE with food/eating/movement. So I thought I’d tackle that here:
I was in balance with food last year from about March to July – I was not triggered by food, I was enjoying watching the weight melt off, I was moving comfortably and happily. I remember that feeling with a lot of longing. Before that, I was in the same balanced state for most of the year before I got pregnant with Baby Kitteh No. 1. Before THAT, I would say I was in balance my first year out of college, my sophomore year of college, and my senior year of high school and the summer that followed.
What all of those times have in common:
I was at ease with eating choices. I was either not overweight at all, or I was eating in a way that reduced the amount of weight I carried easily, smoothly, and relatively rapidly, and I reached a state where I weighed significantly less by the end of that period. I liked moving, I felt energized, I slept well. Food was not part of my coping strategy (although that was progressively harder to leave off each time–food was never really my “go to” coping mechanism until well after college, when I was teaching, living alone, and was struggling to figure out the relationship with Mr. Kitteh–we were not yet married).
Huh, here’s an insight: I’d say that my whole life, I have been thinking there are two modes of living. There’s weight loss mode, where you are trying to lose weight. And there is “not trying to lose weight mode” in which you… can eat whatever you want. Hmm. That would actually translate into “gain weight mode,” wouldn’t it? And it goes right along with the Solution’s concept that one of the roots of weight problems is not setting effective limits for yourself, which is just as much a form of nurturing as giving things to yourself.
Gotta think about that one some more.
So when was the last time you were in balance with food/weight/movement? How did it feel?