[Note: this is Day 1 of a 10-Day Self-Care Expedition. You are welcome to join this expedition at any point through making your own 10-day commitment, commenting and/or silently supporting.]
Man. Have I ever been cranky the past couple of days. Ever since announcing this expedition, actually.
Saying Yes to spending 10 days noticing and reflecting on my relationship with food and movement has most definitely brought the threshold guardians out in full force.
At the same time, all of these insights, stories, and memories related to food and movement have been surfacing.
Today, I want to take a moment and reflect on the nature of my relationship with these two (wily) lovely beasts up to this point.
First, though, it feels important to acknowledge that up until a few years ago, exercise and diet were my primary (only?) self-care practices. It’s only been in the past 5-7 years that they have fallen to the side as I became consumed with exploring the softer aspects of self-care and self-awareness.
Let’s start with exercise.
Like I mentioned in the expedition announcement post, I’ve been really active for most of my life. My body loves to move. And, for most of my life, I’ve loved to move it.
Over the recent years, though, this love of movement has changed. It has shifted from moving because-moving-is-fun-and-feels-good to moving because-that’s-what-I-should-do-in-order-to-be-healthy.
Basically, exercise is now an obligation versus play. And, I do not (nor does my body) respond well to obligation.
Ok, let’s move on to food.
Oh boy. I don’t even know how to start with this one.
I guess, for simplicity’s sake, I’ll just say that for all of my 20s I was obsessed with food and diet. I was a vegetarian (with times of being vegan) for more than a decade. I’ve cleansed, fasted, cut out sugar, done the body-ecology diet, went gluten-free, stopped eating nightshades, soy, corn… the list goes on and on.
Some of the experimenting was fueled by me attempting to establish some sort of connection between my diet and my headaches. Some was just to experiment with how I might feel if I did this vs that. Some of it (a lot of it) was an attempt to control my body and my cravings and my weight.
In short, I imposed a lot of rather extreme experiments on my body.
And no, I never paused to ask my body what she wanted or if she was on-board with all the experiments. I just did it.
My relationship with food may be even more tangled than my relationship with exercise.
Except, they are actually one and the same. In both cases, it boils down to me not trusting that my body actually knows and can tell me what she wants and needs. It boils down to me trying to control my body and impose my will on her.
And now, there is a lot of history and pain to untangle to get to the point where I can be in a relationship with my body that allows me to hear and to trust what she wants.
That is the point of this expedition. That is why I am here.
How is Day 1 of your expedition going? Any threshold guardians making themselves known to you?
Would taking a moment to reflect on what has brought you to this moment in your relationship with yourself and whatever self-care practice you are implementing be beneficial?
Feel free to share (or not share) as feels right to you in the comment section.
And, if you write about your expedition on a personal blog, do please provide a link in the comments so we can follow along.
sending ease and love.