Maybe I am alone in this but have you ever eaten something in public and convinced yourself that people are judging you?Taunting yourself that people are watching the ‘fat girl’ shovel in food.
For years it stopped me eating in public, more so if it was a crowded place. I couldn’t just grab something quickly from the shop and eat it walking down the road, I didn’t like sitting in restaurants in full view or near a window, and if the worst happened and I was placed near a window I had to have my back to it. I was ashamed and convinced that everyone was either watching me or laughing at me.
My first holiday away with the man was last year, we spontaneously booked a last minute trip away to Amsterdam, literally booking it then leaving a few days later. The trip was fantastic from start to finish and filled with some amazing memories, but I can’t tell you much about the Dutch food because to be honest I barely ate.
Holidays are times for creating memories, having fun, letting your hair down and relaxing, but here I was too concerned that people would be laughing at me eating. Maybe that sounds ridiculous to some people but it was a genuine fear and still to a certain extent is. I have spent years feeling so ashamed of myself, catching sight of my reflection and thinking, “how did I let myself get this big”, convinced that everyone else must look at me and think the same thing.
Over the course of the 3 day break, the man ate constantly, I however did not. The first night we grabbed a slice of pizza near the Red Light District (casual) we sat down and the entire front of the restaurant was made of glass, the streets were so busy and I felt awful. Everyone that walked past looked in and I felt all their eyes burn into me as I tried to eat my pizza.
Of course I realise now that the chances of all of them staring into the restaurant for the sole purpose of watching me eat like an animal in a zoo is unlikely and the reality is they were probably looking at the amazing pizza in the window. But that doesn’t change the way I felt that night. It shaped how I ate on the holiday and apart from breakfast in a cafe I didn’t eat unless I was in the hotel.
People often assume that overweight people stuff their faces non stop, but this wasn’t the case for me. I have always had a love hate relationship with food. I used it as a treat and as punishment, switching from binge eating to starving myself. This is no way to live. I would spend days not eating partly because I was out and didn’t want people to see me eat, only to spend those evenings surrounded by food making up for lost time and missed meals.
Something had to change. I didn’t and don’t want to be ruled by food.
I can’t avoid it, you need food to survive so something had to happen!!
Then the prospect of another holiday came up, I was a mix of emotions pure excitement, then fear all at once. I didn’t want another holiday ruled by my insecurities, ruled by food, embarrassed and feeling that I was the entertainment for everyone nearby. So I made a change.
For the people that have followed me from the beginning you’ll know all about my on again, off again ride on the diet wagon but this time I’m in it for the long haul, this time I am determined it will be different. I don’t want it to be like every other time I’ve told people “I’m going to do it this time, I really want it for me,” only to end up heavier then before. I got myself to this size and only I can lose the weight.
I would spend hours scrolling through Instagram looking at all the amazing transformation pictures and I always started well and with good intentions but they soon spiralled and I ended putting the weight back on again! But now I take as many pictures as I can because I know one day I will have amazing transformation pictures and I cannot wait to share them with everyone!
My relationship with food is a work in progress and since joining Slimming World I cannot say that my fear of public eating is gone, but what I can say is that it’s improved!! Not only that but with every pound I lose I feel so much healthier, literally. Seeing the numbers creep down on the scales to numbers I haven’t seen for years is an amazing feeling and hearing people say they can see I’ve lost weight will never get old (no matter how embarrassed I get!)
I can’t pin point why it seems to have clicked this time I’m just happy that it has! It isn’t without difficulty and I work hard every day to stay on track and on plan but this time it doesn’t feel like a chore it feels like the start of something great (pure cheese but true.)