And look at the state of Roger!!!
‘Jessica Rabbit was curvy wasn’t she? And she was a full on knock out.’
I turn to look at him.
‘Seriously? You are trying to make me feel better about my body, by comparing me to a cartoon rabbit with bigger boobs than me? How unrealistic is that?’
‘Ok, bad example.’ He grumbles walking out. ‘I couldn’t have won anyway.’
And he is right.
He wouldn’t have done.
He thinks I am gorgeous.
He tells me all the time.
So why can’t I just believe him?
Because the truth is, the expectations I have of myself are way higher than any expectations I would ever have of anybody else.
It is not ok for my body to look like this.
He may think it is.
But I don’t.
I have to be perfect. I am supposed to be perfect. I need to try harder.
And yet, as I sit here taking a ridiculous amount of time to type this due to the fact that one hand is currently fumbling around in the dark depths of a bag of Walkers Taste Sensations and the other is about to reach out for a pot of hummus, I should be saving for tonight’s tea, I am finding it hard to care.
(I am actually typing this with my chin, as I chew. Honest.)
The thing is, it is all very well having therapy to ‘sort your head out’ but unfortunately the down side of this mood reboot seems to be that as my mood increases, and I start to see sense, due to therapists whacking me on the side of the head and switching me off and on (the tried and tested technique for anything that requires technical assistance…hey! Have Blackberry tried this? I should call them…) Unfortunately so does my waistline, which is playing havoc with my internal scoring system.
Hang on, just to backtrack a bit here… when I mentioned that the therapists turn me off and on, I meant purely within the realms of that metaphor. I can assure you I have not once been turned on by any of my therapists.
Seriously. I haven’t.
Ok, I suppose there is one who is quite fit but it’s not like I am available, or would ever dream of approaching him and he doesn’t have to know that he has done things to me, I mean for me, that … you know what? Lets move on.
He is good for my self-esteem. End of.
Back to the point.
With every day that passes, the stronger I feel emotionally, the more I shove down my throat, and the less I get done.
(Including the washing up.- I was told to put that in here, he feels very hard done to, poor love.)
Which literally is sending my fragile brain and sense of what is normal, in to a tail spin, because for as long as I can remember my self-esteem has been entirely based on how thin I am, and how much I can achieve as the ‘perfect mother’ on a day to day basis.
If I was thin I could be happy.
If I could just complete the last 8 things on my list, including re carpeting the living room floor, while changing Addison’s bum, in the next hour, I would be worth it.
If you could see my ribs I would be winning, we would be a happier couple and the world would make sense again.
Seriously, I don’t know why I ever worried in the early days about other mothers judging me or my lack of parenting skills, because if truth be told, I was judging myself enough for bloody everyone.
However as I begin to crawl out from this dark hole of self-hatred, self-punishment and unrealistic expectations I set for myself, I am trying to see things a little clearer.
I don’t have the perfect body, but the fact I now have a kangaroo pouch that covers my hairy thighs, nipples that I could clean my belly button with (if I wanted to, which I don’t, cos that would be gross) and bits that resemble something literally, that the cat dragged in, they shouldn’t really serve to make me feel worthless should they?
Sure, it isn’t ideal. And I would prefer the body of (not Jessica rabbit) Jennifer Anniston but hey, she doesn’t have kids, a poodle with the runs or a hectic schedule that involves more poop than scoop does she?
(Scoop being cocktails and botox.)
So why do I compare myself to these people who mostly, are airbrushed?
These things about myself that aren’t actually perfect are just tantamount to the life we have created for ourselves. (I say we because I refuse to believe I am the only woman with serious perfectionism issues here, and misery loves company.)
Because as WE start to look in the mirror and see OUR true worth, worth that should be based on a million different things, good things, friendly things, caring things, hugs, words of support, words we give out, friendship, love, our children, the reaction I get off that Irish bloke that lives with me, the fact we are loved, the fact we can love, the ways we manage to succeed on a daily basis, be it just getting out of bed, or be it telling somebody they are worth it, I really am struggling to put importance on the parts of my body that can no longer be considered thin.
I am struggling to put importance on the things I haven’t achieved today, when there are a good few things that I have. (Like eating two massive bags of crisps and having a rant.)
I know I could be healthier, thinner and a million different other things on my list if I really wanted to be, I could run around like a blue arsed fly all day trying to achieve everything right this second, rather than in a week, rather than in a month, but why should I?
Think of all the moments I would miss out on, if I carried on this way?
Why do we need to be perfect???
I wouldn’t punish others the way I punish myself, I wouldn’t expect others to complete as much as I expect myself to complete, Jaysus, if I gave the Irish one a list of 12 things to do in an hour, I would be happy (and amazed) if he completed 3 things. So why when I give myself a list, do I have to complete them all in half an hour and then add stuff?
I do not have to be perfect all of the time.
I am not Jennifer Anniston.
Hang on, I need a new bag of crisps, this is all getting a bit deep.
I have to be honest, I am pretty damn sure that if the 20 year old me, the one who was obsessed with work and a career and drinking and being thin, and having to have achieved EVERYTHING by the time she was 30, was to see the 32 year old me now, living the way I am, having achieved not much of what she wanted me to, she would probably be a bit appalled.
But you know what?
She can sod off.
She doesn’t have my son, and I do.
And there is time yet for all that other stuff anyway.
(My Aunty Et always used to say ‘The washing up will still be there when the children are in bed dear…’ And I see what she means now.)
So, I will sit here and I will eat these crisps, and rather than starving myself, like I used to, or standing and texting work stuff while at the playground, watching a film with Addison while beating myself up and punishing myself for missing out on all these moments that could be enjoyed if i wasn’t so busy trying to get EVERYTHING DONE NOW, I may actually just try and be kind to myself for a change and enjoy the moments for what they are and then list all the things I have achieved by the end of the day.
I know it will be easier said that done, but I owe it to myself to try right?
And if I don’t succeed at first that is ok too right?
Because I am starting to see what really matters to me.
And that is me.
And the moments that can never be bought back.
So if eating a Big Mac makes me smile?
I’m going to eat it.
Enough punishment for now.
And maybe, just maybe, next time the Irish one calls me gorgeous, I may let him win. (Briefly.)