I've written about my struggle with weight a couple of times. I've written about my struggle with drugs, alcohol, and cigarettes. I've written, rather proudly, about my overcoming of those issues. What I have not ever written, however, is how even overcoming is a temporary thing for me, pretty well always. Yes, I lost 75 pounds. I also gained 30 back. Yes, I quit smoking. Three different times. Yes, I gave up drugs and drink. Right up until I decided staying hammered for a year was an excellent idea. It's ok if you want to judge me for those things - I certainly have - but before you decide to do so, please hear me out.
My resolution this year is quite simply, and most difficultly, to be good to myself. I will not resolve to get skinny. I will not resolve to never drink again. I cannot even promise to never again smoke a cigarette (though I do hope I manage at least that). Hell, I'm drinking a double whisky and staring at a box of chocolates as I write this. It seems to me that my struggle was not ever with weight or with drugs or with alcohol or with cigarettes. I have, in fact, been both genuinely happy and sincerely miserable drunk, sober, thin, fat, smoke-free, and in the throes of a pack-a-day habit. What I was doing was never the issue. Why I was doing it was. I tend to be a woman of extremes. When I was thin, I had a certifiable phobia of food. When I was fat, it was my bestest friend ever. When I'm drunk, I'm really, really drunk. When I'm sober, I recoil in horror at the thought of any adult beverage. And so on, and so on. Whether I'm being "good" or "bad", the underlying issue remains - I'm just not all that good to myself. My sobriety or weight-loss was never a result of sincerely wanting to be healthy, it was the result of hating myself long enough to deny my body any pleasures. Likewise, my weight-gain or drunkenness was never a result of being comfortable with who I am and what I enjoy, but the result of hating myself so much that I just didn't give a shit.
This year has been a rocky one, to say the least. I hit my lowest point professionally and personally, watched helplessly as my dad suffered and recovered from a stroke, and re-adopted several of my worst habits. Rather than being angry with myself or anyone else, however, I have opted to be thankful. I have chosen to see all of this as a learning experience - of a clear declaration of who I was, who I am, and who I want to be. I have chosen to no longer dwell on any rut I may feel I am in, and instead look up at that opening. I have chosen to be good to myself.