Fat Girl Doesn’t Do Yoga

And this is what happens:

I have been struggling lately with anxiety and stress. Some of it, I’m sure, is directly related to the lack of yoga in my life. I can’t quite afford a monthly membership right now so I’ve been rationing going to classes on the punch card I have.

I’m not going to talk so much about that today, although I wish I had the time and space to. It will come soon. What I’m writing about today is a rather interesting juxtaposition I’ve discovered in myself. It all starts with positive attention.

I crave compliments. I crave people telling me I’m pretty and I crave being the object of attraction to someone. This is something I might not acknowledge publicly, but it certainly is the truth. The dissonance happens when even when a compliment like that is forthcoming, I have a hard time believing the truth behind it. So I want to deconstruct it a little bit to explore how this relates to my relationship with the world.

What I find appealing, sexually or otherwise, doesn’t necessary align perfectly with the societal norm. It is nothing at all how I’m shaped either. It’s sort of a happy medium. Maybe how I looked in my teens before children. If my body were transposed onto someone else, I wouldn’t find it attractive. Because I don’t find me attractive, I don’t really understand how others would find me attractive. Take that and flip it around, though – just because I don’t find someone else appealing to my personal tastes doesn’t mean that I don’t think anyone else would find them attractive. I understand that the word “attractive” is subjective – and I’m overusing it today – but TO ME, it makes a difference. This is obviously a cognitive problem, but one I’m not quite sure how to rise above.

I know that for many people, intelligence and wit are a big part of someone’s draw. I am intelligent, and witty, and well spoken. And on paper or in text conversations, I can very easily “bring the boys to the yard”. But without them seeing me with all my faults, I often operate under the assumption that as soon as they lay eyes upon my figure, I am off their “to-do” list. Experience tells me this is only partially true, but the mind recalls negative experiences more clearly than positive.

Not all fat girls are cynics. I’m not ALWAYS a cynic. Some days I’m perfectly comfortable being this weight. But lately, my underwear all slips beneath the huge roll of fat that is my belly and my clothing all fits funny and I’m not eating as healthy as I’d like and my stress levels are super high leading to mirror hatred as well. We’re working on moving into a new house, and in the process of clearing out stuff I filled a 45 gallon contractor’s garbage bag with clothing that doesn’t fit me right anymore and should just be gotten rid of.

Juxtapose that with the fact that I’ve been receiving some positive attention lately, as well as some negative attention (or positive attention followed abruptly by absolutely nothing), and I think I’m wandering around in a state of confusion.

I’ve struggled emotionally in yoga lately too. I’ve caught myself making competitive comparisons to other people in class (whether or not I actually see them or know them and/or their struggles) and I have caught myself comparing myself to what I think I *should* be able to do. That tells me a few things:

First, my anxiety is too high. It was much lower when I was going to yoga more regularly. This means I need to find space in my budget for the monthly membership again. I also should consider trying to do yoga at home again – the problem is the lack of me-space currently. I CAN’T do yoga with a thousand distractions and people sitting in an easy chair watching around their electronics. I just can’t do it. The benefits are gone. Maybe once we move, I’ll have some space I can call my own. As long as the rest of the family doesn’t take it over.

Second, as much as I wish I could be the island of self-care I would like to be, I do desire positive external interaction on a romantic level more lately than “normal”. I need to do something about this, but in order to do so I am going to have to open myself up to the possibility of pain again, and that is almost as hard to accomplish as self-acceptance. In that same vein, I need to go to yoga more (are we sensing a theme here? Probably.) because yoga is probably the best self-care I can give myself and it does tend to reinforce my faith in myself, which ends up in me relying less on others for validation.

It’s funny how I can recognize these themes in myself now and realize that more yoga is really the answer. I just need to find the time for yoga to be the answer again, and right now that is insanely hard with trying to get ready to move, being geeky, and fulfilling family responsibilities. Oh, and that annoying thing called work. There’s that, too. I love my job, but it sure cuts into my fun time! Haha.

It might surprise you to note that before I sat down and set finger to keyboard, I hadn’t actually processed that I need to get to more yoga and quick. I recognized that I missed yoga, and I recognized that my “need” for compliments was increasing, and I recognized that my anxiety is higher than normal (which in itself is perfectly understandable). But I didn’t recognize how it all seems interconnected now, nor did I see how yoga could affect it all if I would just go. It’s funny how when you have a jigsaw puzzle floating in your head, it all seems disconnected, but once it gets down on the table top and put together, everything has its place and it all works well together. Go figure.

More yoga it is, then, and I’ll find a way to fit it into the budget because this fat girl wants to like herself again.