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I eat to live or live to eat?


I wrote the words below 6 months ago, in the middle of a night. Coming back to them after such a long time allows me to notice that something has shifted. But I do come back because the pattern is still there and I was caught in it again today – it was meant to sooth, to quieten something but all it did is opening a box of grey, muddy sadness. I am tired… but as I look at it objectively it is good it happened so because without this failure I wouldn’t realise that I did make a progress. A change that makes it possible now to step back and observe my behaviour. Nothing more. Observe this kid that tries to use all the means it knows to stop the fear of itself. Observe and understand it, cheer instead of judging or criticising. See it and trust that it will manage. With this trust and understanding the tiredness fades away because I just know that it all makes sense and it is supposed to be neither faster nor different nor with an outer help – it is supposed to be just as it is.

I sleep unwell waking up all night to the sound of muezzin’s chants, bitten by mosquitoes, hungry… Again the food won’t let me rest. My passion, my curiosity spark but also a heavy baggage, method to trick the sadness or stress, endorphin injection, the strongest addiction. My relationship with the food could be the body copy to the ‘my life’ headline. If there is anything I need to do to feel balanced and healthy it’s to fix this very dependence. Another year of my life passes on being torn between the great joy of tasting the life and the inner anger, guilt and auto-destruction. The pleasure to immerse in the senses, to eat, to relish is so big that very often I can’t stop it, exploiting my body, stuffing the stomach, stopping the stream of the life force. I do it often and trying to restrain myself and change the strong habit costs me a lot of effort, which goes to waste in my opinion.
I was never a fussy eater, always living with the rule “it’s better to eat all and suffer, than waste food” and dreaming to change to “1/3 for the food, 1/3 for the liquid, 1/3 for Allah”.
Food was helping me to deal with my emotions, to modify them, to get back at something. Before each exam or stressful event, I would be found with the head in the fridge. One of my strongest, food-related memories is from the primary school period when after the classes have finished I would be rushing home, carried by some huge excitement of preparing myself some ‘delicious’ treats. Usually, that was some sweet rubbish from the box. The 90’s in Poland – the blink of multicoloured foods entering our newly opened market all combined with a complete lack of awareness of how shitty they were. Those lustrous custards, sprinkles, puddings, cappuccinos, powdered bolognese sauces were my guilty pleasures before I got big enough to reach for cigs, red wine or misuse my credit card. As a matter of fact even after I discovered them and after my consciousness about food got better I was still able to harm myself with an endless number of healthy porridge bowls. Despite all the knowledge and awareness, sport driven lifestyle and work, hours in the fitness studios and explaining to others what wellness is, despite having longer and longer periods of staying in moderation I need to admit to myself that my relationship with the food is still rather unhealthy…

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