A Better Version of Me

My eyes weren’t even open yet. The pain was exquisite. My belly ached with hunger.

Good. That means it’s getting smaller.

My muscles were raw and sore.

Good. They’re getting stronger.

I opened my eyes and peeked at the clock on my Blackberry. 8:45AM. Seven hours. Plenty. It’s doing better than the nine or more. Sleeping, the perfect escape from consciousness. Nobody can get to me in my sleep.

But, I’m sick of it. I’m sick of that life. I’m tired of being stuck in my head with all of this mess. And I’m disgusted with myself and my body.

I am disgusting.

I always have been. At one point, I thought I had excepted and celebrated what I look like. Until, I hit 140lbs.

Most of my jeans were almost too small. A few pairs wouldn’t actually close. I looked in the mirrors at the pounds of flesh I attempted to cram into clothes that were just plain too small.

Sausages have neater packaging than me.

I jiggle and wiggle like jello from every flap and fold. I can feel every inch of my flesh move when I move, and continue moving when I stop. It’s revolting. The idea that I will become obese to the point of immobility, if I don’t get a handle on this, was too much for me.

I choke on the bile that rises in my throat every time I envision my rolls growing into flaps.

I have never wanted to be “skinny”. All that I have ever wanted was to be within the healthy BMI range. I’ve never made it under 25. I have tried, and tried.

Every single diet you can imagine. Crash diets, healthy diets, calorie diets, and portioning diets. No meat, no carbs, not fat, etc. And none of those alone or in any combination was enough.

There is one thing I haven’t tried. Food diary plus exercise diary. Mood charting. A chart for everything in my life imaginable. Because unless I cut it open and dissect it, I may never be able to understand it. I may never understand me.

And I will never have control.

Running. There’s nothing that feels better than that searing fire in my lungs. I am jogging for the first mile, and walking the second. By the last half a mile, I am crawling. Sweat pours down my face, and I am gasping for that one breath that will stop this feeling of dying.

Dying. For one moment, I have a reason to suspect that there’s an external cause for that gnawing sensation I feel at the edges of my soul.

Endorphins. If I can’t cut, and I’m too sad to laugh, then what is a person to do? Run. Period. The ache of the muscles the next day, it’s exquisite. The satisfaction that I am doing well for my body and it hurts is enough for me.

The satisfaction that I completed 5.5 miles in one day. Anticipation of pushing that further. Lulled by the extraordinary exhaustion. Peace and clarity of the mind. And the excitement that I shed 2lbs in a week.

The best part? I am doing this by adopting healthier habits. Smaller portions. Less soda. A person cannot run and smoke at the same time. I have two different trackers for my mood. Sleep. Medication. I can’t control everything. But, that doesn’t mean I can’t monitor it.

I am determined to be a better version of me.