When you choose not to feel your feelings and eat over them, drink over them, drug over them, work over them, whatever over them, and when you choose to stop doing it all hell breaks loose! Those feelings that are kept suffocated by whatever means necessary begin to ever so slowly at first, climb to the surface of you. You will notice them when you drive your car behind a slow, idiot driver. You will notice them when you must stand at a long painful checkout, at the dodgy WiFi not working, at your kids for not cleaning their room, lovers for not listening to you. You feel a feeling that has become unfamiliar during the years of the cover up but you manage to shake it off, breathe it in, run it out. You do this and you think, “These feelings aren’t so bad. I don’t know what I was worrying about. I got this”! And you do, but only for a short while, for that is the thing about suppressed emotion, once you decide to take the lid off the avalanche is never far behind.
My avalanche came last weekend, and boy was it spectacular! I knew it was coming for I had felt the rumblings. I had felt the alien feelings, lost the plot in my car, became Nellie Olsen in the checkout line, screamed blue murder at the Wifi box, snapped at my kid and got all passive aggressive with my love. Not things I am proud of but all part of the weird and wonderful world of my feelings. I knew I was slipping down the mountain and I knew the only way to stop myself was to eat. “EAT ME”, screamed every single bar of chocolate I saw. “EAT ME”, roared the crisps, the fast food, the cookies. Living inside my head and body was loud and crowded and scary. The more feelings that surfaced, the louder it became until I felt as if I was falling off the side of the mountain without anything to break my fall.
It came to a point on Sunday that I knew I only had two choices. Eat or feel. Numb or experience. Die or live. Extreme to some to use the word die? Yet that is how I feel every time I stop the avalanche. I feel dead inside because I know that this is not living. I feel dead inside because I know I am destined for better. I feel dead inside because I deny parts of myself life and this stopped serving me weeks ago. Look, nobody likes an avalanche. They are messy and scary and cause destruction, yet with them comes exhilaration and a change of landscape. An avalanche rearranges things and once the noise dies down the change can look very good indeed.
Sunday I allowed my avalanche to occur. For the first time in years I decided to free fall down the side of the mountain without the aid of my net. I know what my net brings and I am tired of using it, so I trusted what I know, that my feelings cannot kill me. What kills me is what I do to avoid them so I let go. My day was not pretty. It contained a LOT of crying, a panic attack, and a sleepless night but I stuck to my food plan as if my life depended on it and I made it to the bottom of the mountain. I made it! Me, my feelings, no net kind of thing and I feel so incredibly grateful that I did. Sure, my feelings sucked. They were messy and ugly and a bitch to facilitate but not eating over them has given me access to a feeling I have not felt in a really long time. I am still trying to put a name on what I feel but I know it is in the category of peacefulness, or pride, or maybe even happiness.
I guess what I am trying to say is that there is always another way and that maybe just maybe, like my favourite saying goes, “Everything you want is on the other side of Fear”.