i saw the title of a post (or article, or some kind of written-internet-thingy) today that sparked my thinking about what it means to have a "perfect food day".
This kind of lingo is pretty typical in the eating disorder world.
Back when I used to talk to girls who were actively sick, we would discuss what we ate that day, and idealize what our "perfect food day" would be like.
For one girl, it would be eating X amount of calories, exactly. For another, it meant only eating at 12 pm and 5pm. For me, it meant eating nothing, but that wasn't even enough.
Eating disorders set up this kind of "receding horizon" (as I like to call it) in our minds. People with eating disorders are constantly striving towards some kind of unattainable goal, a target that keeps moving. It's like chasing a shadow.
We all know the story : girl loses five pounds and decides she wants to lose five more. She loses five more and decides she wants to lose ten more, and so on.
I would cut down my calories constantly, even down to the point where NO FOOD wasn't okay, and then where was I left? Chasing a freaking non-existent shadow.
I think this phenomenon doesn't only apply to eating disorders, though.
Think of a marathon runner. He or she didn't start out as a marathon runner, right? It's like someone who starts running, and then decides they like it. So they start running, say, five miles a week. And then maybe five miles 3 times a week. And then maybe 5 times a day. Then they do a 5k, and then a 10k, and then a marathon. And then more marathons. And, you get the point.
The problem, I think, is that in our society we all buy into this mindset of "more, more, more". The "American Dream", so to speak, is ruining us. It's this idea that nothing is ever okay just as it is that is causing us to be so dissatisfied with ourselves and our lives, even though our actual bodies and lives are really probably fine as is and would be okay if we just accepted them as they are right now.
I wanted to leave you with this song by Christina Perri today.
I'm not gonna analyze it for you, I think you all can figure out what I think it means...