Slow week for eating disorders in my house. How nice is that?
What has been on my mind is letting people make their own decisions. How other people’s decisions might affect me, and yet I still have to let them make them.
For me, autonomy is a gift of having my eating disorders under control. I have mentioned before that I remember when I first intellectually understood that I was responsible for my own life, no matter what happened to me or who did it. It wouldn’t be until after many years of being sober from sugar that I would understand how to implement that knowledge. But I still recall grasping the idea that even if someone were to “blame” for something, they could not be responsible for how it affected my life. Even if they wanted to take responsibility. Even if I wanted to give them the responsibility.
It’s a free way to live. Scary, but also much more peaceful. Life is scary. Less so when you stare it down, rather than blinking. Or, eating a chocolate cake and passing out in a food coma.
When I got my eating disorders under control, so many people wanted me to do it differently, or not at all. They thought it was extreme to do what I do. Or unhealthy. Or that I was going to miss out on things. Some of them were subtle. Some of them were blatant. But it made a lot of people uncomfortable. And they wanted to make sure I knew it.
When I do something for myself, it makes it easy to do it for others. I don’t know how it works. But because I was willing to ignore other people’s opinions and make my own choices, I am able to let go of making judgments about other people’s choices. Even if they affect me.
We all affect one another. We are all connected. Life is just a big game of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon. And I don’t want Kevin Bacon, or anyone else for that matter, trying to make my choices for me.
And I don’t want to make choices for him. Or you. Or the people I love. Or even the people I thoroughly dislike.
The addict in me always wanted to make all the decisions, and pass off the consequences. The addict in me never stopped to wonder if that were even possible. The sober woman I get to be a day at a time, knows that it’s not. Life happens, you accept it, readjust, and move on. Sometimes (usually) the life that happens is rubbing up against another life. Doesn’t matter. Same rules apply.