A Good Problem

I have a friend who tells me that certain problems that I have are good ones to have when compared to problems that I was having a year ago.  The fact that none of my clothes fit is a good problem when it’s because they are all too big.  The fact that I am waffling about how quickly I am willing to progress with the guy is a good thing to waffle about.  Mostly because there were many, MANY a night when I wished that I could have been worried about that rather than the stuff I was thinking about.

The problem that I’m having right now though is that in the last couple of weeks I’ve become far more aware of just how far I’ve come and, really (without sounding egotistical and full of myself) just how good I look and that has created some new problems.  I realize that I have given myself a kind of power that I’m going to have to learn how to control. 

For one thing, I have the power and the ability now to create whatever body that I want to have.  I know what I have to do and how hard I have to work to ultimately do whatever I want with myself.  That one is a bit of a fine line because while it is easy to stay motivated when going after a specific goal, I have to make sure that what I’m doing to get there is going to be sustainable forever.  So if all of a sudden I start running 6k, 7 days a week to get down to a certain size, I have to be willing to do that forever.  Obviously, I’m not.  That’s the fine line that I have to walk. Increasing exercise will be an option as long as I do it slowly and deliberately and while bearing the future in mind.  As soon as I’m doing it blindly and with just one goal in mind, I’m going to have problems.  At this point I really don’t see myself increasing it much more than I already do, simply because I don’t have that much time to spare.  Already I’ve cut back from 5 days/week to 4 because I was having a hard time getting things done.  Plus, if I start to feel resentful about what I’m ‘forcing’ myself to do, it’s not going to last very long.  Similarly (although I have not done that, nor am I willing to), I could decrease the amount of calories that I’m eating in order to get the scale to a certain number although unless I’m willing to stay that low, calorie-wise, it’s not a reasonable thing to do. 

I’m also having a bit of a struggle with the guy thing.  First of all, there is the guy I’m currently seeing.  He’s great (as I’ve mentioned) and I am looking forward to seeing where this goes.  On the other hand, I have spent the whole of my twenties in a pretty bad place, life-wise, and now that I’m out of that and free, I’m feeling a little ripped off.  I didn’t do the dating thing and the flirting thing and I feel like I totally ripped myself off.  So when I’m standing next to someone (not the guy I’m seeing) who I have found incredibly attractive for the last 4 years, and he says things to me that flips my stomach and looks at me without bothering to cover up his attraction, it makes me feel good.  And it makes me want certain things from him which is weird because he scares the tar out of me.  He’s bold and a little aggressive.  He’s the kind of guy who is going to come to the table with what he wants and either just take it or charm it out of you.  I know what he wants and I know that it isn’t likely to be any kind of relationship with me.  I, obviously, am not going to/am not willing to go down that road but in a way it makes me really resentful that I’m not.  It makes me annoyed that I have had things happen that make it so that I cannot go the route of ‘fun for a short while’ because it would break me inside.  I need to let it be enough that I could make/let certain things happen because of how I look.  Isn’t that one of the ultimate goals; to be and feel attractive and to have it work in your favour?  It sounds slightly manipulative and maybe it is, but since I’ve never had the option of playing this game before now, I have more of a desire to do it than perhaps I should.  In my lucid moments, when I’ve come home and the haze of that attraction wears off, I know that by doing nothing, I’ve done the right thing.  I know what the right thing is in this instance and, like my dear friend says, if you have to talk yourself into it, it is probably not the right choice.  If you have to make excuses for why it would be alright and justify it to yourself and your close friends, if you know that people who care about you are not going to be impressed, then it is probably not the right choice.  In this case I have a good friend who has warned me about this particular person and the situation and has made some pretty obvious comments to try to preclude anything from happening.  While it annoys the shit out of me when people do things that they feel are ‘in my best interest’, I have to have a little appreciation for my friend because he can see clearly what I’m seeing through a fog and he’s throwing himself in front of me to stop anything from happening.  This is an exerpt from an email that I just sent to this friend:

Do I like Ray?  You bet!  I think he’s wonderful man.  He’s nice to me, he cares about me, he’s respectful and hasn’t given me anything to be concerned about at all.  I am definitely attracted to him and I miss him and want him to come back!  Simon is completely at the other end of the spectrum though.  I don’t know a thing about him, I don’t know if he’s respectful or courteous.  I don’t know if he would text me or call me or bring me coffee.  Similarly, Simon doesn’t know a bloody thing about me.  I don’t know if he would put up with my hangups and my intimacy issues.  The thought of dating him scares the crap out of me but that tiny bit of fear is a bit of a motivator to do it anyway.

I know what the right answer is.  I know that dating Simon is not the way to go.  I know that I’m still a little fragile inside and that, really, having anything to do with him would not do anything to strengthen that.  I can predict with a reasonable degree of certainty how it would go and it makes me shake my head that I would even give it a second’s thought.  But you see, I’m a little competetive and while that works out great for things like taking up running when someone tells me that I can’t do it, perhaps it is not the best theory for dating.  I know that Simon didn’t give one rat’s ass about me when I was fat.  I saw him every weekend for 4 years and not one time did he ever make any indication that he was interested in me.  That said, it’s a bit of a feather in my cap to be able to change that dynamic in my favour.  As in, “I changed me and now I will change your mind about me and you will see how lovely and funny and sweet and caring I am.”  I guess I should point out that I have no issue with the fact that men were not attracted to me when I was overweight.  Not only was I fat but I was unhappy and unhealthy.  It is not Simon’s issue that he wasn’t attracted to me before.  That is my issue and mine alone and I harbour no resentment for that at all.  He’s certainly not the only one who has decided that they now like the way I look.  I know that the Fat Acceptance people would say that he should have had an appreciation for me when I was fat, regardless.  I guess from my point of view, not only did I change my body but I changed my attitude and my outlook and my lifestyle and all of that will definitely make me more attractive.   


My final thought.  I was talking to one of the girls at work the other day and she had this to say: “There are three types of guys.  The ones who are infatuated with you and want to be with you constantly and build their entire world around you.  They like you too much and as women that annoys us.  There are the ones who don’t pay enough attention to you, who keep their lives seperate from yours and don’t include you unless they have to or it works for them.  They don’t like us enough and as women that annoys us.  And then there are the ones who just like you, pay attention to you in appropriate quantities and within an appropriate timeline.  They like us the right amount and as women that escapes our attention.”   It’s these men who are normal and appropriate that we should be focussing our time and attention on and yet we decidedly ignore that in favour of the two extremes.  Well this woman has the potential for a relationship with a guy who is right in that middle category and I am not going to screw it up with an extreme (in this case, I’m predicting he would be the ‘not enough’ extreme).


So yes, it is amazing to have someone look at me with undisguised desire in their eyes and say things to me that make my knees weak.  AMAZING!  But that’s exactly where it has to to stay.  I am not going to take the risk of undoing any good that I’ve done by allowing that look or those words to determine my actions.


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