Self Discovery Possible Even With Dementia!

Leah Health Guide
  • It is 3 a.m. and I have just made a personal revelation!  My whole life has been about CONTROL, and I find it quite ironic that, in light of that, I have dementia…a condition known for stealing your ability to control…

     

    Last night I had a junk food fest.  My husband had gone to bed early, and I had the rest of the night to watch my “talk shows”.  I could do anything I wanted.  I wanted cookies—I ate six! (Not a good move for a diabetic!)  I wanted popcorn—so I ate it.  And when I got real sleepy, I went to bed.  Just before 3 a.m., I awoke—it was probably all that food just sitting in my stomach…

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    Lying in the dark of the new day,  I realized the truth of my life.  I have struggled inwardly all my adulthood to get the control I did not have as a child.  My mother was “the food police” of my life.  I remember her saying, “You are like your father’s side of the family.  You have a tendency to gain weight, so you can only have a small piece of pie.”  I was only ten years old, and I was being compared to an overweight aunt whom I loved dearly.  But it was a very negative comparison! I was both shocked and humiliated, as my mother said this in front of my siblings and father!  THIS may have been the very moment that changed the direction of my life.  I can remember thinking that someday I was going to grow up and be in charge and NO ONE was going to tell me what I could eat or not eat!!!”  And that is exactly what happened.  After going to community college for two years, I went away for my last two years of undergraduate school.  Finally, I was in charge and no one could tell me what to eat!  And eat I did!  I ballooned up, and I have struggled with being overweight ever since…

     

    Upon more rumination, I realize that I have unconsciously replaced my mother with my husband.  I would have never eaten the cookies and popcorn in front of him!  And yet, I am being very unfair to him to put him in the same category as my mother.  He is nothing like her.  He loves me unconditionally.  And because of his love, I try to better myself; I try to lose weight.  It seems, though, that my own deeply seeded psychological problem with control always rears its ugly head and sabotages my efforts…

     

    I need to develop this “revelation” further.  Perhaps I will start a journal in which I can write down my thoughts, my feelings, and the food I eat.  I have read about this type of therapy.  Maybe it will work for me now, now that I know my deeply seeded problem with control.  Maybe I can work through it.  No, I CAN work through it.  I CAN find the root of the problem, explore it, feel it, expose it, and then fix it.  I CAN do this.  I need to do this before my dementia worsens.  I have, hopefully, five or more years of a good life, a productive life, a life in which I am mostly in control…  I need to do this for myself and I think I need to do this for my mother.  She had no idea what she did to me that day when she embarrassed me and deprived me of a normal piece of pie.  She had no idea that her reasoning would backfire and the very thing she didn’t want to happen, would happen.  She had no idea that it was her fault—

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    There!  There it is.  “It was her fault.”  That is the truth coming out…but not in the way you might think.  Unconsciously, I think I have been punishing her all my life through my eating…  My being overweight is NOT her fault; it is all mine.  I need to realize that now, to own it.  All along, I’ve been punishing my mother and hurting myself at the same time…

     

    It’s not too late to change. 

     

    My musings have reached a conclusion, and so has this day’s blog.  I’ve got other work to do… Seems I have a journal to begin, a journal of a new journey of self-discovery.  I’ll let you know how it turns out!

Published On: September 02, 2008