Friday, August 24, 2007

Baby kicking my way to anger...

Well, I kickboxed yesterday.

It's really hard for me to use the moves to emote anger during class. There are mirrors everywhere so whenever I kick or punch, it looks like I'm hitting myself.

And for once in my life, I don't want to hurt me.

Shocker. I know.

So after class, I found a corner in the upstairs aerobics room without mirrors (and away from the glass wall that looks down upon those in the fitness center) and shadow-boxed.

And felt a tiny nibbling of emotion.

So, I imagined Tom standing against the wall (in 2D) and I kicked. Punched. Repeated.

For a good five minutes, I wailed at the imaginary picture of Tom. I saw my crescent kicks hit near his chin, my side kicks connect near his solar plexus, my punches near his chest.

And felt the nibbling turn into niggling.

And stopped. It felt wrong. It felt weird. I was uncomfortable.

So I stretched, enjoying the feel of my body as the muscles lengthened and relaxed. And practiced my handstands against the wall (pole class move - but there is no pole in the fitness center, so I use the wall instead.) I gloried in the strength of my abs as I controlled my legs up to the wall and let them move one at a time away from the wall and back again before coming down, gracefully.

I was gentle with myself.

All in all, I think it was a good first attempt. I know the anger is there, I just need to slowly work my way past the discomfort.

I just need more practice. Maybe when the fitness center is completely empty and I can vocalize my grunts and shouts...

Oh, and I tried kicking the punching bag. Uhm, bad idea when no one is holding it still and the bag was not positioned in the center of the hole in the drop-ceiling... Luckily, I wasn't directly underneath the fine powder snow fall, or it would have looked like I have dandruff!


Anger is such an unnatural feeling for me. Okay, so maybe unnatural is the wrong word. Uncomfortable is better, but doesn't get to the intensity of the feeling I have when I try to get in touch with anger.

"I'm a lover, not a fighter."

I often think that describes me well, except that lovers often get angry. Lovers are human, too, after all.


I'm proud of myself for realizing when I had enough. For being gentle with myself afterwards - luxuriating in my body. It was almost as if I was letting my body know that I'm not trying to hurt it. Like I was reassuring the little Jeanne inside that the anger isn't meant for her. That I will protect her and keep her safe. That I understand that she is innocent. She didn't do anything wrong. She doesn't deserve punishment - in any form, be it restricting, stuffing, or nasty insults.

Maybe that's why I felt the need to go shopping for a new outfit for my dance class that very night (after I nourished myself with dinner. At which, I'm also proud to say, I veered from my safe foods and tried a new sandwich.) A little bit of pampering to show me that I'm proud of me.

Make no mistake though, guilt still finds its way into my life. After my dance class, I had a snack - I wasn't ravenous, but knew that it was a long time til morning and I danced hard that night.

And I immediately wished I hadn't eaten. My stomach hurt. I wanted to get rid of it (not that I know how to do that, despite the numerous times I had tried in the past.) So I distracted myself, found safety and comfort and love in my husband's arms.

And today, after working out with my trainer, I've been eating almost continuously. It still scares me - this trusting my body, intuitive eating thing. So I furiously wrote down everything that I've eaten and everything that I planned to... And then stopped before I finished the list. And crumpled up the paper. Threw it away.

I don't need to do that anymore. I can be okay with feeling uncomfortable with my emotions. I can trust myself. I can feel pride with my accomplishments (and yesterday, I had a few what with attempting to channel my anger and then nourishing my whole self (body and soul) afterwards.)

[Deep breath]

I'm okay.

11 comments:

æ said...

I'm kinda tapped on comment material...so I'm here to say I read this, I was impressed and touched. You offer hope for yourself as well as others.

And.

It doesn't connect for me to rage at my abuser either. Something current or vague is easier.

love,
ae

Faith said...

I'm with the both of you. It's really hard to gather up rage at my abuser. It somehow feels fake or corny or something (haven't figured that out yet) but something current is a lot easier. I connect with that.

"I'm proud of myself for realizing when I had enough. For being gentle with myself afterwards - luxuriating in my body. It was almost as if I was letting my body know that I'm not trying to hurt it. Like I was reassuring the little Jeanne inside that the anger isn't meant for her. That I will protect her and keep her safe. That I understand that she is innocent. She didn't do anything wrong. She doesn't deserve punishment - in any form, be it restricting, stuffing, or nasty insults."

This, my dear, is awesome. I am incredibly impressed and I am looking forward to being right there.

Thank you Jeanne for giving me a look at a place I am going to reach.

xo
Faith

Sarah said...

I loved reading this post, Jeanne. It is such an affirmation of LIFE! All of it. Feeling it, experiencing it all. I'm proud of you, and inspired.

I just read your last few posts. It sounds like it wasn't the greatest week for you. I'm glad it ended on this note of strength.

I wish I'd been around for you like you've been for me.

xoxo
Sarah

Jeanne said...

ae,

It's okay to be tapped out of comments - I know I get that way often. I'm so glad that you left a footprint though. That means a lot to me.

I wonder why we (you, faith, me) find it difficult to rage against our abusers? I mean, they played a significant role in causing our EDs, and many other issues in our lives. Maybe it's just difficult in the beginning to connect to the rage at them?


faith,
Maybe I will try something current (like micromanagers at work...) to rage at - see if that works as a gateway.

I won't lie to you - it's taken me years of therapy and recovery work to get this point that I'm in...
But I believe in you, faith. I know you will get here, too.


sarah,

You have been around - in spirit if not in writing.

It was a rather rough week (rough few weeks,) but I made it through. And have learned some.



Thank you all so much! I really appreciate your support and encouragement.

em said...

I'm in the middle of trying to draw out my anger too - and it isn't always easy. I love the passage that you wrote that faith drew attention too - i love that you are looking after little jeanne. perfect.

Eve said...

Dear Jeanne,

So glad you feel okay, feel you can trust yourself, feel proud of your accomplishments. You are a wonderful woman, and you deserve to feel wonderful. I hope this weekend was a good one for you.

Love, Eve

Jeanne said...

em,

Some days it's easier than others to take care of the little Jeanne inside.

Thanks for letting me know that I'm not alone in touching buried anger.


Eve,

Thanks for the encouragement! It really means a lot to me; I need lots of reminders that what I'm doing is worth it.

Emily Jolie said...

Hi jeanne,

Just saying hello. Loved your post!

much love,

ej

Jeanne said...

Hi, ej!

Thank you for stopping by! I'm glad you liked this post.

roark said...

i read this and i see a woman who is on the right path, who is being so gentle with herself, and yet brave and pushing herslef, too. pushing, but listening, and stopping when that feels right.

I'm proud of myself for realizing when I had enough. For being gentle with myself afterwards - luxuriating in my body. It was almost as if I was letting my body know that I'm not trying to hurt it.

i respect and admire this.^^

jeanne, i'm inspired by this.

and, you are okay. i hope okay turns into good, into great. i hope soon.

~roark

Jeanne said...

oh, roark,

thank you so much!! I, too, hope okay turns into good then great, but you know? I'm thrilled that I'm okay after being miserable for so long.

Thank you so much for your encouragement and support!!