Fat is a horrible word. I totally don’t mean fat. Fat is subjective.
By fat, I mean unhappy with my body. I mean not like my body was before. I mean droopy, wobbly, disproportionate. I mean generally a few counties south of where it began. I mean feeling like probably 80% of all mothers, or even all people, feel about their current flab situation.
Well now I know why. It isn’t my fault. It turns out I have a multiple personality disorder. For those who can’t be arsed to read on, the crux of the matter is: I don’t choose to eat the cake; it’s the little voices that tell me to!
Firstly, there’s the compensator. That voice that finds the excuse. We’ll call her Trudy. Trudy helps me see that jeans shrink in the wash; obviously that’s why they won’t go over my thighs. She tells me that everyone bloats following their breakfast, of course my stomach isn’t really that big! ‘They cut clothes smaller these days, it saves the manufacturers money,’ she says when I need to go two sizes bigger than expected. I quite like Trudy. She’s kind.
Then there’s the voice that tells me: ‘This isn’t quite right. Come on, this top used to hang not cling. The knickers haven’t shrunk, your bum has grown. That’s not a double chin because you’re looking down, that’s just what your face is like now.’ Let’s call this voice Betty. Betty isn’t being mean. She doesn’t want to hurt my feelings. Betty is the bringer of truth. Betty wants
me the voices to stop conning me. She wants me to sort this shit out and become one hot tamale.
Next we have the voice of hedonism. Let’s call her Lolita. Lolita is indulgent. Lolita likes it rich, dark and oozy. Lolita is the voice that picks up the chocolate and puts it into my mouth. She convinces me to treat myself to
the kids’ leftover spaghetti hoops on toast ice cream and a glass of wine. For no reason other than it tastes better than a lie in and why the fuck not. Lolita is a wicked wicked woman. I wish I could be Lolita. I love you, Lolita.
But then, who should toddle along, but the voice that yells ‘What in the name of saggy tit skins are you doing!?’. This voice judges me. She berates the choices Lolita forces on me. She’s probably called something like Judith. She’s a bit of a bitch if you ask me. She tells me off for my weakness. She criticizes me for giving in to Lolita’s temptation. She shames me for eating five biscuits before the kettle boils and tells me I should stop drinking
vodka wine when the children are eating tea. I bet fucking Judith has never demanded a postcoital snack of crumpets and I bet her thighs don’t rub together either.
I should also mention the voice of reciprocity. I’m sure we all have her. She tells you that you deserve the doughnut because it’s been a hard day. Why not have the rest of the Doritos grab bag? After all, you’ve been good all week. This voice has even been known to tell me I deserve the prosecco as it’s only two days until my cat’s birthday. I think we shall call this lovely lady, Mary. Good old Mary understands the struggles of daily life. She appreciates that sometimes you need an 11am snack of smiley faces and ketchup. She applauds your realisation that you, of course, need onion bhajis AND naan bread to accompany your Indian takeaway. Mary empowers women. You go, Mary, you marvellous lady.
And finally, there’s the cheapskate. The skintflint that hates wasting money. Margaret. Margaret is the reason I finish the children’s meals, regardless of whether it’s hour old porridge or sandwiches with all the filling scraped out (so just half-sucked bread, then). ‘You’ve just paid £20 for that meal!’ she reminds me when I start to get full in a restaurant (this NEVER happens, tbf). ‘What a waste of money and effort!’ she screeches if I consider tipping three-day old leftovers into the bin. If there’s ever cake/biscuits/sweets at work, Margaret urges me to get my fill – it’s free after all. I have an odd relationship with Margaret. Like, I get where you’re coming from, love, but do I really have to eat this pre-licked digestive that my toddler just threw on the floor?
I’m so happy I came to the realisation that I’m not just struggling to lose the weight – I HAVE AN ACTUAL ISSUE THAT I CAN’T HELP. It’s nothing to do with willpower, or assertiveness or just PUT THE FUCKING JAMMIE DODGER DOWN YOU FAT MORON! Nope, it’s all the fault of Trudy, Betty, Lolita, Judith, Mary and Margaret. Perhaps if they stopped warring, I’d be skinny. But alas, they cease not. And so, I must eat the cake.