A conversation with my primitive brain

I am reluctant to share on the blog.

It feels like there is a huge amount of content out there – videos, posts, musings, photos…  And is there any point just adding to it?

And then there is this other thing.  Shame.  Ridicule.  Embarrassment.  Who’s going to read this?  Will they get it?  If they don’t get it, will they think I’m nuts?

But I do write.  In my notebook.  And it’s usually where it stays.

And I read a piece to my mum the other day, and she said – Please share that.  I need that.

And I thought of the people I turn to – Brene Brown, Emily Rosen, Marc David, and countless others – who share their work so openly, and whose work has been so important in supporting my recovery.

And I thought – let’s share.

In our groups, we talk a lot about THE URGE.

The urge is a desire, a pull, a compulsion that nudges you towards the food, when you know that your belly is not actually hungry for food.

And this urge, it comes from the brain.  More precisely, from the survival brain.  The primitive part of our brain that we have no conscious control over.

And this is highly inconvenient, as my most precious wish is to eat to genuine hunger from my belly.  And I wish, I wish, for new neural pathways to develop.  A new freedom to choose not to follow that urge.  A stronger pathway up from my beautiful belly, so ignored and so maligned, for so long.  So I had a conversation with my primitive brain, in response to an urge to eat.  And it went something like this…

brain

LiquidLibrary

Hello darling.

I hear you, sweet survival brain.  It’s OK.

I promise you, we’ll eat.  We will.  There will always be another meal coming.  We will never starve and we will never give up on eating.

I won’t abandon you.

I’m just taking a moment, some space,

To let the belly join us.

The belly wants in.

You’re not being replaced – you’re still so very important to me.

And I know you’ll help me to know when something’s not right.

But it’s not food that will heal this dissatisfaction I feel.

I can identify you.  I don’t have to eat through you.

I can experience

Emptiness,

Boredom,

Apathy,

Loneliness,

Lack of direction, of inspiration,

Impatience.

I can experience all these things,

Without you, my darling.

But you’ve got me here so far

And I’m still alive,

So well done you, you deserve a rest!

Survival brain to feeding pathway, you’re retiring, my sweet.

You’ve worked hard and now it’s time to rest.

Belly to feeding pathway, your time is now.

I trust you.

I know your wisdom is ancient, and exactly what I need.

My belly’s appetites are perfectly sized to fit my natural body.

I am exactly as I should be.

And I will remain so

Forever more

As each day, I take a moment

To check in –

Do you want this, belly?

Are you ready, belly?

We can go via the new feeding manager.

I’m wiring down.

Survival brain, my sweet, you can still do your thing.

You’re always welcome.

But belly, my beauty, you’re at the heart of this now.

And I can do this,

And all things,

To the best of my ability,

Imperfectly.

I am enough.

My belly is enough.

My brain is enough.

My pathways are enough.

Slowly, incrementally, gently,

I allow the process to unfold.

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