The body’s signals start small; something is about to happen, something big. A pain in the back coming and going, a tightness in the belly, trying to ignore, but soon it’s impossible to ignore. Labor. The day that will change all days is finally here. The first birth-day.
The pain, the stress, the anticipation, the blood and tears. Only through those things may anything beautiful later pass. The laughter, the happy tears, and the first-steps only come after the pain. Two laughs may bookend a cry, a tantrum, a dirty diaper that needs tending. The good and the bad, the sweet-smelling and foul, the win and the loss all must happen, turning like pages of a book.
Food Freedom Day was a birth-day. Full of pain and stress, crying and shame, messy. So messy.
Food Freedom Day: the birth of new knowledge, an invitation to cultivate a new way of looking at my body, my activity level, my clothing, and my health. Every decision on what to eat an act of faith that I am responding to my body, not ignoring it because of some “plan.” Somewhere along the way I had learned that my body was not trustworthy, ignoring hunger signals which eventually turned off from the disregard.
Food Freedom Day: the birth of trusting my body, the only thing I’ll have my entire life. People and things will come and go, but my body is the vehicle I get to take through this life.
Food Freedom Day: the birth of understanding that I am allowed to take up space. I do not need to constantly shrink myself; I am not more or less worthy based on the number on my bathroom scale.
Food Freedom Day: the birth of understanding that food is a gift from God, something to be enjoyed as a blessing. The one who made the food also made me.
The messiness of labor is not resolved in a day. Pain and emotion return like an unexpected twirl on a rollercoaster, no warning.
Food Freedom Birthday: a messy toddler learning how to walk alone, still needing help, still falling frequently.