Food is something we all consume,
And a little extra, if there’s room,
But day by day, meal after meal,
It’s hard to describe the way I feel.

Sliding down a mental slope,
Searching out for confident hope,
Always unhappy with what I see,
And feeling like a lesser me.

Breakfast is a sporadic event,
Over-indulgence or hungry lament,
The ‘most important meal of the day’,
But body image has its way.

Although I never use the scales,
The mirror reveals my physical fails,
Seeing a body, flabby or bloated,
My thoughts are never sugar-coated.

When at work, lunch is a ghost,
The meal I tend to skip the most,
Here I see a common theme,
Depending on my self esteem.

‘Maybe if I miss this one,
Maybe my issues will be gone,
Maybe I’ll like the way I look,
Maybe then I’ll be unstuck.’

My only regular meal is dinner,
The only threat to looking thinner,
I happily eat, but in my head,
My inner-critic filled with dread.

With IBS inflating my bowel,
Now I’m feeling gassy and foul,
Now I’m feeling down in the dumps,
Body confidence slowly slumps.

Food and me have a difficult link,
One that makes me over-think,
Then that makes me over-eat,
My belly full of the sweetest treat.

Shame then swirling in my mind,
Mental words are awfully unkind,
‘Why should I try? Just retire,
I’ll never look the way I desire’.

My self-care month aided a bit,
Helping me feel less like shit,
But my inner-voice is hard to hush,
My critical buttons, easy to push.

Week after week, I try to learn,
Following every twist and turn,
Mentally dragged, pushed and shoved
Teaching me to feel more loved.

The teaching term, incredibly tough,
Hoping the goal comes soon enough,
I will set my own graduation fate,
Love means more than looks or weight.

By Paul Webster