Monday, May 11, 2009

My Body/My Garbage Can

I have not been treating my body well -- not in any way.

I've been eating constantly -- lots of chips and cake. It's a long time since i've eaten this compulsively.

i've been drinking a lot of wine. i've been smoking. i've been tanning -- something i've never done before. it can't be good for me and my fair skin. i've taken the occasional sleeping pill.

it feels terrible. i feel terrible, physically and emotionally.

was it mother's day that got me? my boyfriend's a florist, and we spent the last week dedicated to preparing flowers for many, many, many mom's. everywhere i turned there were people buying flowers for their mothers, their wives, their grandmothers.

was it having his parents over unexpectedly and having to clean and shop and clean and shop. unexpectedly. and then they showed up TWO HOURS early, while i was vacuuming and my boyfriend was mowing the lawn (after a full day of working at the flower shop.) and on top of that, they'd already eaten, unexpectedly. i had enough food and beverage to feed everyone on the block. you could tell his parents just wanted to go home.

i haven't thought about my mom much, which is really, really unusual. until a couple of weeks ago, i dreamed about her every single night. maybe i'm letting go, which could make things easier. but it's so sad too. my mom is really gone. and it seems that everyone else has their mom or is a mom.

i talked to my sister today, who is a mom. it's my fabulous niece's 14th b'day. my sister tells me that all my niece thinks about is her weight. she gained 15 pounds and is no longer the skinny kid she always was.

my sister's looking for ways to help my niece lose weight without making my niece nuts about it. (remember, my sister is a sylph. muscular, disciplined, tiny.)

i told my sister to leave it alone. to tell my niece she's perfect and beautiful the way she is. right now. no matter what my niece says. my niece is very healthy. she loves to dance and takes lots of classes. she's 5'4 and 134 pounds. in a better world, EVERYONE would consider that perfect. i pray she stays healthy.

while i was talking to my sister, i thought of myself. i stepped on the scale this morning and weighed 135. all my reckless eating and drinking have put on about 8 pounds.

but if those eight pounds are soooo important to me, how can i be an example to my beloved niece? if i'm drinking a bottle of wine, how can i help her?

it's time for me to take care of myself. for me. for my niece. for my boyfriend. for me!!!!

first step -- i just emailed my therapist that i'm taking antabuse (the anti-alcohol drug) during my session tomorrow. not drinking makes everything better -- especially my now very-blotchy skin. oh yeah, and my self-esteem and all my decisions.

when i'm not drinking, i eat better. i sleep better. the whole thing works better.

and then i can get out to pittsburgh to visit my niece. and let her know she's perfect and wonderful JUST THE WAY SHE IS.


  1. I think it's smart to start with one thing. If you know the drinking leads to other problems, start there. We all let ourselves slip at times. You sound positive, and I'm optimistic for you!

  2. sending love and positive thoughts your way..

  3. At 15 the very last thing your niece needs to think about is her weight. She's still growing and filling out. Heck, who am I telling this to? You know that! Good for you for wanting to step up and be that role model for your niece. Any motivation is good motivation, but this sounds like it's the best motivation of all. Love.

  4. kim; i am positive. today is day one without the booze. i'm kind of excited to start treating my body better. and feeling better! thanks for your support.

    me: thank you, thank you. i can feel it. it's so important for me to keep reaching out. even though i'm very talkative, i tend to keep my secrets close. it's great to have support.

    Amelia: thank you for writing! i've started reading your blog and look forward to having some real time to read more. i keep thinking about my little niece, my sister's daughter. my brother's daughter, who's 23, is very, very heavy and there is SO much talk about her weight. sometimes i'm glad i don't have a daughter - i'm not sure i'd know what to do.

    my niece IS great motivation. i want to be someone she can respect.

  5. Awesome! Its good tha your taking things into your hands. We're all very proud of you. I'm sure you're an amazing role model and inspiration to your niece. =) Oh, and Happy Belated Mother's Day (Or Woman's day, as I like to think of it).

  6. Sometimes when it doesn't seem worthwhile to do things for ourselves, it's good to do things for others - like get yourself better for your niece. Then you can start to get yourself better for YOU.

    My weight was all over the place when I was that age. It's called puberty. And boobs.

  7. A great book I've started, it addresses the last part of my eating disorder-the addiction to food. "From the First Bite A Complete Guide to Recovery from Food Addiction" By Kay Sheppard. If you can't find it I'd love to send it to you when I finish it. It very much resembles the ideals of AA and the sensitivity of the addiction-being food, because we are faced with eating everyday.

    Hope your week becomes bright Mel!

  8. mynameismellon: thank you. i'm so rarely proud of myself. i'm feeling better today. one day with out a drink! one day at time. and i've been eating pretty normally. lots of hope.

    Lisa; my weight was all over the place too as a teenager. my niece just stopped growing, she got her period last year, she's getting curves. this is such an important time for her to learn that it's just fine to look like a real woman. instead, my sister wants to teach her how to eat more lightly. YES, i am pulling myself together and heading out there a couple of times this summer to hang with my niece and talk to my sister. and YES, it's called puberty. thanks, lisa

    sarah; i'm heading to the bookstore this afternoon. i'll look for the book. thank you for the suggestion!

    i'm taking my brother's daughter clothes shopping. she's very overweight (by who's standards?), and everyone's made such a big deal of it. she thinks she's 100% hideous. she was apologizing that we have to shop for her in a plus-size store. my work begins -- boostering her self-esteem. i'm ready to walk the walk that i talk.

    thanks again for your ideas and support