Friday, September 30, 2011

Lessons Learned

being that i was at the end of my rope, i just let go....

early morning.

i'm at my job. it's 5 am. i don't like my job.

it's been an extraordinary learning process, though -- entirely humbling. it's really mundane -- filing, faxing, etc., and i'm not even good at it, which worries me.

i've been looking for other jobs, but the market's not great AND i really don't know what i want to do, and i don't want to just take some/any other job and end up unhappy all over again.

what do i learn here -- certainly the afore mentioned humility. sure, once i had big jobs in New York City, but the stress and drugs and alcohol took me down, and i started completely over (with nothing) in New Jersey, where i still prefer my VERY quiet life.

here at work, i'm the fetch-it girl. i go on coffee and junk food runs for my hungover bosses. i fly to the drugstore to get them their Xanax. and make multiple stops each day to satisfy their specific and disparate food needs.

and all the while, they complain about their weight constantly and talk about laxatives and cleanses and go on every different diet every different day.

it can't be coincidence that i -- an anorexic, bulimic, compulsive eater, drug addict and alcoholic -- spend my days dealing with highly cranky hangovers and scoring snacks and painkillers.

at first i found this nearly impossible and embarrassing as they special order EVERYTHING, whether they send me to KFC, the diner, the grocery store, McDonald's or all of the above in one day. it's chicken and rice soup without the rice at the deli and at KFC they make me hand pick each piece of chicken and on and on. oy.

one of the bosses makes me call to complain if the deli doesn't butter her bagel the way she asked or if the bread isn't toasted as requested or there isn't enough lettuce on her BLT.

and then there's the filing and faxing and answering the phones. i'm good at the phone but have always been challenged with paper work. Often, i let that define me and i feel badly about myself BUT THEN i stop and make myself remember that i AM not just a gal who can't fold paper neatly.

i'm a woman who cares about other people, who speaks publicly all the time at AA meetings, who gives rides to people who can't drive, et. al

being here has broken my heart over the last 7 months, as i've made so many dumb mistakes and been berated. i haven't been able to believe that this is where my life is at 47.

YET, the truth is, this IS where my life is at 47. i spent my first 46 years in some form of addiction, wasting opportunities and going nowhere.

along the way, i've learned that i CAN deal with people who talk endlessly about drinking and partying. i CAN deal with other people's food issues without it affecting me.

I NEVER THOUGHT THIS WOULD BE POSSIBLE. and i have been able to keep getting up every morning and coming to this place that i really don't like.

in the meantime, i keep thinking and praying and visualizing what i might like doing.

it's a lot of growth, whether i enjoy it or not. i CAN handle discomfort. i really can.

Monday, September 12, 2011

OA meeting.

so, i went to my first Overeaters Anonymous meeting, and i loved it. i have avoided OA all my life because i thought it was just another diet and probably cultish. but as AA changed my life (really kind of gave me a life) AND i know some incredibly centered and healthy and happy women who go to OA, i figured, why not -- give it a shot.

well, i gotta tell you -- i felt completely at home and welcomed and comfortable and right where i belonged. i felt even more at home than i have in AA, which is pretty cool.

the women at the meeting were telling my story. and telling a story of recovery. such hope.

i'm actually going to get a sponsor and see how it goes. AA gave me freedom from drugs and alcohol. i'm so interested to see if this will happen with food and AA

there were a number of women at the meeting who were addicts and alcoholics as well. and they agreed with me that food is the base of our problems -- the final frontier and where it all started. and they agree that it's, in many ways, the hardest. obviously, you can give up alcoholic and drugs, but we all have to figure out how to eat.

i'm really excited. my eating is ok, (i NEVER binge, starve or purge) but i can still have a funny relationship with food and still "use" it sometimes. i'm the absolutely healthiest i've ever been with food, but i want true ease and comfort.

i know there can be a lot of feelings against OA, and i've had them too, so we'll see.

for now, i'm feeling really positive. i'll let you know...

Friday, September 9, 2011

what am i crying for

ya know those days where you feel blue and your not exactly sure why you're blue today, as opposed to other days?

this would be one of those days. i'm weepy and gloomy and low and letting things bother me. i put a lot of effort these days into not feeling sorry for myself and playing victim, because that just makes me feel worse in the long run and does no one any good. (besides, i'm pretty lucky in the scheme of things.)

today, it's really worrying me that i need to lay out a lot (too much) money for my car AND i owe the IRS and now, an accountant, money.

i can just cover it, but it depletes my savings. and that keeps me stucker (i just liked the word) in a job i don't like too much, because it pays just a little bit more than others.

blah. boo. hiss. want a man who loves me.

oh yeah, and i cut my own bangs with "choppy" results.

there ya go. i think i'm done. THANKS, if anyone had the patience to listen.

i really feel better. i'm off to do some good. :)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011


i haven't written in ages -- i haven't had anything much to report. Basically, I'm just living -- day by day. nothing too exciting happens; nothing awful happens. Basically, I'm just living -- day by day. some days are good, some are less good, some are a mix. what i'm learning is how to just -- be. i've really learned that the world doesn't revolve around me, and there's just about nothing that i can control. the earth will turn without me, the wind will blow and other people will do exactly as they're going to do, whether i like it or not. the more i've learned to accept this and to let things go and to face things with a more positive attitude, the better i do. the more gratitude i have, the better i do. if i'm grateful to have a job that pays for my life, i can't resent the job (quite so much. i'm getting better, but i'm sure not perfect!) it's been a difficult month financially -- turns out i owe the IRS money and my car is costing me almost more than i can afford. still, i'm eeking it out (let's just hope nothing else goes wrong.) but i'm handling it, knowing that for right now, i'm okay. re; food and weight. my weight is still up, hovering around the same 135. i'm getting more and more okay with it. i read a good book recently -- "Read My Hips: How I Learned to Love My Body, Ditch Dieting, and Live Large" by Kimberly Brittingham. The author decides to live and enjoy life, no matter her size. She explores her interests NOW, not waiting until she might, one day, lose weight. she wears what she likes, does what she wants and doesn't back down. the book was very, very inspirational to me. i need to live life right now. afterall, NOW is all I have.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Do I have to be thin?

When i think about working in the Eating Disorders field, i wonder what i should weigh, and does it matter?

during my worst struggling anorexic years, i couldn't take seriously a professional who carried "extra" weight. In fact, i found an over-weight person's suggestions frightening. why on earth would i do what they told me?

now, of course, i understand that anyone/everyone can help me. and there's nothing wrong with carrying any amount of weight.

but what about the still-suffering client? will she listen to me if she doesn't like how i look -- if it made her uncomfortable?

I worried, too, when i was still a little too thin. would i give a bad impression and look as though i were still disordered in my eating? as my weight climbed, i kept in mind that this new look was a better role model for my teenaged niece, who fights her own battles. how could i tell her she was beautiful and perfect, no matter how much she weighed, when i still looked a little boney?

but then is there only a very narrow amount that i can weigh?

i've always thought i'd have to be one exactly perfect weight (with a few pound fluctuation) for anyone to listen to me about eating disorders. but there i go again, putting myself in a tiny box where there's one teeeny, tiny area where i'm okay.

What do you guys think?

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Big Beautiful Women

I get girl crushes on larger sized women -- i wish i felt the freedom to be one myself.

my body longs to be free. as i've mentioned before, when i've really left myself alone, my weight climbs and climbs -- all my Russian peasant stock ancestors were bigger folks, and i know that's what my body wants too. of course, i won't let it.

in the past, i posted pictures of gorgeous fuller-sized women on my refrigerator for encouragement. at my most anorexic, a glowing plus-sized model could make me weep. when i wore a size nothing, i'd buy Mode magazine for plus-sized women, and i'd pray for the courage and strength to let my body be where it belonged. Model Kate Dillon, in particular, was my glorious hero. she'd struggled horribly to meet the weight demands of the regular modeling world, but now worked so successfully at her body's larger natural size.

My boss, Ann, is exquisite -- distractingly beautiful. She's nearly 6' and fantastically strong. she, of course, thinks she's fat and has no confidence at all, but i find her eye candy. when she stands to her full height, with her waist length hair high in a pony tail and her cowboy boots planted firmly on the ground, i just think there's no better looking woman around.

i've written before about taking my niece shopping last year at Lane Bryant, where i felt absolutely at home -- to me, these were my peeps. i was the exact weight for this store when i was in my teens and part of 20s and then later 30s, but i never shopped there. instead, i'd try to deny my size and embark on my incredibly unhealthy process of slaving off the weight.

i wonder where i'd be if i'd learned to accept myself at a larger size. instead of dieting madly my whole life, what if i'd found Lane Bryant for myself and let myself be?

what does any of this mean for me now?

Friday, July 1, 2011

The Scale: Part 1. Trillion, that is

Yes, i got another Scale last month -- i really should buy stock in Scales. no one can count as high as the number i've bought(and thrown out) in my life.

i got The Scale because of the ten pounds i'd recently gained -- no matter how much i talked to myself, i couldn't convince myself that i wouldn't keep gaining weight until i exploded. unless, of course, i had A Scale. no matter what i said to myself about my body regulating to where it needed to be, i was absolutely convinced i'd keep gaining weight until i exploded. unless, of course, i had The Scale.

since i've had The Scale, my weight has stayed in the same few pound range. but how can i really know, as The Scale seems to have issues.

This morning i jumped on it, and it gave me a number and then an error message. so, i got on twice more, and i was seven pounds less than the original number. i walked away all happy -- woo hoo. but i didn't trust this number, as it did seem a little low. hopped on twice more -- four pounds up.

i decided to pick the middle number, as it seemed the most reasonable.


this is ridiculous. once more, i am chucking The Scale. It doesn't know my weight any better than i do. how can i put faith in a stupid machine that gives me 3 different readings, ranging 7 pounds, along with an Error message?

how indeed. here we go again. this is getting very, very old

Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Boyfriend's Weight

My guy friend is losing weight. He's fairly thin to begin with, but he always had this sweet little belly. Now, he's losing weight.

Mike is a contractor and this is his crazy, busy time of year. He's doing very physical labor, very long hours, seven days a week, in the heat. When he gets home, he's often too tired to eat much of anything. Of course he's losing weight!

Last night, i saw him, and his clothes were just hangin'. His face looks really lean and that dear little belly -- not to be found.

where does this leave me?

Mike's always been just a little bigger for his size than i am for mine.
But now, i've gained 10 pounds since he met me, and his weight is dropping. i don't like this. Although somewhere in my sane mind, i know it's not important, i still don't like it!

Mike seems exactly as attracted to me as he's always been.
frankly, he's too tired right now to notice too much of anything. i doubt he's actually noticed he's lost weight -- he just pulls his belt tighter.

i'm sure i'm annoying him -- i keep asking him if he's lost weight (duh, just look at his droopy jeans and sallow face.) he never knows -- he's really too busy to think about it, and i know he DOESN'T think about it or care.

I'm the problem here.

I wonder how you all feel about your significant's weight. Do you have feelings about your sibling's weights? friends? parents?

I know this is wrong, but i want the belly back.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Ed Cycle

Sometimes i feel like I live my life in the belly of this beast. i'm going along dandily, and then something comes up and drags me into ED territory. it's just a brief visit these days, but old thoughts can still creep in. I see this on other blogs too -- we're doing well, eating our meals and snacks, dodging the laxative aisle, ignoring the scale and then, seemingly suddenly, we're not. it's important to remember, tho, that we've had the good days, we've done "this", we know how to do it, and we'll do it again. Yet, our ED habits are pretty deeply ingrained and in many ways, even worshipped, and so it's normal that they will slip back in at times.

yesterday, i ate a very large lunch -- WAY more than usual and a lot more than my hunger required. i was tired and bored and, so, began eating mindlessly. i found myself barely chewing and hardly tasting, like in the binge days of yore.

happily, these are new days and i stopped after simply eating a very big lunch - not unlike what normal people do occasionally.

still, it's not easy. my mind starts up,

"Melissa, what was that? Keep that up and not one piece of clothing will fit by tonight."

"Piggy, now you're not entitled to eat again until tomorrow night."

"what's wrong with you? why aren't you perfect?"

"hmmm, laxatives would help this situation you've gotten yourself into"

I'm astonished that these voices can still fill my brain after all the work i've done. The good news - I DIDN'T LISTEN. instead, i spent the rest of the day gently calming and encouraging myself and telling myself to GET ON WITH LIFE.

And that's the point, isn't it -- GETTING ON WITH LIVING. Our eating disorders seem to stop the process. We're all involved in calories and weight and BMIs and food and.....

In the old days, there were plenty of ways i would have dealt with my big lunch. i would have continued eating to a full fledged, giant binge; then thrown up and started binging again; and taking laxatives, followed by locking myself in my house until i'd purged and starved myself down to a weight i considered acceptable in order to walk out the front door and into the world.

Yesterday, i put down my fork, got back to work and finished the day. after work i ran home, took a fast shower and drove to pick up an elderly friend who goes to the same AA meeting as i do. i was able to enjoy the meeting without obsessing about lunch and weight and then drove my friend to his house and me to mine.

i got on with life and lived it exactly as i would have any other day.

Sometimes, i still find myself in the Belly of that Beast, but now i move on.

Confidence: Body Style

Sunday, I went to a local lake with two friends, ages 50 and 29. (i'm 47.) we are probably around the same weights for our respective heights. (i'm 5'6 and 135.)

After an hour of hanging, the sun finally came out and almost in unison we pulled off our cover-ups. Both of them were wearing bikinis. My tank suit basically covered me from neck to as far down on my thighs as I could pull it. My other suit has a skirt.

i haven't worn a bikini since i was eight (it was pink with white polka dots), when i decided i had a huge belly. From then on, no matter how tiny i was (WAY TOO TINY), I still believed with 100% of my body and soul that my belly was way too big for this world, let alone a bikini!

It's nearly 40 years since i donned that little polka dot number, and i still have no desire to wear a bikini, BUT i do have a burning desire to finally have some confidence in this body that's bravely walked me thru life these last 47 years, no matter how badly i abused it.

i say i want to set an example for the next generations, helping younger women to feel wonderful about their bodies of all shapes and sizes. How can i be an example when i ridicule my "droopy" breasts, "blobby" stomach, "flat, wide" ass, "wide" hips and "bulgey" thighs?

I've got some work ahead! it won't be easy, but it will be healthy!!!! and well worth it, i'm sure

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Daily

i haven't posted in a while, mostly because there's not much to report, which -- in a lot of ways -- is pretty good.

i get up early, go to work, run errands, go to an AA meeting, eat dinner, take a bath and go to bed.

not very exciting, but that, in fact, is the good news. My life used to be FILLED with drama. everything bothered me or hurt me or thrilled me or devastated me. now, i like cleaning my little apartment, reading in the bath tub and enjoying the nice weather.

simplicity is pretty cool.

Monday, June 6, 2011

My Bosses and their Bodies

My two bosses (the owners) are wealthy sisters. One is 44, the other is 38. They live in Manhattan and have socialite lifestyles.

They also come in completely hungover a lot and love their Xanax. They constantly regale us all with stories of their drunken ventures. It's a little weird for me, considering my history with drugs and alcohol.

They also talk about diets ALL DAY LONG. Ann is on the Cookie Diet, but eats everything else all day long and then endlessly complains how fat she is. Mary walks around pinching her stomach and talking about her trainers. One day she'll eat only grapefruit, the next she'll eat the refrigerator.

I'm starting to wonder, though, if they don't throw up after they eat. I know Mary's thrown up when she's hungover, and when i've gone into the bathrooom after she makes that grand announcement, the toilet seat is sticky. (sorry for the TMI.) i'm not sure why it's sticky, but i think maybe she clutches the seat with lotioned hands? anyway, i've noticed lately that she runs to the bathroom a lot, stays in there for a long time and then the seat is sticky again.

Ann's been spending a lot of time in the bathroom lately too. Last Friday, the workers had to wait 1/2 an hour to get paid, because she was in there that long.

At first, all this confused me. What the heck am i, Ms. Everything Disorder, doing sitting next to these women. Now, i just feel sad for them. This can't be a happy life.


Wednesday, June 1, 2011

At the Detox

i spoke about AA at the Detox again last night. i don't remember the last time i felt so - present.

When i'm there, it seems just the right place to be. i am comfortable speaking (i'm usually kind of nervous)and the time flies by.

i also find that i truly care about the audience -- i'm there for them, it's not about me, which is a nice break from my usual worries of all about me: my job, money, relationship, weight, blah, blah.

i've decided to look into careers working with substance and alcohol abuse. there seem to be certificates you can earn to get started in the field. i'm concerned about low salary; however, we'll see what i learn as i begin the research. if i can pay my bills on the salary, there's so much extra i can cut out of my spending.

i'm excited!!!! imagine doing something i care passionately about!!!!!!! (hard to imagine at the moment.)

it's been a tough road, career wise these days. but now i feel like i have something to work toward and dream about and plan for, and things feel a lot easier to take.

i'm all for that!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011


i feel better today, even though nothing has changed. i seem able to handle all the things i'm not crazy about and just not care.

Most likely it has to do with what i did last night -- i went with friends from AA and spoke about the program at a Detox. i've been in a couple of detoxes (both for alcohol and drugs), and i could relate to the patients, although most were pretty young.

it felt like an opportunity to be helpful or useful to someone else. who knows if anything we said will resonate or help anyone, but it may and that's good enough. we'll be going every Tuesday, and i so look forward to it.

all day when i'd get irritated at work today, i'd think about going to the detox, and i'd feel so much better about my life and what i'm doing.

besides, it's sunny and beautiful outside, i'm going to the bookstore this evening, and i might even treat myself to a pedicure. ahhh.

also, i found out that my job doesn't deduct anything for health insurance, so in a way, i make more than i thought. and that's pretty nice.

i've felt better since first thing this morning, and it's 2:30 pm now. that's a good run for me! YAY.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Great Career Search Suggestions

Linda at (can someone remind me how to link? please)wrote a terrific blog about the career search. she has great questions to ask yourself and brings in some new points i hadn't heard before.

What i particularly like is: she asks you to think about what you're always complimented for, what you do 99% better than anyone else and how you might get paid to do these things. i have a hard time figuring out what i'm good at. it helps to see it from someone else's point of view -- what others say i do well.

Linda also warns not to say you hate your current job, because unless you've recently won the lottery, you most likely need this job and it's serving a real purpose. it's important to see what's good in it, so you really CAN feel more positively about it.

What are you doing in your current job that's preparing you for your next step?

Use your free time to go after your dreams. as she says, if you're channel-surfing on your couch every night, stop it right now.

these are just a few of her suggestions -- i heartily suggest you go to her blog to find out more, if you're in the same place career-wise that i am. i know i was inspired. and felt better about where i am right now.


Thursday, May 19, 2011

Schwarzenegger's Mistress Looks

Everything else aside, I feel badly for "the Other Woman", Mildred Patricia Baena who bore Arnold Schwarzenegger's child. Everyone keeps making fun of her looks. I heard one DJ call her ugly. Someone else said the Governor would obviously "do" anything if he'd "do" her, including a chimpanzee.

I just imagine her hearing this all day, every day until the story dies, and i can't imagine how awful it would feel -- if everyone seems to universally agree that you're very unattractive and it's practically disgusting that Schwarzenegger would even consider you.

still, i admit that it flashed thru my mind. i actually tried to find older pictures of her to see if she was more attractive when they were trysting. it upset me that i was doing this. does it matter what she looked like? does it make the crime any different?

i guess this is kind of all about me. i would be DEVASTATED if so many people were making fun of my looks. DEVASTATED. i always thought i was particularly unattractive and nowwork very hard, each and every day, to tell myself i look fine. i'm getting better and some of it comes from the fact that people around me seem to think i'm fine-looking. i get compliments, no one makes fun of me, men ask me out.....

what would i do if the media compared me to a chimpanzee?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


I liked this definition of spiritual growth, "an ever-deepening capacity to embrace life with justice, compassion, curiosity, awe, wonder, serenity and humility."

My new-found spirituality is what's keeping me going these days; it's what gives me hope. i pray constantly to be kind, compassionate, just, grateful and humble. i examine my actions and intentions to see where i can always do better, all the while working toward compassion for myself.

it hasn't been an easy time with work and relationships. none of my friends live in new jersey and i've struggled more than usual to make friends lately. maybe it's my age, and i live in suburbia where everyone's married and doing their own thing.

i found myself very lonely this weekend -- like in the old days, but then i'd use food and alcohol and pills to run from the loneliness. this weekend, i helped out an elderly friend who'd moved into assisted living and ran an AA meeting and called my friends (who sadly, don't live near me.)

now i have hope. and tools for pulling me out of sadness, anxiety and depression. before, there was no hope -- just food, alcohol and pills.

before spirituality, i thought i alone ran the show. I was the alpha and the omega, life began and ended with me. that's very lonely, empty, and....scarey for me.

what i believe is still developing. but starting with justice, compassion, curiosity, awe, wonder, serenity and humility doesn't hurt!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

It's Not About the Food

but it's not about the food order, is it?

if you read my last post, you'll know that i'm very unhappy serving as the resident lunch lady here at my job. actually, i'm very unhappy about the whole errand girl issue over-all -- the post office (mailing bosses personal mail every day), Staples, fetching files, making copies...

but it's not about the errands, is it? it's about the fact that, as i'm soon to turn 47, i feel i've made nothing of my life professionally. career-wise, i've kind of gone backwards.

what worries me is that i'm not even sure where to begin anymore. i really don't know what i want to do. maybe i just need to daydream and daydream and jot down ideas?

career has always been a problem for me. i've just never known what to do. and i was always so, so troubled that i never stuck with anything and developed much of a skill or craft.

i'm in the position i'm in today, because I got myself here. So, who am i really mad at -- i think it's that lady who's staring back at me from the mirror above my computer.

all i have is the present. i can not change the past.

anybody have any ideas where to get started or what worked for you along the professional way?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

I Need Your Help

I wrote this entry this morning and posted it under "The Lunch Order". i didn't realize then just how much i really, really want/need your feedback, thoughts and advice. If you have a couple of minutes, i hope you'll, uh, "weigh" in. Thank you so much. Here's the original post.

There's not much for me to do here at my new job, but one of those few things, sadly, is getting everyone's lunch. Couldn't i just dig for coal?

this is a FOOD-oriented group and picky and particular. did i mention they're all picky and particular?

does anyone else see the irony of a woman with a 30+ year history of eating disorders being the resident food enabler?

my gang here gets hungry early. we're a meat distributor that opens at 2:30 am. (i get in at 7.) by the time 8:30 am rolls around, it's "Melissa, what's for lunch? Melissa, we're huuuungry".

by 9:30 am, i'm off to the supermarket to fulfill each person's needs (that's after the hour or so it takes to get everyone's order.) Sue's on the Atkins diet, so it's cold-cuts for her. Annie wants fruit, but is very picky about the quality. Johnnie needs sweet pickles; Marg wants gherkins. Different mustards, different dressings. Walnuts for Sue (is that even on Atkins?), lightly salted cashews for Annie. Becky asks for boiled ham -- sliced THIN. the boss wants coleslaw without any purple cabbage. diet coke, regular pepsi, vitamin water.... it goes on and on and on.

it's worse if we order in. it takes a good hour or so to get consensus on a place. then no one can make their minds up about what to eat. then i have to call a few places to see what the specials are. after that, everyone special orders EVERYTHING anyway, so who cares what's on the menu or the specials? and everyone complains about the cost...and, it doesn't end.

so ironic that's i'm the gal. me, i like to forget about food during the day and only think about it when i'm hungry. to spend most of my morning on this (hearing the whining, taking the order, going to the supermarket, shopping, laying out the food table, cleaning up....)is fairly bizarre, vaguely freaky and always annoying. on top of it, i feel demeaned -- like a servant.

i wouldn't mind all this so much, i think, if i were a waitress, but i had no idea this was going to be a (big) part of my job when i was hired. i thought i was going to be trained in the business and then groomed to sell. hmm.

i'm smiling now. i put off writing this post because i know it makes me pretty darn cranky and i, myself, start whining. but after this morning ("this grapefruit isn't ripe enough", "no purple cabbage", ) i needed to vent.

why do i stay at this job, you may ask yourself (and me)? well, i'm not quite ready to switch AGAIN. and i find lots wrong with every job i work.

this job, in general, is low stress for now. there's not that much to do. i can leave early if it's really dead. i'm way over-paid for what i'm doing, and i have benefits. going to the supermarket (and running all the other errands) gets me outside for at least an hour. everyone's nice enough to me.

besides, i don't know what else i'd want to do at this point. this is a really good time to figure it out. i'm sober, getting more confident, enjoying life itself a lot more and beginning to really work on fear.

fear keeps me doing all the things i shouldn't be doing and keeps me from doing all the things i could. touche

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

perfect days off; perfect eating

i just had four days off in a row. bliss.

i slept beautifully and lengthily every night. ahhhh. great sleep tops everything, if you ask me.

my eating was easy, gentle and intuitive. i ate what i wanted, when i was hungry. and if i wasn't hungry and felt like a cookie or some potato chips, i had some. but i really didn't have cravings or any desire to use food emotionally.

i realize how much more comfortable i am in the world. i did very little over the four days but i swear, i enjoyed each moment of each day.

i savored my morning coffee, spent glorious hours in bookstores, got a manicure, took long bubble baths, read wonderful books, went for walks, took myself out for lunch one day and dinner another.

i also lead an AA meeting, helped facilitate a workshop and attended a really good AA meeting, all with very nice people.

there was nice time with the guy i'm seeing. and we helped an elderly friend move to assisted living, which was emotional, but i'm glad we could help.

four perfect days.

i didn't cringe about coming back to work until 4 am this morning, when my eyes popped open, and i realized i wasn't going to be sleeping in today.

i'm now tired and my usual grumpy BUT i know i didn't waste one second of my time off. and there will be other days. heck, Saturday is just four days away. zzzzzzz

Monday, May 2, 2011

Are we self-absorbed?

i think this post will be controversial and perhaps some will be angry with me, but i figured i'd still put this out there.

someone said that their first impression of anorexics was that we are self-absorbed and unappreciative. now, however, that person says she knows differently.

i, however, think that our eating disorders do, in fact, lead us to self-absorbed and unappreciative behaviors. we are not to blame -- we are very, very sick and struggling, BUT i do think we can be quite narcissistic, as well as unappreciative of all that others do for us and all they withstand.

it's less now, but certainly in the past, my eating took over every meal. what did Melissa want, what would i eat, what would i NEVER eat? what time was it comfortable for me to eat? what could be kept in the refrigerator? what must never be in the refrigerator? what holidays could i tolerate? at which holidays (thanksgiving, christmas) would i never appear.

everyone's world revolved around me. was i eating? was i sneaking off to the bathroom every time i ate? was i being honest about my intake?

special arrangements always had to be made for me, and if they weren't -- oh the wrath i'd unleash. and there was absolutely no way to please me.

during all the years i was starving, i was mean and miserable. but i felt entitled to my fury and moods. when i think of what my friends and family dealt with, yikes. and particularly my mother. how would i have dealt with me?

and unappreciative. did i ever say "thank you" for all the special arrangements? i honestly don't think so. i was more angry that they were putting fattening food on the table. why couldn't everything be steamed or poached? why did we have to have meals at all? what about ME?

perhaps i'm being harsh. and i suppose that knowing this wouldn't have helped me much -- i was desperately, miserably sick.

but i wonder, what if i had said "thank you"? what if i had been kinder and gentler, and more aware of my parents' struggle -- NOT in a self-hating, guilty way, though. self-hate is once again just self-absorbed. and guilt is useless. what if i had just been nicer? and less resentful?

who knows? who knows if it were even possible, what with how unhappy and confused and desperate and sick i was.

very importantly, i don't think we need to feel badly about ourselves for our actions and behaviors -- we are dealing with very, very difficult issues, afterall. i just think it's interesting to notice and perhaps, if possible, make some adjustments. if it's not possible to do things any differently, perhaps, it is at least, good to notice.

i'm just wondering what you think. i would love any and all feedback from you guys. what DO you think?

Friday, April 29, 2011

Hello Mojo

I'm happy to say that my mojo is back! Hallelujah.

I'm comfortable with food again -- YAY! it took a while, and i sure felt uncomfortable but things are back to normal. i'm not stressing or obsessing, which is brilliant.

i suppose it started with the food journal. writing everything down helped me see where and when i was using food for purposes other than fuel and nourishment. giving up gum and candy made me feel so much better about myself too. although i've struggled some with missing my candy, overall i don't even want it.

with the food journal, i did send it to my acquaintance, Mary, as she suggested, but i haven't heard back, and it's been a week. somehow, that's okay. i needed her comfort so much that night that i called her. her kindness and suggestionss in that moment put me right on the path of healing. perhaps, that is just what i needed.

i've also been making myself go to bed earlier, and that really helps. i'm such a night owl and hate the morning BUT i don't have that luxury with the new job's schedule. being inflexible was only hurting me, so i'm off to bed a little earlier and really feel better.

i've been working on myself -- working on patience, kindness, compassion, tolerance, gratitude......all this helps more than anything i could ever dream of.

and very importantly, i got a couple of highlights and, finally!, a cute haircut -- it makes all the difference. i was feeling frumpy and pasty and my hair was drab and the cut was kind of square-shaped. now i have a little bounce and some brightness, and i swear, i'm a new woman.

Compassion and a good haircut -- what else does a girl need?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

A Girl Can Dream

this life here, right now, is kinda "eh". sooo, i am perking up to get things going. a girl can dream -- dreaming, happily, is free.

sooo, the job is quite "eh". there's still pretty much nothing for me to do, and i get the really scut jobs, if any. it's not particularly good for the ego, BUT i am doing so much work on myself around it. i need a job, i need to pay my rent, i need benefits and this is where i am right now, and it really is okay

but, this is not where i have to be forever. that's where dreaming comes in. and that's how i'm going to spend some time today. where would i like to be? what kind of work sounds appealing? what do i want in a job, a home, a life? what do i want for myself. what's important to me? what are my values? what am i doing to live them?

i've sort of been biding time, trying to make the hours pass at work. but that's not how i want to spend my days -- life is too short to kill time. what can i do to make the most of this life?

i'm a little nervous. will i get overwhelmed, as i do so often? will i decide i'm too under-qualified for everything i want in life? will my old negative voices kick in, as they always have in the past? and then what will i do to bring in new, hopeful voices?

hmm, we'll see.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011


i'm shutting down the gum and candy. i just emptied my purse and put all my goodies out for my colleagues. they're in bubble gum heaven.

i've had enough. it's kind of like when i put down the drink -- i was done.

after work, i'm off to the dentist to have two cavities filled. that's FOUR total this year. i've had tons of cavities and several root canals. ouch. i'm sure it's all the gum and candy (none sugarless).

plus, it's obsessive and just a replacement for food, alcohol, drugs....whatever. i've used whatever i can to calm myself.

we'll see what happens. it's going to be pretty uncomfortable, i'm sure. uh, very sure. (hope i don't take up smoking!)

but i want to make this change. i want to be healthier. i want to be free of all my obsessive chewing and sucking; all my comforting through snacks.

writing this here on the blog is meant to help keep me "honest". i'll be checking back with status updates.

i'm not touching coffee and diet soda. yet.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Sending the Food Journal

i'm procrastinating typing up my food journal and sending it to Mary. i was completely honest, and it's somewhat embarrassing. i'm too mortified to tell you guys how many pieces of bubble gum i chew in a day. and how many diet sodas go down.

i truly hadn't realized how many old habits i still have! but i am excited to start fresh -- to give my body a chance to be happy and healthy.

On a different topic (well, it's really the same topic, isn't it?), i'm a little nervous about Easter. I haven't been nervous about a holiday in years, but this time i way 15 pounds more than i have in many years, and i'm not as comfortable.

Plus, we're eating early which, historically, is tough for me. And i'm going to my best friend's house. His mother is the best cook of all time, and makes enough wonderful Easter food to feed the Tri-State. and THEN she also makes enough Italian food to please Rome -- all from scratch.

Growing up, i spent most Christian holidays (i'm Jewish) at my best friends house. Christmas Eve AND Christmas day were gastronomic miracles. At different points in my eating disorder, i'd have varying amounts of difficulty with the meals BUT i loved his family so much and being with them and for once, feeling a part of a family, that it didn't much matter. i was just gloriously happy to be with them.

i haven't seen the family in over ten years. we were all living in different areas, and i had my own (crazy) life.

this year, i invited myself. my parents are gone, my brother and i still aren't on particularly good terms, and my sister's in Pittsburgh. I WANT FAMILY.

i've been praying a lot about it. i want to go and enjoy the company and catching up with everyone. i want to enjoy a nice meal but keep the focus on the joy of this beautiful sunny day spent with people who are so dear.

i'll let you know..

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Some Help

i just made my first entry in my first ever food journal. it's kind of a breakthrough. Never, ever before, in all my 47 years, have i shared my food intake with another human being. what i ate was between me and my eating disorder and that was that -- a sacred pact. I refused to share with any therapist or nutritionist. None of their nosey business, i told myself

Until now.

I've been displeased with what i've been eating and how my body feels lately. I've been leaning on diet sodas, sucking candies and late night snacking. It just doesn't feel healthy.

but i hadn't known what to do or where to turn. then it hit me -- a lovely woman in AA is a nutritionist who had nearly my exact eating/food/body issues. She's been doing great for years (she, Mary, also has something like 20 years of sobriety.)

Mary always looks great and healthy and she's got a very happy and full life. And I like her.

Yesterday, I got her number from a friend and called her. She was WONDERFUL and truly "got" where i'm at and knew exactly what i was talking about. another plus, we're about the same age with one major difference -- she feels great and has lots of energy. Me, not so much.

Mary offered to work with me in any way she can. She told me to write down everything i eat for three days and we'll look at that and go from there.

I am beyond excited and relieved. Mary really has everything in perspective -- she eats for nourishment, and she eats healthfully BUT she used to be just like me.

I'm also thrilled that she has a really solid Twelve Step background. On the AA front, she's a true leader who's founded meetings and sponsored many, many women.

That's why i just made my first entry in my food journal and i have no problem with it. My new, free life awaits!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Just the Way I Am

i want to remember that i am fine the way i am.

yes, i want to find a way to feel more free around food and weight. i would like food to truly settle into its proper role -- fueling and nourishing.

when i'm depressed and bored and frustrated, sad or upset, i want to turn to God, not to Werther's caramels. and i'm hoping i'll find some resources in OA and all my reading that will allow me to take the steps toward the freedom i seek.

yet, i also want to be okay with myself, just as i am right now. i am a fine, healthy weight. would the ED in me like me to weigh less? sadly, it's still a yes. so, part of my process is learning to accept me for me.

maybe i don't want a food plan? maybe, i don't mind eating the way i do now? i don't really over-eat. i truly like healthy food, in general. i do eat dinner very late, but i always have (my mom worked very late when i was little and dinner was often past 10 pm.) i never let myself get famished. i don't binge or purge.

but i do still use food for comfort. i definetely lean on diet soda to get me thru the day. and all the gum and candy. i'm getting tired of it, yet i can't seem to slow down or stop. hmmm, guess i do need some help here.

good to know.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Figuring it Out

it started with eating. sure, later i found drugs, alcohol, spending, obsessing about men...

but it started with food.

i'm going to get to the bottom of this. i'm going to be okay.

i've been reading a great book, Food: The Good Girl's Drug, by Sunny Sea Gold. It's all about binge-eating. i identified one million percent. my eating disorder started with binging, day and night. after i gained 70 pounds, i caught the starving disease. starving, as it so often does, lead me to binging, then purging.

i've come a loooong way, baby, but i still worry about my weight, still think of food when in need of comfort, still look forward to eating alone at night and well, i haven't got this down yet.

i'm going to. i'm not giving up until i'm living in this world content with my body and having food in its proper place.


Saturday, i'm going to an Overeaters Anonymous meeting. i've never been before. i'm not sure it's for me, but i'm interested in seeing how it works. AA, of course, changed my life in every way, but it makes more sense -- you can (you must) abstain from alcohol. but food? we'll see.

i've decided to make a study of this whole thing on my path to real freedom.

Ciao, ED.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Hormones and the ED

...with apologies to men. and anyone else who doesn't feel like hearing about this. also, maybe triggering?

yes, it's that time of the month. the time where i'm completely on edge and grimacing, no matter what you or anyone else says. it's the time where i am crippled for 2.5 days of pulsating cramps -- yes, i swear they vibrate. and now is the time when no pants (not even one's from ten pounds up) fit. as i write this, my super stretch jeans are unbuttoned, and i'm about to change into sweats before i head out to pick up Chinese food for dinner.

of course, there's nothing wrong with getting Chinese food. there's nothing wrong with eating dinner.

but why did i think about food all day? why did i think food would comfort my screeching, exploding belly? a "normal" person, (read: someone not reared on bingeing, purging, and starving) would want nothing less than a meal at these particular moments. in fact, they might have to force themselves to eat some rice or crackers or something to coat their stomachs before they take their next five Advil.

hmmmm. come to think about it, maybe i really just need some rice and maybe some gentle protein to fuel my body and coat my stomach before gobbling afforementioned ibuprofen.

this post sounds like the "old" me. hormones make me cuckoo. i'm thinking about not posting this -- is it pissy? resentful? vaguely nasty? is it triggering?

is it? please let me know. i have no perspective at this moment. Thanks!

Saturday, April 16, 2011

comparing ourselves

turns out, the gorgeous woman who sits next to me at work weighs exactly what i do. how happy am i -- she's perfect, so i must be okay.

but here's the thing -- why am i comparing myself to every human on earth? i'll even watch my guy friends eat and gauge what i'm eating against what they consume. with the guy i'm seeing i'll hear myself thinking, "he's 5'11 and weighs 170; i'm 5'6 and 135. he ate a whole sandwich, but i had more potatoes..." how ridiculous.

i compare myself to everyone about everything, actually. i think everyone's better, smarter, funnier... mostly, i assume everyone knows better than i do.

i'm starting to work on this. it's SUCH a habit -- it's shockingly constant. at this point, i'm more noticing than taking action - it's so ingrained.

i'm working to ground myself in myself. THIS is where i am and who i am right now, separate from other people and who they are.

it actually feels odd. i've always gauged who i am against other people.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

My Answer

A.A. in Two Words

"All A.A. progress can be reckoned in terms of just two words: humility and responsibility. Our whole spiritual development can be accurately measured by our degree of adherence to these magnificent standards.

Ever deepening humility, accompanied by an ever greater willingness to accept and to act upon clear-cut obligations - these are truly our touchstones for all growth in the life of the spirit. They hold up to us the very essence of right being and right doing. It is by them that we are enabled to find and to do God's will."

Bill Wilson from a talk in 1965 (Printed in Grapevine in 1966)

i didn't know what else to do. Humility seems to be my answer. Work is finally fine. I realize nothing is beneath me (except denigrating or judging others)-- this is where i am in life. Learning and practicing humility is something i've never done before. it's actually kind of interesting and it's makes everything, well, just fine.

as for taking responsibility -- living up to my side of the bargain, changing the things i can and accepting the things i can't -- well, that's pretty cool too.

these two words bring me great peace and freedom.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Not a Problem

i'm going to mention my weight and my eating, so if that's difficult for anyone, i completely understand.

I'm 5'6, and this morning I weighed 135 at the boy's house. That's the most i weighed in years and years and years. It's fine, and I look fine, but i'm no longer super thin, as i was for years. In my mind, being slim was one of my best (and only)claims to fame

Last summer, when my world was so crazy and i was drinking like crazy, i weighed 110. SUPER skinny -- i looked awful.

I've gained a lot of this weight recently and quickly. I'm sure that my horrible new work hours and unhappiness in the job have contributed to this burst of pounds - eating out of boredom comes into play. and with the weird hours, my body's not sure when it's truly hungry or if it's just tired.

BUT i've been eating differently and better. I used to live on salad and red wine. i had to seriously restrict to keep my weight light.

so, i'm no longer exclusive with salad. i'm now dating around. this must be fairly confusing for my body -- red meat! potato salad! butter!

I'm still okay, though. In the past i would have created a problem somewhere where there wasn't a problem

My weight is fine. I'm fine. The guy I'm seeing doesn't have an ounce of diminished passion, because i'm heavier than when he met me.

i was raised to believe that people would like me less if i weighed more. i was raised to believe this was acceptable. now, i believe neither. if someone's opinion of me changes because of weight gain, i don't want to know that crazy person.

i was raised to believe that all men would have no interest in me if i weighed more. so far, not the case. it's still a little difficult for me to believe, but the proof is in the.....well, the bedroom

this is still a work in progress, but it's good. i do wonder, though, if this bothers any of my readers -- talking about my quick weight gain? i don't want to scare anyone. my body has always really, really loved weight. and i don't exercise at all, (that's something i need to look at for my health and bones.)

it's my experience that when most people start eating more naturally, they don't gain anywhere near what i have. each body is different.

this journey has it's moments, but i find it pretty liberating and not particularly scarey. i'd love your feedback and reactions

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Accepting Weight Gain

Russian peasant stock. That's what i come from. All of my ancestors were strong and hearty and healthy. NOT thin.

i've written about this before, but it's coming up again. i'm not naturally thin. my body loves to gain weight and does so quite quickly and easily.

as i've been letting myself be about food, i've definetely put on weight. as i've forgone the daily weigh-in, my pants have tightened indeed. however, this is what's supposed to happen, i'm sure, for MY body.

i weighed myself at a friends' a few nights ago, and i'm now up 15 pounds since last year at this time. that's 35 pounds heavier than my lowest weight. am i healthier, you betcha. am i happier, YES. and i'm no longer living on red wine and salad.

i look like an adult woman, which makes a lot of sense, since that's what i am.

still, it can be difficult. i'd assumed that if i learned to eat intuitively, i would somehow end up nicely thin (not skinny). for many people, that happens. but i have to accept, as i've said, that i'm not naturally thin. i don't know what my natural weight is yet, but i want to be ready to accept it, no matter where it falls.

until then, i'm hanging in there, literally loosening my belt and staying away from the scale as much as possible. i also (and this is corny) look in the mirror and tell myself i look just fine. this actually works. i do look fine.

my guy friend pays me lovely compliments (love that!)and seems to find me pretty attractive.

i'm eating well. not binging, purging or starving. and i'm living life.

pretty good, if you think about it.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

What to do About My Job?

my new job's got me depressed. well, i guess i'm letting myself get depressed.

i have worked really diligently to keep myself from griping and moaning and whining and blowing off the steam. today, i need to vent. please forgive the rant.

there is NOTHING to do here. why did they hire me? I sense they thought it would be busier.

when i say i do nothing, take it literally. every once in a while, they hand me some grunt work -- make a few copies, send a fax, order lunch, pull a couple of files. other than that, i spend 8 hours trying to look busy. i fail.

i'm just not sure what to do. i'm considering checking to see if my old job will take me back. who knows if they would -- i left after only six months, thinkng this here was a good oppty. my last job didn't thrill, but it was fine.

i was happy then -- happy with my life, my adorable little apartment, my AA meetings, my friends. now, i'm depressed and obsessed -- all i can talk or think about is how bored i am all day. dread.

i need a job/paycheck, OF COURSE. and benefits, so it's not like i can just walk.

should i give it a chance? my boss tells me it will get busier and there is oppty, but can i make it, doing nothing for 40 hours per week until who knows when?

everyone is very nice. it's a small family business in a very small office. i like that's it's super casual -- i could wear pajamas and no one would care. if i need to leave early or take a day off, they don't care at all, and they'd pay me, even though i've been here only a few weeks.

still, i'm not a morning person and the job starts at 7:30, and its 45 minutes from my house. at my old job, i got in at 9:30 and it was 12 minutes from home. my sleep was, for the first time, great. now, i have so much trouble again -- getting to sleep and staying asleep. i'm always exhausted

also, food's more problematic here -- i've over-tired, bored and unhappy. and they're ALL obsessed with food. they order lunch before 10 am.

i'm certainly building a case for leaving, aren't i? but it's scarey -- i do need that paycheck and who knows, maybe the next job i'd find would be AWFUL. i hate job-jumping too.

does anyone have any suggestions or thoughts on this? i find myself pretty confused and bummed.


Monday, April 4, 2011

Clothes That Fit

Yes, my clothes are too tight. As i write this, i'm wriggling around in some jeggings that used to fit just fine. now, there's muffin top rolling over the front of my jeans. happily, i have a big sweatshirt that skims my (newly full) thighs. unhappily, i struggle to breathe.

i've been ignoring the fact that my clothes are just too tight. i kind of wondered were my weight would land after i got better adjusted to the crazy hours of the new job. but instead of floating back down, as i'd truly suspected would happen, things are still going up, up and away.

i'm hanging in. i'm genuinely interested in where this all will settle. i'm just doing what i'm doing and living a good life and wondering what size my body wants to be.

it's not always easy, but i can put it aside and go on with my life. i think i look like a normal person -- i'm not special in my thinness or special in my heaviness. i'm average. nothing about my weight or eating or body image is special. but, i can be special as a person.

so yes, i'm okay with body changes BUT what about my wardrobe? i can't afford new clothes.

ahh -- there's a bright side. it's almost summer -- i'll bet all my sundresses and t-shirt dresses will fit. problem avoided. YAY

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Free from Weight Tyranny

it's amazing, but i really don't care what i weigh. i really don't.

of course, i don't always know what i weigh anymore, so what's to actually care about.

the thing is -- i look fine, and i'll look fine if i get bigger. i trust (trust, me?) that i probably won't get too much bigger,anyway, because i pretty much eat normal-esque portions when i'm hungry and don't often get too full. why don't i get too full -- because it doesn't feel great and i like to feel good.

i find i don't need to feel so filled with food because my life is richer. i love and adore my new apartment, my new friends, my new attitude toward life. i am appreciative and grateful and see where things were once so much worse. and there are wonderful people in my corner now.

sure, i re-visited eating-to-soothe in the first two weeks of my new job. but it was okay and even manageable. yes, i chewed a lot of gum and sucked a lot of hard candies to calm my nerves and anxiety. did it help -- in a way, yeah. now, i'm feeling calmer and pretty darn good.

as i mentioned in my last post, i did note a few extra pounderoos when i jumped on my friends scale last week. but then i jumped off the scale and had dinner with that friend. life went on, i ENJOYED the evening and i was fine.

when i say i "enjoyed" the evening, i mean that i could be present and part of the conversation. we watched a movie, and i saw the movie. i wasn't worrying about what i'd weighed or what i'd eaten or what i'd weigh tomorrow or what i'd eat tomorrow.

talk about freedom.

re; my weight. i obsessed over every ounce of it for most of my life. even as i was healing and allowing myself to settle at a healthy weight, i still watched that weight with every inch of my 20/20 vision. even as i stopped throwing up and taking laxatives and binging and starving, even then i lived by the digits. when they went up, i'd freak -- sometimes a little and sometimes a little more.

not now.

i'm dating someone new, and he seems perfectly happy with my body. for some odd and unknown reason, i've been getting asked out a lot lately, which as i said in an earlier post, i find bizarre. people, i'm going to be 47 in June! no one asked me out in my 20s or 30s, and i was thinner then.

and there you go. nobody liked me more when i was supermodel thin. not one person, although i really thought they would. they didn't.

i CERTAINLY DIDN'T LIKE ME at all when i was supermodel thin and obsessed with weight, then drugs and later, alcohol.

now there's some peace. is there perfection? absolutely not. i'm a work in progress but now, i see a lot of progress.

that's free.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Here I Am

Is it possible that i haven't posted in over a month in a half? Unbelievable.

Life has been busy. I did change jobs and am not sure at all that i made the right choice. This was a risk, and i knew it. i wasn't thrilled at my old job, and this new gig seemed like a potential opportunity. i wasn't all excited to start, but i thought it could be better than my last job AND it did seem to have potential.

the jury is out, way out, but i'm hanging in. to be continued i'm sure.

with the new job came some anxious times. prior to switching positions, i was sooo darn happy -- loving my wonderful new home, enjoying my freedom, loving my AA friends and feeling really free from my addictions, one and all.

once i started the new job, a lot changed and i've struggled some little bit with wanting to eat just to comfort myself. yet, i'm ok. i've begun finding balance again.

the schedule is really different. i have to be here at 7;30am, and i have nearly an hours drive. before, i got to work at 9;30 and it was 12 minutes away from the new home.

i'm a night person and dislike the morning. and i'm entirely bored at the job, so i started reaching for sucking candies and gum and coffee with my usual vats of cream. i'd suck and sip compulsively. yick.

for the first two weeks, i allowed myself to suck to my heart's content (discontent?). i had too much else to worry about.

and it was okay. was i thrilled? no. but i was thrilled that i could accept that i, temporarily, wanted external comfort, and it was okay that, temporarily, i gave in.

do i feel like i've gained a few? yup. and i'm still okay. in fact, i stepped on my friend's scale, and i saw that i did, indeed, gain a few. the miracle -- i'm still ok. i still don't have a scale at home. and that is, truly, a miracle.

i also had some thoughts of drinking, which i haven't had. it's been over six months (yay!). but i didn't drink. instead, i looked at my issues and worked on working them thru, versus trying to solve my issues thru a bottle, especially since that never worked anyway!

life isn't perfect. the important fact is learning i can cope -- without binging or starving or drinking or taking klonopin or ambien.

i'm okay. and that's wonderful.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

i don't seem to care much about my weight

did I write that, "i don't seem to care much about my weight?" WOW.

i just wrote that in response to a comment on my last post and then i stopped -- i guess i DID write that. could it be true?

i last weighed myself 12 days ago. it's a pretty big deal for me, indeed.

hand in hand with jumping off the scale, twelve days ago, i left D. and my home of 3 1/2 years. since then, i've been living on my own, in my own place for the first time in years. in the last 12 days, i went on a job interview and got offered a job (which i think i'm going to take tomorrow.) i've helped facilitate an AA workshop and lead a meeting. And i've felt friendships grow and develop, even in the last 12 days.

so much has happened and changed and moved me forward happily and with powerful strides.

on some levels, in the scheme of things, it seems trivial that i haven't stepped on scale. yet, we all know how huge this is.

speaking of huge....the "elephant" in the room. will i grow huge without the "kick your ass" guardianship of the scale.

i don't know. i have no idea how much i care.

my weight is definetely up. i look better. i feel better. what if it goes up more? i don't know. my range of "fine" keeps going up.

this is all rather startling. i find i love being startled!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Great Weight/No Scale

i feel like i'm at a great weight, but i wouldn't know. i haven't weighed myself in over a week!!!!!! i don't own a scale. YAYYYYYY.

i can't remember the last time i went more than a couple of days without hopping on that digital monster. and during those days, i was really kinda nervous. now, well, i have some brand new trust that things will be fine.

i was up 8 pounds when i moved out last Saturday. i'm assuming i'm somewhere in that range now, but it doesn't seem to matter.

as i make lists of what i need in my fabulous new home, every once once in a while i'll think, "oh, maybe i should get a scale." but then that thought drifts out. in truth, i really need to watch my pennies and i certainly don't NEED a scale. toilet brush - yes. vacuum - yes. tampons -- yes, a true necessity. Scale -- uh, if i have a couple extra bucks, i'd rather have a latte.

isn't it nice that the scale loses? ha ha!

let freedom ring.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Internet's coming

i'm getting internet service at my wonderful new home today, so i'll be back in blog world. i've been computer-free at home since Saturday. no TV either. quite peaceful, actually.

i am so looking forward to sitting down and catching up on blogs. (i'm writing this quickly from work-- personal stuff is HIGHLY frowned upon.)

i love, love, love my new home. i couldn't be happier.

AND -- i don't have a scale. haven't weighed myself since Saturday morning. i was totally a daily weigher. this is grrrreat.

gotta run back to work. more later -- when i get internet service. YIPPEE

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Moving Day is Here

Hey, everyone. I'm moving today! i can't believe it. I'm going to have my own apartment.

i haven't written much lately, because everything's been a wild whirlwind of activity swirling around. but i found a nice place that's much closer to work == half hour closer each way. and i'll be standing on my own two feet (a little scarey financially, but that's the way the adult world works.

i'm super tired today -- up all night packing and there's a BIG day ahead. Can't wait for the end of the day, when i curl up on my own bed in my own apartment where the heat is great. yippee!

a bunch of guys from AA are moving me. i am so lucky and grateful. my life is not the life i had six months ago -- not by a loooong shot

if i'm not in blog world for a little, you guys know why. also, i missed the cable guys at the new apartment the other day, so i don't have internet or tv yet

the guys are here. gotta run

Friday, January 28, 2011


I’ve gained 7 pounds and I feel….sexy? is that possible? Could I actually feel more attractive with seven MORE pounds?

Yes, I was really comfortable seven pounds ago –lean & healthy– I could slither into my favorite jeans even after they’d been tossing in the dryer for way too long. I thought I looked great.

But here I am, 7 pounds heavier and feeling fine. And just a little hot.

If you’re anything like me, you rarely feel sexy. Somehow, weight-watching took away my zesty gene. There wasn’t much room (no room) for hips, thighs or boobs.

Now, look at me. I’m looking kind of round. My bra’s a bit too tight. There’s a little belly pooching out against my pants (I didn’t wear jeans – they’re not that comfortable today!)

So, I’m bopping around work. Look at me! Don’t I look like a real woman?! Woo hoo.

This is wild AND wildly wonderful. I feel grrrrreat.

And I’m not restricting or thinking of restricting. In fact, I’m letting myself be. That feels grrrreat too.

I have been weighing myself (obviously, as I know I’ve gained 7 pounds), but what if I stop? Does it really matter what I weigh? Uhm, there’s an interesting question…

The fact is, the chances are, I’m not going to gain the zillion pounds I’ve always feared. I eat healthfully and moderately with little treats.

Wow, I almost sound like a normal person. Uhm, did I say that?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Going Natural

I’ve posted before about my seriously low self-esteem when it comes to my looks. Way too much time and money (and I mean WAY TOO MUCH) has gone to cover and disguise my natural appearance.

With all the positive changes in me and my life, I’ve begun to lose interest. Does anyone care if my fingers and toes aren’t professionally manicured?

I used to wear so much make-up; I truly believed I looked UNACCEPTABLE if I wasn’t FULLY made-up at all times. I was embarrassed in front of my boyfriend in the morning. Last March, I went to Macy’s and spent $785 on cosmetics. And you have to know I had tons of make-up at home. Yes, that’s right - $785

Now, I slap on eyeliner and lipgloss, during the week. They both wear off by noon, BUT I DON’T CARE. I think it’s fine. I don’t cringe deeply when I look in the mirror. Wow.

I got Lasix eye surgery a year ago, and it’s thrilling to see, but really –I thought I was hideous with glasses. I recently saw picture of me with glasses and you know what – NOT HIDEOUS.

My biggest stumbling block was always my huge frizzy, brillo-pad hair. I straighten it professionally and have it dyed blonde pretty frequently.

Suddenly, it doesn’t look like me to me. I’ve been pouring through old pictures of my mousy brown mop-top and………..well, that's me.

This transformation of thinking amazes and thrills me. It’s brilliant to put my time and efforts into other things (anything!) but my appearance. And to I think that I look okay….well that’s priceless.

Saturday, I’m heading off to the hairdresser and going back to brown. Back to basics. Back to me.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


Work is really, really slow, and I work on commission. I’ve been cold calling and calling and calling, but nobody’s hiring. My boss is NOT happy. And I hate cold-calling.

If I’m not cold-calling, I’m working hard to look busy, but I am truly running out of ideas.

Right now, it’s making me anxious and depressed. I have that bleary-eyed, foggy thinking, brain befuddled thing going on. I’m getting a little sweaty. And there’s two more hours to go. AND this is the time of day where it gets even slower.

I don’t mind the job at all if work is consistent or busy, but that’s just not happening lately. Every day stretches before me. I sit next to my supervisor who wiggles if I’m not on the phone, making or taking calls.

I’m a little worried about my job – if I’m not taking ads, I’m pretty superfluous.

I daydream about going back to school but am not sure how, exactly, to afford this. Do I want to take loans at my age and end up in big debt? I just got my credit back and don’t owe any money at the moment. AAAARGH.

I don’t know what to do about work. I’ve only been here four months. I’d really like to be able to stay here and support myself. I don’t want a different job at the moment. All I’m qualified for is more of the same. As I said, I don’t mind this job if I have enough work to do.

What do other people do when they’re bored, anxious and depressed at work? Anybody hiring?!

Monday, January 17, 2011

How I looked

Yesterday, I pulled out some old pictures and found a photo from my brother’s first wedding, when I was fifteen – 31 years ago.

For the last 31 years, I’ve told anyone who’d listen that I was a hideous child – very, very heavy, frizzy hair, braces, glasses and acne. Recently, I’ve been wondering if that was really true. Was I truly ugly or was that just ingrained thinking?

Well, according to this wedding photo, I was a perfectly normal-looking kid. Yes, I was heavier than I am now. Yes, the braces were already off at this point and my sister had tamed my hair for the photo, and I’d taken my glasses off but still – I looked like a normal teenaged girl.

If you read my post about my niece’s weight, my sister was appalled that my niece at 5’4, weighed nearly 150 pounds. I think that’s just fine. My niece is healthy and very active with lots of energy and lots of great friends.

At 15, I was probably 5’5 and 150 pounds. I thought I was heinous and crashed dieted and binged and starved and took diuretics and shortly after, found laxatives. My mother dragged me from Weight Watchers to diet doctors (pep pills!) to NutraSystem. We tried the Beverly Hills diet, Atkins, Scarsdale, just for starters.

I gained an additional 40 pounds, all from misery.

What if I’d been raised to believe that I was fine at 5’5 and 150? What if I’d never known Weight Watchers or multi-colored pills or fruit fasts?

I wonder.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Jane Fonda's Weight

Academy Award winner Jane Fonda has a new exercise video coming out.

Ms Fonda has a history of anorexia and bulimia but says she's absolutely healthy now. I hope that's true. i've always kind of felt sorry for her. She never seemed very happy or comfortable with life or her body. Her husbands cheated on her, she got breast implants and now she says she's had more work done.

Still, she says she's happy and healthy -- that's according to an interview I just read in People magazine

Here's what worried me. Ms. Fonda says she now maintains 121 lbs on her 5'8 body. That, in itself, sounds awfully thin. Then i wondered, knowing that she's 121, not 120 or 125 or about 120ish, suggests that she's really watching that scale. From there, i wonder if she's 121 on every scale, her scale, her doctor's scale...

Something about Jane fonda always makes me sad. This was no different

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

About my Niece's Weight

Just a warning. i talk about height and weight in this post.

My sister was telling me that my niece's weight is really an issue. Jessica, now 15, stands 5'4 and, my sister stage-whispered with horror, "must weigh 150.

My naturally skinny sister talked on and on about the tips she wants to give Jessica. (I'm sorry, but naturally skinny people don't get to give diet tips! i don't believe in diet tips, of course, but they're even worse coming from someone who's never dieted in her life)

of course, i worried about this all day. here's the letter i wrote my sister last night.

if it's possible, can you forget about the weight? i know it makes her unhappy, but if you can, don't add to that unhappiness. she'll find her way.

i thought i was the ugliest thing on earth because the family so valued slimness. i work with two zaftig women who think they're gorgeous. and they are. all the men chase them. and these women are 5'4 and about 170. i know, because they tell me. they're adorable.

if you can't live comfortably with her at 5'4 and 150, really think about that. she's healthy. she's wonderful. does it really matter how she looks? does she really look "bad"? does it matter to you?

we're a weird society. leave her alone and give some thought to why she feels the need to eat so much. is it anxiety? or...?

i would definetely not give suggestions based on how you do it.

what would happen if when she complained, you said, "jessuca, you're beautiful and you're healthy. if you're unhappy, let me know what i can do to help. but as long as you're healthy, you're weight isn't particularly important."

what IS important about jessica?

if this feels really hard, think about it. i was sure that you and mom loved me less because of my weight. i loathed myself. i wouldn't take that risk with jessica.

if this feels really hard, think about it.

just my opinion, but i feel pretty confident here. help jessica feel glorious at every weight. please

Tuesday, January 4, 2011


I forgave my mother on Sunday.

I realized she was broken too, and I forgave her. Yes, in many ways, she wasn’t the mother I might have wanted, but by holding on to ever single thing she ever did and said, I made it all worse. As I re-lived each “wrong” over and over and over and over, I experienced each miserable experience over and over.

In a way, I loved my resentments. They were what I knew, they kept me righteous and they gave me purpose. Poor me, what an awful childhood – I need a drink. Poor me - let me pop a pill to space out the world

But the drink, the pills, the binging, the purging, the starving -- they made me miserable and took away my chance to move forward and to be free.

My mother had a difficult life, my mother was broken too - i forgive her.

My mother was a beautiful pianist. Her parents wanted her to be a secretary, but my mother paid her way through Juilliard by teaching piano lessons. At 16, she moved to New York and supported herself living on the Upper West Side. Mom was so smart and charismatic and engaged in life. When my mother got her Parkinson's diagnose, she went to Thailand and rode a camel.

I look like my mother and smile when people tell me that.

For most of my life, I forgot all these lovely things and only remembered all the negative and lived the hurts over and over and over.

I forgive her as so many have forgiven me.

I loved my mother.

Do try this exercise at home.