Saturday, December 31, 2016


The number one New Year's resolution, apparently, is losing weight. Isn't that bizarre, when you think about it? Of all the things we could hope or dream to change and make better with the gift of a new year, most of want.......weight loss.

We sure don't dream big, do we?

For many, many years, my entire life's goal was to be thin. For me, that was as good as it got. I didn't pursue a meaningful career, a fulfilling relationship, and I certainly didn't reach out to help anyone else. 

Barely, a life.

So, this year, I resolve to pursue my true dreams. I have an interview next week for a volunteer spot with the National Eating Disorders Association, I am going to blog every day, and look for any other ways I can help those who suffered as I did.

I also resolve to be kinder, more considerate, less selfish, more patient, tolerant and loving to all. Now that's a REAL challenge. Losing weight's got NOTHING on kindness. (Or patience!)

That's a life.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Care and Feeding

I have a cold with a runny nose and a stuffy head,achy bones and tired body. Just home from work, I'm going to have hot soup with crackers, hot tea with lemon and a hot bath with bubbles.  Then I'm off to bed. 

This is not how I would have treated myself, when sick, back in the days of the eating order, 

I remember suffering a raging stomach flu when  I was anorexic. I also remember eating mass quantities of raw vegetables, because that's all I ate.  And I so looked forward to those veggies. It didn't matter that my stomach revolted. Trust me, raw broccoli is of  no help to a stomach virus. But eat it I did. In mass quantities.

When I was bulimic and had a root canal, I still made myself throw up all night. That's what I did, no matter what. I binged until i couldn't move, and then purged until I felt empty - root canal or no root canal.

What a miracle, and I don't take it lightly, that I can take normal, nice care of myself.. I never thought it  would be possible and easy. But it is.

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Why Skinny?

I was in Manhattan yesterday and everywhere I looked, I saw a super-skinny, exquisitely dressed, incredibly chic woman.  And when I say “super-skinny”, I mean pretty literally toothpicky.

Now I’m sure there are exceptions, but REALLY – is anyone that thin naturally?

So the question becomes – why do a large group of women want to be that skinny? These women on the Upper Eastside, where I was visiting,  have the means and often, time, to look anyway they like, and this is what so many choose.

I’m an average weight now, but once I weighed 40 pounds less, and I was STARVING all the time.  I thought that was somehow virtuous. I called myself “good” if I didn’t eat.  I called myself “fat fucking pig”, 
The thinner I got, the better I thought I looked and I would do anything to stay skinny.
 For breakfast, I ate the paper wrapping of a muffin. I’d head to Dunkin Donuts, order my black coffee then stand for a few minutes, pondering which flavor of muffin to order – kind of silly, considering I really did just eat the paper it came in. Lunch was iceberg lettuce and raw veggies with balsamic vinegar.  For dinner, perhaps a coffee yogurt, preferably frozen so it would last longer, more veggies, and then my big reward – one oreo cookie.

I was dizzy and weak all the time but even more, I was angry. I hated everything and everyone, particularly anyone who seemed comfortable eating. If you offered me food not on my “plan”, I resented you even more. How dare you!

Finally, I couldn’t live that way anymore and I began to binge constantly. Terrified of weight gain, I discovered bulimia and purged as often and as violently as possible.

It was a horrible, miserable, sick existence, but I did it for years. To stay thin.

Desperate not to eat, I turned to alcohol, hoping I would drink and not eat. And stay thin. Finally, I discovered crack cocaine, which killed my desire for food and got be back to skinny . But  then it wasn’t just weight that I lost.

I lost everything.

Of course, all those women I saw yesterday most likely do not struggle as  I did or perhaps not even at all, but I still want to know why skinny is their ideal.

Or anyone’s.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Celebrity Skinny

I spoke at an AA meeting this morning. In the front row, I noticed a woman who looked incredibly familiar, I was sure I knew her from somewhere - did we go to high school together? Maybe I knew her from a different meeting? Was she a friend of a friend?

After a few minutes, I realized I recognized her because she was a celebrity, although I couldn't remember her name, so I kept shooting furtive glances her way. Looking more closely, I saw she was very, very pretty and very, very, very thin. "Ah," I thought, if she's that thin, she's definitely a celebrity. (Whenever I've seen celebrities, they are always startling thin.)

By the end of the meeting, it came to me who she was - indeed, a celebrity. But I also wondered the same thing I've always wondered - why do we want our stars so thin, particularly women?

I've never understood the super skinny ideal - it's so unnatural to most people, especially grown ups. And what about celebrities who have had babies and are then expected to be supermodel skinny immediately? It sounds excruciating.  And speaking of supermodels, why do they have to be so skinny?

Does a woman have to be starving to be famous? And if, why?