For a while, I was doing so well. I showed restraint. I could drive by a Burger King and smile as I easily fought the urge to stop. I could stroll pass the ice cream freezer in the grocery store and just keep on going. In fact, I lost 32 pounds.
Now? Now, life is harder. I’ve been inundated with change. My new job, a new sleep schedule…new people to cope with and the new issues accompany them. The stresses and strains of dealing with so much change in my life has all but thrown any discipline by the way side.
Enter hapless self-indulgence.
When that happened, I began eating and drinking for distance and sadly, it’s caught up with me. Mashed potatoes and fried chicken can feel like warm, supportive arms when there are no human ones in your realm. But sadly, the warmth and security is short-lived. Once the full tummy fog has lifted and lucidity re-enters the picture, you realize how fleeting ‘food love’ can be. You can only fool yourself so much with emotional eating because it really doesn’t compensate for anything substantial. Food certainly can’t replace human contact. In fact, it can be a stark reminder of one’s solitude. You sit there all alone, there’s nothing and no one between you and an empty plate that’s smeared with tale-tell gravy streaks–evidence that you let the biscuit that came with your #7 four piece dark meat dinner, handle mop up duty.
And when I’m like this, when I’ve gained weight because I’ve lost a sense of myself, I have severe reflection avoidance. I don’t look at myself in mirrors. I apply make up intuitively or by feel, which sometimes means lipstick is extended to my earlobes. I also hate looking at photos of myself. I rarely take good ones. Even when at my fighting weight I’m not very photogenic.
It all sounds shallow, I know but I want you to understand that I only have surface self-loathing. I have this premise in my head: that if beauty is skin deep then fat is just deep skin and under this layer of adipose, there lies a decent human being. I know the quality of my soul and my heart, which due to my recent weight gain is probably enlarged.
Anyway, it’s true…I’ve gained most of the weight I fought so hard to lose this summer and in spite of the fact that I’m relatively well-adjusted internally, the outside is what everyone sees first. Let’s say I’m out at a club or at a party, no man is going to approach me on the off chance I’m witty and somewhat self aware!!! Since I can’t change the way men are wired, I can change the way I look. Well, I get that but as wonderfully together as that sounds, losing weight is much much easier said than done. To be honest, the reality is that all of this has me angry and a bit depressed, which sadly, usually triggers more compensatory eating. But I’m going to try not to sink to such depths and let my my lack of discipline and embarrassment over my level 2 bloat serve as further motivation. I feel like a sausage and I’m miserable. MISERABLE!!!!! And apparently, so are my clothes. Last week, I put on a pair of paints and they were so tight, I looked like an angry amoeba trying to split.
And they were drawstring sweat pants.
Yesterday, I actually heard a pair of stretch leggings scream in pain.
But wait, it gets worse.
I was walking into Target the other day to do a little Christmas shopping. I heard a car backfire and as I turned my head in the direction of the sound, out of my peripheral vision I caught a glimpse of someone who was walking right behind me. I mean like, right up on top of me practically!!!!! Any closer and we’d look like a tandem parachute jumping beast with two backs.
Well understandably, this was extremely unnerving. Parking lot attacks on women are nothing new in Houston; not even in broad daylight. Not only that, ’tis the season for purse snatching and these dayscrooks are far more brazen. Well, whoever was behind me was up to no good, so I held my purse tighter and stared to walk faster.
So did my potential attacker.
I started to gallop; so did he.
I glanced to my side again. The bastard was sly and sneaky, we were even dressed similarly. My God, has he been stalking me???? I sped up; he did too, never leaving his proximity to me.
I decided to confront the miscreant behind me. I turned and very defiantly screamed,”What the f—–?????” I stopped in mid expletive and my own dismay was the reason.
You see, there was no one behind me. No criminal; no menace to society. No frighteningly evil knife-weilding psychopath that had played a starring role in every nightmare I’d ever had.
No, the culprit that was chasing me so closely; that was egregiously invading my personal space in a manner that was criminal—was my own ass.
I stood in the middle of the Target parking lot, devastated by the realization that my ass was now the size of would-be rapist. I was sad, crest fallen..besieged by my own lack of discipline; my lack of conviction to my self-respect.
Shopping would have to wait. I couldn’t shop. I can’t do anything when reality has just bitched slapped me like that. The only way to deal with this was go home and do a little self loathing in private.
But wait….why do that? Self-loathing is what brought me to this corpulent place in my life; only real, abiding self-love can fix it. I was suddenly bound and determined that I’d revisit my diet regimen that resulted in so much weight loss this summer.
Time to get back into the practice of eating nothing by lean meat and plenty of green, leafy veggies, fresh fruit and drinking my weight in water.
I decided to start right away. I’d would go grocery shopping to buy all the things I’d need for my diet regimen. This time I would do it. There’s no stopping me now.
Fueled by my renewed determination, I drove to the nearest supermarket. My large, man-sized ass and I walked in together.
Skinless chicken breasts √
Fresh vegetables √
Fresh fruit √
Two cases of bottled water √
“Yeah, this is good”, I thought to myself t as I wheeled my shopping cart out to my parked car. Weight loss is at hand. I’ll be healthier, look better…certainly, I’ll FEEL better. If I can just say no to all the temptations that chocolate, cake, bread and potato chips provide. All are the weaknesses of my flesh. I can do this. I can say no to empty calories. I can choose to make healthy choices. Cut back. I’d go all Charlie Sheen on my convictions. I WILL win by losing.
Think of nothing else. Focus. FOCUS!!!!
Just as started to put my groceries in the trunk, a man walked up to me and said, “I haven’t eaten in a week”.
I turned and looked at him. His steely eyes never left mine. I closed the trunk and said, “Man, I wish I had your will power!!”
I think I’ve lost half a pound so far.