Tuesday, July 21, 2009


I found another good weight loss blog called Escape From Obesity that I started reading in the day or so. Having finally gotten through PastaQueen's tome-present day, I needed another source of inspiration. There are a million good health/wt.loss blogs out there, but I'm just one woman and can only really focus on one at a time. So Lyn, of EFO, is my latest inspire-ator. I read an early post of hers today and was moved to send her an email telling her how I related to her workds/thoughts/feelings. And in my new effort at economy of action, I am copying the email I wrote to her here as a post for today. A few new thoughts came to me whilst typing to Lyn, and rather than double my efforts, I decided to clone them instead:

I found your blog last week and have begun reading the archives from the beginning. Me like!! I just read your 9/10/07 post titled "Full", where you talked about the amazing quantities of food you could ingest at given times and not really be full. Good heavens, can I relate! But what I wanted to comment on was about you losing your mom at age 32, thus being rendered an orphan in the absence of your already deceased father and no siblings. I lost my mom at 23, after caring for her at home during the end stages of her cancer. I am also an only child who had lost my dad when I was 11, so I was acutely aware of losing the only/last person in the world who allegedly loved me (relationship with mom had been strained for years) after her death. I was about a year out of nursing school, and "left my life" for several months to care for her. At this time in my life, I was very thin (in an eating disordered sort of way!), but also a major binge eater. I once had an elderly man sitting next to me at a family style restaurant look at me and say, "You sure do eat alot for such a little thing!" Compulsive exercise, the ability to restrict my calories to ridiculously low levels, and just plain youth likely helped me achieve that "little thing" status in those days.

But once my mom died and I became what I called "a single agent, more alone than alone", my eating began to take on bizarre and voluminous characteristics. I still managed to keep my weight normal until after my second child was born (no way was I going to do "an only" to my kids), when I began the creep up the scale, with ever increasing momentum, that I've battled until recently. And just now, as I write this, I realize that once my #1 life goal of not having an only child was achieved, I lost the ability to keep my eating in enough check to not gain weight. Hmm...significant? Anyway, I've gotten as high as 237 (same as Oprah!), and gotten as low as 195 a couple summers ago trying a radical 12 step program that makes OA look like a free for all. Weight fell off while following rigid restrictive eating plan...weight piled up FAST once I decided to allow myself "one treat". Alas, I'm sure you know the drill. In essence, my relationship with food has always been passionate, tumultuous and often out of control. As much as I love food and eating, they have never given me genuine pleasure because of the crazy relationship I have with both.

About 6 weeks ago, a series of events (ranging from emotional to physical and even spiritual) unfolded that culminated in my reflection aloud during a meditation class that while I loved to swim and be in water, I haven't been in water (other than a tub or shower - alone) in over ten years because of my shame about my body and refusal to put on a bathing suit. This admission stayed with me that evening, and I felt very sad about the truth of it and about the state of my body image. I went to bed and just before waking the next morning, I had a dream in which I was standing at the shoreline of the gulf of Mexico (where I grew up), looking out at the water, wearing shorts and a lose tank top. And suddenly, I just dove into the water, which (in the dreamscape) morphed into more of a pool with clear beautiful cool water; and I swam and slithered and did somersaults in the water - playing like an otter. It was glorious. And when I woke during my otter sequence, I knew my soul had spoken to me. I knew it was time to make peace with food, eating, and most importantly, myself . That very day (June 12) I signed up for an exercise and weight loss program at a local gym, I stumbled upon PastaQueen's blog and began reading her archives to the present, and have now found yours and several others I like as well. I'm beginning, and I'm not giving up this time. I am working to accept myself on bad days as well as good ones and to stay the course for the duration. I also started my own essentially private blog (I had another for a long time and love to write) called willswimagain.blogspot.com where I can do what so many have done... chronicle my experience for myself, work out issues as they arise, and practice out loud the very important act of self love and acceptance. And I'm feeling better. Physically? Definitely. Emotionally and spiritually? Beyond measure.

So thanks for your inspiration. I wish you continued success on your journey, and I wish the same for Moi!

1 comment:

  1. That was such a touching email! I really appreciated you sharing that with me. I am certain you will reach your goals with the wonderful attitude you have. Take care!