The first thing I want to do is encourage you, if you grew up fat like me, especially if you are a woman, to go buy Kristin Higgins’ book, Good Luck with That. This is the story of 3 young women who met at a summer camp for fatties and stayed in touch through the years. This book will make you cry, laugh, remember the pain of the past, and be glad you are past that now. If you are not, you should seriously get some counseling.
Kristin Higgins herself is not overweight. Not 200 pounds overweight like Yours, truly. But by talking to hundreds of women who are, she gained a lot of insight and put it all in the book. Like seeing yourself as fat no matter how much weight you lose. I look back at pictures of myself and think, You looked great! Why didn’t you do with that? Well, having been molested as a kid, I had fears to deal with at that time.
The food issues, the treat just for today, tomorrow back on the diet. A chiropractor put me on a liquid diet with a very strict list of foods that I could consume one a day. I made delicious broccoli tacos. But that’s not the way normal people live. I wasn’t normal, but I wanted to be. Every event that happened, especially in the Society for Creative Anachronism or the science fiction conventions, I’d throw together something to wear and promise myself I would lose weight by next year and make a sexy/pretty/amazing costume to wear. I’m still waiting for next year.
I lost weight. I gained weight. I did aerobics and hiked. I tried Fit for Life, the only plan that worked well enough to fit into daily life for me. I always blame my loving husband for causing me to stop exercising and going to meetings, but I was the one with abandonment issues. I was sure he used me to get out of a bad marriage and would cheat on me like he did on his wife. Being the other woman carries lots of guilt.
Mike also was thin and healthy. He even stopped smoking soon after we moved in together. He didn’t like the idea of steak without potatoes, or chicken without rice. The Fit for Life plan segregates food by time of day. Fruit in the morning, nothing else. Whole grains and veggies midday. Veggies and protein in the evening. I lost so much weight but I had no skill power and could not resist potatoes or rice if I made it for Mike.
I never wanted to have gastric bypass surgery because I didn’t know anyone who had gone through the torture and kept the weight off. To this day, I only know one person who has kept the weight off for decades. I know I would have failed. Food was too much of a friend and comforter. My mom was a pretty good cook and an amazing baker. I was told to clean my plate at every meal, and my brother believes that’s why we are overweight. I’m sure it was part of it, but for me there was so much more going on.
Grew up fatherless. Molested. Needed to hide and be ignored. In high school, I put up with despicable actions from the people around me. But reporting would have made things worse. Being alone as far as a relationship goes until my 40s, being embarrassed about my hair, clothes, skin, glasses, amount of food I ate in public (not that it stopped me from eating), were just the things in my life that I carried around until next year, when I would have lost weight and looked wonderful.
Losing weight does make you a topic of conversation. People don’t mean to be cruel, I hope. But I have so many memories of the offers of food because I would eat anything, and being told it only takes will power to lose the weight. Then the ones who want to know how you did it, but don’t listen because really they wanted to tell me their method or their friend’s plan, or why it wouldn’t work for them. Sucks to be us. And when you agree to go out to lunch with them, they become the pushers, assuring you that you can have a little bit of this or that. No, I can’t. I feel especially horrible that when my sweet friend Leslie did the Clean 30 last year, I hated the fact that she couldn’t come out to lunch with us any longer. I was not supportive and I am so sorry.
Read the book and also read this blog by and about Bailey. Send me comments about your struggles, because often we need someone to listen to us. We need to be heard. We need this today, not next year. Thanks for reading, I’ll be back on Thursday.