I thought about not writing this post. As a matter fact last night I stared at this screen for what seemed like days trying to think of what to write, how to put into words exactly how it works in my mind and how the past comes skipping back up the lane gently slipping it’s hand into mine and off we go. I could not do it, I simply could not process it into words. Tonight I will try again.
I went to the movies with my mom and Lauren (aka my twin). We saw a film where someone is dying. They are in a hospital room slowly withering away to nothingness. As I was watching the film I thought of my Dad, of watching him through the years wither away watching his dignity and life seep from him in small droplets, slowly, with no feasible way of making them stop regardless of how I tried, so desperate to stop time. I sat there watching the movie but what played in my minds eye are memories that haunt me when I let them. As I watch this movie set of a hospital room, down a fake hallway, the prop door leading to the actress laying in the bed I can all to easily remember the sour stench of what it was like to walk down the halls of the nursing home day after day. Room 1103 was close to the nurses station,two doors down from the shower room and it was directly across from the lady who never had visitors but who sat patiently on her bed staring out the window day after day waiting for someone. In my six years visiting my Dad I never saw anyone come to visit her. I would go say hi to her and she thought I was her daughter who had come to take her to the fabric store, I could never bring myself to tell her otherwise. The memories I have of his time there are so vivid and yet I struggle with a tattered patchwork mosaic of hazy memories for a time when he was not old or ill.
I am writing this to tell you how it happens, this is how I fall from grace, how it begins and how the cycle of self loathing starts. How I am triggered, and how the memories and emotions trigger old habits. How I comfort myself without even realizing what is happening. In the past I don’t know that I have been able to identify it, or that I am even aware of it when it happens. I am aware now.
I returned home from the movie and made dinner, chicken vegetable orzo soup it simmered on the stove and when it was time to eat I had a bowl with a dollop of goat cheese on top and a toasted pita. Then I had another bowl and then I had some gluten free marshmallows, and then some rice crackers and then I peeled an orange and with part of a segment still hanging out of my mouth I went to the freezer and as I pulled the drawer out to see what was in there it hit me. STOP. STOP. STOP! I spit the orange out in the sink and in a frantic race to get out of the house I pulled on my too big blue jeans with no belt and in my house slippers I went out the back door , through the garage and I walked and walked and walked. Tears streaming down, chest heaving, shaking and holding up my jeans best I could. THIS IS IT, this is exactly how I got to be over 600 pounds. In the past it has not been soup, crackers, marshmallows and oranges. It has been pizza and burgers and ice cream sandwiched between shame and self hatred. For the very first time I was able to see the whole thing play out and actually process in the moment what happens. I feel free. I don’t know if this will make sense to anyone but to me this revelation is huge.