Tuesday, August 31, 2010


I recently started corresponding with a new friend about food issues via email. In the course of our conversation it brought up this memory about sneaking food.

I remember a time from my childhood where I snuck some food because I felt I needed it. It was as if there were some magnetic draw between myself and the food. I had to have it.

I was probably a tween and it was definitely summer. I remember wearing shorts, remember sitting at the kitchen table, remember it being the weekend. My mother was making lasagna and had taken a brick of mozzarella and shredded it by hand with a grater.

She left the room and the fresh pile of cheese behind. I got up to eat a little bit, stuffing it into my mouth quickly. Then I went back for more.

My father came charging into the kitchen questioning me about the cheese. Had I taken some? Where was it?

I had heard him coming and hidden the cheese under my leg, my right leg, as I sat at the table. He made me open my mouth. No cheese. He looked around and then discovered the hidden food. I remember a lot of yelling and my mother coming back into the room, looking at me, while I sat shamefacedly.

I think I had been in the room to be close to my mother who worked a lot. I remember the feeling of shame, the embarassment, the guilt. I had stolen from her, from them, and in doing so removed myself even further from her.

Why did I have to sneak that cheese? Why was I compelled to eat? Why couldn't I just sit there like a good girl, a normal girl? Why did I have to let my mother down again?

Monday, August 30, 2010


How do you hide an overweight woman? Answer- in plain sight underneath all the fat and flab. A big girl learns to hide under specially chosen clothes, with a big smile, ready to deflect any conversation about herself to talk about others.

If she sees a mirror she flinches and looks away. She does not want to see her ever expanding girth. She does not want to see the thick waist, the belly that hangs down, the wide hips. She dresses in silence, willing herself not to see the X's in front of the L or the 2's as a first digit in pants or shorts sizes.

She pretends she is a normal size, just slightly bigger. To do otherwise would lead to a further loss of self-esteem. She has so little now that it would seem cruel to add more fuel to the fire.

When she does her Zumba that is the only time when she feels good. The only time her body does not betray her. The only time when she feels powerful, strong, lovely. Is it that time she treasures and holds tight when reality tries to slip back in.

It is better than nothing.

Sunday, August 29, 2010


I remember being young and fat, of course. I was always chubby and I was always embarrassed by it. I had to get clothes in the bigger kids' section, the Missy Plus area. In second grade my pants split and everyone on the playground saw my underpants. In fourth grade I noticed red marks appearing on my skin, especially my belly.

Imagine my shame when one afternoon I was playing on the floor with my little baby brother. My shirt went up and my big round belly was exposed. Both my parents saw the stretch marks.

I was immediately pounced upon verbally by both of them. They were ashamed of me and my weight and my stretch marks. There was a verbal barrage of how bad it was to be so young with those marks. I was branded forever, taught to be further embarrassed by a body that wasn't seemingly under my own control.

Once again my body let me down, I let me down, and I let my family down. That's an awful lot for a little girl to carry on her little shoulders.

Saturday, August 28, 2010


Do people still say they're tuckered out? If they do then good because I am tuckered out. Also, I'm slightly annoyed because yesterday's post which was spell-checked still had errors in it after I saved the changes. But I digress...

I was tired on Thursday after working in the classroom with BJM for a few hours. She did a ton of work and I did a lot for my "easily distracted sensibilities". Then on Friday I woke up with pink eye and felt like I had been hit by a bus. Today I was up from about 2:45 a.m. until shortly after 6 puttering around like I usually do each morning. Again, I felt like I had been hit by a bus and then dragged for a few blocks.

It also got a wee bit hotter here today, out of the 70's and about 85 degrees. The heat just wipes me out with my multiple sclerosis.

No school yet but I must go in this week and finish up the room. So much to do, so little time and I am just plain old wiped out.

Friday, August 27, 2010

The great equalizer

I just finished my Zumba Cardio Party DVD and I feel absolutely sweaty and fantastic. When I feel logy and down I have to remember to force myself to put in a workout and do it. I did NOT want to do Zumba tonight but I told myself I'd just do at least 20 minutes, which I often tell myself, and then I often end up doing the whole fifty minutes or so. Good for me, in more ways than one.

Exercise is the great equalizer. If you do it right you get that endorphin high the experts all talk about. I do it right when I do Zumba and I love it. There is nothing like the feeling when your body has completed a strong, cardio workout where your heart is beating faster, your breathing is deeper, and the sweat is pouring into the bandana wrapped around your head. Afterwards you glow, okay maybe I only glisten, but I feel like a million bucks. I don't focus on the fat and flab. Instead I thank my body for going through the dancing motions and holding up during the tough times.

I am not an official spokesperson for Zumba but I do enjoy flopping around, pretending I am doing all those dances and moves correctly. I especially love the Samba. I like pretending that the guy in the back row with the cute bod is actually smiling at me. I like pretending that Beto, the instructor, can actually see me and is thanking me, just me, for attending the Cardio Party with him.

I thank Zumba for making me feel more gorgeous, more competetent, healthier, and stronger when in reality I am an overweight woman with pink eye. (Yes, you read that right. I go to school for one day with no children and catch pink eye.) Some days all you can do is laugh and then do your Zumba.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Something to consider

"Sometimes good things in life fall apart so better things can fall together."

I put this on my Facebook page this afternoon because I thought it was so wonderful. Thoughts?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

The "S" word

What to write about...

I've got a streak going here where I have written every day in August. School starts in September so that means I'll most likely be losing that streak because I will be busy, busy, busy with either planning, or naps and planning, or naps and planning and exercise. There may be some teeth gnashing in there too. Also, possibly some wailing and I know there will be some kvetching because my feet will hurt.

Tomorrow I will be going in with BJM to work in my classroom. It may be gruesome as I am not anywhere near as organized and helpful as she is. My idea of cleaning is taking everything out of the boxes and then walking around with one thing, placing it here and there and being interrupted by things like breathing and feeling the air-conditioning. BJM is on top of these sorts of things but I'm not sure if she knows exactly what she is getting herself into which is my good luck.

I have a huge room, a double room actually with air-conditioning which means that my old room, which I miss already, was half the size and twice as hot. It's (my old room) under construction at the moment so no one inhabits it yet. I will never get that room back as I have changed grades but I am looking forward to the new huge room. The only drawback is that I have no windows but I am across from a teachers' bathroom. That will be coming in handy for sure.

So tomorrow is a day back at school with an old friend who will be looking at school through new eyes. I hope my computer and SMART board are up and running so I can share that with her. The technology is great and seems really cool to us older folks who graduated 21 years ago.

I guess it makes it fitting that my finger nails are painted bright pink with the color called Back to the Fuchsia. Gotta love a play on words...

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Taking chances

What would you do if you could not fail?

I ask my students to respond to that question in my classroom. I'm always amazed at what they write. Now it's time for me to ask myself the same thing.

Just what would I do?

I'd get healthy and beat back the demons of obesity and diabetes. I'd actually write more and dream about writing less. I'd find myself in a healthy relationship with an intelligent and respectful man. I'd be all that at work.

I'd be unstoppable. Solid, fun, interesting. Healthy, involved in life, living out loud.

So what's holding me back?

The same crap that gives me high blood sugar numbers and hasn't moved the scale down in weeks. The same crap that whispers in my ear, "You're not good enough, smart enough, pretty enough." The same crap that hasn't been dealt with in years about family issues and my feeling of being unwanted. The messy stuff, that's what holds me back.

What's holding you back from living the life of your dreams?

Monday, August 23, 2010


I sit perched on the edge of my recliner writing in my journal with my free-from-Staples red pen. I'm watching E! while chewing on a Dunkin' Donuts cookie and occasionally sipping my small caramel frappe. Yep, I'm plugged into my IV; it's hooked into my left hand, taped above the Silly Bandz on my wrist.

It's infusion day for my Tysabri, the liquid gold medicine for my multiple sclerosis. I'm at the infusion center where I'll be for about two hours while my medicine and then some saline will drip into my veins. This medicine seems to be keeping me in remission which is a wonderful thing. It's also wonderful that I have insurance, a good neurologist that was willing to prescribe this, and an infusion center about 50 minutes from my house.

I'm a lucky girl.

I am lucky. I have a good job and I live in a beautiful area, one small block from gorgeous Lake Ontario. I have great insurance with low prescription co-pays. I work in tandem with great medical providers. I am lowering my blood sugars. I have a handful of close friends that I can count on. I have a blog that I adore and people who read it.

What's not to like?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Marriage: A True Story

I married an idiot. Honestly, I did. I knew better but I did it anyway. My favorite "wasband" story is this one.

One day my ex was making a cake from a box mix. He put the ingredients in the bowl and then mixed them with his hand, his literal hand, because those were the directions on the box. Forget the picture of the spoon in the woman's hand.


Saturday, August 21, 2010


Why is it that some of us choose to eat past the point of comfortableness and go straight to full? Is it because we feel we're lacking in some way, that somewhere there is an emptiness that we are trying to rid ourselves of?

For me filling my stomach makes me feel something. I feel when most of the time I just glide through my life on a sort of invisible track, going through the same motions day to day.

I feel full, weighted as if I do indeed exist on this planet. Days can pass now where I sit in my apartment and see no one else, interact with no one else. But if I eat I take up space. I can be seen whereas before I was empty, full of air. I eat to be hidden from view yet I eat to be viewed as well.

How is that possible? How can one be empty and full at the same moment? Simply because what I am filling up is not the part of me that needs support and love. The empty parts of me are the ones that are the most sacred, the most needy, the most deserving. Yet I share them the least.

When will I learn it's okay to be filled with happiness, delight, wonder and self-acceptance? When will I learn that eating does not, will never, can not fill the voids in my life? All it does is make me bigger on the outside instead of on the inside.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Oh cr@p!

This morning I was deeply humbled by an incident that made me grateful for my current good health. It was early and I was checking my blood sugar. I had just hit the button on the lancet when I realized I needed to go. Yeah, that "kind" of go. And I went as I was dripping the blood on my glucose strip.

You should have seen me. There I was bloody and trying to do the responsible thing for my diabetes as my multiple sclerosis "reared" (oh my, what a pun) its ugly head. In case you're wondering, I didn't quite make it in time which is why this post is aptly titled.

I rarely write about my MS because I am in remission but I do have bladder and bowel issues. I just tend not to mention them because it's embarrassing. Who wants to admit they cr@pped their pants? This happens more than I care to admit, about once a month or so but the feeling that I have to go sometimes comes upon me so quickly that I have to whip my apartment door open after shopping or hang up on friends to get to the bathroom. Sometimes I barely make it.

It's not so bad if you pee yourself but doing number two on you is not something you brag about to your friends. Some of my friends know that I have these issues but most people don't. I take Ditropan to help with the frequent urination. When I go out or am at work I limit my food and liquid intake. Thankfully this year I am right across the hall from a bathroom.

The diabetes meds all cause me some sort of diarrhea. That's the stuff that can hit me like that, making me squirm while someone is talking to me at work. My stomach starts to churn and gurgle and I know I have to leave in the next few seconds. People at work don't know I'm about ready to cr@p my pants so they just keep talking while I look for a way out of the conversation.

So if you see me walking quickly down the hallway to the restroom, don't stop me!

Things could be much worse so the only thing left to do is clean yourself up, buy more big girl panties and chuckle at the messy stuff that is coming your way. :)

Thursday, August 19, 2010


After yesterday's post I realized that I needed to regroup and get focused. I need to start a new way of eating again. It's time for me to be conscious and to follow the guidelines that Geneen Roth puts forth in her books.

When I do what she's suggested I do better and feel better. When I slow things down and give that time while eating back to myself, it's magical. Less food fills me up. I make better choices. It takes longer to eat because I am tasting the actual food instead of just shoving it down.

I wonder if food will ever not have this pull over me. Why are some people able to just eat, to just sustain themselves with food? Why are others of us seemingly tortured day in and out, trying to eat well and get or stay thin?

Who decided that some of us see food as only fuel while others view food as friend, foe, solace, and comfort?

I have been chubby to overweight to obese for most of my life. When I was thin I was only that way due to an eating disorder. I have had a disordered view of food, weight and eating for as long as I can remember.

I'm trying to change that though, again...

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


We know too much of a good thing is just still too much and therefore not really a good thing. Lately I have been having issues with too much, specifically my weight and my blood sugar. My glucose levels are slowly coming down but are still not in the normal range. I know this is because I am still enjoying a one-sided, unrequited love affair with carbs. Specifically, bagels and cookies from Dunkin' Donuts.

They, however, are basically through with me.

Most days I drive to DD before dawn has cracked to buy a bagel with strawberry cream cheese and a cookie or two. Then I come home and eat them in front of the TV. I am not eating them consciously like Geneen Roth recommends. I am not eating in silence and enjoying the food. I am inhaling it and waiting for the sugar rush to hit.

I am craving carbs like there is no tomorrow, as if each meal is the last one on this planet. This is not a good thing. Some people eat a bagel like this every day and are fine. I'm more of a junkie, biding my time to the next carb fix.

I have to stop and refocus on what Roth has suggested in her books. It's time to eat slowly, without distractions. Time to taste the food and savor it. Plus, I am having big time weight issues.

My weight is up nine pounds in less than 2 weeks. I'm not quite sure how that is possible. A bagel a day and maybe a cookie do not add up to that much poundage. I know I need to get in more fruits and veggies. I know my intestinal tract is rather sluggish and it's not my period.

So I did a little Zumba today and the other day. I had a big salad for lunch. I bought some bagels from the store to stop the DD runs so that means no more cookies. I am still only getting a small frappe once a week. I no longer order out every other night. McDonald's is a place I go for salad instead of burgers.

But I still crave more, more carbs, more sweets. I have curtailed my diet a lot from all the crap I was eating before. Then again I was thinner when I was eating all that crap because the sugar was just running through me.

I need to ask myself what I am trying to fix with food. There's some messy stuff hidden there that needs to be dealt with. I need to do this soon before I go back to work, which is part of the issue. I'm still nervous but doing better because I know I still have weeks left before we start up again. I know I can do this.

I have to do this. My body needs me to get it healthy. I'd like to get off some of this medication. I'd like to start the scale moving in the right direction again. I want to buy smaller clothes. I miss my button-fly jeans!

Time to spend more time eating consciously and looking at the messy stuff.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


Many of you who read this blog know me IRL (in real life). You are old friends and new ones, Facebook pals, or people I work with. Others of you have no idea who I am but you come back to read my words nonetheless. Nowhere on this blog will you find my name or my face.

It's not because I am ashamed of what I write because I'm not.

It's for my own protection, if you will. I keep this blog anonymous to keep myself safe. It's a place I can go where I can write about anything and I do tend to write about whatever crosses my mind, whether it be fabulous, painful, honest or somewhere in between. Sometimes it's nothing at all and sometimes I feel like I've poured myself out for your reading pleasure, like pancake batter on a hot griddle.

I'm not famous or any more special than any of you. I just have the desire and need to write these things down. I like your comments when I've struck a chord. I fear your silence when I hear nothing. Sometimes it's as if I'm holding my breath, waiting to see how you will respond. It's not easy writing about some of the topics that I do, it is scary and worrisome. Yet I cannot stop myself.

Being anonymous in a sense is what allows me the freedom to be so spontaneous and open. Some of my friends have learned things about me through this blog that they did not already know. I share things here that I do not talk about with others.

For example, many of you do not know that I repeated the ninth grade. That particular year was a tough one for me. I spent part of that year in a mental hospital due to severe depression and a suicide attempt. When I was released from the hospital I went to a special school for students with severe emotional issues. I did no work there and at the beginning of the new school year I was back at the regular high school.

I basically was a smart girl all wrapped up in the midst of some pretty messy stuff. I repeated the ninth grade and redid the year that I had messed up. It was tough being a teenager with a past that everyone knew about. I had spent years being with certain classmates and now I had to start to make friends all over again. I was a freak of sorts and some people unkindly went out of their way to make sure I didn't forget that. But I survived and eventually thrived despite suffering with depression, battling an eating disorder, and trying to start over.

Here's something else a lot of people don't know: I graduated seventh in my high school class out of about 185 kids or so. Not too bad for a girl with a lot of messy stuff, huh?

Monday, August 16, 2010

Back at it

Today I had to go to work so off I went. I wasn't sure how the day would go but it went better than expected. I learned the algorithms of the new math program. Surprisingly, it was easier than I thought. I still need to work on the multiplication and division but I'll get it.

I also saw my new, giant room. It's the old faculty room from a few years back and it has air conditioning. Air conditioning, people! That's a coup for someone with multiple sclerosis. It's also a double room with a folding partition in the middle. I cannot believe how much room I have. We also discussed where my SMART board is going to be placed. I love my SMART board. It's like an interactive white board/computer screen. Some people love them and some people hate them. I think it's a great tool to use in the classroom.

I have to work again tomorrow so I hope I can hold up for another day. I feel more positive about the new year ahead even though it's all new to me. I can do this, one step at a time.

By the way, did I mention that I'm psyched about my new room?

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Not my words...

The greatest discovery of our generation is that human beings can alter their lives by altering their attitudes of mind. As you think, so shall you be.- William James

I just finished some Zumba and I think I'll be fabulous now! How about you?

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Inner peace and outer calm

Last night I talked with one of my best pals from college. Lola told me that I get crazy and nervous every year at this time. She built me up and made me laugh about my classroom worries. I went to bed and had a school dream but a good one. I don't remember what it was about but I woke up feeling utterly peaceful and positive about the new year.

Then I cleaned my sink this morning and there's something about scrubbing away the smudges with Comet that makes the whole world seem right. After that I cleaned the toilet, filled up a tire with low pressure, and now I am going to do the dishes that have piled up. Accomplishing small chores like these set my feng shui free to do its thing. There's something about cleaning up your space that helps to clean up your life.

I also ate cleaner today and my blood sugar was much better for it. I even felt better by eating healthier.

All around I am going to give myself an A+ for the day.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Talking the talk

I've been talking a lot of rah-rah, woohoo pep talks to myself lately. The problem is that I am talking a good game but not walking the walk.

I have to admit something to you all. I am scared crapless about the new school year. My position was changed at the end of the school year, kind of out of the blue, and I am not happy about it.

Not one little bit.

Did you hear me, world?

I am NOT happy.

Instead I am a nervous wreck, worried about what I am going to do and how I am going to deal with it. The thing is even if I stayed in my old position there would be changes but at least I would be in my same little room with some of the same people. I like "sameness". I am very comfortable when I know what my limits and expectations are.

Now it is all different and it is freaking me out. I am overeating because that is what I do with stress when I don't know how to handle it. I want to let the feelings wash over me but for some reason I am a mess and I dived into a pizza today after an early morning Dunkin' Donuts run for a bagel and cookies. Yes, cookies, plural. I had a bagel and two big ole chocolate chip cookies for breakfast. Then my sugar rose to the 350's. Dumb, dumb, dumb move.

I am afraid I am never going to learn the names of all 100+ kids in my classes. My MS makes my brain slower to learn stuff like that. I don't like to be at a disadvantage and knowing their names is power. There's nothing quite like trying to reprimand the kid in the blue striped shirt. Knowing his name is powerful.

I am not sure exactly what I am teaching yet. I have no set curriculum and I am not familiar with what goes on in this new grade. I am supposed to teach Math and ELA Enrichment, whatever that means. Thankfully the students do not know what that means either. Whew, that's a break in my favor.

We are also starting a new Math program which I am not trained in, yet I am supposed to support it in my classroom. I have some Math training coming up on Monday and Tuesday of next week. Sigh, that means it is almost time to go back to school and I mentioned earlier that that scares me crapless.

I don't want to have to change but I must. There is no school fairy that is coming to sprinkle me with her academic dust that will make my worries go away.

I don't WANT to do this but I am going to put on my big girl panties and do it anyway. I'll let you know how it all goes...

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Into the light

In college, several states away from home, I was very sick with bulimia. There I started real therapy for the first time in my life. I was slightly hopeful. Maybe then someone could see the good in me.

At one time I was so ill I had to go to the college infirmary every day for vitals. Every morning I dutifully showed up. I was a good girl underneath all the "badness". I did as I was told.

Eventually the therapy helped me to realize I wasn't worthless. I never took meds there for depression but that improved also. I got better with someone believing in me.

When I was doing better, years later, the bulimia came under control. Eventually I stopped all the pills and the purging. I went from throwing up every night to nights where I could eat and retain the food like a normal person. I didn't have to excuse myself to go purge any more. I put on some weight once I stopped the bulimia, not much, but I remember my mother saying I looked pregnant. I was so hurt because my family knew of my bulimia but ignored it. They were good at ignoring big problems and making me feel bad about myself.

Now I see a new life, a better one. One not filled with so much anger. One where I can let lots of the past go.

This new life is a strange one. Part of it is better living through pharmaceuticals, part of it is better living through ten years of intense therapy, part of it is self-acceptance, wisdom, and self-love. A lot of it is personal growth.

If I can overcome depression and bulimia, I can overcome anything. If I can adjust to life with multiple sclerosis, I can learn to deal with diabetes. I can learn to control my weight instead of letting it control me.

It's time for the real me to shed the extra weight and let my light shine.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Self abuse

I spent years trying to destroy myself, both overtly and subconsciously. I recall severe depression and self-injury starting in the fifth grade. It escalated from there to hallucinations, overdoses and slit wrists. I was desperate as a young girl to make my pain go away. Suicide seemed like the only viable option.

The first time I was seriously hospitalized I was in the ninth grade. It was like a saving grace, to be away from my family who refused to help me in the midst of all my turmoil. I remember feeling safer but that was not a place where you'd want your child to spend a month.

I was hospitalized again in tenth grade for another suicide attempt and for bulimia. By then I was learning that I was too timid to actually pull off suicide, so I started to kill myself slowly. Bulimia was a way of saying, "F--- you," to my family. It allowed me to scrape my insides raw while looking normal on the outside. I could starve, then binge, then puke it all out. Anger within, exited with food.

It felt good to be in control of one thing in my life. I ran, I starved, I was sick with sores around my mouth. I was anemic. I thought I was fat when I was not. I bought in to what I was told: I was selfish, unlovable, stupid, BIG.

In fact, I was none of those things.

I abused myself because I knew of no other way to survive. There was no help for me, no therapy, only people telling me I was wrong. I was the weird one, the freak, the black sheep. No matter how small I physically got, I could not escape my parents' prying eyes and harsh words. They said I wanted too much when all I wanted was love and acceptance.

Bulimia overtook my life. I lived on diet pills, diuretics, and laxatives. I exercised like crazy, sometimes twice a day. At one time I was doing five thousand sit-ups a night. It took me hours to accomplish this.

It took me years to beat bulimia.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


I had two great glucose readings today, both in the 160's. Could a girl ask for anything more?

Sure she can!

I also put together my new steam mop and used it in my bathroom tonight. The floor looks great, so much cleaner than it did before. I miss my cleaning lady bunches but I am starting to get a little domestic here now that I love my ORECK vacuum and my steam mop.

I spent thirty minutes working out this afternoon to the Biggest Loser DVD. I felt a kazillion times better after working out. The sweat and those endorphins make me feel like a real human instead of a big old lump. I need to remind myself to move it while I still can. It also helps with the diabetes.

Today I read my Momentum magazine from the National MS Society. I consider myself lucky right now because I am rarely inconvenienced by multiple sclerosis. It won't always be that way though. I have no idea when a flare will happen or when I will progress and it is most certain that there will be some progression some day. As long as I can walk and exercise and move freely I need to remember to celebrate my body by doing those things more often.

I'm a lucky girl even with MS and diabetes.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Changing course

When I first started this blog I was a woman who wanted to write about my experience with multiple sclerosis and I did. I spent most of the first year telling my story as I bounced from Copaxone to Rebif to Tysabri with some steroids thrown in for good measure.

So where am I now?

I've been on Tysabri for almost two years now and I am in remission. I haven't had a flare in a long time. I do have some symptoms daily but they are minor, mostly muscle twitches called fasciculations all over my body. Sometimes other people can see them as my skin ripples along. They don't hurt and I'm used to them.

I also have fatigue issues which tire me out easily. During the school year I medicate with Provigil which is a medicine for narcoleptics. It keeps me awake and alert, especially since I rarely sleep all the way through the night.

On occasion I'll get some terrible cramps in my legs that can last for a long time. I also am very heat intolerant and spend most of my time indoors by a fan or in air-conditioning. That's the gist of my MS at the moment.

The diabetes however is not in control. I'm on three medications and testing my blood twice a day. I have had mostly high numbers with a few readings in the 100s. Then I got my period and the numbers have gone high again. It's frustrating.

I have cut the frappes down to one small once a week. I have cut out the Dunkin' Donuts except for once this past week. I stopped ordering out from Canale's and they probably think I have dropped off the face of the Earth as I used to order from them every other day.

I'm working on the diet and the exercise (which I will admit has been few and far between this past week which is an anomaly). I am taking my meds. I am testing my glucose levels. I am looking at the carbs in food. I am drinking my water. I want my diabetes to get under control now and it just doesn't work that way. (Imagine me pouting.)

When I started all of this writing I was a very angry, very fat, very inactive and sad person. I had been in therapy for about eight years when I started this blog. Now I am out of therapy, out of the anger that fueled me for years, exercising, down twenty-five pounds, and able to see a better, healthier future.

What a difference a year or two can make! I am actually looking forward to a new day, a new month, even turning 40 in September. Even with obstacles in the way I'm not giving up; I'm just changing my course.

Sunday, August 8, 2010


Now here's an emotion we can all get behind but somehow we tend to miss it because we're so busy living for others. Whether it be a job, a spouse, a demanding child or needy friend, we tend to put others' needs before our own.

What brings me joy? Big, wonderful events like unexpected snow days, medium-size events like the weekly episodes of Survivor (when it's on), to small events like phone calls from friends, a funny joke, a good book to read, or a smile from a stranger.

Joy used to equal food, or so I thought. Now I know food is separate from joy. Food is fuel that keeps me moving, but it's also been food that has been part of the problem in my life. It's kept me from experiencing more joy in my life and I'm not willing to accept that any more.

Bingeing or compulsive overeating does not bring one joy. As a matter of fact, in those cases you're not even enjoying the food because you're inhaling it so quickly while trying to suffocate the Inner Voice for a moment with carbohydrates and sweets. You're trying to close down those thoughts that you're not enough by filling yourself up. It makes no sense but it's a pattern I was caught in.

Now I'm making changes in my life to make more room for joy and less room for that terrible Inner Voice.

Saturday, August 7, 2010


Why is it that we spend so much of our time worrying about what others think of us? What makes their opinions worth so much more than our own?

I have spent years, too many of them, being afraid. Afraid to be myself, afraid of not being loved, afraid of letting my own voice be heard.

That is why I write here. My voice may be shrouded behind some sense of anonymity but I do have a voice. Here my voice rings out causing people to listen and think and comment on it. Some part of me glows and grows and becomes more alive. Here I become powerful beyond measure.

For once I am not afraid.

Friday, August 6, 2010


What makes you feel safe? Is it knowing that you have a home to call your own, friends who keep your secrets, a spouse who loves you no matter what, or a combination of these things?

For me, safety has been being overweight, to be full to the point where no one can see inside me. It meant to be surrounded by and covered with weight so no one could get to my core, the place where the real me survives.

Slowly, ever so slowly, that is changing.

Weight has been a form of protection, a barrier from and for others for a lifetime. To change that takes great courage and introspection. Looking inside and at myself is something I rarely do. What I see frightens me and causes me to want to run away from that.

What do I see when I look deep inside? I see someone who is small and scared, someone needy and wanting, someone desperate for intimacy but so scarred that I run from it when it's offered. I see someone who wants to be less shy and more open, less restrained, happier, and more content with my life. But I haven't known how to do that until recently.

Shining the light on the messy stuff is hard. Working through the weight issues means not just losing pounds but getting my head on straight. My mother suggests weight loss surgery but that would only solve the problem of the pounds not the actual demons I battle. When you live feeling like you are unloveable, that you are not worthy, that you are not enough, it does not matter whether you weigh 110 pounds or 210 pounds. The feelings are still there and the pounds will come back if that is how you deal with things.

Food is slowly but surely losing its hold over me. I have cut down to one small frappe a week. I no longer go to Dunkin Donuts for bagels or cookies. I can order a pizza and it can last for more than one meal. It sounds silly but these are small victories for me. I am doing battle against diabetes, against obesity, against these feelings of being less than I am.

I am slowly winning but this isn't a race, it's just a journey that I need to take.

Thursday, August 5, 2010


We all have them and they hold power over us. Some are so insignificant that if we spoke them aloud to others they would laugh at us and say, "Is that all?" Others are large, just bubbling below the surface while we keep pushing them down out of view. They are words, thoughts, memories of events that happened years ago or maybe even yesterday. Secrets all have the same thing in common, we need to keep them locked up so others don't see our imperfections and realize how damaged we are.

That's the kind of thinking that comes from believing the Inner Voice. The hard part is not in keeping the secret, it comes from moving past the secret and allowing it to be seen or heard. Power comes from moving through your secrets out into the sunshine, moving past the messy stuff of your life.

Many people have food secrets, weight secrets, life secrets. We're ashamed and saddened and angry at ourselves for our variety of secrets. We push them down with overeating so we stop feeling. We're afraid to "feel" because those feelings might overtake us, wash over us and engulf us in their throes.

What if our secrets get out and people learn what we have done? What if they know we are flawed and sometimes we make poor choices? What if?

The truth is that we are all flawed, every one of us, every single one of us no matter how much good we try to do in this world. The other truth is that we all have secrets.

My blog is a secret from my parents for a variety of reasons. I would probably be disowned for some of the things I have written about from my past. They are not untrue things but rather unflattering and in my family appearances are very important. Ironically, I have a weight issue stemming from years before when I grew up in the midst of a huge secret that I already knew.

I knew that my biological father was not the father of my mother's marriage. I knew that from a young age. I felt I had done something wrong by merely being alive. What an awful feeling to live with for your whole life. To this day I still am unable to deal with these issues and I don't by pushing my biological father away. His overwhelming desire to know me is like a tsunami causing me to run in the opposite direction. This is another piece of messy stuff that I need to work on.

I have talked about many of my secrets here: my weight, my health, my eating disorder, my depression. However, I do not solely focus on the negative pieces of my existence. That would serve no purpose. I try to balance the good, the bad, and the ugly bits. I try to grow from my experiences. I want to share with others that they can deal with frustrating times and come out the other side.

If I can do it, anyone can. All you have to do is take that first step. I'll be here with outstretched arms waiting for you.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Anyone for a dance?

Today I took one step forward and one to the side. I'm not ready to go backward yet. I'll just slide from side to side, even if I don't have a partner.

In diabetes news I had to call in my glucose readings for the last week. The numbers weren't good, often in the high 200s and 300s. Sooooooooo that means it is time to tweak the meds again. Glipizide is moving from twice a day to three times a day and we are adding in a third drug called Actos once a day. I will continue to take the Metformin ER twice a day at 1,000 mg each time.

I am majorly bummed out about the whole diabetes debacle. I guess I assumed that once I was on meds my numbers would just magically drop but not so much. I guess I really need to work at this plus take my medicine. I have made some huge strides with my food, virtually eliminating frappes and not eating out from my favorite order-in place. I am also eating more mindfully and consciously. I am making better choices but my numbers aren't reflecting these choices as much as I'd like them to do so.

I also set up an appointment with a dentist in my insurance network. Huge step forward because I am going to admit to you all right now that the last time I went to the dentist I was still married. I left my "wasband" in February 2000 so it's been a while since a doctor was poking around my mouth. I have no fear of dentists; I just haven't gone because I go to so many other doctors. But, with diabetes, I must now go twice a year like a normal human to get my teeth cleaned.

Tomorrow is my first consultation, exam and X-rays. Then I can get set up for a cleaning. Thank goodness for my flex plan. Now I can afford dental appointments and Tysabri. All my diabetes meds are, thankfully, free.

My weight loss has stalled even with the decrease in food intake. No more Dunkin Donut bagel runs at night. I bought those bagel thins thingies and some cream cheese to savor at home. I also need to get some eggs to hard-boil so I have some more protein options. I can do this, I will do this. It may be going slow but I'll take progress over stagnation.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Happy second to my blog!

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world." ♥ Marianne Williamson

Enough said for now.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Too much of a good thing

I still have more than a month until I officially go back to school to work. I do have to work two days coming up in a few weeks and I will have to go in and set up my new room but for real work, I have some time left to waste. The thing is it's too much of a good thing. I have too much time on my hands.

Sounds like a good thing but for me it isn't. I wouldn't mind working all year long and having three days off a week. Throw in our regular vacations and I would be a happy camper.

Food can be too much of a good thing too. It's all around me and available 24/7 because I am here at home 24/7. I do better on an eating plan when I have a structured week. Now I am just all over the place, sleeping at odd hours, awake in the middle of the night, with no specific purposes to my days.

Food can be friend, enemy, joy, sadness, anything at all that I need it to be. What I need food to be is just fuel. That's what it is supposed to be anyway. Babies come in to the world with base instincts, eating being one of them. They basically eat whatever is placed in their mouths from the little spoons. They don't start out all whacked out about food.

How do so many of us get from there to here? I know I am not the only obese person in the country or the state or this city or even in my apartment building. There are literally tons of us. When did we come to the fork in the road and take it to eat more?

Why do I feel so alone in this when I am clearly not the only fat lady in the room? I guess that's why I see food as a friend at times. It keeps me company when I am lonely and fills up my time when I am bored.

Food as only fuel... something for me to ponder.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

You are what you eat

I've finally dsicovered the mere fact that if you take in crap you feel like crap. Doh! I'm not generally this slow on the uptake but in this case I am. Now that I am diabetic, with my sugars still out of control, I am feeling the headaches that come along with eating too many fats and carbs. I am supposed to be carb counting but have been doing a half-ass job of it.

I rarely sleep through the night and often find myself driving to Dunkin Donuts for a bagel with cream cheese at some random time in the morning, say around 3 a.m. Then I also get a big ole chocolate chip cookie, double doh! No wonder my sugars are in the 300s even hours later.

So today I pulled out my meal planning and carb counting book from the diabetes nurse educator and flipped through it. Time to get a little more serious. I have a good month before I have to return to school and I'd really love to see lower numbers. Even when I do eat well my numbers are often very high, rarely under 200 and nowhere near where they actually should be.

I guess there's a learning curve with every illness. It took me a long time to get past being a person with multiple sclerosis to just being a person again. MS consumed me for a long time because I was so symptomatic and needed to take shots daily. Then there were the side effects of the Copaxone shots. I was immersed in the MS online community, searching for people who were like me, who felt like me. That took years.

Now I coexist with the MS and am happily in remission. That brings me to the present time to focus on food, healthy thoughts, exercise, and diabetes.

I am now turning a wary eye to mindful eating even when it includes a bagel and a cookie. I enjoy eating them and eat them slowly. The problem ensues with the diabetes. That just means it's time to refocus the lens again to see the clearer picture.

It's as simple as the old line, you are what you eat.