My name is Melody. I am a recovering alcoholic. I am a mother. I am a wife. I am a woman that is diagnosed as bi-polar with clinical depression, severe anxiety and panic disorder. I am a woman that wears many hats and not all of them are positive. Today, I finally admitted to myself that I am addicted to food.
My entire existence and who I am has centered around food. Food and being fat because of it. I am not a medically reasoned fat person. I know each and every time that I put food in my mouth that I am making the choice. And every time, I sit there and literally ponder what I can cut from my intake in the next day to make up for what I am about to do. It’s a horrible way to live.
How I envy those people that eat to live and not the opposite. How I wish that I could walk away from cookies and cupcakes. How I wish that I didn’t obsess about one particular food for a week. Not eating anything else until I have made myself so physically ill from the consumption. How I wish that after nearing forty years on this earth, I could put down that last bite and be satiated. But, I never do.
At one point in my adult life, I weighed in at 331 pounds. Today, I stand at 168. Last week I weighed 164. Yes, you read that correctly. In one week, I gained 4 pounds. How in the fuck does that happen? Normal people don’t do that, right? Now, most people think that in the scheme of things, four pounds is a mere drop in the pie pan when you compare 331 to 168. Well, not to me. Nothing changed in my life last week. I wasn’t anymore sane or depressed than normal. Nothing changed in my physical activity level (or lack thereof) in the last week. And, it’s not Aunt Flo’s visit. I just gained fucking weight. And, to an extent I can see where 4 pounds is “nothing”. That is until I begin to analyze how that measly four pounds is really going to hurt me. That is when I think about gaining 4 pounds a week for a month. (16 pounds approx.) Then, I think about gaining 4 pounds a week for the seven months that my husband is deployed for. That is where panic ensues.
You know that point when you are eating something and you use KNOW that the last bite(s) are going to make you miserable? You stop eating, right? Nope. Not this girl. This girl sits there with the last bite of food in her hand or on her plate and waits. Waits until it feels like she can manage that one. Last. Bite. Then she gets sick and has to stick her fingers down her throat to vomit because it hurts so badly. This is not normal. This is not the actions of a person that wants to “eat to live” and be happy. Yes, you also read that correctly. I gag myself to vomit if I eat too much.
I am 168 pounds and I am 5’8″. By some accounts, a relatively tall woman. All the charts say that I am overweight. Yet, I have been told that I look “sick” or asked “how much more weight…” do I want to lose. (btw, I am not sick at all and I want to weigh 150) When do I start feeling that my weight is acceptable? When do I start remembering that my husband met me when I was 200 pounds and still wanted to be with me? When do I stop thinking that the rail thin woman is silently scolding me for eating the exact same thing that she has on her plate? Well, apparently not anytime soon since I can’t stop eating.
The other night, a friend called me a bad mother. She made accusations about me on my own post and then proceeded to private message a friend of mine to make sure she knew that I was a bad parent. Now, this was not a close friend. I met her maybe six months ago? But, she totally seemed cool enough. She is into rescue just like I am and we actually foster kittens for the same mutual friend and her rescue.
The woman said that I curse my children out, have them raise my three year old and punish them for the things that the things the three year old does. All of these accusations of which, are false.
I will by all means, take responsibility for the fact that I use um, COLORFUL language and it takes over a lot when I get excited or upset. And, yes. I have used curse words towards my children at one point or another. (As I am sure most every parent
***This is a draft from last year. Again, not sure why I didn’t publish it or finish it. But, I do remember being lit the fuck up about something and decided it would be best to not address it in this blog.
I will be 40 in two months. I am from Mississippi. I was raised with a member of the KKK as my grandfather. I don’t say that with pride. But, I can tell you that aside from the discipline and the insane amount of church that I was forced to attend, my grandfather was and continues to be a good man. I don’t dare ask the things he saw. The things that he may have participated in. All I can say is that I still love this man. Despite all the things that he preaches in true Sunday Christian fashion and the way that he will call a man a ‘niggra’, I still love him.
What I cannot and will not tolerate now that I have a voice is those that feel okay with spewing vulgar names, pushing the already present racial divide.
I’m getting off topic here so, let me pull it back in.
I believe in the #blacklivesmatter movement. The black community needs us right now. Since every one seems so desperate to need to claim a hashtag, we now have #alllivesmatter. We now have #bluelivesmatter. I’m sure that there is a #muslimlivesmatter. My thoughts…
***This is a draft that I saved from last year. Not sure why I never finished it nor published it.
Okay so, not really. On most days I do well to not get my ass kicked by some huge Jamaican woman. Don’t laugh. Until you have stood shopping cart to shopping cart with one, don’t you dare laugh.
A few days ago an announcement was made throughout the US Navy that has to be the most nerve-wrecking, fingernail biting, cursing every high ranking asshat that holds that one email. Yes people… We entered, duh duh duhhhnnnn…
The Season. Chief Season. Induction.
Normal people refer to it as “jovial menacing” or “driving to the point of hilarious insanity”, “good natured ribbing by BFFs”, aka., Hazing. (btw, I am required to say that in no way were any sailors hazed by any other sailors that may or may not have been hazed in previous seasons. At least to my knowledge.) But, I digress…
I have been subjected to post after post after post about what gifts to give or tips to give to the newest CPO(Sel) spouses. Let me take a minute and tell you what ‘gift of advice’ that I would bestow upon you. Only four little words to remember;
Don’t. Be. A. Cunt.
Yup. It’s that simple. You are not your spouse’s promotion. His/her promotion is not yours. You don’t have to stop associating with friends that may rank below your husband now and you don’t have to change carpools because you are the wife of a man that wears khakis.
This weekend has been one, long, nonstop anxiety inducing panic attack. It would slow at times but, still just linger in my chest. There were so many times that I even had to stop and make myself REMEMBER to breathe; and then would panic wondering “Who the fuck forgets to breathe?” and the cycle would begin again. I am the person that when I try to slow my breathing, inhale deeply and exhale slowly… I fucking panic. Why? Because what the fuck is wrong with me that I have a goddamned panic attack because I am trying to alleviate a goddamned panic attack?
Saturday morning. I had a full on, crying and screaming, shaking and in literal pain because I didn’t want to paint my formal dining room. No, this wasn’t a “…lazy Saturday, I don’t wanna” kind of fit. This was a complete panic because I worked so hard on that room and the thought of painting it to appease buyers that may or may not be serious about purchasing our home destroys me; HOURS was the amount of time that it took my husband to calm me down and convince me that I didn’t have to do anything if I didn’t want to.
Yesterday, I stayed so medicated on goddamned Xanax that I slept almost all day on the couch or was in such a fog that I didn’t know what was happening. It was fucking miserable. I paced the entire house. Every room, multiple times. And I was ANGRY. So angry and I still have no clue as to why.
At some point, my husband convinced me to go with him to the store to grab a few things. Yeah, that was a mistake. I can’t count how many times that I had to stop and lean on the shopping cart to avoid my legs buckling, trying to remember to make myself breathe but, not too deeply because then I got lightheaded and thought for sure that I was going to pass out and well, that would have ended badly. Not failing to mention that continuous, never subsiding utter pain in my stomach to my chest and making my teeth throb.
This morning, I woke up at 3am, snuggled up to my husband and thought to myself that today was going to be a GOOD day for once. Then his alarm went off and reminded me that because of not being of sound mind for a majority of the last 48 hours, it was not Sunday as I thought but, rather Monday; and my husband has duty.
My motivation is nil and although my anxiety/panic has passed for now, the horrible ache in my stomach and my lungs reminds me of the physical toll that an attack like this can leave behind.
But, on a good note… I lost 6 pounds in less than 4 days.
This morning, I was making my um, second (or fourth) cup of coffee and for some reason my grandfather popped into my head. Not the living one but, the long time gone one. My father’s father. The part of my genetic code that I wholeheartedly credit my quiet, quick and mental warfare abilities from. Thank you, X.L.. You were one of the greats.
Anyway… there are things about my grandfather that I can pull from memory and then there are the stories. Some of those stories were romantic and involved my grandmother, Ellen, and some that included a dog, a knife and jumping states lines but, that is all complete hearsay and no charges were ever brought against him and no one can prove anything. I mean, the guy lived for fuck’s sake but, yeah. That’s a story for another time.
Let’s go with my memories since well, I can confirm these. Well, I can confirm them as far as my first 12 years allow me to.
I guess what brought him to mind was my coffee. X.L. had some very unique ways of doing things. Being almost 41 years old now, let’s just call a spade a spade; he was OCD as fuck. “Unique”, ha. Back to the coffee though; X.L. would make his coffee in a regular old cup. Add his sugar to the cup, stir and then pour it onto the saucer and drink it from there. Pick up the saucer and literally, slurp it down. I always told myself that it was to cool off that delicious nectar of the gods but, I don’t think that I ever asked. I wish that I had asked.
Coffee in hand, I stood in the kitchen and just tried to remember the things that he did and said. Although I don’t remember his voice and I don’t recall words of insight or advice, I did remember another little doozie that again, I wish that I had asked about.
X.L. loved banana sandwiches and I’m pretty sure that this is another thing that I can give him props for. (I have one almost every night before bed.) He also, on top of his coffee thing, had a way of eating those sandwiches that boggled me and honestly?, I’m still confused as hell. A traditional banana sandwich, at least to me, is two slices of white bread slathered with Blue Plate mayonnaise and with slices of an almost over-ripened banana between. BAM! Pure fucking, glutinous deliciousness. However, this was not the case with my dear Pop. The components were all the same but the prep was over the top, WEIRD. Stay with me here…
X.L. would take a saucer (wtf is it with with saucers and this guy?), and use a fork to MASH UP the banana, then add mayonnaise to it and stir it until it was mixed and finally slathering it on the bread. That is a big, fat, unequivocal, disgusting NO. Oh, I tried it. Once. And once was enough. The slime and the goop. Nope. And again, something that I wished that I inquired about. For the record, I always just assumed he did it because sometimes the slices that are in between the bread will fall out and it can get messy; mashing it all together makes more of a spread and less likely to just fall apart. Yeah. I like my theory.
X.L. also had an earthworm bed under this enormous tree in his backyard. If he wanted to go fishing, and that was often, he would take a bucket and a rake, go out and just turn the top soil enough to see those nasty little fuckers scouring for safety, scoop them up and be on his merry way. I’m pretty sure that I was more than happy to help him scavenge for the things as a small child but, I do remember towards my last memories of him, hiding in the guest bedroom and playing in a hope chest that my grandmother still had full of her hats and gloves from the 40’s. (I was NOT supposed to be doing that, btw.)
There was a mirror that hung in their hallway. That mirror always creeped me the fuck out. All the things it had seen and the places it had been moved to. All the make up that was applied, the coiffed bouffant up-dos that were perfected, the ties that were straightened, the dirty faces of kids and grand kids passing by on their way to the bath, the tears of happiness at babies born and weddings and the tears of losing people they loved.
That mirror hangs in my formal dining room now. And sometimes I just clean it. But, never too much or too often. All of the things that it has seen, I will never know and that’s okay because it will carry some of my secrets on when I am gone. And maybe it will bring some memories to whomever it resides with next.
Xeles L. Swindoll, b.1911 d.1988