Saturday, January 23, 2010


I originally started this blog as a way to journal about my lifelong battle with emotional eating. I've noticed that with time, I've careened off the path several times to divulge other personal issues and challenges. But in the end, most of my unhappiness stems from the struggles I've had with food.

In the interest of not sounding too egotistic or self-serving, I'm going to tell you this directly: that battle is ending for me. It hasn't been an abrupt ending or one that hasn't had its share of relapses. But is a solid ending. Closing the chapter of the book that wants to be re-written countless times. Shutting the door on all the demons and dragons that undermine my efforts to be a healthy person. Opening up to the possibility of change, acceptance, peace and self-love.

And it feels great.

Now I know what it's like to be in control, to have boundaries and to respond to my emotional needs with integrity and respect. I know what it's like to feel good in my skin and to look at food as a source of nourishment and enjoyment. I know how to exercise less and to live more. I know that lunch and dinner and all the time in between is like a big, huge "danger zone." I know that dark chocolate can always be in my kitchen and that ice cream cannot. I know that packaged food - crackers, pretzels, chips, cookies, bars - have no place in my world, not even for convenience purposes.

What I didn't expect is how much I would learn about myself. I didn't expect to have little break-throughs every day. I didn't expect to be this present, this aware.

I'm not out of the woods yet. In reality, I'll never be. But where I'm at now feels pretty damn good. Conscientious eating is perhaps one of the biggest roadblocks to "being in the moment." I may have missed my share of moments up until now, but I'm ready to be around for many, many more.

Sunday, January 17, 2010


is the number of dates I've had in the new year. Three different guys. Three different days (still not courageous enough to try "back to back" dates!). Three pretty similar experiences. Sadly, the term "three strikes" comes to mind.

I decided to jump back into dating, wholeheartedly, because living with my mom has made me realize that I don't want to be alone. Bad things happen when you're alone too long. You get too comfortable with yourself. You have conversations with the dog. You start dragging the dog from room to room in the house, so that you NOR the dog, have to be "truly" alone for too long. You have a routine that involves eating early, on a TV tray, in front of the TV. You eat the same thing every night. You eat the same dessert. You retire to bed after dinner and of course, you take the dog. Your life involves so much routine that the thought of deviating from it, only for a day, is paralyzing. You require a menu before you'll eat at a restaurant (even a casual establishment which is inexpensive and fairly "mainstream."). You sometimes don't leave your bedroom for hours - in the afternoon - and you're NOT napping. Your life is the same. Day in. Day out. Change is terrifying.

After living with my mother for nearly a year, I've realized that I soooooooo don't want this. One of my favorite authors, Anne Lamott, writes that you need to spend no more than 50% of your time alone. Otherwise, as she puts it, "You just go a little crazy." I'm not going to call my mom crazy but I am going to go out on a limb and say that she needs to get out more.

So in the interest of not turning into a woman who is terrified of what a man might bring into her life, I decided to pull the trigger - yet again - and give the dating world another try. I haven't met anyone horrible - so far - but I haven't made anyone remotely captivating, either.

Christmas and the entire month of December were really hard for me. So was the first week of January. I'm finally feeling now like I have more strength. December didn't kill me; and I do believe that it made me stronger. Christmas nearly killed me, but again, I'm so much stronger on the other side.

I certainly feel like my life is a big Pandora's box and with any decision I make right now, a slew of uncertainties could arise. It's going to be like that for awhile. I know that. I like the control that I have over dating right now. Pursuing, if I want; backing off, if that's appropriate and being aware, which is always the key to making good, sound decisions.

The funny thing about dating- online dating, in particular - is that as a female, I can pretty much date all I want. There's no shortage of men on the dating sites. It's unfair, I think - the ratio is truly not kind. Regardless, my activity can only be dictated by my energy and my schedule. No way am I going to go out on a first date on Ben's time. No f-cking way. No way am I going to tie up my three days without Ben, just for the purpose of having dates. I'm quickly learning that my emotional "tank", when it comes to dating, is quickly depleted and only really "full" when I'm feeling rested and focused. Knowing this keeps me reigned in. Which is where I need to be.

Wish me luck.

Monday, January 11, 2010


I have some big decisions to make. And I need to make them soon. If I want this year to be different, there needs to be change. Change requires decisions and I'm in the middle of what feels like a great big pool of deliberation.

For starters, I have to change my living situation. Since B of A can't work with me on a new loan, the house has to go. But that's OK, really, because if I think long and hard about what this house means to me, I can't come up with much.

Also, my mother has lived here for 10 months, which is to say that she has lived with me 10 months longer than what is healthy for a 39-year-old female, a 66-year-old female and a 6-year-old male. She has to go, as well.

My head is spinning today from the enormous amount of information that I acquired about short sales in general, and mine, in particular. I'm also reeling from the shock of what my home will be listed for. I knew the market was bad, really bad, but I had no idea that the houses in my neighborhood are selling for next to nothing.

I'm also trying to embrace the fact that I'm going to have to go against my nature - and my policy - of paying everything a few days early so that I can qualify for a short sale. Basically, I have to "look like" I'm a deadbeat - or at least someone who can't pay her bills - so that the bank will consider a short sale. I'm having a hard time with this and might have to be physically retrained next month when it comes time to include the mortgage payment in my outgoing mail.

It's now a matter of me pulling the trigger and executing this process. But once I do, a whole new list of unknowns unfold, the biggest being: "where will we live?"

My mom said to me yesterday: "I don't know why you couldn't just get married and live happily ever after." As if it was so easy. I'm sure she didn't mean it to be condescending and I didn't take it as such. Yes, there are lots of things that would be much easier if I had stayed married. Without question. But there would be just as many challenges and I'm certain that would have been the easy way out for me.

Being unmarried and saddled to a house I can't afford means that I get to be strong and capable and decisive and responsible. It means that I have to surrender to a relatively large amount of uncertainty and hope that the choices I make are good for Ben, and for myself. That feels like an enormous burden to shoulder. I hope and pray that I can do this.