Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I'm still not feeling inspired to write. But I want to get this out so that I can move on; literally, figuratively, emotionally and any other way possible.

Chris, my own version of "Big", is a world class asshole. A fake, a fraud, an egomaniac.

Everyone keeps asking me, "How was your weekend?"

My weekend was fabulous. I stayed at the Ritz and ate amazing food and drank lots of great wine and vodka and I saw a fantastic city (St Augustine) and I loved every moment of my beloved band, OAR.

But I didn't have such a great time to be incapable of ignoring the gigantic red flags that were popping up so quickly and with such frequency, that I knew that the Universe and God were sending me giant messages and I would be a complete and total idiot to ignore even one of these signs.

Starting with no return text the night before my trip, no return text on my layover in Vegas and no sign of Chris at the airport.

But then, a text - of course - "Grab your bag and meet me at the curb."

Now if that isn't being a total gentleman, I don't know what is.

Oh, but wait, we're going to the Ritz - after all - in time to see the sunset and have lots of cocktails and go to an expensive restaurant so really, do the little things matter all that much?

Why yes, they do.

My first revelation of the trip was that I'd rather be greeted when I emerge from the gate area and taken to the Marriott, or even the Hilton - than to be ignored for a day prior to the trip and then have to drag my bag to the curb and look feverishly for my weekend date and be whisked off to the Ritz.

Here's another thing. I think it's weird for PhDs to make reservations at restaurants and hotels as Dr So and So. Medical doctors, I can see, but PhDs? I don't get it.

Case in point. Chris ordered room service four times. In one evening. For eight cocktails. And two shrimp cocktails. Every time, it was the same thing: "What else can we get for you, Dr and Mrs Cale?" He thought that was great; I thought it was completely absurd.

I got sick on Friday. I don't know why. Chris went to work and I think that the travel and my strong dose of anti-anxiety meds that I administered on Thursday might have turned my stomach a bit. I was on the hotel veranda - having eggs as "Mrs Cale" - when my stomach completely heaved and I had to dash for the restroom and totally toss my cookies (which were eggs). Then, I was fine.

Not knowing what else to do, I took the shuttle to the Ritz Pool Club, which is across town and only accessible via shuttle. Chris was to meet me there. My cell phone battery was dying, I forgot my book and all I had was sunscreen and a hat. So I sat with my thoughts for about seven hours and wondered why the sweet guy I met in June was - by all accounts - a complete slimeball?

A slimeball who didn't show up to get me from the pool club. He was "tied up" at work, but I later found out that "work" ended at 3pm and then began again at about 3:15pm at the hotel bar. I finally got a shuttle.

Through a series of "snoopy" events that I thought were absolutely justified, I found out that Chris had planned a date with another girl after he dropped me at the airport on Sunday. I really wasn't surprised; we had "the talk" on the way to St Augustine and he told me - with a lot of conviction - that he could not do a monogamous long distance relationship. With me. This wasn't exactly the impression I've been under for the last three months; I thought we were planning to see each other when we could and potentially developing a long distance relationship if things were proceeding in that direction. I guess I was wrong.

But that's OK, because we still had St Augustine, the concert and more time as "Dr and Mrs Cale" at the beautiful B & B that he chose. I was really excited for the concert; I was pretty much done with being Mrs Cale.

Apparently, Chris was not done with that whole charade though and he went on and on to talk about how he can't wait to visit Sacramento and see my real life. The he got smashingly drunk and told the cab driver that I was going to move to San Francisco with him when he got a teaching position at Stanford or Berkeley.

Oh. My. God.

Smashingly drunk for him = a late night for me on the B & B porch, texting and talking to my friends. (Read: the pressure was definitely OFF.)

At 6am, he woke up and dashed to the bathroom. He emerged looking panicked. "I need a plunger!" Despite my sleepiness, I dissolved into laughter and he looked completely mortified. As he ran to find the innkeeper in the adjoining building, I called across the courtyard, "Can you grab a cup of coffee for me when you get the plunger? With a lot of cream?"

Dr. Cale at his finest. You had to be there.

The coup de gras event happened a mere five minutes from the airport. Chris had his GPS on his phone, which was wedged into his steering wheel. I glanced at it, in time to see the GPS image go away and as an incoming text alert sounded.

He clicked on the text.

It was from the girl he was meeting.

There was verbiage about "boobs falling out" and "can't wait to see you."

Mere minutes later, we arrived at the airport. "Bye, babe," he said with a hug and a kiss that was meant to be longer. I pulled away and I walked through the glass doors and I never looked back.

Then I stewed all the way to Phoenix.

I sent a simple note from Phoenix: "I saw the text come in from the girl you were going to meet. I saw what it said. I'm disappointed in you."



It all crystallized in Phoenix as I waited on my late flight. Any guy who was remotely interested in keeping this thing going would have been right on the phone. Making up excuses, lies or apologizing profusely. None of that happened.

I did get a text a day and a half later that said, "That was from my friend. Her boob popped out at the beach."

My only thought is that I think I am worthy of someone who doesn't check their text messages in the last five minutes of our time together. And also, I'm absolutely certain that the whole thing borders on trashy and slimy and generally, gross.

I'm not sad. I'm relieved.

There is the small matter of the upcoming San Francisco trip but I know that I am incredibly justified in telling Chris to find his own fun that weekend.

This girl is staying put.

I still wonder what I saw on June 21st when our paths first crossed. I guess you can see anything you like if you look hard enough.

Monday, September 6, 2010


I've been abandoned and betrayed by who and what really matters and what I've got left is food. Here is where the link between food and God exists. In that isolated place, it is a short step to the conclusion that God - where goodness and healing and love exist - abandoned us, betrayed us.

This passage, from Geneen Roth's book, really struck a chord with me.

I often wonder why I seek God in so many places - in church, in nature, in my child's eyes, in yoga, in prayer - only to find that He's not really there. At least, not for me.

In truth, I've struggled with this notion of an elusive God for quite some time. I even stopped going to church for a while because I was angry with God's passiveness.

The most critical time of abandonment - by God - came when, in the midst of my separation, I fell down onto my knees and begged for Him to soften my ex's heart and to take me back, lovingly and unconditionally. It didn't happen. And when it did, it wasn't loving and there were tons of conditions.

I continue to look for God in dark corners and during the dark nights, I eat because I can't feel Him; I can't sense His presence. I feel very, very alone.

God is goodness and healing and love. I know that. I've felt it at many different times in my life and for many different reasons.

It's just that I lose sight so easily of my own faith and I doubt my worthiness of having goodness and healing and love all the time.

And I slip into the space of abandonment and betrayal.

Where it all goes downhill.




Faith that it can all be mine. Not just during the daytime hours but any time I like.

Sunday, September 5, 2010


I originally created this blog to acknowledge and work through the issues I've had with emotional eating over the last twenty-something years. Somewhere on the path, I lost touch with the purpose of this particular blog and began using it to vent about all the "stuff" in my life.

And somewhere on the path, my struggles with food re-surfaced, significantly, and began to overflow into other areas of my life.

One of my favorite authors on the subject of emotional eating is Geneen Roth. She's written several books, all of which I've read, and I went to see her speak back in 2001, when I first moved to Sacramento.

Recently, she published a new book, entitled, "Women, Food and God."

The book made a media splash. A big one. Oprah had Geneen on her show and also featured her in O Magazine. Big authors, many of my favorites - Ann Lamott, Annie Dillard and Christiane Northrup - spoke out on the significance of addressing spirituality and food together.

I'll spare you the details but I needed to get my hands on this book last month. I should have bought it much earlier. A downward spiral that only accelerates with the passing days is not a good place to be in. Thankfully, Target had lots of copies and I had some time each night to read.

There's so much to this 198 page book. I read it and I re-read it. Now, I'm going through with my highlighter. Eventually, I should probably get my journal out.

Right off the bat - on page 2 - Geneen drives it home. Here is what she writes:

Our relationship to food is an exact microcosm of our relationship to life itself. I believe that we are walking, talking expressions of our deepest convictions; everything we believe about love, fear, transformation and God is revealed in how, when and what we eat. When we inhale Reese's peanut butter cups when we are not hungry, we are acting out an entire world of hopelessness, of faith or doubt of love or fear. If we are interested in finding out what we actually believe - not what we think, not what we say, but what our souls are convinced is the bottom-line truth about life and afterlife - we need to go no further than the food on our plates. God is not just in the details; God is also in the muffins, the fried sweet potatoes, and the tomato vegetable soup. God - however we define him or her - is on our plates.

This passage made me cry. It made me realize how my eating directly affects my spirituality and ultimately, my connection to God. It made me see that every time I eat when the last thing I need is food, I am expressing hopelessness and loss of faith. I am doubting love; and I am in constant fear. And when I really stepped back and looked hard at those areas, I could acknowledge that yes, indeed, these are incredibly painful topics and that yes, indeed, I need better coping strategies.

So I'm going through the book for a third time. And using this blog as it was intended. At least for now.

More to come.