WHAT? JEN? YOU ARE A FAILURE.
Yeah. Sort of. Sort of not though? Maybe?
Here’s the story.
I got online today and IMed Meghan Bassett, the other last man standing with me in this god-awful 5 day challenge, (Samira and Stephen got tuckered out day 1 by an ugly stomach bug that’s going around), to tell her that I was dying. Here is what happened.
It went on, but I’ll spare the details. Until I finally pulled the trump card.
Yeah yeah yeah. I’m dramatic. Whatever. You aren’t perfect either.
Ok, I’m done being pouty.
So, we didn’t know how to handle this. Actually, I didn’t know how to handle this. So here’s what I decided.
1. Explain why dieting is a disaster and no one should do it. Because it takes you to crazy fucking places.
2. Ask Chase over and over again if he thinks I’m weak, to which he responded “No, but with food yeah. You bend right away with food. It’s ok, everyone has stuff they love. You fucking LOVE food.” Thanks Chase, I guess you don’t see me as the dainty ballerina I thought you saw me as.
3. Write super vulnerable letters to our bodies illustrating what we’re going through so that you guys won’t stop loving us. Even though let’s be real, you only tune in here because I’m a disaster, not because I’m a flawless holistic living guru. Whatever. You aren’t perfect either. Or maybe you are. Whatever. I have wine now.
Anyways, we’ll start with Meghan’s letter since hers is eloquent and mine is more of a word vomit rambling session.
Clearly, I haven’t handled the last couple days with grace.
Well initially I thought this was a great idea. I think you did too. It sounded pretty awesome – getting back on track with our diet, getting healthy, a little “clean living” for 5 short days. We thought we would be trim and fit and ready to take on the world after this whole experience.
Now we are halfway through the third day. And we feel like HELL. We are starving, depressed, and driving our hubby insane with our short temper and unyielding desire for carbs. The will to be productive is currently eluding us and even the excitement of favorite holiday approaching isn’t cheering us up.
There’s another two and a half days left of this. At this point, two days might as well be a million years. That’s a million years until I can enjoy the taste of bread again, a million years until I can enjoy a glass of wine. Not to mention the fact that I can’t just stop my addiction to food, so I keep looking through recipes and watching food shows acting like nothing is wrong. It’s driving us to the point of a mental, emotional and physical breakdown.
I think we can both agree this wasn’t one of my better ideas. I mean, what food obsessed individual voluntarily attempts to diet this intensely? It is a type of masochism that needs to stop immediately.
I feel the need to apologize. I may ultimately desire to be healthy and tone up, but that does not mean I should subject you to this kind of torture. I promise you now that I will NEVER be attempting something like this again. I may force you to work out in the mornings and I may not let you eat that 2nd piece of cake, but I am not going have this lapse of sanity again.
It’s time to go back to a healthy co-existence full of happiness and FOOD.
We can walk away from this whole thing with our heads held high, because we are strong enough to realize this isn’t something that is worth sacrificing our happiness for.
Your Mind & Soul
Ok. Enough of Meghan being sweet and Zen and wonderful.
Dear Body (you motherfucking disaster. I swear, I will never have a handle on you),
I thought this would be a great idea. We’d eat a lot on Thanksgiving, we’d be full and feel gross, and we’d reset to get to a place where we could reset our hunger and our body and not get fat over the holidays. Months ahead of time, this was my most brilliant idea ever! Now, on day 3 of 5, starving and dying, I realize that it was my WORST idea ever.
How is this a surprise? It shouldn’t be a surprise. Extreme dieting has always made me my worst version of myself. Chaotic, emotional, clingy, depressed, tired. Yikes.That sounds like a shit show. Well, this time was no different. Moving my fingers on the keyboard is miserable. I’m tired. I want to cry. I feel awful.
So why did I do this? I don’t know, because I got greedy. My body has been awesome. We dine. It speaks when it’s full, and for the most part I stop. It’s been fantastic. But I thought “hey, body, we’re getting along so well, let’s just take this one step further and get super skinny after Thanksgiving before Christmas and be super adult and in control of your life.” Well, let me assure you, THAT DID NOT HAPPEN. What happened is that I felt really focused for one day (day 1) – a sign that getting alcohol-free REM sleep is good for you (well, I could have told you that). By the end of day 2, I was so cranky and and angry that I just curled into blankets and enjoyed how soft they were. When the highlight of your evening is thinking about how soft blankets are you know you have an ENORMOUS problem. I actually thought about blogging about how the beauty of starvation is that you can feel soft textures more acutely. Let’s get real, that’s a warning sign.
So anyways, today, I’ve been tired. So tired. And so sad. I think all of the serotonin has officially left my brain, and I’m just left here to sit through the wreckage sad and uninspired.
Body, I’m sorry. And I love you. And that junk in your trunk, and your round face, and your shortness. You are no gazelle, but you’re MY non-gazelle. And Chase loves you, and he’s the most handsome man in the world, so stop being an asshole and fucking it all up because you’re doing dumb things like this.
So it begs the question, why do we keep doing it?!?. We’re doing it, as Samira so eloquently stated at the beginning of this whole experience, to get some control over our lives. Food always has been, and always will be, a very intimate part of the female experience. Society applauds an androgynous appearance, but we glow (literally) with a certain amount of body fat. Each woman has her own unique distribution, but I happen to be one that’s curvier. Not curvy as code for “fat,” just curvy as “I have hips.” That’s all. But there’s something about the diet I love, the food I love, and the junk in my trunk that leads to a source of… I don’t know. In high school it was shame, and that led to anorexia. Today it’s more curiosity – “I’ll do the 5 day diet and just see how I look.” I get excited about the prospect that maybe if I control this I’ll “feel better” going into the holidays, or my birthday, or whatever.
The last detox was miserable, but we got through it. This time, I thought it would be easier – and it was. But the depression isn’t worth it. In fact, losing a couple days of just “being me” isn’t worth it. I’m not a teenager anymore that drinks diet sodas by the gallon and comes home and goes to bed at 8. First of all, I’m 20 days short of one year diet soda free (if there was a diet mountain dew anonymous I would go. Shamelessly). I’m also in love, with a home and a life. I also have a job. A job that I like. I can’t just check out and focus on my body for 5 days. The funny part is, I don’t really need to.
The first day of the detox we lost Samira and Stephen to a horrible stomach bug. I don’t know if it was fate or what, but now, 3 days in, Meghan and I decided this was dumb, and as the last men standing wanted to walk away. There’s nothing keeping us walking away but my pride, but who really cares about my pride because caring about my pride implies that you guys really care about what I’m eating – which I’m confident you don’t. Because you have your own lives. Just like I have my own life.
So today I’m hoping I can outlaw dieting in my life, because, well, I hate putting myself through this. And I hate putting Chase through this, because he has to put up with me, and that’s worse than being me putting up with me.
Now, for the record, if Samira and Stephen were still here and still game I’d be on it. But if they were in and were dying I’d say fuck it. Because we, as people, come before diets. What can I say, I’m not a good hardass coach. Because I don’t want to be a hardass during this one little life.
And on that note, I’m pouring another glass of wine and going to sleep.
Don’t diet. Portion control. Holla.
**Appendix A: I realize this post is the epitome of first world problems. “I have so much food to eat but I’m going to restrict it so I can be skinnier but AH I can’t handle it so OK I’m going to go back to eating the food.” I know, it’s bad. But you know what? It’s my reality. And why am I blogging about it? I don’t know, maybe I’m crazy. Just know that if you send me mean comments I’m not going to approve them and you’re going to get the finger because I’m sensitive right now and I’m not in the mood for that trolling anonymous internet bullshit.
As you can tell, 2 days of not eating does not sit well with me.
I am not the finest version of myself.