Dear Buffet, Eff You And Your Desserts

So, I have the pleasure misfortune of calling a town where buffets reign supreme my home.  Honestly, we probably have more buffets per capita than anywhere else in the world (okay, yeah, I’m pulling that out of my ass, but it sure seems like it). We frequented them far too often when my parents started making good money and refused to cook anymore and I all but despise buffets because of it.

Well, my aunt and cousin are in town with a few people for a couple days and wanted to grab dinner. Of course I said yes to seeing them, but unfortunately, the picky eaters in the group didn’t like my suggestion of a top rated seafood restaurant (where I happen to know the chef who totally would have hooked us up). It’s their vacation, so I let them decide where they wanted to go – the buffet.

I knew this would be a challenge, but I’ve been doing really well and thought I was strong enough to make good choices.  Bring on the buffet, I thought.  I’ll see you there.  I’ll totally make it work for me (yeah, I am apparently that dumb).

While this isn’t exactly a revelation to me, it is painfully obvious after tonight that buffets absolutely cannot be a part of my life anymore. At all. Ever. The reason? Taking a fat ass pre-op recovering food addict to a buffet is like sitting a barely sober alcoholic down at the bar and putting three of his favorite drinks in front of him.

You just don’t do that shit. 

Deep down I knew this was trouble.  Still, with weight loss surgery on my mind, I really did start off with the best of intentions, making sure to get a nice salad in right off the bat. So far so good. But things escalated quickly from there. Pasta. Sirloin. Mexican. Chinese. Desserts.  Get in my fucking belly right now, all of you!  I mean, it’s expected that your plate will be overflowing at the buffet.  Why else would you go? 

I wish I could say I stopped there, friends.  I wish I could say that was it.  But I can’t.

Because I am the fucking food junkie that I am, I just found myself back in the fridge.  Yep.  I’m eating again.  Once you’re off the wagon, you might as well fall off the fucking wagon, am I right?  I’m absolutely disgusted with myself, yet I will finish what I started, I have no doubt. I’m incredibly embarrassed to be admitting this to you all, but accountability or something. I feel like such a fucking failure right now.

Oh wow, hello my dearest shame spiral. I hope you know that I absofuckinglutely hate you, but your darkness, your berating tone, your words like razor blades are so familiar, so comfortable. As sick as twisted as it is, I miss your company sometimes.

Anyways. 

For tonight (and forever), I throw up two middle fingers and say good riddance to you, you evil buffets. You wouldn’t really have been missed as it is, but you did teach me an important lesson tonight. Next time stand up for yourself and demand a different place.  After all, for every buffet, there are half a dozen killer restaurants to choose from in this town too.  My visitors will just have to understand.

Back on the wagon in the morning, I hope. 

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram, and in my Etsy shop.

Reminder To Self

Today I was reminded why I originally refrained from telling people about my decision to have weight loss surgery.  Today I was reminded that I need to be more careful in the future.

I do not particularly care for this person, because, well, I can’t put my finger on exactly why.  Something inside me always bristles when dealing with him.  Nevertheless, in an effort to relate to him and provide some comfort after he tells me he’s having a hard time with recent medical diagnoses (and looks like he’s going to cry while doing so), I offered that I too had the recent pre-diabetes diagnosis and was going to have surgery in a  few months. He asked the natural follow up question about what kind of surgery, and I’m not one to lie, so I told him.

It’s not that he reacted poorly or was derogatory or demeaning, really (at least at first).  He’s a bit of a meathead that works out a lot and so his automatic response was, “Don’t do that, just work out.” He went on to recommend a personal trainer he knows that has “changed people’s lives.” I could sort of appreciate that, because I know it’s well intentioned, even if a little obtuse (it’s not like I havent tried on my own, after all, and if I thought anything but surgery was the best option, I’d do it).

But then he went and called it the “lazy way out.”  That I could not be okay with. Lazy? No.

This is not the lazy way out. Quite the opposite, this is one of the hardest things I have ever decided to do in my life.  There’s so much more to it than food changes and exercise involved. For me, having surgery is the only way I can release myself from these physical chains from my dysfunctional upbringing.  It’s the only way to blow open the doors of the fat prison that I have locked myself in to keep the monsters and bad things away.  I know he doesn’t know my history, but this is, in no way, an easy journey.

I’ve been getting so much positive feedback that I naively let myself forget that there are those out there  (besides my parents) who do not need to know. He was one of them, and I knew it.  I feel like an idiot for ignoring my instincts and saying anything to him, but I can’t let it get to me.  I know in my heart that this is what I need to do. Haters be damned!

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

Unannouncement

After I was feeling so great that we had what I thought was a real moment, a genuine break through, she showed up at my house unannounced on Sunday. Yep, she blew through all boundaries to show up on her estranged daughter’s doorstep expecting a warm and happy welcome.

Keep in mind that she’s been to my house less than ten times in the six years since I bought this place. We spent nearly half of that time not speaking. I’ve seen her in person all of maybe half a dozen times since we started talking again.  Oh yeah, and let’s not forget that she abused me in ways I can’t fathom abusing anyone, ever.

I don’t have the capability, or the guts, or whatever it is that I need to ignore the doorbell or the knocks (driving my dog crazy). I don’t have the power to just tell her I don’t want to see her and that she needs to leave. I’m not assertive enough to answer her truthfully when she asks me if I don’t want to see her. I don’t have it in me to turn her away, despite the fact that all my alarm bells are ringing, my entire body is immediately buzzing, and inside I’m screaming at myself and at her that this is bullshit.

I let her in after I take a minute to hide a few personal things (like my open book on healing daughters of narcissistic mothers – oh the irony).  She is now in my safe space. Why did I let her into my safe space? She is tainting my safe space. I have no more safe space.

She tries small talk, but it’s forced and I’m not prepared. It ends up being the most awkward 30ish minutes you could imagine.

Finally, I get my wits about me and tell her that she can’t do this again. That she’s ruining our shot at a relationship by taking these liberties. I calmly explain to her that it’s awkward and uncomfortable because of our past. I let her know how I respect her space and need her to respect mine, reiterating that this can’t happen anymore. I remind her of the time I changed the locks after she threatened to come sit on my couch to force me into speaking to her again (she did actually come over and I got the bitch out of the century for being a bratty, ungrateful, spoiled child that would do such a thing), to give her a concrete example that if it wasn’t appropriate then, it’s not appropriate now (she claims not to remember, but I call bullshit).  I try to be nicely stern. Meanwhile, she’s visibly upset, on the verge of tears. I feel bad and tell her I don’t mean to upset her, but I continue saying my piece. I couldn’t stop at that point.

Her responses are so out of touch with reality.

“Well I called.” I didn’t hear the phone, but regardless, in what fucking world does that give you rights to come over unannounced?! 

“It’s rude not to answer.” I didn’t hear the phone, but regardless, in what fucking world does that give you rights to come over unannounced?!

“You said you wanted us to come over more.” Regardless, in what fucking world does that give you rights to come over unannounced?!

It ends with her declaring that she’ll never come over again. I throw my hands up in exasperation and tell her that’s not the point.  She’s even closer to tears as she walks put the door and down the front walkway towards her car. As I close the door behind her, I stand there, reeling. I’m confused, ashamed, fearful, sad, and so many other emotions that I can’t even put a name to. Days later, I still don’t know what to make of it all.

I’m afraid that the apology I remember from just days before was not what I thought after all. Maybe I was just so wrapped up in the mixture of wonderful feelings about trial and exhaustion that I heard something she never meant. Maybe she’s actually sick enough that she really just doesn’t get it. 

Either way, I’m left to pick up the pieces of my heart again. 💔

I had been getting my hopes up that there was some functionality to our relationship. I always get my stupid hopes up. She always finds a way to dash them. It’s an awful cycle that I’m tired of repeating.  I don’t know what to do anymore.

This book I’m reading says, “Before you can grieve, you have to accept the reality of what you have gone through. … Most narcissists lack the capacity to give significant, authentic love and empathy, and you have no other choice but to deal with this reality. Accepting that your own mother has this limited capacity is the first step. Let go of the expectation that it will ever be different.” I hope that the book also tells me how to give up hope without just giving up, because that feels like my only option at the moment.

I don’t feel at all equipped to navigate through this. I don’t know how to be the adult child of abusive parents. I don’t know how to keep myself protected while maintaining some semblance of a relationship with them. I don’t know how to get rid of the crippling guilt over losing my Gram’s final years (among other things) that makes me continue to cling desperately to this dysfunctional woman.  I don’t know how to release the hope that she can, on some level, just be a good, regular, mom. I don’t know how to rid myself of the desire that runs to the core of my being that she will someday love, respect, and support me in all the ways I wish she could. It’s killing me inside. It’s killing me.

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

Late Night Eating Woes

I had another bad moment last night.  It was not, by any means, as bad as Wednesday night, and it was probably better than Friday night’s overeating, but still.  During the day I’m fine.  It doesn’t bother me to eat small portions and sometimes I even have to remind myself to eat at all.  At night, though. Ugh. Some nights I’m just ravenous and feel like I can’t help but stuff food in my face when I sit down for dinner. 

Has anyone else struggled with overeating only at night?

I know I do most of my thinking about life at night, so the emotions and anxiety get worked up.  Maybe that’s it?  Is it because I’m tired and my willpower goes out the window? Maybe I’m not getting the right stuff during the day so I’m hangry and overeat? Maybe it was because I cleared my kitchen of all the crap yesterday and my addiction was upset? I’m not sure, but its annoying.

I had the best of intentions last night, too. *sigh* It makes me feel like such an idiot that I can’t get this under control.  I am already improving in ways, I can see and feel it.  But this is a problem and I have to figure it out. How am I ever going to be successful with WLS if I don’t?! 

Thoughts?

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

GoPicnic and Crockpots – WLS Eating

I had another bad eating night this week (only 2, so that’s really not too bad).  Stress and exhaustion got to me and I had a hardcore binge. *sigh*  I’ve been trying very hard to forgive myself when I fall, so I can keeping moving forward every day on this journey, even if only a small step.

On a brighter note, these bad boys are going to be a godsend pre- and post-op!

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Delicious, gluten free, vegetarian, non-gmo, healthy, appropriately portioned little meals! Protein ranges from 5g – 18g (I think), so some decent options there too. Everything is individually wrapped, so you can eat one thing and finish the rest later!

Plus, it’s kind of fun to imagine being on a picnic every day! 😄

On another note, when your dietician says buy a crockpot, you buy a crockpot.  Never used one before in my life.  Should be interesting!

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Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.

Rollercoasters and Childhood Dreams

In the last week I have experienced more emotions than I ever thought I could possibly handle.  From anxiety to elation and exhaustion and everything in between, it has been quite the roller coaster.  I am a different person for all of it.

I got all of about thirty or forty-five minutes of sleep Tuesday night because I was anxious and excited for the biggest day of my career to date on Wednesday – the first day of my first solo bench trial.  I was pumped at first, getting ready to do this thing.  I was thrown off by the small podium and got my papers all mixed up as I tried to figure that out, so when I started the first witness the first morning, I completely blanked.

Yep.  Everything about the case left my mind completely.  Not. Fun.

It took me all morning to work through that as I examined my first witness.  The Judge was none-to-happy about my morning ineptitude either.  Ugh.  I was running on fumes and I was nervous, so sue me.  I took the Judge’s words to heart, beat myself up about it, then regrouped and worked it out after lunch.  It went much smoother, but the witness was equally challenging.  When I left, I was beaten up and bruised.

As I drove home, exhausted, enjoying the cloudy sky and processing the day, I began to give thanks for having this moment.  While it was beyond challenging, it was still the first day of my first solo bench trial and I was floored.  This was the final realization of a childhood dream and I was so grateful for it.  As I prayed, the clouds opened and visible rays of sunshine shone down upon the mountain.  It was a glorious moment.  I felt like God and my Gram were both there and I couldn’t help but cry.  As my tears dried, the clouds closed and I felt revived.  Tomorrow would be another day.

And boy was it!

The second day of trial on Thursday started off with me missing my alarm.  I stayed up late again the night before so I could prepare better witness outlines and plan my attack for the next day.  I slept like a rock and had apparently turned my phone on DND the night before.  You know that feeling when you wake up late?  Yeah, not fun on day two of an already tough trial.  Thankfully, my body clock actually had woken me up on time.  But the adrenaline was already coursing through my veins by the time I realized that!

After I managed to assuage the near panic attack I had from missing the alarm, I got ready and made my way to the Court.  Thankfully the morning anxiety and stress did not stop me from having a killer day.  Before I even made it into the courtroom, I had seen three attorneys I know who all had support to give.  It really helped me be on my game like I wanted to be the day before!  Talk about exhilarating, friends!  This is why I wanted to be a lawyer, after all.  Finally living the dream.  It’s so fun to be doing what you want to do with your life.

As a side note, opposing counsel and the Judge were both women.  Also, a few senior girls from a nearby high school came in to observe for their class project.  It was totally girl power up in there Thursday morning!  But I digress.

After a great day like I had, I couldn’t go home and be alone!  So I met up with a friend at a business mixer at this cute little restaurant I had heard about before.  I was out in full effect, let me tell you.  It’s been a long time since I’ve been in public and felt like that.   Carefree, happy, not worried about what anyone else thinks of me.  I made lots of new friends (one, in particular, I can’t stop thinking about – AK) and a couple potential clients.  It was, to say the least, a great night.

What had just been an awesome day turned into an incredible 24 hours.  After leaving the bar following a long, heartfelt, naturally meandering conversation with AK at 11:30 p.m., I couldn’t sleep when I got home.  I had to work through the prior day so I could be ready in the morning.  Ugh.  I shouldn’t have stayed out so late, but it was 100% worth it.

I was going to try to sleep, then get up early to prepare for the next afternoon (Court didn’t start until 1:00 p.m. Friday, thank God).  Hahahaha!  My brain was so not into that idea.

I needed to talk to someone, but by then it was 2:00 a.m. Friday morning and no one I knew was up except my parents.  I had not intended to call her until after trial was complete.  I still had words for her and did not want to get into another screaming match right at that moment.  God called me to do it anyways.  So I did.  And, well, you already read the result of that.  After having the day and night I had already had, I was truly overwhelmed.

With so many feels, it took me until about 9:00 a.m. to fall asleep, but I did enough work to feel pretty prepared for the next day.  I managed to get a tortured couple hours of sleep and was nothing short of exhausted as we begun day 3 of trial.  I was still pretty on my game, though.  Worked through my last witness and rested my case.  I think I got all of the important evidence in.

I almost cried during my closing argument.  I did my very best to tell my clients’ story how I would want someone to tell it if it were my own.  As I got near the end and was summing up how this case has affected my clients, I turned and looked at them and I almost lost my composure.  One of them, the older man, winked at me and I somehow managed to keep it together.  It was a special moment I will absolutely never forget.  To be zealously advocating for my clients and to get so into it that I experience that type of pure, unabashed, emotion is beyond words.

Beyond words.

A Little Peace

We had a breakthrough of sorts.  We showed each other mutual respect, she actually acknowledged a large chunk of things in a meaningful way.  I’m so grateful for it.

I told her something along the lines of, “I always respected and admired your career.” Totally true. Career and education she has been my 100% cheerleader for in so many ways. In many ways not.  But still.

She was successful.  She worked her way up from the very bottom to second in command of a local governmental body.  She had no higher education, her parents couldn’t afford it.  But she was smart, she worked hard, and she, well, she fought her way there (more on that some time later).  I idolized her in so many ways.  She took advantage of it.

Growing up, I was always telling her how proud of her I was, so she could succeed (it always should have been the other way around).  Not to mention, some of the lessons she handed down were sick and twisted.  She was severely abused herself and took out all of her anger and her feelings of inadequacy on us.  She also, as happens, reenacted a lot of her abuse with us.  But I digress.  You’ve read some of my story, so you know by now (I hope).

Anyway.  She actually said before I could even get it out of my mouth, that her “career came at a high cost.” An incredibly high cost.  She said so much by saying so little in that moment.

We agreed that we can’t change the past and we both want to move forward how we can.  I explained to her that I’m just starting to work through a lot of things and it’s going to be hard sometimes, but we’re on the right track. 

I’m still hella guarded,  but we’re willing to work on it.  That’s good. 

Check out my art and follow my journey on Twitter, Instagram., and in my Etsy shop.