Sunday, May 15, 2011


Gentle reader: I eat like a pig. Not always, but often enough. So that you will believe me, for breakfast this morning I ate nine slices of bacon, two eggs fried in bacon grease, and half a dozen extra-dark chocolate truffles. It was delicious.

Culturally this is a confession because that sort of lipid bacchanalia has largely been outlawed and, being a woman (let alone a fat one), I am supposed to be on a diet. I refuse to accept the shame of it, first because is it really anyone's damned business? And second, because improvement of dietary habits will come after improving suicidal depression, or it will not come at all. Bacon overload may make me feel a bit sick, but today it's unquestionably better than crying at work with a surveillance camera three feet from my face.

This is not to say I don't have goals. One is that someday, I'll be able to deal with my emotions sustainably, mostly using music, art, exercise, travel, friends, and bad-ass political action. If I eat half a package of bacon for breakfast, I want it to be because I just like bacon so much that eating it is worth both the damage it does to my body and the tortured life of an intelligent creature. That would be some extraordinarily bacon, no?

In the meantime, I work at smaller things--like being present while I eat. Like trying to make conscious choices, even if they are different from the choices I hope to be making in the long run. Like being able to feel hunger and fullness, even if I sometimes choose to ignore them so I can be numb. Eating can be fraught. Like dinner the other night:

I love the way the green of the cilantro looks against the sour cream. Oh no, I have so much more sour cream on my tortilla than he has on his! How did this happen? He's going to think that I'm a pig! It's practically all fat! And even though it's low fat it's still all dairy. I don't even like sour cream that much. I have been experimenting with eating it, to see how I do like it. God, it's right on top, just staring at me. . . no way to hide that. That's right Day, staring at it isn't going to make it magically disappear. I guess I was thinking about not leaving salsa in the sour cream container when I dished up. I feel so huge. Ok, stop it, just eat your dinner. Enjoy the view. Try to taste your food. He's probably looking at me eating and thinking about how incredibly fat I am. STOP THIS! DAY, YOU ARE BEING CRAZY.

I know that this is crazy. A quarter cup of low-fat sour cream on my dinner plate isn't going to make me fat. Drowning my sorrows in cheese is a solitary activity, and obsessing over how terrible it is will more likely make the problem worse than solve it. My dining companion was my boyfriend. He's thin, but to my recollection he's only ever said two things about my body--that he thinks I'm beautiful, and that I looked sexy in that outfit with the miniskirt. If he thought I was horrifically ugly, he would not be dating me. This does not make the crazy go away.

So it's an uphill fight.


___________________________ said...

"If he thought I was horrifically ugly, he would not be dating me."

So, you're saying he's superficial. Are you sure you should be dating someone superficial? :P He should like you for who you are on the inside. (I want to keep on talking but then I'll almost certainly say something that will cross the line)

In any case, Day, I think society has a point. Why aren't you anorexic or bulimic? I mean, obviously that's the morally good way for a woman to live. You'll be skinny. All you have to do after bacon fest is just vomit it all out. Simple! :P

misssrobin said...

Ugh. Food. So many issues. So many ways I don't do it right.

Funny you'd mention bacon. It's kind of my current thing. I've always liked it, partly because I'm big on salt. But there are so many foods I don't like. And I so seldom eat meat just because I'm so particular about it.

So lately I eat bacon and feel good about it because I'm actually getting some protein. Not the best way, to be sure. I eat six slices of bacon (microwaved -- this has been a wonderful discovery for me) and four slices of toast. A couple of bacon sandwiches, in essence. That's not exactly going to pass any health contests either.

And just think, in how many other places in the world would no one think twice about what you're eating?

It's tough. I want to be healthier. I really do. But I don't want to be miserable doing it.

SAC said...

I liked this one. I laughed at the "I like bacon so much..." sentence.

Also, I just read the link you posted for Mother's Day. Wow. Merciful Heavens. Other exclamations of amazement. I should maybe just put that up on my blog and stop writing altogether. Heh.

misssrobin said...

I thought of you when I saw this story just now.

The first health tip on the list for losing weight is to eat bacon and eggs for dinner. See, you're doing it right your own way!

recovering jezebel said...

I love sour cream next to cilantro. :o)

I just read this and it's so powerful. I am trying to stop seeing my body from a distance and be actually IN it, however big it is.

Also: my new website: :)