GETTING BY WITH
A LITTLE HELP FROM MY FRIENDS
25 February 2003
I truly love the Internet. I swear it if weren't for the Internet, I would have given
up on this new lifestyle long ago.
Last week after my weigh-in, I was too embarrassed to talk to my leader, who weighed me
in, and I didn't stay for the meeting. But I knew I had e-mail, so I wrote to her when I
got home. "Has this ever happened to you?" I wailed, bemoaning the fact that I
had been on an eating kick and didn't know how to stop it.
She took two days to return my message, and had obviously given it a lot of thought.
Her words were very supportive. She went into great deal, revealing her own personal
history and then offered, I still let myself get somewhat out of control with eating -
though counting it - but it feels more like a choice. I know that I'm doing it - but not
always WHY. I must go to my WW meetings so that I don't just rely on my own thoughts, but
I can then absorb the positive messages and support that is there for me. I think you will
find that coming back to the meeting each week will help you a lot, Bev. Just don't give
up. Oh, and go to the WeightWatchers.com message board for "stress and
overeating." That is a good one. Take care of yourself. You are special and maybe
need to be reminded.
Before she had the chance to respond, I'd already received a kick in the butt from
Australia. Peggy gave me a goal weight. "I don't want you to be any heavier than that
when you get here," she said, saying that weight would give us the opportunity to eat
whatever we wanted without having to worry about weight gain. Yes, ma'am! (Peggy has been
through WeightWatchers and reached her goal weight. I'm proud of her!)
Then came the letter from our mutual friend who is struggling with her own
WeightWatchers program and discouraged that she's on a plateau. I was put in the position
of giving her back the encouragement she's given to me so often--pointing out to her that
she'd lost forty pounds, for heaven's sake, that she was so certain she'd never be
able to lose anything. As she did to me months ago, I was able to tell her to go to a
grocery store and pick up something that weighs 40 lbs and realize that she is no longer
carrying it around on her body.
I also promised her that if she loses the 11 lbs she's struggling with now, that I'd
fly to visit her and we'd do something special to celebrate.
At the same time, my friend Joan, who lives in Davis, has been adamant that I and a
mutual friend, also here in Davis, are not going to give up on our plans. Joan has been so
faithful at following the WW plan, even through some of her physical problems in the past
months and her ability to stick with it (to say nothing of her creative gourmet recipes!)
have made me feel like I'd be letting her--and our mutual friend--down if I give up. Our
paths almost never cross in person, but we stay in contact via e-mail.
And then there are people who read this journal who write me wonderful e-mails, either
encouraging or empathizing. People I've never met, some of whom I never even knew were
Gail wrote: I read you everyday. This day's journal entry is the very ones I love
the most because, what you share of your feelings about food and emotions, are just how I
feel about food and emotions. What you communicate helps me to understand myself and the
sickness of addiction to food. Self hate. Jeannie adds, I really identified with
your entry about your day's eating and your counting of points. I also know that once I
start eating , it is really nigh on to impossible to stop. I have always been that way.
Katherine signed the guest book: I liked your phrase "eating molecules." I'm
plagued by those devils too and am the daughter of an alcoholic who was in denial even
after she stopped drinking (she "wasn't like other alcoholics").
There is something so helpful in discovering that you aren't unique, that there are
others out there who understand exactly what you've expressed and who are making the same
struggle. ...please share more of your struggle and victories with us regarding food
addiction. Your feeling and thoughts mean a lot to me and please keep up the honesty it
encourages me to be honest with myself.
Now how can I give up after that? If there was ever an incentive to stay honest, to
keep going with the struggle it's that.
Even if nobody ever wrote to me after an entry, I have other people's journals to
inspire me--people like Marn and Mary who are my exercise heroes, Haggie and Terri who
are my biking heroes, and Mary (Bozoette) who often seems to be my weight issue twin, and
people like Cecily and Dez, who have been writing "Days of our Thighs" (love the
title) for several months. Their ups and downs are inspiring.
There are lots of ways to change your life, and the Internet has brought us all into
the same circle. It seems that when one of us is down, another of us is there to pick that
person up and keep us all going.
I am so very, very grateful to everybody who reads this journal, to everyone who writes
to me, to everyone who cares enough to notice--You are all a huge part of why I've
lost so much, and why I refuse to give up.