Today would be what is called in the media, a Big News Day.
First of all, a combination of things. I went out to dinner with my family: Mom, sister, step-brother and step-sister-in-law and their two kids. We went to a place called The Bagel.
My usual fare at delis is lox and bagel. Plus, this place serves great bread. And fabulous fries, which I never order, but which I sometimes “borrow” from those who do.
I ordered a lox and onion omelet, and asked them to add cream cheese. There’s my lox and bagel, sans bagel. I only felt like eating half of it. I had quiche for breakfast but ran out of time for lunch, but had some ham-and-cheese rollups as a snack about two hours earlier. Learning to adapt old food habits to new food rules is important.
Didn’t eat bread. Didn’t eat fries. Actually handled the fries several times, grabbing a few for my mother while the boys were in the bathroom, passing her the plate again later.
Watched my sister. Mom asked her if the fries there weren’t the best. Sister said, “They look great.” Very important, that: she didn’t have to taste them or explain why she wouldn’t, but she still validated my mother, who wanted validating. I shall have to remember that.
I told my sister about the diet and my progress. She was very happy for me. I explained a lot about my feelings when she gave me the book. She invited me to share progress reports, saying that doing the diet with her boyfriend had helped a lot. I may give her a link to this blog. She will be my only follower. 🙂
The other big thing was that my stepmother died. Now, how huge this event is will vary from family to family. I’m not entirely sure how I feel about this. We were close once, when she and my dad lived in California for a year or two, but we hadn’t been close since, and that was 20 years ago. We didn’t call or exchange e-mail or visit. The last time I saw her was a year ago, on Father’s Day 2009. So I’m not going to claim that this is some huge tragedy for me, when her son, my step-brother, and my dad, and her mom are surely devastated by this.
But it shocked and saddened me. And in the past, my first reaction would have been to head for the junk food. Nothing like a sack of Doritos or a pound of M&M’s to render you incapable of feeling any emotion.
And I just didn’t. I dealt with it. I accepted the fact that it felt like getting socked in the stomach, acknowledged that I wanted to feel nothing for the next two weeks, and didn’t eat to create that state.
It feels really shallow to say that my stepmother died and all I’m thinking about is how it doesn’t affect my commitment to eat in a different matter, or how I seem to have changed and no longer want to eat to dull my pain. But I think it’s important. I’m going to deal with this the way normal people deal with it. I’m going to write about it and cry about it and do something in her honor. I’m going to mourn her and experience that pain, and I’m not going to stuff my feelings down and bury them under food.