Wednesday, December 3, 2008

the Re-Education of Food

I've lost a lot of weight this year. Last winter I was a size 10, this year I'm a size 4. One of my friends at work was a 0 last year and this year is a 4. We've met at a "middle" but are still two of the heavier girls at work.

We talk about of food in that secretive way ex-smokers will talk about lighting up. We discuss meals, quantity and what shape we'd like most. I can't stand my bony wrists and clavicle, she misses seeing hers. We talk about getting used to larger portions and pushing our stomaches to expand and accept larger meals. We discuss vitamins and fatigue. We both approached 4 from opposite ends but are both discontent to be here.

She just sent me a link to Juliana Hatfield's blog:

Juliana Hatfield"They make us eat six times a day. Three meals and three snacks. We all sit in the kitchen together and there is a monitor at the head of the table making sure we eat everything on our plates and drink everything in our cups. This is called the refeeding process. It must be done slowly and steadily, with more food added on as time progresses so we don’t shock our systems. So we are not in danger of ending up like Karen Carpenter — she gained too much weight too fast after starving for a long time, and her heart couldn’t take it.

The bathroom doors are locked so the bulimics can’t go in and puke. (I myself have never been a purger.) When you need to go, you must ask a monitor to unlock the door for you and after she lets you in she stands just outside the door and then you must either count while you are on the toilet, loud enough so that she can hear you, right up until the moment you exit, or you must let her flush for you after you are done — so that there is proof that you didn’t vomit your food into the toilet."

I'd never heard of Juliana Hatfield but I am overwhelmed by her courage. Discussing an eating disorder with such candor on a public forum is brave beyond words - especially when its done by a celebrity. I don't know how any of them approach a normal BMI when there are photographers analyzing every pound.


Sharon Rose said...

Hi there-congrats to you on your weight loss-size 4 is a Uk size 8, I believe-thats tiny! I'm anything from a UK 8 to UK 12 and I don't class myself as fat!! I think the USA has more weight issues than here, as in getting to size 0.