I’ve had issues with food all my life.

At age 8, I was hungry for milk and pasta in any form. That made me a fat kid. The teasing was relentless: “Fatty fatty, 2×4, can’t get through the kitchen door!” My poor mum tried to help with a low-carb diet in my Holly Hobbie packed lunch.

It horrified kids in the lunchroom who were enjoying their deep fried burritos and cake.

“What is THAT?!” they would point and ask as I peeled a boiled egg or opened a can of Vienna sausages. “Are you on a DIET?! Susie’s on a DIET! EWWWW!”



I have no fond memories of being able to eat “kid food”. It seemed no matter what I ate, I was fat. Guilt with each mouthful of anything except Lima beans or carrots. I’m allergic anyway.

Good. I hate carrots.

Carrots can piss off.

High School was just as bad.

America, early 1980s. The pressure to be an unmuscular size 3 or 5 (today’s sizes 2 and 0) was overwhelming. It was not as in fashion to be muscular as it is today. Only the little tiny girls got asked out on dates or to dances or prom it seemed. Being anorexic and/or bulimic was the norm. I chewed gum at lunch and avoided the cafeteria at all costs. At 15, the height of my anorexia, a “good” day was drinking black coffee, eating 2 saltine crackers and running 3 miles.

This was the birth of my inner Marine.

The malnutrition didn’t serve me, my brain, my skin, or my hair well, but the incredible self-control and concentration did later in life.

Grad school.

Oil patch.

Pure grit.

I know I don’t sound as tough as a weed, but I am.

Church can be a challenge.

Not the people or the message, but “fellowship” (food) afterwards.

Every Sunday, I am faced with a kid’s birthday party smorgasbord.

Cake, pies, brownies,
potato casseroles, cookies…you name it- everything the “church mothers” can think of to “love up” the congregation. If I eat any of it, within 20 minutes I will be writhing in pain. Only narcotics touch THAT kind of pain.

I take a medication for PTSD -apparently 20 years in the oil patch was really traumatic for me. Every night, horrid nightmares about working on bad assignments or with people I didn’t like. God loves them in His own way, but they were horrid coworkers on Earth and they haunt my dreams.

Friday night, my husband brought home one of my favs- Szechuan fish. I think it had cornstarch in it that set off a weekend long painfest. These food reactions while on medication have sent me to the ER in the past with a morphine drip because my gut goes into full blown seizure- not cramps, seizure. They have been filmed during one of my many operations.

Luckily, I had pain meds to combat the seizures, but my gut swelled to the size of a basketball.

I see food and I think PAIN. Too afraid to eat anything aside from my sfh protein shake or a bit of cheese.

“Well, what a horrible way to live!”

Yes, it is, but I may get those 7 remaining lbs off faster than I had thought.

One of my church “mothers”, with a stern German accent and knitted brow, said I needed to put on weight. I should have her call my surgeon. “Here’s his number, fight it out”…

I approach food the way Professor Dumbledore sidles up to a box of Bertie’s Everyflavour Beans:

“Perhaps I could be safe with a nice toffee…

alas, earwax.”


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