My mother worships every DIET ever created. Like having a prayer day for each of my sisters, there is probably one for The South Beach Diet, The Cabbage Soup Diet and The Sugar Addicts Diet. My Mom was never under weight or over weight, in fact, she was always at the PERFECT weight. And we, my sisters and I knew why, because she had achieved the perfect cycle of pig out one day, starve the next.
Even on the day my mother was having her Nervous Breakdown, she had my aunt PINNED in the corner of our kitchen, extolling the VIRTUES of "I CAN'T BELIEVE IT'S NOT BUTTER." (IT TASTES LIKE THE REALLY THING! WITH HALF THE FAT! JUST SPRAY IT ON YOUR TONGUE, LIKE A DELICIOUS SNACK!)
So, there I am this past SUNDAY, doing my obligatory Sunday call and my mother asks about MY DIET. Now this is after I've already told her over Christmas break, I'm on WW, I've got a handle on this, the weight (THE BACK FAT, THE EXTRA ASS, THE CHUB RUB THIGHS) came on because I was so depressed (loss of writing job, cousin's murder, being dumped, HER NERVOUS BREAKDOWN, the stress of stealing expired Vicodins from my friends), BUT I SWEAR, I'm better now but in no uncertain terms (I think) I DO NOT WANT TO TALK TO YOU ABOUT THIS. (I wrote about this in the "Why Wafting Taco Bell Out Of My Car Is Essential to My Sanity" entry).
Now I'm in "Landmine City." Being a mommy pleaser, I just want her to be SO DARN PROUD of me so I say, "I've lost 7 pounds. I'm doing good." But by opening the door a crack, IN COMES THE AVALANCHE OF QUESTIONS and COMMENTS, "Are you staying for the meetings? Are you exercising? ARE YOU USING "I CAN'T BELIEVE IT'S NOT BUTTER?????"
Then she says, "You know, if you just EAT SMALLER PORTIONS, YOU'LL LOSE WEIGHT." REALLY??? WELL, NOW I'M SET FREE! BECAUSE I NEVER KNEW THAT! I wasn't even using a plate before, I just ate out of a giant wheel barrel. Was that too much?!?!!!!!
The rage had really boiled up. Why? Because if she listened to me the first time, that this weight was a direct result of my depression over my cousin's death, ETC., SHE WOULD KNOW I DON'T NEED ADVICE ABOUT PORTION CONTROL.
I needed time to get over how sad, angry, guilty, terrified, hopeless and depressed I was.
By her thinking I just need to limit my portions dismisses everything I have gone through these past two years. And I know why. BECAUSE SHE CAN'T GO THROUGH IT. Not her mother's death, all my father's illnesses or her nephew's murder. So she stores it up, eating and starving to stay in the CHAOS and having something ("I CAN'T BELIEVE IT'S NOT BUTTER" lectures) to take her mind off the pain she is in.
But I don't want to be any part of it. It's how I learned to cope this long. But I don't want to be that way anymore.
AND I TOLD HER SO.
She got mad, pitched a fit and even hung up on me as I was saying, "I love you." Because I do love her. But I don't want to talk about diets with her anymore. Because that's so NOT what this is about.
And I stand f'ing firmly in that resolve, although, I have to admit that when I saw the "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter" spray in my fridge, I felt so damn guilty.