Looking at myself from the perspective of an acquaintance, I see a woman who is struggling with grief over her mother's death, holding it inside, nodding and outwardly saying things like, "Well, she was 94 and lived a good, productive life... Our love and mutual respect was solid as a rock," while inwardly feeling lost, abandoned, stricken.
I see a woman who is eating her heart out, big plates heaped with food, seconds, between meal snacks, reverting to old habits for comfort, not asking her friends for help.
And here's a big one. I see a woman who did not go to her OA meeting on Saturday, even though it's a place where she always finds comfort and support, a place where just maybe she can open the door to her feelings. Why? Because of vanity. Plain and simple. I did not want to show my face.
It's OK. I'm not beating myself up about this. I suspect it's a pretty normal thing. Being aware of how important my face is makes me much more sympathetic to people who have birth defects, scars or other deformities of the face. It makes me more sympathetic to women who have face lifts and cosmetic surgery. It makes me want to contribute money to the Drs. who donate their time to do cleft palette surgeries on children from other countries. In the meantime, I am feeling the results of three weeks of overeating in the way my jeans fit. It's time for me to admit that I need help.
Help me, dear universe,
to feel rather than feed my feelings.
Let me cry and rage.
Let me curl up in a little ball and moan.
Let me turn toward friends
and away from food.
Let me write and speak my truth
rather than the deception of "it's all OK, really."
Let me breathe in healing energy.
Here's a picture of Mom, taken by my sister-in-law last fall, a time when she was feeling pretty chipper.
She loved to go to my brother's house, and especially their garden, every Sunday for dinner. There she would have a glass of wine and delicious food, very different from her regular nursing home meals. She's wearing Karen's gardening hat to keep the sun from her sensitive eyes and holding her arm up so she can wave for the picture. Absolutely a sweetheart! (See a couple more pictures here.)
Gratitude for today: my husband, having had 68 darn good years with my mom, signs of spring, all three of my sisters-in-law.