Friday, February 1, 2008

Are You There, God? It's Me, Erin.

I am very close to giving up and shutting down this blog.

And I don't want to quit, deep down, but I don't know how long I can string out more and more blog entries about dieting and losing weight and getting healthy when I'm not doing any of those things. I'm getting worse, losing momentum, and I just really want to pull the covers over my head and do the easy thing and just give up.

I know I'm setting myself up to fail. I realize this every single morning when I wake up too late to make breakfast so I grab a doughnut or an Egg McMuffin on the way to work. I know it's my fault whenever I succumb to my usual post-work malaise and burrow in my bed with some kind of junk food and stay there until it's time for to actually go to sleep. I know it's my fault that I don't exercise, and I don't try to make myself cook the food I buy. I know all this.

But I swear, if I COULD make myself do these things I would. I really would. I hate this inertia more than anything in my life. My body has been screaming with pain over the past few weeks because I haven't been moving it, but the idea of exercising or even standing for more than few minutes at a time is exhausting.

I've caught myself praying over this a couple times, and I don't really pray. It's more of a "Dude, help." kind of plea, and I don't know if Jesus or whoever even thinks that counts. But I also know that something has to be pretty bad for me to even subconsciously be praying about it, so that's telling me something has to change. I need something to change.

The more I think about this, the more I'm starting to become convinced that all the problems in my life...my eating disorder, the almost comatose state I go into when I get home, the depression, the anger...they're not the problems. I really think they're just symptoms of some sort of enormous spiritual deficit that I haven't ever identified before. I feel empty. I think I eat and eat and eat because there's a hole inside me that I try to fill in all the wrong ways. I feel like I need more. I just don't know what that "more" is.

Sometimes, even though I'm really cynical about it, I think there is a God that watches over me. I believe this for purely circumstantial and silly reasons, like the time in college when I had thirteen cents in my checking account, and I owed $225.00 in rent by the end of the week and then I received a random profit sharing check from a summer job for $226.00. Things like that tend to happen to me enough that I think there's more than just coincidence to it, although that really doesn't seem to be much of a basis for religious faith. If I wanted to be so precious as to say that God's answered my prayers for help yet again, I guess I should mention that a huge grocery/health food store opened up about ten miles from my house, which means I'd only have to drive 15 minutes to get decent food instead of 30. I also noticed a Bikram Yoga studio had opened up in the same area, which also means I could drive there in 15 minutes instead of 45 or an hour. I don't know why I think those are my only chances to fix this, but right now I do. The yoga classes are hideously expensive; $150 a month, which I cannot afford at all right now, but feel like I need to purchase anyway. I emailed the man who runs the studio and he said he might be able to cut a work study scholarship deal with me if I would commit to going for awhile. I am terrified that yoga will end up just like tango, or aerobics classes, or Jazzercise or the old yoga classes, and when faced with the site of my enormous bulk in the studio mirror, I will leave after the first class and never come back. It'll be another opportunity I couldn't sustain because of the cost, or the driving, or because of my own stupid insecurities. It'll be another disappointment and if it ends up that way I'm just giving up.

Every night when I get home from work and I lie here on this goddamned bed with my laptop and my phone and I slip in and out of a fitful all-night nap before bed I think "This can't get worse. You will never be more emotionally bankrupt than you are tonight. Tomorrow will be better." And then tomorrow's worse. Something has to change. I need to figure out what that something is. Jesus, if you've got me on your Google Reader, I could use a little help. Thanks.

16 comments:

Anonymous said...

please dont give up, please dont stop writing. i could type all night long, but it only comes back to the good you do by being open and honest.

ahappywife said...

Whatever you do, don't stop writing. Even if you just write about the dust gathering on your exercise videos while you start a new hobby of paperclip origami. I personally want to hear it. YOu have a wonderfully engaging writing style that always gets me to thinking about what's going on in my own little world. It's okay if you broaden your journal to other topics than dieting. Maybe you can blog about your quest for filling up that 'emptiness' inside of you. Alot of us out here often feel the same thing. I know I can certainly relate. Whatever you decide to write, it will be worth sharing. We're all hear to learn from eachother and I always learn a lot from you.

Helen said...

Hang on, Erin...it's a journey...and SOME tomorrow WILL be better. The more you recognize about who/what/why you are, the greater it is. At least for me, the blogging helps THAT...even if the scale isn't going down.

Megan said...

Please don't stop writing, and please don't give up. You might not think so, but I find you inspiring because what you write is so real, and I find I can relate to it and not feel like i'm alone in thinking and feeling the same way you do in many cases. You'll get over this hump!

Lori said...

Erin, you are a fantastic writer who gets gold out of the staff lounge goings-on and your everyday life.

You're looking at the positive things in your life. The health food store, the yoga, are all good things. Don't think about the long term of whether you can do it or not. Just commit to doing one thing a day and one class a week (or however it's set up). Don't think you have to run a marathon if you have trouble standing up or walking. Just stand up or walk for a while until you can add to it.

You know, I'd have to go back and figure out when the divorce was final but maybe some of this depression/inertia is due to that. It would be hard for anyone to go through. If you're like all of us, you have this idea of what life should be like and the reality is much different. It's part of the void you've mentioned as well. I don't know how to fix it either. I have the same void but it's at a different setting than yours.

I'm thinking and praying for you and feel free to email me offline. Don't give up. We love you an awful lot, Erin.

Luna Bella said...

I just want to echo what everyone else has said. Please don't stop writing. I love reading what you post here, no matter what you're writing about. You always leave me with a lot of "me, too" moments, and those are worth so much.
I'm sorry you're feeling so stuck at the moment. You'll find your way through it, just as you've done in the past, but I know that it sucks to be where you are right now. We are all thinking about you and cheering for you, Erin. Hang in there!

Vickie said...

ditto what the wise women who commented before me said.

and HUGS.

A true yoga studio should not have mirrors - so maybe this one won't. and even if they do - you can probably find a spot where you can't see yourself. and then just train yourself NOT to look.

PattiB said...

Erin-
I just recently found your blog and enjoy reading it (the girl scout cookie post make my coffe come out my nose--disgusting I know--but I was laughing so hard).
I can relate to what you said about wanting to give up but I ma here to encourage you not too. I have been on the diet/stop/gain rolercoaster for 20 years. I started again in Janaury and while I have {{only}}} lost 9 lbs in a month...I have not given up or gained it back this time.
I am a beleiver so I am confident saying that I think God is putting these things (yoga studio/food store) out there for you as a lifeline. Seek out other beleivers (church/online) and talk to someone about it. There is also a great program you might be able to find at a local church called First Place..it is a scripture based health/weight loss program. I knwo someone who lost (and kept off) 55 lbs last year.
Keep moving forward (and keep writing) it is a great outlet and it is obvious form all the other comments I read on here, you are blessing so many people.
Patti

Casey said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Casey said...

Erin, it would be terrible if you stopped writing on this blog. You are expressive, articulate, and quick-witted, and your posts have been something for me to look forward to for weeks. I will be very sad if you stop writing.

Earlier this morning, I posted a very lengthy comment with all sorts of semi-worthless nutritional junk, but after I read it, I realized that it all completely missed the point.

Instead, I want to tell you that I understand intimately when you talk of that leaden sensation where it takes all of your body's strength to lift your head off of your pillow. I have known that sort of dispair, the kind where you feel like an empty shell after your insides have rotted away.

You will feel better again, I promise. This process of change is slow and there are setbacks every day, but you will come out the other side.

I'm thinking about you, and I would be happy to repost that nutrition strategy stuff if it would have any utility for you.

Poonie said...

Please don't give up Erin. You've come this far already and you can keep going. I think a lot of us are finding it tough and struggling with the urge to give it all up right now but things will get better. Start by taking one day at a time and one step at a time rather than trying to fix everything all at once.

Your blog is a great read and so honest, I'm sure I speak for many of the other weight bloggers when I say you'll be missed.

Please hang in there.

Hugs

Anonymous said...

Erin,
I think you are a great writer and I enjoy this blog. But I think if you want to stop writing because it is leading you to a bad place, that is perfectly justified. I think blogging can both hurt and help writers. You know how it can help, but excessive rumination on the same topic can also be defeating if you are focusing on your "failures" or lack of progress.

You sound so depressed. Just print this entry out and fax it to your shrink. You need new medication! It is not your fault! If it is a spiritual deficit, you will be able to deal with it once you are stable again.

Good luck with whatever it is you choose. If this blog is a parasite holding you down, cut it loose! If it is the wind in your sails, embrace it. But you don't owe anyone a damn thing. Be free. And go to the damn doctor.

Linda said...

Erin, know always that you lighten my load with your wonderful wonderful prose.

At the end of the day: your life = your decision. Up to you, but if blogging helps in any small way, know that it helps others too.
Bless you, Linda xoxo

The Cakehole said...

This is the first time I've read my blogs in two weeks because I've stopped exercising, stopped eating anything close to natural food, and have spent the last week going to the supermarket every night for a binge of bread cake and chocolate. I guess what I'm trying to say is that mentally, I'm with you. I wasn't going to comment because I felt like a fraud encouraging you when I was having the same problems and can't seem to encourage myself, but you are on my google reader and if I can help I would like to. I don't live in your head, I can't tell you how or when the change back will come, but I can tell you that shutting it down and giving up on the get healthy plan will not make you feel any better. At all. I haven't gone back to exercising yet, I just can't face the energetic, wholesome-ness of eating right and exercising five times a week that seemed so easy a few weeks ago, but yesterday I gritted my teeth and didn't go to the 24hr supermarket. That's all I did. I didn't get my water in, I didn't put on my exercise DVD and I didn't eat healthy meals, but I managed to not compound that with a bag of chocolate croissants, 3 packs of ocky, and a chocolate bar. It wasn't a good day, but it was progress, and it made me feel like there was some hope that I could get back to the way I was a few weeks ago.

Please, please don't quit. You don't have to exercise, you don't have to plan and log every scrap of your food, just choose on thing, one single piece of junk food that you've been eating and don't eat it, even if you don't change anything else. It' a small change, and it doesn't fix everything, but it gave me hope that if I could do it just for today, then tomorrow I could eat one less thing, or make one different choice, and that there was a light somewhere at the end of this static.

Grumpy Chair said...

Whatever you do, don't delete your blog. If you feel you can't write on here any longer (for now) maybe just set your blog to private you can always change it later.

Number one Erin, treat yourself kindly and take care of you right now.

Jarrett Meyer said...

We find God in the people we know who care for us and really want us to be happy. No strings attached friendship.