the mechanics of domestic starvation

Amidst all the things I tell myself I “need” to do (dishes, laundry, floor-scrubbing, and toy put-away), the things I really MUST do (take care of the children, feed everyone, use the toilet, etc), and the things I manage to work in that I consider bonus (email, blog, call girlfriends, Husband, & Mum, sew, design, write) – the one thing every day I consistently don’t do is: feed myself.

My kids eat well. My husband eats OK. I eat nothing until dinner, where I scarf extra helpings until the LBS swoon subsides and I’m left feeling like a python who just worfed down a goat. Then a small midnight snack; sleep. Rinse; repeat. This isn’t for any reason that makes sense. It’s almost like a bad habit from years ago (coffee and cigarette in the morning; nothing else until noon) gone so awry and laden with so much baggage that it’s become my own personal institution. Even if a normal human being can survive on naught but caffeine for half the day, a mom NURSING TWO CHILDREN (as I was for a year) and CARING for them (and sometimes more) amidst tantrums, singing, hiking, heavy lifting, wiping noses, and four-alarm diaper changes – that woman is putting herself and her kids in a dangerous and silly position not to nourish her body. And yet I do it daily.

Tuesday I ended up crying on my counselor’s couch when we discussed this issue and she said the word “protein”. I realized how sad it was for this poor person (me) who takes care of everyone in her family but is running on empty almost all day long. Worse than the sadness: I couldn’t think of a reason why I didn’t take better care of myself. And: I felt really, really stupid. After a few sniffles I said to L., “I’ve always been proud of myself that I don’t have ‘food issues’ — but it turns out I do, they’re just not the ‘normal’ ones.”

Today I broke habit and forced myself to eat not only a breakfast but a lunch – a good lunch with walnuts and avocado and spinach. It helped. At dinner (Date Night – yay!) I was actually present – as opposed to my normal SOP, inflicted with Crazy-Eye and completely scattered and unfocused on my husband’s lovely dinner conversation.

So. One day where I did things better. I swear, when these kids are a little more self-maintaining I am going to go back to coffee for breakfast, hardboiled egg for lunch, and bourbon and steak for dinner. Can’t wait.

… A side note. What is up with that bullshitty blue-speckled material in laundry detergent? Are we supposed to believe that’s some sort of magical, whimsical encapsulation of pure mountain streams and not the same goddamn chemical composition as the effective-yet-scary white chemical? Who figures this stuff out and thinks to throw it in detergent? How do you dye specks? And what do they call it? What job description is in charge of these things? I want that position. Frolicking in great clouds of gleaming white bullshit, all day long.

Comments are closed.