Saturday's Post, Our Neighborhood Black Out, My Outlook On My Weight Loss Experience As I Approach the 100LB Loss Point, The Hell I've Been Through, and Coming Clean About My Affair and the Breakup of my Marriage.
We had a blackout yesterday for several hours when a truck hit a tree that came crashing down on a power pole snapping the lines that carry power to about a dozen blocks or more in my neighborhood. A mini taste of what it must have been like for everyone on the East Coast during their recent black out. This was just a few hours and I was going out of my mind with boredom because it was dark and I couldn't read, watch television, or write on the computer. It amazes me how dependent we are on power. Frightening really, and a good lesson for me to ponder over.
The worst part of this and something I'm not even sure I should share in my journal is that when one of our beloved pets die we put her/him in the freezer until the animal mortuary comes and picks them up for cremation, or until I can find the courage to take them to the vet. Depending on how torn up I am about this, or how broke I am due to my compulsive spending, and eBay debating, a little friend can spend up to a couple of weeks in the freezer.
Don't worry, it's a common practice among vets, (that's where we learned how to do this from), and we have an enormous refrigerator. It's one of those huge stainless steel Sub Zero's with two big doors -- the freezer section is a refrigerator unto itself. The very bottom drawer is designated for pet loss and nothing else so we're not mingling our food with our friends.
So, in a black out, being vegetarian means we don't have to worry too much about our food spoiling but we did have Baby Baby who we all loved desperately, and one newborn kitten who just didn't make it, in the freezer. I didn't know what to do. No one could tell us when the power would come back on, so we had to pack our two little friends in a cooler with ice and rush them to the emergency hospital to borrow their freezer and then have the mortuary come pick them up today to cremate them.
This seemed to be a real hoot of a topic for Mom and the girls at their Saturday bridge game. I can only hope there are serious animal loving people out there who can understand.
On a happier note I've lost ninety-eight pounds now and am only two pounds away from the one hundred pound mark. On the Sharon Osbourne Show I told Sharon I had lost one hundred pounds and felt like I was cheating a little bit but Lord two pounds off the mark isn't much and by the time those two shows air I'll be even thinner.
I'm liking my face a lot more now that it's thinner, and I'm loving buying clothes and trying things on that haven't fit in years and finding that they're just too darn big now, damn ; ) But the wrinkleyness of my skin is really bothering me, and I've been thinking about how I must be reaching the midpoint of the weight loss part of this experience and that there is so much more to come in terms of the way I look, the way I feel, my health, and how I handle all of this psychologically. I know that with exercise and time and then cosmetic surgery, shudder, everything about my appearance will be dramatically improved and I'll be happier in my skin, literally.
What is really blowing me away about all of this is that when I look at pictures of myself from just five or six months ago I don't recognize myself. It feels as if someone is playing a trick on me and digitally altered my images in some way to make me look fatter than I remember being. I'm still not ready to show you these pictures, but at some point I will. What's important to me to share with you is how clearly I can now see the distorted dis-ease part of my former way of living, eating, and seeing myself. I was in HUGE denial about my appearance and my health and used self deprecating humor and yes, a pretty face, and never looking beneath that in the mirror, to hide the truth of how I really looked, and how unhealthy I had become from myself. I used fat positive magazines and stores and big-gal celebrities to buoy up my self esteem and give me permission to keep heading for the edge of that cliff.
Now, it's really important for me to share that I believe we can be healthy, and beautiful, and fat all at the same time. I love big people and I don't want anyone to think that I'm judging or turning against my fat sisters and brothers in any way or becoming a get thin via surgery zealot, I swear I'm not. I know how zealous recovering addicts can be and I don't want to push my personal philosophy about this on anyone. But I was really fat, and I couldn't see it for a very long time. At first when I started to put on weight I was mortified if anyone would bring it up or point it out to me. The word obese was the most horribly unfair word in the dictionary and if I overheard anyone saying it in reference to me I would break out in tears. Then as I continued to gain weight I looked for physiological and psychological causes, and there were plenty, but they didn't help me take the weight off, or at least not for long, so I turned to fat acceptance and gained some self esteem by getting political about it. That's when I started getting real paying work as an actor and I got caught in a kind of self defeating trap. My manager and my agent both told me they would kill me if I lost a pound, they said it kiddingly, as if it were some sweet little joke, but I knew they meant it, and I actually worried that if I lost weight I would fall out of this terrific category I had lucked into -- this group of fat actors who got to eat whatever they wanted and work at the same time -- and it was so easy to work because despite the fact that I really am a born to act, do or die kind of actress, the competition was smaller, and I'm pretty, funny, super creative, and I can charm my way around pretty much any casting director, director, and producer, so being big was working for me.
But then my life kind of came crashing down around me. I lost my best friend when her sister accused me of something I didn't do. I lost several more "friends" when they accused my friend of something he didn't do. I found my Birth-Mother after a lifetime of wondering and searching, only to have her completely reject me and tell me the happy news that my fantasy father was a rapist. She literally said, "Your father is an evil man and I will never tell you who he is. You were the "product" of a rape. Enjoy the family I gave you and leave mine alone."
My Dad who had been hallucinating and having paranoid delusions, calling me late at night and telling me that "they" were out to get him, and that I was the only person who believed him and could help, bought a gun, booked a hotel room in Ohio near the cemetery where his parents are buried, "so they wouldn't have far to move him", wrote a suicide letter to my Mom, and then began an even steeper slide into dementia and Alzheimer's disease, ending up in diapers in a hospital bed in my old bedroom at home. Four or five times a year I would get a phone call in the middle of the night and have to rush to meet the ambulance at the ER and pray that he would pull out of his latest bout of pneumonia.
My agent went out of business, wished me luck, and closed her agency. Then my Mother got really ill and needed serious surgery and since I am all she's got I became her everything gal. There wasn't any time to look for a new agent, Mom was sick, Dad was a vegetable, my marriage was falling apart, and we were in the middle of an expensive, never-ending total house rebuild, with my husband as the confused, poky, first-time-slacker-contractor who everyone took advantage of.
To make matters more complicated, and just that much harder on my tortured soul, after having put up with my husband's constant philandering, and ambivalence, his never being home at night, and total lack of interest in me sexually, I figured what was good for the goose was good for the gander, and after having warned my husband that we were in dangerous territory and should enter therapy if we were going to save our marriage, (something he outright refused to do), I began what was supposed to be a casual affair between two really good friends that would burn itself out in time and keep me busy while I waited for my husband to grow up. But I was naive and I hadn't counted on falling in love so this turned into a full blown love affair that threatened to wreck both of our marriages. His broke up, but loaded with guilt and torn in two I hung on to mine, unable to leave this new man, who I was passionately in love with but not entirely sure of, and my husband who I loved with all my heart, and who I had been with since I was nineteen years old. So there I was having an affair and stuck between two relationships, in love with two people, having sex with only one of them, and totally unable to leave either of them. Life was truly hellacious except for my beloved son who was the joy of my life.
But then, ultimately, my marriage that had been teetering on the brink for years, finally got the push it needed right over the edge when just one day before my birthday my ex finally fessed up to one of his affairs, told me he was deeply in love, tortured, and confused, and left me for a young, thin, manipulative, clingy, (I have no shortage of judgments here, no, none at all), fakely-sexy, (you should have heard that syrupy voice, "Ooooh baaaaby, I'm just dying to feel your big hard..."), crystal meth addict, who just happened to be a Las Vegas stripper. Five days later he moved back in and although he had been shacked up with girlie number eight-hundred-and-sixty-six in some sleazebag motel, and didn't even bother to call us on my birthday, I decided to tough it out, put on the bravest face in all the world, and threw him a big birthday bash in our enormous half finished house remodel, that we probably weren't ever going to wind up living in together. To say all of this was painful would be the understatement of a lifetime.
We stayed together for another desperately painful month and then without knowing it he left us for good when he flew off to some fencing tournament in, of all places, Florida at Spring Break, lying as he went, "I'm not going with her, I promise," yeah right. Then just a few nights later I had the pleasure of speaking with Miss Sweetie Pie herself when she "accidentally" answered the phone. At that point, with all the covers off, Rob, my husband of eighteen or nineteen years, I swear I forget, suddenly turned into some bizarre icier robotic and cruel version of himself, and linking arms with his much-sexier-than-me girlfriend, refused to return any of my anguished calls for the rest of his fun in the sun spring break.
Then taking his Mother's advice, (which was that if I had any hope of ever getting him back I'd better show some spine and throw him out, so he and the gal would have nothing to come back to, and he would be forced to look at what the rest of his life without me was going to look like), I called a moving company the next day, packed up all his stuff and put it in storage for him. Then I passed out all of his best cigars to every lowlife scumbag I came in contact with, including all of the men who had been working on our house, telling them that there was a new sheriff in town.
Robby and his gal came back from Florida to learn that he wouldn't be taking one more dollar from this side of the family, he'd been fired from his job, and that he'd been tossed out of his home and the locks had all been changed. I had been hoping for at least one last conversation, after all those years, everything we'd been through, but his Mother double crossed me and welcomed them both into her home with open arms, calling me one last time to tell me not to come by and cause any kind of scene trying to talk to him. Which as you'll see at the end of this very long post, is the reason why I have condemned her to one of the last circles of hell.
Then to make matters worse, they got thrown out of his Mom's house, I don't know what happened to the girlfriend, but my husband now homeless called crying and begged me for help, so I moved out of the house we were renting, weeks earlier than we were prepared to, and moved into our unfinished house so he could sleep in a sleeping bag on the floor of our son's old bedroom, where he kept a bottle of Astro Glide and a Polaroid of his lover wearing a push up bra, spike heels, garter belt, stockings, and no panties, with her leg hiked way up on a cheap motel table, with empty beer bottles and containers of spaghetti slopped all over it, one finger provocatively placed between her lips while the other hand spread her other lips apart.
It gets worse, so much worse. While I tried to see the good in all this and went into deep therapy, he and the chicklet spiraled downwards, doing one hurtful thing after another to Beau and to me. Weekends were spent with my son's bag packed by the door waiting for Daddy to come, Daddy who would call drunk or stoned and leave a message on the machine saying he couldn't make it while the girlfriend screamed in the background, "He's with me Jacqui!" This happened so many times I had to finally put a stop to it and told him to go away until he would be capable of making and keeping a commitment to his son. Something I thought had only been a problem for him with me, never for his own son, and was I stupefied when I learned that he treated us all the same, his dogs, his wife, his son.
Then he sort of disappeared for a while and I finished the house remodel on my own. I tried to arrange some kind of stable visitation situation with Robby for Beau, but he couldn't keep any commitements, one time leaving him at school until late at night when his Mother finally came and picked him up and dropped him off at her house, refusing to make him any dinner and leaving him alone in the dark while she went upstairs to her apartment. Just weeks after this my son heard the news that Robby and the gal had gotten married in Vegas, (making him a bigamist because he conveniently forgot to divorce me first), when she secretly changed his outgoing cell phone message, presumably to announce this to all of us. After that I just stopped trying to force him to be a Father to Beau and after he made a few half hearted attempts to get back together with me, which I promptly rebuffed, I pushed him as far away from me as I could, and that's how I slowly, bit by agonizing bit, came to see the light of day and got the hell over him.
Through all of this I had Scott's support, which was amazing, and I can't tell this long miserable detailed story without at least mentioning how good he was to us, how patient and almost saintly he was through all of this. I was very lucky to have found him just as his relationship was coming to an end, but I do blame myself a lot for this and know that when I judge the gal who Robby left me for I am in turn truly judging myself.
Then my best friend showed up in my life again announcing that she was pregnant and married, and just as quickly as she came, she rejected me again and left. I had more painful rejecting communication with my birth family, particularly one of my half sisters and then my Dad died and I had a miscarriage. And it all just got to be too much for me so I kind of gave up. I stopped trusting people. I stopped going out socially except for places that were very nearby, comfortable, and safe. I just took care of my boyfriend and my son, kept adding to my family of pets, kept to myself, and made my housekeepers into psuedo sisters, sort of adopted all of their relatives and their problems and kept piling on the pounds. The Internet and television and food became my company and my solace, reality, exercise, socializing and going out, were the enemy. I landed in the land of utter denial.
I had crossed the line between being zoftig, lush, big-healthy-sexy, to being a three-hundred-and-twenty-three pound woman who wouldn't get on a scale, let alone admit something like this to you, me, or anyone else. I didn't have the stamina to walk more than a block. I certainly couldn't walk on my treadmill for more than ten minutes. Sex was getting pretty monotonous with being able to make love in only one or two positions, plus it's hard to feel sexy when you hate yourself, hate the way you look, and hurt all over. I'd given up the thing I love the most, which is acting, because I knew there was no way that even if I landed one of the many fat-gal parts I had been going out for, I wouldn't have the energy to get up at four or five and sit on a set all day.
Things had gotten so bad that I was afraid I was going to have a heart attack. I learned that obesity, adult onset diabetes, and heart attacks all run in my birth family. I had used the excuse that my blood pressure had been fine all along and that my cholesterol was great to buoy my I can eat as many fattening deserts as I like, it'll never happen to me, denial, but then all of a sudden my blood pressure started to rise and I discovered that I was pre-diabetic. My knees and ankles were starting to buckle and give out from under me. I was borrowing my Mother's handicap placard, feeling guilty and worried that people would look at me and think, "Handicap Parking Space Stealer", when all along they were probably thinking, "OMG poor girl look at how fat she is, no wonder she can't park further away and walk." Or maybe they were hating me, I don't know.
But most of all I was afraid that I was going to die and leave my son all alone without a Mom, and with an emotionally checked out, distant and selfish boy-man for a Father, and little else. So I did the only thing that was left for me to do, and I signed up for this operation. At this moment, I can say pretty confidently that with the exception of giving birth to my son, this is the single best thing I have ever done for myself. We'll see if I'm still saying this ten years from now, but for now, my life is taking a turn for the better, things are definitely on an upswing and I am healing and healed in so many of the areas I described above.
Well, that was exhausting and overwhelming. Thanks for letting me put it out there. I just start writing these things and I never know where they're going to lead. Most of you know a lot of this stuff about me but for my new pals it can't hurt to recap a little, (or a lot, lol,) here and there.
I found this on Cellar Door's Journal. Much fun and super therapeutic. Off we go to finally see Whale Rider, although I really want to see The Magdalene Sisters.
Most Cab Drivers, People who Never Swear, Shamers, General asshats
Circle I Limbo
Ice Cream Truck Drivers Who Won't Stop
Circle II Whirling in a Dark & Stormy Wind
Mean Gym Teachers, Bigots, Clowns
Circle III Mud, Rain, Cold, Hail & Snow
my ex mother-in-law, Josie My Nanny
Circle IV Rolling Weights
Homophobes, Fat Haters, Racists, Misogynists
Circle V Stuck in Mud, Mangled
Rosa My Mother's Housekeeper
Circle VI Buried for Eternity
Anti Semites, Terrorists, Child Molestors, Rapists
Circle VII Burning Sands
Murderers, Serial Killers, Nazis, NAMBLA Members
Circle IIX Immersed in Excrement
Animal "Researchers", Vivisectors
Circle IX Frozen in Ice