LOSING LORI #5A – September 1, 2012

It took a very long time to work up the chutzpah to lose weight again. I had been a 3-time loser at Weight Watchers years ago and each time I gained back the weight plus more. It’s a very common story. And one I don’t care to repeat.

When I worked at a computer company, and I mean circa ’89 when computers had their own rooms, I lost 35 pounds then gained 65 back. It was humiliating but I put on a brave face. I’ll never forget this one day when a woman – we’ll call her Azmina because that’s her name – said, in a decidedly snotty way, “What happened with your weight anyway?” I was too shocked by her insensitivity to have a snappy comeback. I’m not sure what I did, but I’m fairly certain crying in the ladies room was involved. Hey, Azmina, if you’re reading this, I hope you grew some manners since I saw you last. Oh crap, you guys. I have to confess this. Azmina had a baby while we worked together. The staff knew of my ability to cross stitch and asked that I stitch a birth announcement for her baby as a staff gift. And I did. It took weeks to stitch. This was before she was a snot to me. My tiny victory came when she had a second baby and asked me to make another cross stitch. YES, she did that! I KNOW! I said no. Be snotty once, shame on you. Be stupid – NO CROSS STITCH FOR YOU! God, sometimes I’m so tough I scare myself.

Ha! This is not what I was going to write about at all. My point is that before I committed to losing weight again, I decided I was going to do it differently. I point blank refuse to pay any person or company to lose weight! Yes, I’m angry about the millions of dollars the diet industry fleeces from people, but that’s another blog.

Eating disorders are about addiction. This is why I added regular psychology to this adventure. I’ve been a fan of therapy for years now, ever since the Post-Partum Crash of 2000. That’s when I met anxiety and depression in a dark alley and knew I needed some new tools in my box (mmph, I said ‘box’).

Since the grand dose of therapy back then, I enjoy a psychology ‘top-up’ a couple of times a year. God, it feels so fine. Yeah, yeah, there’s that whole work component of it, but I have never had such amazing payoff from work in my whole life. I have friends and family members who are curious about therapy, but are admittedly nervous about going. I get it. There are stereotypes about therapy – that whole lay-on-the-couch thing as a crusty old man looks at you disdainfully while making notes and judging you; that image of you crying uncontrollably while confronting your childhood issues head on, etc. It doesn’t sound like fun! Another friend of mine figures he already knows what the psych is going to do/say, so it won’t make any difference. That one makes me laugh.

A good psychologist does none of these things, nor does he/she force you to do anything you’re not ready for or comfortable with. Even when I’m with Psych and we get into hypnosis, I don’t say, “Okay then, lady – hypnotize me!” Okay, actually, I did say that. Then she reminded me that I hypnotize myself. She’s the supporting actress.

Hey, if you’re looking for a psych, phone around. Ask them questions like: “What techniques do you use?” “How have you helped people with this issue before?” “Is it cash or open bar?” Don’t be shy. Grill ‘em, I say! You’re shopping for a mental health coach. Accept only the best.

When I emailed my family doc to let her know I was going to shed a person, one thing she said was, “The psych piece is key.” Hell yeah, it is. Every time I stroll out of psych, I sing to myself, “I’d like to buy the world a psych…” to the tune of the Coke commercial in the ‘70s. Stop snickering. I always get the elevator to myself. I wish I could buy the world psychology. I know how GD lucky I am that my husband’s job provides benefits and I don’t have to shell out $160-$180 an hour for psych. Maybe someone reading this knows of resources that help out with the cost. If so, please post them.

Some people in the world don’t get that this is about addiction. “Just stop eating so much. Go work out.” Oh, okay. Wow. I had no idea this was so simple. Why on earth did I not think of that myself? I am a moron. You sir, have saved my life. JACKASS. Addictions aren’t easy, and we all have ‘em. There’s no shame in asking for help. As a matter of fact, it’s pretty damn smart.