Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Dear President Obama, and Citimortgage,

Dear President Obama, and Citimortgage,

The Holiday season has arrived. Yesterday, I spent the afternoon decorating my home. I had Charlotte and Molly here. We played Christmas music. "Charlie Brown Christmas" actually. It is our favorite. We hung ornaments on our little tree in the kitchen. We put one up there every year. It is our "bird tree". Through the years, we have collected bird ornaments, here and there. My husband David, loves birds. From bald eagles, to hummingbirds. He has a love for them. He has a love for their ability to fly.

I even baked cookies yesterday. I tried to create a day for Charlotte and Molly that was magical. Olivia was off on a play date, and I wanted to make the day special for Charlotte. Molly, being so little, just thought each sparkling item coming out of assorted boxes was wonderful. She giggled all day. Yet, all afternoon, I was not enjoying what we were doing. I should have been, but I was angry. I had shaky hands, and heart palpitations. I wanted to scream. I wanted to cry.

 David had called me, and told me that the cost of living raise he was going to be getting in the new year, would not be coming. President Obama had announced a two year freeze on raises for civilian federal employees. The raise would have been a 1.4 % increase. That's it. 1.4%. But to us, it was a lot, and we were happy about it. The President  went on to say that federal employees should make this sacrifice.


With all due respect President Obama, my family has sacrificed. We have been for quite some time now. My husband David was one of the first people to jump out of a C-17 airplane. He was a test jumper for the U.S. Army. He was a squad Sergeant with the 82nd Airborne Division. He earned the NATO Service Medal Award while stationed in Turkey. He is a brilliantly smart man, with a Masters Degree.

He worked in Land Surveying for almost 10 years after he got out of the military. The industry he worked in was completely driven by the buying and selling of houses. Thanks to the mortgage companies wreaking havoc on the real estate industry, and the market drying up, so did my husband's ability to work. He was unemployed for almost 8 months, and the only way he was lucky enough to get a job, was because I wrote a letter to our local newspaper about him, and they wrote a story about him.

During his unemployment, you know what he did all those cold, stressful days? He walked around neighborhoods, and knocked on doors, and asked people to vote for you, Mr. President. He and I both really believed that we would be helped by you.  We really thought that you got it. That you would make things better. That we would save our home, and the mortgage company would assist us in doing so. We thought that all of the men and women that we personally knew out of work, would get jobs. We thought that you were going to help us remain whole.

I cried. I laid in bed, pregnant with my little baby girl Molly, and watched you the night you won the election. I wept, tears streaming down my face uncontrollably, and David and I held each other, because we thought everything was going to be OK.

It isn't OK. It could not be worse for us. Citimortgage, in the beginning, offered us help. David's new federal job paid him far less than his previous job. They said they would help us, and enroll us in the "making homes affordable" program. They mailed us a letter, and told us that if we paid the three month "trial period" payment, they would close on the reduced mortgage and interest rate after we did so. Three months came and went. We paid, faithfully, this new reduced, affordable rate. We could pay it, because we could afford it. After paying for almost 9 months, and still not closing, we kept calling Citimortgage, asking when we could expect to close.

Citimortgage reneged. After all the months of making timely payments, they sent us paper work for a mortgage payment that was almost $100.00 dollars more than the payment we were making, before David lost his job. The help we thought we were getting, would not be coming. It was over. My home is now in foreclosure. Citimortgage will not help us. They were there, in rescue boats, throwing life rafts out to my family, and just as our finger tips grasped them, they yanked them away. They looked us all in the eye, and turned their boats around.

I am watching my family disintegrate. We have medical bills, and unpaid taxes. We have never lived above our means. We are cash only people. If we don't have the money, we don't get it. And I am not talking about luxuries. I am talking about necessities. We cannot afford to buy our girls Christmas presents let alone afford to keep food in the refrigerator at times.

Sacrifice? How much more are we supposed to?I kept choking back tears yesterday, as I put up Christmas decorations, because I don't know where we will be next year. I don't know if we will have a home.  I don't know if our bird tree will still be part of Christmas for us. I don't know if I will have anything. And yet, a silly 1.4 % cost of living raise is now not coming. My President, the one David asked countless people to vote for, door to door, is asking us to sacrifice more. I have to watch the government bail out banks, and read about Christmas bonuses being handed out to the employees of these very companies, that are poised to throw my family out into the street. The very same companies that caused my husband to lose his job in the first place. They are double and triple dipping in my family's life, and they won't help us.

Sacrifice? How much more? I am but one, person. A mother, and a wife. I am powerless. I have a keyboard. All I can do is write, and pray someone will hear me.  I pray that someone will hear all of the countless families that are dying out here.

Citimortgage doesn't care about my beautiful family. I don't think you do either, President Obama.

We are tired of sacrificing.

I am beginning to believe that the American dream, for many of us, is out of reach.

Saturday, November 27, 2010


Thanks to the kindness of David's co worker, we made it to East Hampton for Thanksgiving. I am happy we were able to. I am happy someone's kind heart allowed us to.

I am so stressed. I can't focus on just letting go, and enjoying time with old friends. I keep worrying about how we are going to buy Christmas presents. I couldn't sleep thinking about it.

I took a nap today here at our friends house. This is the first place David and I lived before we got married. This was our love shack. I was here with Molly alone. Everybody had gone out. I sat on the couch, holding her on my chest, under the giant picture window, that faces south. Giant squares of sun warmed us. It felt so familiar. It made me feel sad.

We napped in the sun. When I opened my eyes, it felt like we had never left here. It was like I dreamed about a life somewhere else. It was just a dream. I woke up in my old home. But it wasn't. This isn't my home anymore. The warmth of the sun tricked me. It made me want to cry.

I just can't shake this incredible sadness.

I feel like I have misplaced something.

I have this urge to keep looking around for it, but I don't know what I am looking for.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


There never seems to be a dull, stress free moment around here. And in that spirit, today began filled with anxiety. Due to a massive system failure at David's job, he did not get paid. No one did. At least I can take comfort in that. At least I am not one of those women out there who were waiting for pay day, to go to the supermarket, to get what I needed for the house full of company that is coming over tomorrow, and now unable to. My worry is that we have fifty cents in the bank, and no way to get to my parents for our turkey dinner. No gas in the car, and actually, no groceries in my fridge, as I thought we were going to be out of town for the weekend, enjoying time with old friends. And here I was, actually looking forward to this weekend, even in the mess we are in. Bad luck is our companion. Why would it take a day off.
So, I will try and count my blessings, in order to avoid having my head blow off my shoulders.

I will drive to Charlotte's school today, with what little gas I have left, and watch her recite the "Jazzy ABC's" in her "Poetry and Punch" performance.
I will be thankful that we still have a house, for now, in which to call home.
I will be thankful that it is warm inside of it. (knock on wood)
I will be thankful for my husband, and the upward climb he continues on each day.
I will be thankful for my beautiful little girls, in every way possible.
I will be thankful that my parents are still alive, and are so good to me and my family.
I am thankful that I have my friend, Nichol. Even though she lives in Germany right now, I have her in my life.
I am thankful for the warm sun that is shining in my window.
I am thankful for the gap toothed man I married, and having two kids with gap toothed smiles. That beautiful smile will live on.
I am thankful for the girls assorted dimples, and Davids.
I am thankful that we have a car.
I am thankful that someone at David's job overheard him talking to me on the phone about not getting paid, and offered to loan him money.
I am thankful for all of the kind words and good thoughts that people have sent our way.
I am thankful that we had Grandpa Joe in our life, for as long as we did.
I am thankful for no one being sick.
I am thankful for medical insurance.
I am thankful for good report cards.
I am thankful for hearing Olivia sing in the shower.
I am thankful for Molly's habit of calling out "mommy" in her sleep.
I am thankful my girls go to school with breakfast in their belly's and clean clothes on their bodies.
I am thankful to have diapers and baby wipes.
I am thankful to have good neighbors.
I am thankful that I am alive. I don't ever want to leave this party.
I am thankful to have these days of raising these beautiful little creatures. I am in awe of them.
I am thankful to have had all of this. I am thankful for these days. They are filled with stress, and at times, frighten me, but I will long for them one day.

I will cry when they are over.

I am thankful to be loved.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


In 4th grade, there was a rite of passage, in my Elementary School. It was a week long trip to Fire Island. It was the trip. The one you waited for since you entered Wing Street Elementary School. It was in the Fall, just as the season ends, and the raw Winter weather pushes in. All of your fundraising efforts were for this trip. It was legend. My older sister went. Everyone who grew up in the "T" section, my Levitt neighborhood, lived for this moment. I laid in bed dreaming of it since 2nd grade. The thought of going was too much to even think about at times. The level of excitement rivaled Christmas.
Fire Island is a barrier Island off Long Island. No cars are on Fire Island. It is miles long, and I don't even think a half mile wide. It is a giant sand bar. One side of the Island is on the Great South Bay, and the other is the Atlantic Ocean. The land in the middle is a magical world. Mostly sand dunes. And an amazing "Sunken Forest". A boardwalk goes through the entire forest. It is long, and twisty. Strange trees and plants abound.
When the fourth graders go to Fire Island, they stay in Ranger housing. Barracks really. The cafeteria is ocean side, and a bit of a walk from where you sleep. The "classroom" is at the Ranger station. There were amazing items laid out there, for you to touch. Razor clam shells, and horseshoe crabs. All sorts of seaweed, and birds nests. Shells, and tree bark. There was a great big fire place. At night, we gathered around it, and Mr. Raso, clearly an alcoholic, and chain smoker, read "The Tell Tale Heart" to us. We ate s'mores, and held each other. He told us of the legend of Whistling Sam, a pirate who, along with other pirates, had buried treasure, somewhere in the Sunken Forest. His greedy partners wanted more of a share  in the loot, so they tied him to a tree, and let the tide come up, and drown him. It is said he whistled, as his last attempt for help, and at night, you can hear that whistle in the wind. You could, and it was the scariest thing I had ever heard.
We spent our days in waders, standing in the bay, and looking at underwater life through these great big floating microscopes. We caught things in nets, and dissected sea creatures. We dug, and diagrammed everything. I even tasted sarsaparilla.
Before dinner at night, we played football on the ocean. It was cold and gray. I remember how ominous the sea looked to me. Yet, it was exhilarating. My hair smelled like salt water, and fresh air all week. It was magic. Pure magic.
My mother and I were very close when I was in 4th grade. She packed my bag for me, and in it, she put four envelopes, with a letter for each night I was there. She said to read one, privately, before bed. I did. I looked forward to each one. I would bring them in the bathroom, because I didn't want my girlfriends, who I was rooming with, to make fun of me. In each letter, she told me how beautiful I was, and how smart I was. She told me how proud she was of me. She told me that there was something different about me. That I was special, and I was a gift to her, and my father. I remember how happy those letters made me. They made me feel like I was a gift. They made me love my mother so much.
When I returned that Friday from my week away, my room was clean, and organized. My mother had even cleaned out my hairbrush. She made my favorite dinner, and listened intently to my long, drawn out adventures of being on the beach. She seemed so happy. When she tucked me in that night, my sheets were all freshly laundered, and smelled so good. It was such a happy, safe feeling. We said our goodnight prayers. She told me she had spent a lot of time in my room, all week. This really surprised me. I remember, asking her why. She said that my room was her favorite room in the house. I couldn't believe this. She had a family room, and a big living room, with a fireplace. She had a pretty bedroom. My room was nothing compared to those rooms. It was filled with my stuff, and things looked a little messy. My sense of style, and decorating, not yet  fully formed. Yet, this was her favorite room? She said that it made her happy to be in it. She could smell me, and feel my smile. She liked to sit on my bed, in the afternoon, when the sun came through the window, and shined through the rainbow sticker I had on the window. I liked that time of day too. The room turned all different colors. She said she liked to look at the things I had on my dresser, and she liked the way all my stuffed friends had their own spots on the bed.
I never understood her love of my room, and honestly thought she was just being kind to me. Funny how, now, when I feel overwhelmed, or a need for some calm, I wander in my girls rooms. I can feel them. I can feel the safe, loving place we created.
It wraps it's loving arms around you.
I understand. 

Monday, November 22, 2010


The weekend was full of highs and lows. Money stress eats away at everything. Your relationship's with friends. Your relationship with your children, and your ability to be a good parent. How you move about during the day is helped or hindered by constant, gnawing, thoughts. Your very freedom is dictated by how much money you have, or have not. A love hate relationship. Constantly. It is simply, at times, maddening, and truly exhausting.

My marriage has not been immune to this constant stress. It has chipped and pecked, slowly at the foundation of it. It has done it very quietly. I think all is well, and suddenly, I step on a weak plank, and one whole part of the floor shifts, and avoids caving in by mere millimeters. Many close calls. Too many to count.

I can see how some marriages cannot continue to stand on such shaky ground. I used to think that they probably never had a firm ground to begin with. They built there life on swamp land, and it was only a matter of time before it all sunk, and was swallowed up by the muck of it all. A ticking time bomb.

I don't think that is true anymore. Constant, palpable worry, will weaken even the strongest of foundations. The weakening of it takes a little bit longer. Bit. by bit. Pebble by pebble. Sometimes, just tiny grains are carried away. But eventually, worry's evil excavation will wreak havoc. No one is immune.

But this is the only foundation that I want to stand on. This ground is soft, and in a warm place. I looked for so long to find the perfect plot, in which to build it, and found the best partner, to do it with. So we will continue to get out the mortar. We will patch, and repair. We will shore up the weakest points. Some days all we have is duct tape. The fix is temporary.

Yesterday, we had boulders. And we moved them into place. The ground is still so shaky beneath us. There are quite a few areas I don't trust to walk on yet.

But when the dust settles, it will still be standing.
I know this, for certain.

Saturday, November 20, 2010


"Look at me......I'm a weeping willow".....

He has his arms stretched out and he is clearly making fun of me.

I feel foolish.

I get it.

You are supposed to be the person who doesn't do that to me.

You are supposed to take care of me.

You told me I was your queen and you would always be on my side.

And now I am a joke to you.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Cross section

 Tree's amaze me. The sheer variety of them are astounding to me. The climate's they grow in, and how they adapt to those places, just to survive, I find incredible. Broad leaf tree's and conifers. Trees like Redwoods, and their massive size, and age. Fig trees...an ecosystem unto themselves. They grow, tall and solo, providing animals, bugs, birds, bats, and the forest floor with a bounty. Their seeds carried in the bellies of many. Yet solely dependant on a wasp for pollination. Trees that grow in the desert. Unbearable heat and no water. Yet somehow, they find what they need to survive, and thrive. Palm trees. Oh how I envy them. Shallow roots, abundant moisture, and glorious sun. The elite trees.
Trees provide shade, and fruit. They are homes to thousands of species. We harvest sap from them to pour on our pancakes, and cut them down to build homes. Paper products and medicine. Furniture, and pencils. Their uses are endless. Yet they go, virtually unnoticed. We pay no attention to them. They are a part of our landscape, and fade into the back round. They provide us with what we need to breathe, but they are not given a thought, mostly.
Some trees, like the Sugar Maple, develop tricks to get moisture. Their roots will stretch hundreds of feet, and grow another set of smaller roots around the peat moss of a plant, surrounding the root ball, and stealing all of it's water. Anything it can, just to survive.

The cross section of a piece of wood tells not only it's age, but it's story. You can see lighter areas between it's age rings, that are the summer season. Sap flowed freely to the tree, and growth was quick. The darker color is the winter. It is a layer that builds up to protect the fresh summer growth. In the Fall, the tree will pull most of it's sap from it's upper reaches, to keep it from freezing. To keep itself alive.

When you look at the growth rings of a tree, you can also see when something traumatic has happened to the tree. There will be a distortion, or an unusual ripple, signifying that the tree suffered in some way. Maybe a drought. Maybe a terribly dry, burning summer. It changes the rings, altering it, like tossing a pebble in a brook. It reverberates. The tree will recover, but the wound is etched into it's long memory.

On the outside, it appears tough, from years of growth, and a coat of bark.
It remains silent. Never speaking of the ripple within itself.

Only when it withers and dies, will someone see it's story.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


We received word from the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency the other day. We had applied for an emergency loan, to help us save our home. We have been denied. The letter states that we have no reasonable prospect of resuming full mortgage payments. It also says that "Applicant is not suffering financial hardship due to circumstances beyond applicant's control"...Several things came to mind when I read the letter. Besides panic, and rage, and an overwhelming need to vomit, was that it wasn't unexpected. This seems to be the way our life goes.
That same day, David called to tell me his Grandfather died. Grandpa Joe. He was ancient. He dropped dead on the front lawn of his house, on the way to a doctors appointment. He was days away from moving into a home. Something he never wanted to do. He wanted to die in his home. He has always said that. Kind of beautiful.
Today, I had to file our response to the foreclosure notice, with the court. We couldn't afford an attorney, so we googled how to do it, and typed it up, and I have to say, it looked pretty darn official.
Christmas is coming, and the girls submitted their lists to Santa. How we are going to pull this off should be very interesting. I have listed some things at Etsy (see the fancy link on the side) in the hopes that I can make a buck or two.
But I expect I will not, cause that's how things seem to go around these here parts.

Monday, November 15, 2010


The pot on the stove is simmering. Last night's dinner was a roasted chicken, with brussel sprouts (oddly..my girl's favorite vegetable) and stuffing. Today, it will be transformed into chicken soup, minus the stuffing. Although stuffing soup would really please Olivia.
Everyone in this house has been sick, for two months now. One gets better, another one is taken down. I have left all of the cold medicines out on the kitchen counter. They have become part of the decor. Today, the baby woke up, and sounds like a seal, when she coughs. If the soup doesn't cure us all once and for all, I am unsure of the next course of action. All of our hands are red, and chapped from hand washing, and anti-bacterial. I disinfect surfaces three and four times a day. We never stop hugging and kissing, so I suppose the closeness we all share is to blame.
Time is ticking. We have over a week to respond to our foreclosure notice. It needs to be in legal speak, which we are not fluent in, nor can we afford. I have visited some websites that show how we can respond, without paying a lawyer. I feel like I am back in middle school. The big book report is due. Looming. I have not yet read the book. I keep putting it off, finding more important things to do. Last week, David and I were going to dedicate Sunday to dealing with it. Yesterday was Sunday, and the baby was not feeling well, and I was still sick. Without saying a word about it to each other, we put it off. I don't want to deal with it. I know David doesn't  want to either.
Yet, yesterday was a great day. We all curled up, and watched kid movies, and ate Pringles. Molly cat napped. The girls stayed in their pajamas. Actually, we all stayed in our pajamas. We watched Ramona and Beezus. David and I held hands under a soft blanket, and were amazed at the similarities of our life, and the movie.
They had three girls. So do we. The dad was laid off from his job. So was David. They started struggling with bills, and fighting. So are we. Boy, are we. They feared losing their home. That is the daily fear here.
Of course, the obvious difference here, is that in the end, the movie had a brilliant happy ending. Everyone got what they wanted. They got to keep their adorable Craftsmen style home. The Dad got a new job. A job as an art teacher. He left the corporate world to pursue his true passion. The girls didn't have to move away as they feared. The movie wrapped itself up, with a big, giant bow stuck on it.
My chicken and water in the pot is beginning to smell like it is coming together. The water has changed to a nice shade of yellow. Olivia just remarked how great it smells in here.
This is all I ever wanted.
 Bow, or not.

Friday, November 12, 2010


I am terribly sick with a cold. I feel awful. I took a shower, and gussied myself up as best I could, and went to read a story to Charlotte's kindergarten class. The kids all sat at my feet while I read a story about a nesting doll. Molly was my assistant. It was so much fun. I brought along one of my own nesting dolls for them all to see. They loved it. I loved it.
Charlotte was the star of the week. She was so proud to be the special person at school. I am feeling her happiness.
The day is beautiful, and the light is brilliant. Despite my sick feeling, I am wonderfully happy today.
Everywhere I go, I am blinded by the sun.
My shadow is so tall.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


Today, I am taking Molly to story time at the library. She loves being with the other babies. I love watching her be a baby. I love watching her joy.
I feel like painting again. Maybe I will get some books out about flowers. Maybe a cookbook too.
I miss painting. I dream of a studio, all my own. A place to write, and paint, and be alone. It is by the side of a stream, in my minds eye. It is filled with books, and all things that I love. It smells like linseed oil. Maybe some orchids, because the light in it is so incredible.
I love visiting this place, even though, I have never stepped foot in it. I think about this place, when I can't shut off the scary thoughts in my head.
When I am in that place, sleep comes easy.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010


It was an unlikely fit, you and me. You had a previous marriage, and a child. I had years of a broken heart. You smiled at me, and when I saw your dimples, it took away from the gruffness of you. They made you not so serious. They made you vulnerable. We liked each other right away. I thought you were smart and funny. I liked how you listened to me. You gazed at me. You wanted to hear what I had to say. That had never happened to me before. You wore bad shoes, and were a little rough around the edges, but you made me happy, and I made you laugh. 
You called me, and offered to make me dinner. No one had ever done that for me before. You picked me up, and I could tell you were nervous. You made me tortellini, and a salad. You tried to bake bread. You had wine. You lit candles. It was the best night. It was love.
After I had Olivia, you gave me a card. I keep it in our wedding album. It still makes me cry. It says the day you looked into my eyes, you saw a flash of your future. A flash that was so bright, you could not look away. You saw a glimpse of yourself. You felt innocent. It made you want to cry. You saw your purpose and your destiny. You saw secret parts of you, that you have never let anyone see. You saw your past forgiven, and envisioned the two of us dancing, in another time and place.
You said I was the face of your heart, smiling back at you.
We are still those people. We still have that future, and it is clear and bright. We have endured a lot. More than some. Far less than so many. Our home is us. Me and you, our olive branch, our diminutive woman, and our star of the sea.
We will always be dancing. We will remain whole. Whether under this roof, or in another home, whose doors we have yet to walk through.
You are the face of my heart, smiling back at me.
Dimples and all.
I love you so very much, David.

Monday, November 8, 2010


The day I have been fearing came to be. David and I had to go to the Sheriff's office on Friday, and pick up our foreclosure summons. It is official. The mortgage company is going full steam ahead, and taking our home. I am really, really, scared. More scared than I have been about this whole mess. We have 20 days to respond to the mortgage company, and ironically, you have to respond through a lawyer. I can't afford a lawyer. We can't afford Christmas this year. I certainly cannot pay an attorney.
We got a car. It is really nice, with low mileage. I cooked a special dinner Saturday night, to celebrate this small victory for my family. I am relieved to have transportation. I can leave my house. I can drive to the bus stop. I can take the girls to the doctor. I am so thankful for the car.
We went to take a ride in it yesterday. The girls love it. David and I are so stressed, and we just wanted to relax, for just a little while. We were driving down the road, and the the engine light came on. The friggin engine light came on. I mean...are you kidding me? Really?
I laid in bed all night, unable to sleep, listening to the winds howl, and thought, we are just never going to get out of this mess.
 Things are just never going to get easy for us, are they?

Thursday, November 4, 2010


My concentration for my everyday tasks disappeared on about the third or fourth day of the cleanse. I had no ability to focus on anything else other than food. I was not eating any of it. I could not stop thinking about that, and became obsessed with the thought. My body would be OK with not putting food into it, for 10 days. This amazed me. 
 I longed for food. I dreamt about it. I cooked my brains out all week. All the meals I wanted to have, I made. On Halloween, I made a big pot of Chili. I had all of the sides put out. Scallions, and cheddar cheese. Even sour cream. I watched the girls sink their teeth into Reeses Peanut Butter cups, and Sugar Babies, enviously. My parents were visiting, so the wine was free flowing, and I watched everyone else drink it, and saw the relaxed looks come over their eyes, and I could feel the swell of laughter, and giddiness, rise in the room. It reminded me of being pregnant, and going to parties, and being the only clear thinking one in the room. Now this time, I had the only clear head, and stomach.  
I made Chicken Florentine another night. A wonderful sauce consisting of shallots and garlic, white wine, and heavy cream. And butter. Oh, beloved butter. I watched it bubble in the saute pan, and drool started to pool at the corner of my lips, like a bull dog's. I made sauteed spinach with more garlic. The smells were intoxicating. I watched everyone help themselves to seconds. It was torturous. Yet, it was freeing.
Food seems to be an all consuming matter for me. Always was. I love it, and deeply hate it. I run to it for comfort. I flee from it like a prisoner. I think about my next meals, and enjoy them, as I am eating them, only to be filled with anger, and frustration, after they are consumed. I have been a size 0, and I have been a size 16. I have a closet filled with sexy pants, and fat Mom jeans. And underwear to match them all. My life is filled with memories of happy, "skinny" times. Then there are the fat times. Pre-marriage fat. Post baby flub. Renewed resolution Spring skinniness, followed by the Winter gain. Up and down. My whole life. Food driven. 
Taking food out of the equation was for me, bizarre. My obsession with it, was replaced with being preoccupied with the fact that I was not consuming it. It was amazing. It gave me both a sense of control, and a feeling of helplessness. I had no comfort. I had no salty, treats, in which to confide in. I longed for a sweetness that I could not have. I stopped thinking about money. I stopped worrying about all things beyond my control. I started to feel like I was in command of my body, and not the other way around, for once. For the first time, in my life actually. 
Dear Food,  You have been a true love, my worst enemy. A constant companion, an awful shadow. A reward. A punishment. Something that understands me, yet clouds my ability to understand myself. Something to come home to, yet something I want to run from. A necessity. Something to be shared. Something to keep secret. I worry that there is not enough of you for my family. I count the days until payday to get you. I want to wash you down the drain. Holidays centered around you, followed by days of guilt. You bring happiness, and shame. Many laughs, and too many tears. You have controlled me. 
I am not able to control much these days. From my kitchen, I can only contribute so much. I feel frustration most days, and a feeling of giving up on others. But I was OK without you for a spell. And I know that I need you. But I don't need you to make me feel better.
 I can do that myself.