Most everyone who knows me knows cooking is not my strongest talent. If you need a paper written, a CPR lesson, or a laugh, I am your girl, but cooking…not so much. I can make the basics and I can boil water, but I am nowhere near the culinary talents of almost anyone in my family. My mom and Cara are brilliant cooks, Dad and Ryan are great grillers, Steven is in culinary school, and Monica can def get by way better than I can. Nicole might be the only one I can take in the kitchen…’might’ being the key word. (I know she learned some serious lessons after that grilled cheese in the toaster mess). Either way, I am not a wiz in the kitchen which makes me laugh out loud. How does one not cook, but have a serious food and weight issue? Oh right, fast food. (This post is quite embarrassing so bear with me as you always do).
Fast food has been my down fall for as far as I can remember. I don’t recall eating much of it with my parents as a kid, but on my own, I was a dedicated patron of all the greats, Jack, KFC, Taco Bell, Carl’s and especially McDonalds. I have not had any fast food since being home from the Resort. (The last fast food I had was on the drive down to the Resort. Cara and I stopped at a Del Taco and I had diarrhea on the first hike that following day and had to crap in a portable potty in the middle of Malibu, California. Can we say that’s what you F’in get!) Fast food is highly addictive and I know this first hand. I craved fast food more than any other kind of food during my emotional eating binges. People told me that I would never eat fast food again if I watched Super Size Me, a movie about the effects fast food has on the body. I saw the movie and I kept eating it. I also read an article about all the things people have found in fast food…finger nail clippings, packaging materials and pubic hair. Yes, hair from your pubic. You think an article like might stop someone from eating the food. Yea, not me.
I was always so embarrassed to order fast food. I would never go inside, always drive-thru. I would google where I could find a drive-thru just so I didn’t have to go in. I never wanted to admit to anyone that I liked fast food. I know it’s disgusting. I knew it with every bite I would take. It’s greasy and fatty and I am surprised that obesity is the only disease I have. I would “run” up the stairs to my house with the bags and large drink hidden so none of my neighbors would see me. I have hidden the garbage under the seat in my car and felt so ashamed for binging on food that took me 30 seconds to consume. I would easily eat 3000-4000 calories in one fast food meal sometimes more than once a week. Fast food is full of sugar and salt, both food items had me completely addicted. Fast food was the easy way out. I didn’t have to cook. I could just choose what type of food I wanted and drive my car through a little path that ended in a full bag of good smelling food that was already cooked for me. It would curb my emotional responses to stress and anxiety until I fell asleep in a food coma. I would always promise myself that tomorrow I would change my eating behavior. “Yesterday, you said tomorrow” is a quote that resonates deep within me. I am not sure why or how my fast food addiction started, but it’s done with now. I have placed it on my “Never Again” list as part of my past life I will not ever return to again. Fast food supported my addiction on and off for several years. I found what I believed to be comfort in food that was killing me. I now feel detoxed from that sugar and salt, but the emotional triggers I used to have are still in existence. Fearing a complete relapse with one bite, I stay far away from fast food.
Writing this blog, though I know I am now in a different place, I feel such shame. Everyday, I want to live a life worth living. Even back before the Resort, I felt humbled by the blessed life I was given. My parents instilled values in me and my sisters that we try to live out every day. Cara, Nicole and I grew up with parents that would do anything for anyone. They would give their last cent out to someone who needed it more. Because of my parents, I live with a true sense of integrity and work ethic that dedicates me to serving other people. I have seen struggle and sadness, yet I have allowed myself to spend money on food that has set me back several years. Shame is an understatement. It saddens me to think that I have not been living my best life. How do I walk around clearly over fed when there are people in this world, right in the community I serve that are starving? So shameful. So embarrassed.
There are many lessons to learn along this journey and being humbled by every reflection allows me to experience the truth of my reality. I have lived very comfortably with my fast food and soda while others struggle to find food. The Biggest Loser TV show talks about paying it forward. Taking the lessons you learn and doing good for someone else. I have learned that I can’t hide myself under the seat in my car or in my jacket so my neighbors don’t see me. Like with this blog, I need to put it all out there. I met with a non-profit organization in San Francisco called Glide Memorial. It is one of the longest standing, most comprehensive resource shelters in the Bay Area. It serves food 3 times a day, 365 days a year to people who have nothing. They find housing and medical care for homeless and less fortunate every day. Glide serves without judgment or restriction. They turn no one away. I spoke very few words during this visit as I was so consumed by the fact that I have this amazing life filled with possibilities and people and support when there are so many without. To pay it forward, with the help of some truly dedicated and selfless people I work with, we are starting a work group that will begin volunteering time to serve food at Glide. Many of us have struggles of all different kinds. I have eaten too much food, when there are many who eat too little and it’s time that I give back.
“Love. Acceptance. Compassion”-Glide
Cara: YOU LOST FORTY MUTHA EFFIN’ POUNDS! Good work son. Trust the process. I believe in you.
Mom and Dad (aka Chaz and Grod) Thank you for instilling values in me that help me see how lucky we are in this life. I am forever grateful for every ounce of support and unconditional love you give me, Cara and Nicole.
Victor Cruz! Not a day goes by that I am not inspired by you and your fitness journey. Thank you for being my long distance workout partner.
Michael Friedman, our patient yet ass kicking trainer: THANK YOU for making Cara and I a priority. We choose LIFE BY TRAINER!
Heather A: That picture you sent me this week made something very clear for me... Though I have a lot more weight to lose than you did, I believe it can be done. I can’t wait to send you my pics. Thank you for inspiring me.
To Ronald BitchAss McDonald: I will try to avoid blaming you for the weight that I have put on since you didn’t force feed any of it to me, but I can be angry at you. Ronald, you and your stupid costume and stupid fries are DEAD to me. Good bye.
It is important to be present on your journey. Reflect on what is different about your life as you go. Make changes when needed and do what works.
If you have a roof over your head, food in your kitchen and a potty to crap in, find it in yourself to do some work for others that have nothing.
Kill fast food before it kills you.