Saturday, December 18, 2010

Narcissism and the nursing mom

I used to do what my husband and I fondly refer to as "the popcorn diet"--basically eating a whole bag of popcorn two or three times a day (in addition to meals.) Somehow, unlike most of my lofty plans, it actually worked. That was about two years ago, and I got down to near my weight in college, though I was still hoping to get down to what I weighed in high school (when I was skinny and hot, but still of course thought I was too fat.) The popcorn diet led to many a-toilet-clog, which my kind hubby would plunge out for me on a nearly daily basis.
That was two years ago and i promptly got pregnant before I got much chance to keep losing. My Joshy is nearly nine months old and I'm still a good ten pounds up from that recent low. If you have never nursed a baby before though, you need to know that a kid can suck a couple hundred calories out of you in minutes. On the surface that seems like a great fad diet itself, but in my actuality after a nursing session, I just turn into a starving post-hibernation bear ready to eat anything in my path.
So four days ago, I launched Operation Soup Diet. The idea is eat only three meals (instead of my normal six,) and just have plain vegetable broth soup when I'm still hungry. Well, that lasted two days--I'm still doing three meals, but the soup kept me up all night peeing.
I'm actually surprised that I'm sticking with any diet at all, since on the third day I got up the nerve to check the scale for the first time in the week and found I was up three pounds. I moved the scale to what I hoped would be a more level, and thus accurate position, only to find that it added an extra half pound!
Dejected, I moaned to my sweet hubby how frustrated I was. He assured me that I just needed to give it more time, which depressed me further, as I looked out onto a new calendar year filled with bagel-less mornings and cookie-less nights sandwiching sanwich-less days going on for an eternity or until I decided to just give up on skinniness altogether.
The scale incident actually called to mind my first diet failure--I was about nine or ten and just realizing I was chubby compared to other kids. As a quick-fix measure, I grabbed a bottle of chocolate-flavored calcium pills shaped like circus animals, which for some reason we called "milky bones," also the name of some doggy treats that probably tasted just as good. Blissfully ignorant of both the registered trade mark insignia and the fact that more calcium does not equal less fat, I took a milky bone and stepped on the scale. When it showed no result, I popped another, giving up anticlimactically at seven.
My life has been full of half- and whole-hearted attempts at weight loss since then, so there's no reason the current one should be much different. Except that now I'm a mommy, albeit a very hungry mommy--and a mommy who, like the Very Hungry Caterpillar, needs a whole lot of olfactory encouragement and old-fashioned moralizing before I can get my act together.

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