Friday, February 10, 2006

Diets Stink.

That's what it says on my t-shirt, bought from 'White Trash Palace' online a couple of months ago.

Even though I heartily agree with the statement, I'm still on a diet. Somehow, on the 1st of January, the little red needle on the bathroom scales came up with a number that was far larger than I'd been used to. I felt ill and then ashamed at the memory of everything I'd shovelled down my throat in sheer abandon since, oh, about July and reaching a peak of piggyness over the silly season break.

It was with great shame that I realised too that running six kilometres every second day did not keep the fat cells at bay. Instead, I was revelling in the moral superiority of having just gone for a run, and rewarding myself with a post-breakfast snickers/frog cake/wagon wheel/custard tart/six rows of Cadburys. After all, thirty minutes of high impact exercise would certainly burn up the leftover carrot cake I'd have with lunch, the mid-afternoon choccy chew and the after-dinner M&M munch fest wouldn't it?

In MillyMoo Land, it would be OK and also be a confirmed source of fibre, vitamin C and scientifically proven to improve my intelligence. In reality, unfortunately, it was not OK. That is, not unless I liked looking like an albino acorn and didn't mind my upper arms jiggling ten minutes after I'd waved my family goodbye.

Sucking in my stomach all day wasn't an option either, not when my daughter Sapphire remarked, "Mum, are you pregnant?" So much for thinking I'd breathed in my bellybutton up against my spine then. The final nail in this cake lover's coffin were shop windows. Have you ever had that happy feeling when you're out? You know - you feel great, you've got a nice outfit on, you think you look pretty good until...... until you happen to see your reflection in a shop window. Is that what I look like out in public? Are those thighs really mine? Any happiness you may have felt before the unwanted viewing then disappears quicker than a chocolate sludge shake in Britney Spears' hands.

What happened next was not that I joined a gym or hunted out raw vegetables and vegan meals, oh no. Instead, I'd dejectedly find the closest coffee shop and order a 'skinny' cappuccino and a custard tart, fretting about my reflection and inwardly cursing every little skinny bitch under 60 that walked by. 'Huh, she's only that size because she's so obviously a four pack a day lady,' or 'You need an arse for those jeans love', and 'Yeah right, why don't you breathe out and let your gut flop over your jeans, you fat fake.'

Despite all of this self delusion, I have been on a diet for about a month and have only broken it twice. So far. The first time was last week, when Love Chunks could see that I was feeling rather miserable, and he said, "I'm sure it won't force the needle too far on the wrong side of the scales if you have a few squares of chocolate with me in front of the movie." It was Cadbury's hazelnut, and I sucked my six squares as though I'd misplaced my dentures and didn't have the energy to get into my zimmer frame to find them. They had to last at least the length of the movie (2 hours 10 minutes) so even the damn nuts were sucked into oblivion.

The second occasion was this morning. After cashing in a $20 book voucher at Dymocks (which of course cost me another $36 because bookshops are only second to cake shops in terms of irresistability), the lure of the bakery nearby was far stronger than my willpower. "One skinny cappuccino and, ummm, a slice of that berry cheesecake over there," I pointed with my hand shaking in greedy anticipation. Ordering it felt so naughty, so wrong. 'Do not ruin it by sitting here trying to calculate how many grams of fat are in each slice', I told myself. 'This is your treat. You deserve this. Why, I don't know, but you do - you deserve this!'

A couple of hours later, my errands were done: I'd posted Sapphire's entry to the Kangaroo Club Colouring In Competition; collected the toe-nail sized clippers on order from the chemist; bought some milk and found some face cream for less than $7. It was crunch time - did I dare step on the scales for a weekly weigh-in when -
a) I'd hadn't just got out of the shower but was fully clothed;
b) it was over three hours since I'd been to the loo;
c) my legs were unshaved;
d) my nose unblown; and
e) it had been a fortnight since cutting my nails?

'Yes, it is time Blubberbuns, especially seeing as you inhaled that cheesecake so willfully this morning,' I told myself harshly. Stepping on ever-so-gently, my eyes were squeezed closed and for some inexplicable reason I was sucking my stomach in. What did the red needle say? One kilogram less than last week - yee hah! Woo hoo! Maybe I could celebrate by popping into McDonald's with Sapphire after school and having one of their mudcakes and.......

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