She was fat… and she knew it! She was always, it seems, fat and had to deal with it. For years, when she was growing up, she believed that this is what God had dictated for her. As she got older and perhaps a bit wiser, she began to understand things better. Maybe it wasn’t preordained at all. Maybe other factors came into play in her heaviness. Yes, she did recall how her parents, her mom especially, had always pushed her to ‘ Eat the rest of the roast if you’re still hungry honey.’ When the dismissal bell rang at 3 O’clock, as she rushed with the rest of the kids to get out of the prison, there was her mother and her grandmother waiting for her with a sandwich and some snacks. ‘ You must be hungry love, go ahead and eat the sandwich.’ When they arrived at home, before she could play with her dolls they had the regular glass of milk and stack of cookies for her to devour. It seems that she really never had a chance.
She didn’t want to go to the dance. What good would come from it? It would be the same as always with no one giving her a second look. The boys wanted to be with skinny girls, or at least girls who looked normal. No one wanted to get hooked up with a fat one. Even the fat boys stayed away. Yet, her best friend and her mom pushed her to go. And she did… and she cried alone in her bedroom every time when she returned home. Sometimes, not usually, she would actually think about ending it all. Yeah, being fat sucked. So, she sat at the table in the church basement, made small talk with her friend, drank a Coke and sucked down some peanuts… and cried inside. The band’s music only made it worse, because with music came dancing and watching everyone having fun was like a dagger in her back.
She tried dieting… first the one her family doc recommended, and then many others. Only the same result: She would lose 10 or 15 pounds and then just put it back on within a few weeks. Wasn’t there a way to just clamp her mouth? No. That wasn’t going to work. Damn it, she was so used to eating a lot that she just could not stop!
When her mom mentioned Dr. Perlowitz to her, she at first shrugged that off. A psychiatrist!? Oh, come on! I’m not mentally ill or anything! Her mom loved her too much, so she persisted… again and again. Finally, she became more desperate than her mom and agreed to go. It took her a few sessions with Dr. Perlowitz to relax enough and begin opening up. Soon, the weekly sessions became more and more inviting to her. She actually couldn’t wait for them. The doctor was an old school Freudian psychoanalyst and had her lie down on the couch each session. He took her back, very gently, to the earliest moments she could recall in her life. Amazing how so many hidden memories just flowed from what had been blocked for so long. After a few months she began to understand where this state of being overweight came from. It wasn’t just the flood of food that her family always pushed her way. No, it was much more than that… much more.
By her third year of college she was a different person… emotionally AND physically. She still was not as thin as she had envisioned herself being, but now she could actually relate better to her fellow students… especially the men. It wasn’t easy to stop herself from going on the many food binges that ruled her life for so long. Yet, with help from good old Dr. P she moved on. The ‘ Fat Girl’ was gone… hopefully forever!