Friday, September 12, 2014

Finding a Smoke

What would you do with time and a camel?
This camel's coat is sheared beautifully.
Click to enlarge.
As a child, I was pretty active but I did not like competitive or team sports at all. And I ate whatever I wanted and as much as I wanted. I was neither proud nor ashamed of my body; my body was what it was and then, only female bodies were objectified in advertising. By my thirties, I had become "consciously" active—that is, active on purpose, not as a natural function of living—to keep my usual shape of neither thin nor plump at around 77 kilos.

In my mid-fifties, I went on my first diet. That meant cutting down on food (especially sweets, my reason for living) and increasing my exercise. Since then, my life has been a see-saw between indulgence and dieting. A couple of years ago, my weight rose to 92 kilos.

Recently my friend Rob had surgery and when I visited him the nurse and I got him up for the first time and his hospital gown got all askew. Rob is in fabulous shape and the site of his 50+-year-old flat stomach made me feel sick about the state of my waistline, so I came home resolved to make a change.

That was last Monday. Tuesday began with new rules: No bread and no sweets which is sort of like saying no breath and no water. Oh my God it is hard because I crave sugar every time I swallow a solid. And my favourite solid is bread, so bread butter and sugar are my holy trinity.

When you are young, vanity can be a motivator, or your libido. As you age, good health is supposed to be the motivator but my desire to feel good trumps my desire for longevity. And with a dead libido and youth far behind me, what better way is there to feel good than eating?

I've decided to diet until I weigh 75 kilos. When I started, I weighed 81. I also decided that every Sunday, I could have a sweet. Yesterday, at lunch, floating on the water in glorious sunshine at Royal Vancouver Yacht Club, in their inner harbour in Stanley Park and while I was in the washroom, my host bought me a cookie. It felt like finding a cigarette when I was 12 years old.

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