I hate feeling like I need to clarify a post but it’s worse to come across in a way I didn’t mean, especially if it’s potentially hurtful. I keep thinking about the way I wrote this and how even the title has this vibe of “I let myself eat all the food and now I need to fix that because eating all the food is bad.”

This is in fact exactly what I was saying, but I want to emphasize that “bad” for me isn’t going above some holy grail number on a scale, it’s about disordered behavior. Treating food like an addict treats a mood-altering substance — because I am an addict and food is definitely a mood-altering substance.

It’s important to me to keep working on my relationship with food not so I can fit into a certain size, but so I don’t have to live in active addiction.

Everywhere I look lately there’s crappy diet industry messaging about losing the pandemic weight and man, I sure don’t want anything to do with that, so here’s a whole-ass follow-up post that no one asked for. Unraveling decades of diet mentality isn’t easy but being more thoughtful with words is so important for making things better.

I was at a doctor’s appointment this afternoon and the first thing she said as she came in and got settled in front of my records on her computer was, “How’ve you been doing?” This is such a common small talk question I feel like my normal response is an automatic affirmation of some kind, the verbal equivalent of a quick thumbs up. “Good!” “Fine!” You know. But this time I just sort of sat there in the chair and looked at her until she looked back at me and I was like, “Myyehhhhhhh” with my hand flipping back and forth and she was like, “MmmHmmmm” with her cheeks kind of tucked and her eyebrows raised, and it was somehow a WHOLE ASS CONVERSATION, probably one of the more authentic ones I’ve had lately.

I had been a little worried going into this appointment because there were a couple of things flagged in the results of the lab work I’d had done ahead of time. My cholesterol was high, as well as my LDL cholesterol; HDL cholesterol normal. So of course I was all in an ill-informed tizzy because I can never remember which cholesterol is the good one and which is the bad, and oh no are my abysmal dietary choices finally transforming my arteries into a golden spongelike substance with a delicious yet deadly creamy filling?

When she got to that report of the report, though, she asked if I’d been fasting before the draw and when I said no (because no one told me I needed to, dammit) she was like, “Oh well then pssshhh, they’re not accurate, and I’m not worried about it.”

“Great!” I said, and then pointedly asked if it was maybe important to go ahead and check in on those numbers with a proper test, but only inside my head because that is exactly the kind of medical patient I often am: HUGELY AND WEIRDLY SUBSERVIENT.

Anyway, I’m probably not actively dying, which is good, because I’d like to stick around and see things getting better, which they will, because they always do if given enough time.

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