First Day of Lent
6:00am– Self talk: “Ok Ms. Jenny, you got this. You’ve gone through many-a-breakup where you starved yourself for 3 days straight.” (Don’t judge. I don’t eat my feelings- I starve them to death) “Besides…. WWJD?”
8:30am– I usually eat a healthy, delicious breakfast at my desk at this time of the morning. “Oh I know! I shall have a spot of Green Tea.” (Technically I’m not supposed to have anything but I’m not trying to pass out in front of my co-workers. I’m wearing a dress for church and no one needs to see my lucky undies) “MMM…tea….delicious.”
8:35am– Chants to self: “Bacon, bacon, bacon, bacon, bacon, bacon”…. “Stupid Green Tea…stupid idea.”
10:23am– Text my girl Caroline (who also happens to be doing this same Gluten Free challenge with me). Text reads: “Lent Update: day 1, 10:23am… Already miss Pita Chips!”. I have a disgusting obsession with Pita Chips. I hoard them in the “snack drawer” in my desk, and yesterday I had to finish the bag. Also in this drawer are (1) packet of Lite Italian Dressing (not G Free), an Orange, and my inhibitions.
11:10am– Co-worker is eating. Why is she doing this to me? I now feel that everyone who eats has a personal vendetta against me. I am pretty sure I once saw a movie and this was how WWIII started….
11:26am– Another co-worker behind me is crunching… a part of me dies inside.
12:05pm– People start breaking for lunch and I pop in my 3rd cup of tea. I have been putting a squirt of honey into my tea, and it’s at this point that I consume a spoonful of it. Desperate times, people.
12:08pm– “Should I eat the Grapefruit I brought? I mean, it’s just a measly grapefruit. And I do sorta have a headache. Ugh, forget it, I don’t need it. I’m not going to die from not eating…my spirit made fade, but I won’t die…”
12:12pm– Receive a text from Meredith (another of my ladies participating in this challenge). Text reads: “eff- you-see-kay (SIC), I’m starving and all I want is bread!!! Ahhhh Dear Lord help me” Exclamation point, exclamation point. Lucky for Meredith she isn’t fasting today and can actually eat real food. My reply.. “SNAP OUT OF IT” and then I promptly instruct her to the closest salad franchise.
12:29pm– Boss yells “running out to grab some lunch, anyone want anything…?” “Just my soul back…” I reply to myself silently in my head, my stomach agrees…
12:45pm– My Momma calls and announces she will be having pizza for dinner. MMM NY pizza… Am I, …am I drooling?
1pm– I’m sitting on the corner of Grapefruit Center where it intercedes with Shame Street and Hunger Blvd. Do I always base my day around food consumption or is it just because I’m not allowed to have any on this particular day? …I ate the grapefruit. I’m sure an extra Hail Mary at church this evening will take care of that delicious moment of weakness.
My afternoon follows with much of the same.
Tea, anger, tea, hunger, tea… I swear any senses that are associated with food are heightened. Smell– multiplied by 1,000 and someone has something wonderful in the microwave. Sight– everyone looks like a bacon cheeseburger and I swear the pens on my desk are French Fries. Sound– crunching and munching echoing in my head and I swear I hear a mouse in the wall eating cheese. Taste– nothing, absolutely nothing…
4:30pm– Leaving for mass now. Have to be there early so I can throw up some extra prayers and penance for the ever-atoned 1pm Grapefruit. I have never looked forward to a Communion Wafer so much in my life.
Mass was wonderful, I’m almost not hungry. Almost. At this point I am seriously considering 1) going home and straight to bed so I don’t eat anything and/or 2) signing myself up for an Over-Eaters Anonymous group- as seen above, I obviously have a problem.
Somehow I have found the strength to go home and rid my cabinets/fridge of foods containing Gluten. Much to the happiness of my roommate, who ultimately obtained about 3 weeks’ worth of food, it turns out I am a Gluten hoarder.
I have to say, after a day of fasting and a pure hour of atonement, I feel renewed and ready to embark down this road of change. It will not be trouble-free as I, no doubt, will have many-a-desire for my long lost starches. So says T.S Elliot “If you aren’t in over your head, how do you know how tall you are?”
*slight disclaimer- I am aware of the fact that in the Catholic religion discussing/posting/bragging about the religious things you do is a sin in-of-itself (pride). I understand the point of Lent and I assure you that I am probably one of the ‘last of a dying breed’ who follows the traditions. I am a believer of my faith and I am not asking you to be the same. They way I see it is that if it doesn’t exist- well I still went through life living in kindness, no harm, no foul. Claim me sacreligious if you want, but this is all in good humor. And what is the point in living if you don’t feel alive???
Just in case you ever saw this on someone’s forehead- Ashes….The more ya know, folks!