Quick! Don’t think about food.

So, my iffing (intermittent fasting) hasn’t gone well. Over the past few days, I’ve been stressed, and I’ve broken the fast in the evening to eat one item of junk food. Yesterday, it was a few bites of cookies. The day before, it was some sort of individually wrapped cake that someone gave my dad. It was good.

The problem is that you have to fast for X hours so that your body will enter autophagy (in which it eats its own fat). My stress levels have prevented the fasting hours from remaining “clean”. And I still haven’t lost any weight yet, although the author of my book said it would be that way.

So today, I’m taking my iffing to a whole new level. I last ate a snack at 8:30 PM yesterday, so I’m not going to eat until 8:30 PM today. That’s fine. The author of my iffing book says there’s nothing wrong with doing a 24-hour fast. She also says that you need to keep mixing up your fasting hours, because if you follow a strict schedule (like always eating from 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM every day), your body will predict it and find workarounds. Groan.

Prior to today, I’ve been toying with the idea of doing a 24-hour fast once (or twice) a week for the following reasons:

  • More discipline. Even when my iffing is going well, I still eat some junk food. I need more discipline like a 24-hour fast to help me gain more will power in a broader sense.
  • More weight loss. I think that one speaks for itself.
  • It’ll help my body enter autophagy more than doing the daily fasting hours, because I doubt the human body can find a workaround while you’re fasting for an entire day.

That’s what I’m thinking. But I’ve never been this ambitious. Just eight more hours until it’ll be 8:30. There’s a lot I want to accomplish today: cleaning, laundry, reading my self-help books, etc., etc., so I’ve got distractions onhand.

Oh! Also, writing my NaNovel in October didn’t happen. There’s been so much going on lately. But, no worries! I can write it in November. I’ve still been working on my memoirs, and I’ve made great strides in that regard. Here’s an excerpt for anyone who’s interested. This is from our vacation after fourth grade. It was oddly eventful. (c) Meg Kimball 2020.

We went on another vacation after fourth grade. My mom; my brother, Philip; my twelve-year-old cousin, Michele; Aunt Mary, my mom’s childless younger sister; and I all spent a week in North Carolina. My dad stayed home with the baby. We had a secluded condo right on the beach. It was wonderful. There were only four condos in the strip, and the other three seemed to be unoccupied. 

When I saw the beach for the first time ever, I boldly declared that it was the happiest day of my life. I had no idea how disastrous the vacation would become.

Philip and I captured a jellyfish and named him Cookie. We kept him in a pail filled with ocean water for a few days before setting him free. He was a happy jellyfish. Unfortunately, another jellyfish stung me on the chin. My mom took me back into the condo where she called the poison control center and spoke with someone. After she hung up the phone, she grabbed a knife and slowly approached me, a glimmer of mayhem sparkling in her eyes.

I walked backward. 

I tried to laugh it off, but it was unnerving. “What’re you doing with the knife, Mommy?” I wondered if the poison control center had urged my mom to kill me sacrificially before the jellyfish venom could transform me into a rabid monster who’d destroy everyone.

She didn’t answer until my back hit the wall. “Hold still. I have to scrape off the venom,” she explained. 

I sighed with relief. Had I really thought she’d kill me with a butterknife? She scraped it along my chin and made it all better.

Back at the beach, Mommy floated on her tummy on a huge raft. She must’ve been doing something right, because she managed to swim far from shore. I was impressed, so when she waved to me and Philip, we grinned and waved back. We were nice, accommodating children. She waved again. Glad to have so much of her attention, we kept waving and saying, “Hi, Mommy, have fun,” even though she couldn’t hear us. This loving wave-fest went on for several minutes.

Aunt Mary approached us. “I think your mom’s lost at sea and can’t make it back to shore, kiddos. I’m going to call the coast guard.”

I wasn’t too worried. And before the coast guard could show up, wouldn’t you know it—Mommy floated back to shore.

A rude person called her a beached whale. We all thought that was mean. It wasn’t Mommy’s fault that she was overweight. But she seemed more broken up that Philip and I hadn’t been too concerned about her.

“I knew you’d make it back to shore, Mommy,” I told her. “You had the raft to hold onto, so you wouldn’t have drowned. And Aunt Mary called the coast guard. They know what they’re doing.” I grinned my childish grin as I proudly reassured her.

She acted happy to hear me say that, but it did little to cheer her. I couldn’t understand why she was so upset. Later that day in the condo, my mom flew into a rage and spanked me for no rhyme or reason. Michele gasped and stared at me, her expression saying, is your mom crazy?! What was that for? I had no answer for her.

Fate took a bizarre twist later that week.

My mom gave me some coins and asked me to get her a Coke from the machine. My flipflops went slap-slap on the pavement as I traipsed past the other condos and approached the vending machine at the end of the strip. Sinking the correct amount of quarters, I hit the Coke button, but nothing happened. Not a darned thing. I hit the button again. Still nothing. I pushed the button for a Sprite. Nothing. I tried to get a Dr. Pepper to no avail. I hit the coin return and felt for coins in the slot. Nothing. I hit all the buttons in a futile effort at making something happen.

An unaccountable bad feeling took over me. My mom wasn’t in a bad mood, and I doubted she’d blame me for this, despite her penchant for irrational reactions. But something undefinable felt wrong, badly wrong. I needed to get my mom a Coke. I kept hitting all the buttons, and when nothing happened, I prayed. Please, God, get me a Coke from the machine. No such luck. I stared at the vending machine with the weight of the world in my stomach, and then I turned and walked back to the condo as slowly as I could.

Mommy was crying over the sink, and Aunt Mary was comforting her. Mommy had picked up a heated pot without an oven mitt and had burned all five of her fingertips.

I stood there in the doorway and felt terrorized and saved all at once. I was scared beyond scared by what had happened to Mommy, but I also knew in that moment that a higher force had protected me. If I’d been forced to witness Mommy get burned, I wouldn’t have been able to cope with it because nothing was scarier to me. My pyrophobia was rampant. I would’ve lost my sanity. But I’d been spared by the Coke machine.

I knew I wasn’t alone on this Earth. Someone was watching me and guiding me and protecting me from my mother’s cruel machinations. Perhaps it was Jesus. I’d been taught about Him at our Episcopalian church. And in my imagination, whenever I got mad and punched Jesus off His holy cloud, He’d return and let me continue punching Him for as long as I needed. Jesus was always there for me, I realized.

I found religion of my own weird sort that day as my mom sobbed about her burnt fingers that she’d probably burned on purpose.

4 thoughts on “Quick! Don’t think about food.

    1. Yeah… oh no, that made me laugh out loud. 😀 I think that was a major disappointment for her!! HA HA HA! Like, “Oh no, I’m drifting back to the shore! I need to go farther out!!” Oh my gosh. [Shaking my head.]

      Liked by 1 person

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