Birth– I was a heavy baby. Too heavy to make it to the hospital and my mother gives birth in the Simons old house on Carol Street in Brooklyn, New York. My birth story always begins the same way,” you were too heavy to make it to the hospital”. Thus begins my belief that I am heavy. Till this day emotional feelings will always manifest as heaviness in my stomach.
Early Childhood Life: I am sensitive, serious and a smart kid that is particularly picky with my sense of style. But, I’m also the family comedian and Friday nights at Shabbat dinner I’m retelling the same story over and over which, for some odd reason has my family rolling with laughter every time.
It’s the one where I’m young and with Alte, my younger sister. My dad picks us up from sleep away camp and we are driving home and he’s blasting Yossi Piamenta on the tape recorder. He stops at the red light on Carol street and he sees his friend in the car right across from him. He tries to act cool and waves his hand around laughing and dancing in his seat. Then, all the sudden my sister is projectile vomiting in his 90’s Toyota which he cherished dearly and he screams and almost sobs and tells us to hold it.
At the time we were both wearing long jean BIZ skirts ( which was 90’s fashion) and we are holding her pile of barf in our skirts as he races through the light and practically throws us out of the car and then both of us are dumping piles of barf out of our skirts which held as makeshift bags they were so long and he’s practically crying, “my car, my car!!” Then, he races to the bodega on the next corner to get some cheep Glades air freshener trying desperately to get the smell out.
For some reason this cracks my family up because my father is so anal about his car and we think it’s hilarious karma that my sister projectiles in it. Its an old car, but my dad treats all of his cars like they are a Mercedes Benz or Rolls Royce! Even he, howls with laughter when I’m retelling the story.
I’m popular and have my core group of friends. Childhood is somewhat decent except for troubles at home and a guy groping me inappropriately in my basement at home.
Age 10-I’m smart intellectually, and socially I’m confident. We go to Israel for the summer and after a couple of weeks I’m the one navigating my family around because I can speak fluent Hebrew, accent and everything. I also get boobs which I cant stand. They feel heavy and gross and I wish they would just go away so I could have no boobs on my body and feel young again. I don’t like the feeling of being mature, it makes me uncomfortable.
Age 13-I discover boys. I sneak around in alley ways and basements and start experimenting with eating blow pops which are non-kosher. They taste sooo good but I feel guilty for betraying God, and I think I’m going to go to hell but I also don’t care because they taste too darn good. I can’t help myself so I keep on sneaking them from the corner bodega. Cherry and blue are my favorite.
Age 14– I go to the Gap and buy my first pair of jeans. I’m in love with wearing them. They feel so good and stylish and I’m still sneaking around with boys but in a really innocent and fun way.
Age 15- I really dislike being religious. I can feel it being really restrictive and close-minded and something feels just, off about it. I also hate covering myself in skirts and long sleeved shirts. Fashion feels important to me and I want to expose more skin. It makes me feel free.
Age 16– I get a toe infection and miss school for the day. My best friend writes me a letter about us going to the movie theater and talking about vaginas. My mother finds the letter and I am no longer the golden child. I get busted for going to the movies, which is practically a crime if your ultra religious. She never mentions the vagina part of the letter because we don’t talk about that body part out loud. Its a sin. Life is over as I once knew it.
Age 17– Traumatic life event. This will change me forever. It seems normal at the time but now I know I was just trying to survive.
Age 18-I am still happy and dancing at clubs in Manhattan with fake ID and raver pants (otherwise know as, UFO’S).
Age 19– I go skiing with my boyfriend. On the outside everything seems beautiful. It’s snowing, I’m in the gondola, it’s almost majestic looking. Inside, I feel numb and void of any joy. I notice how weird that feels. This marks the start of what I now know to be PTSD.
Sometime later I look in to the mirror and see my body changing. I detest myself. I cry. I start my first diet. I start running. I become addicted. Life feels more in control. Two weeks later I break my diet. I feel guilty over food. I hate myself for being weak.
Age 20-22– I go through the darkest period of my life. I have friends and people love me but I feel like I’m trapped in my own hell of complete darkness. I’m obsessed with food, being skinny and exercise. I don’t know I’m obsessed. I always end up failing. I cut myself mostly off from men, joy and pleasure. I tell myself no man has ever wanted me anyways. I feel like I want to die. Not suicide but just something else.
Age 23– I Travel to Australia and South East Asia with my best friend. I’m grossly underweight and borderline panicked about keeping it off. I mostly live on vegetables and animal protein and I stop getting my period. I feel less female. Thank God. I always hated having a female body. We are on some of the most beautiful beaches and all I can think about is dragging my best friend through the sweltering heat to find vegatables so I can have food. I gain weight because I’m also binge eating because I’m starving all the time. I never party because I’m scared of letting go even though I love dancing.
Age 24– Obsessesion with food is incredible! I come back to NYC and get a very well paying job in the diamond district. There are no windows in my office and no one I work with has ever left NYC. I feel as if I am suffocating. I panic one day during lunch and decide I’m moving to Boulder. I move one month later and become even more obsessed with losing weight when I get there. I exercise for two hours every day and it’s still not enough. I feel like I might die on the elliptical machine. Then I binge. Then I curse myself out and tell myself, “you’re a fucking looser, you will never amount to anything in your life”.
Age 24 and 3/4– I am on a date with a super skinny dude who has back issues. We are hiking. Its my first hike in Colorado and I slip and break my ankle. We are in the middle of a trail. He can’t carry me because of his back issues. I think he can’t carry me because I’m too heavy and fat. My ankle is so severely broken I can no longer exercise. I think I’m dying and after a couple of weeks I lay on my bed naked after the shower in a cast and sob hysterically to God, the universe or anything that will listen to me. I think, “I’m dying, I don’t want to continue like this, please help me”. My tears are guttural. I scream in my head, “if you don’t show me the way, I can’t go on”. I fully surrender to anything or nothing at all.
Three days later I have a conversation with someone that will change my life and begin my healing process around the traumatic life event, my body, and food. With lots of intense personal healing over the next several months, I start to finally feel better. This is after years of tremendously and agonizingly suffering and being freaked out about being alive.
25th Birthday– I sit around with a group of loved ones and Max and I are officially together and dating each other. They say nice things about me and I finally feel as if I’m ok and safe in my body. I love my body just a little bit. It’s not too bad even though I’m the heaviest weight, I’ve ever been. I accept that I may be at this weight forever but it feels ok because I’m eating what I want and stopping when I’m full. This feels healthy even though I don’t have the thin body I dreamed I would have.
Age 26– Eating and weight issues are gone and I start to feel what it’s like to exist as MYSELF which feels so good. I realize what my gift is. I’m going to help people heal from disordered eating and body image issues. It’s a painful realization because I don’t believe in myself. I have some confidence but not true, deep or real confidence to put my gift in to action.
Age 27+28+beginning of 29– I work and work on all of my issues that were behind the food issues. Some of them sting like crazy. They are painful yet beautiful to work on. They are not easy to look at. I want so badly to help people and make money while doing so.
January 2014, age 29– I get acupuncture from this sweet woman who puts the needles in my body and as soon as she does this, I cry and cry and cry a deep cry. I feel as if I’ll never amount to anything worth it in my life. I also know I desperately need to but the question is how? I decide I’m going to really try for Embody Nutrition, and I do.
July of age 29– Its my wedding and I’m dancing. I look around and realize everyone that I love is within ten feet of me. I think this is it! This is life! Life is love, when you’re in a place to take it in. Life is when you are gifted with something that’s beyond you and you can actually use it to help others heal. It’s about not feeling beautiful but loving yourself anyways. It’s about dancing no matter your body weight. Its about being free from your inner critic or at least knowing its your inner critic and not you. This is life!
Age 30– I love my body on a different level. I can look in to the mirror and see beyond my flesh and fat and think to myself, “damn you’ve been through a lot and I still love you”. I can see beyond the shell of myself and am grateful for it inside. I feel good in my skin. I’m proud of how far I have come. I’m mostly financially independent and can even pay for expensive dental work that I need done (for some reason this makes me happy). I have been helping other women heal their relationship with food and their weight and my service, works for other people. I don’t think there is anything that makes me happier than to help other women. I am married to someone that’s on the same path as me and we can actually have epic heart to hearts. I’m still working on some financial stuff and past stories or beliefs that I’m not good enough but I’m grateful. I’m grateful for everything that once was and is. The Universe continues through pleasure and pain to be my greatest teacher. Thank You for taking care of me Universe.
This timeline of my life is to give hope to all of those that haven’t had it easy. I want to tell you to keep on asking. Keep on getting support. Find people that have walked the path a little further than you and ask them to show you the way. Don’t be afraid to cry because you want something so bad but also don’t be afraid when the Universe gives it to you in the form you least expected. Trust. Trust, that the universe will always help in your healing process if you just ask and dream. Always dream.