My relationship to food is, like everyone else’s, really complicated. I hover between 210 and 230 (pounds that is) yet I still don’t really put a lot of pressure on myself to avoid food that is bad for me. To compound this, I have a pretty aggressive case of GERD, and I have been told to avoid soda, coffee, fatty foods, spicy foods, etc.

I have learned to control my reflux by simply not eating that much at any one time, and by not eating after about 8 at night. But the thing is, as an American, the food issue is more precious to me and all of us than anything else. Abortion, the Middle East, presidential politics are all things we can discuss, but weight is just too sensitive for most people.

My soon to be sister-in-law Tessa (that’s the last time I write that, from now on she is my sister, as well as my other sister-in-law and my real sister) had lost some weight a few years ago, and I told her so, and she said, ‘thank you, but y’know, I really don’t even want to think about it, or make it something I aim for or dwell on.’ And it is so true. I don’t want to think about it.

Jordana, about whom you will read much I am sure, has one of those builds that women really aim for, and yet she hates herself for her eating habits, which she describes as ‘snacking all the time.’ My sister Michelle, who is an ardent vegetarian and eats organic food, derides herself for being unhealthy. Two days ago I ate two Taco Bell chicken burritos, a KFC chicken sandwich and a Wendy’s Chicken Sandwich meal. In one day.

I caught the Norwalk virus three weeks ago and lost ten pounds in a week, and I felt a perverse sense of pride. I was sick and people were jealous. How does that make sense? My roommate Amy lost almost thirty pounds, and she is still unhappy most of the time. Because she isn’t still losing weight. When I made pancakes and toast for breakfast she said ‘Do you want more carbs with your carbs?’, and I just wanted to say, ‘It’s just breakfast, really. It’s just three pancakes and a piece of toast. It isn’t wrong.’

By the way, Amy is awesome and she was just joking. But that’s the thing. We all hear judgement in what everyone is saying.

There is no answer. But if I am 210 pounds and I ran three miles today, I can’t really beat myself up if I eat carbs with meat tonight. No one should.