Thursday, July 24, 2008


But I am, in fact, in action.

First of all, thank you so much for the many compliments. I suppose I know I'm pretty but we all know what it's like when we're squirming in our own bodies, of which this week has been chockful of. This is the email I wrote my sponsor this morning in lieu of a formal inventory. It seems crafted enough to post here...

Monday: jury duty and my air conditioner died. Taking it out of the wall pulled out part of the wall.

Tuesday: Bought a new air conditioner for twice what I expected to spend. Called Craig's List guy to install. He did but my socket is so old it couldn't plug in. All stores closed for converter.

Wednesday: Found out there is no converter, the socket would have to be changed. Joe from CL brought an electrician friend over and changed socket. Plugged in air conditioner. It works for less than a minute before shutting down and flashing numbers at us. Called store -- they told us to return it. Joe went out to get tools to do so and saw his car being towed.

Luckily, the weather was cooling off. I went out and bought another fan because I don't have the time to go to store & be here for installation until Saturday if I'm fair to Joe & fair to myself.

So. I'm out approximately (and this is gonna hurt because I haven't added it up yet): 430 (air co.) + 120 (removal) + 25 (car service) + 140 (Joe, so far) + 40 (electrician) + 2 (subway): $757. And we still don't know if it's a matter of the wrong amp for air conditioner or the air conditioner itself.

AND the wall will have to be re-drywalled AND we need a sleeve for the air conditioner.

But I'm abstinent. My meals have been small and cold because I'm so fucking hot and so fucking anxious, but they have been self-contained and, if not weighed and measured, not excessive. Today is Day 14 and I've gone from 262 to 252, and yes, I've been drinking my water.

I woke up today and didn't pray. I thanked. Daisy and I stayed here last night rather than at Boomer's house; there were big thunder storms; it's cool but very rainy today. I'm thankful we could stay at Boomer's but we were both very happy to be home, even with the door on the chain, ajar, & fans.

I'm behind in meetings. Will do my best to catch up. One reason I nixed tomorrow night or Saturday morning for the air conditioner is that I want to go to live meetings. I need them.

I haven't done anything nice for anyone because I'm in a nasty, jealous mood -- they have air conditioning, let them put their OWN garbage bales back. I haven't felt in the least feminine -- hard to do when I sweat so much that my hair stand up in thoroughly wet spikes. The scale is part of my higher power right now because I know that every pound I lose will make the heat more tolerable and the walking less painful to my hips and back, and it will help me restore order to the Bat Cave, which is a wreck with a million sizes of clothes for all seasons that don't fit.

I've had to deal with workmen, sales people, hosts and sympathy calls from dog owners, as well as a distraught M, who is borderline suicidal over her eating and in desperate grief about a death in her family. I can only listen & pray and DEAL with what's on my plate and hope that she sees if I can do it, in the same relapse as she's been in, then, maybe, she can try too. She calls me because I'm probably the only person who understands the eating, the weight, the Rooms, the loss, the walking of dogs, and the jealousy of her clients who HAVE family. It's strange that the person who, in a sense, inspired my book (she broke off our friendship, which were the first strong Amazon posts I wrote), turns to me when she's grieving and hurting.

An odd thing about being so focused on one problem -- the restoration of physical comfort and a refuge from the outside world -- is that it takes me to the bones of my misspent life. All kinds of regrets, people, incidents come up as my sadness, physical duress and frustration bubble to near-tears. Things from 20 years ago are vividly in my mind. Other times that were painful replay themselves. I feel self-absorbed and guilty -- was it especially painful for M to walk Daisy (or try to: Daisy is extremely reluctant to walk with anyone but me)? How can I pay for Joe's towed car? Where are the words to address other people's problems -- R's stolen wallet, M's grief, Joe's car?

And why am I alone at 51, dealing with this shit by myself? My alone-ness is very evident.

OK. Enough. Breakfast: 1 c. rice, 1/2 c. cottage cheese, 1 nectarine; lunch: steamed kale & a tomato, 4 oz. chicken; dinner w/ friends, which will be abstinent.

Love to you --



Bea said...

I refuse to go into regret. It can and will suck me down to near death. How long do we (I) have to grieve over past losses and mistakes? Until there is no more grief? I ain't got that long. I am giving my overwhelming past griefs to God. The day to day stuff I'm handling.

That was some miserable story about the air conditioner. Too bad it wasn't fiction. Keep on fanning, you are ten pounds lighter.

Marian said...

Oy, can I relate! My housing nightmare right now is an infestation of bedbugs. I'm scheduled for my second extermination next week, and few people get rid of the things without 4-5 visits. So far I'm out probably $2K of my own money, including around $700 to get my three cats up to date on their shots, and to board them because the shit they spray for the bedbugs is too toxic for my cats! (And what about me?)

Anyway, as I struggled a few weeks ago with three cat carriers, trying to get them in a car service to the vet, I so wanted another person there to help. Really, *any* other pair of hands would have been helpful but of course my head went straight for the strong, silent man who will save me and fix all my problems.

The bedbug situation in general is making me face the fact that I have lived in a dump of an apartment for TEN YEARS. When I moved in, it was pretty much all I could afford but I should have left years ago. I haven't been taking care of myself - it's another one of those basic self-care things that get put to the side when you are in the food.

I can also vouch for the ability of a REALLY high level of stress (not your garden-variety malaise) to help keep you abstinent. But I hope we both find calmer and saner ways to do it!

Anonymous said...

Reading this makes me feel so much better because I spend a lot of time feeling very alone, though it probably doesn't look like that.

Your A/C story kills me. As an addict I can't stand discomfort but even worse than hunger for me is being hot. I hate it, I hate sweat, I hate sticky. I think it's why I can't do exercise even though I know I will feel okay if I do.

Congrats on those 10 pounds. ODAT.

Cindy said...

It is easier for me to surrender when I am alone. And I find myself alone frequently. Lack of AC in July is a major thing. Walls being torn up, very invasive. I drove without AC for three summers I think. I grew to enjoy the sweating and purging, but then I had air conditined places to go, the car trips were temporary. It is MARVELOUS that you are abstinent and you lost ten pounds. And you are doing it in the midst of the AC crisis. I'm struggling right now with increased appetite and food cravings and I am looking for someone or something to blame. Blame doesn't work, though. What you are doing works. Hang in there it sounds like you are doing really good. Putting first things first, you know.

Cindy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

No AC in this wicked heat is impossible to bear, but you are showing courage and commitment and hanging on to abstinence with everything you have. And it's paying off in self respect and weight loss - though the self respect and stability of the program are what makes the loss happen.

My heart goes out to you over the topsy turvey Bat Cave. I hope it gets resolved soon.

Lori G. said...

Every morning this week, I've staggered into work and thanking God for Mr. Carrier's invention. You are a very strong person throughout this because I would have slugged someone, taken over someone's apartment and a number of Bad Behaviors.

And you stayed Abstinent.

The wreckage in the Bat Cave can be fixed. It's just harder to fix ourselves. You're trying and sticking to abstinence and the Rooms and all of us have faith in you.

Unknown said...

Considering how hot your apartment was in March, you must be dying. Hope it's over by now and you're feeling better.

Sorry to hear your friend's car got towed. I'm not sure that one is your responsibility, but I can understand why you feel like you should do something.

Miss you!

Anonymous said...

Hello !

You looked gorgeous in the dress. Ten pounds is good. Many blessings.


Vickie said...

at least you don't have Anne's mushrooms growing in the heat. . .

Anonymous said...

Dear Frances, This is the first time in months that I've read your blog. I'm so sorry to hear about the AC Hell you've been in. Glad you're keeping your abstinence. Leslie

Janey Watkins said...

Oh no! I'm so sorry to hear about all this trouble you've got with your AC! Not for nothing, I know how it feels to be so frustrated with something that it causes a domino or a ripple effect to various other things. I do hope that everything eventually got fixed and sorted, and that you've never had this sort of trouble again with it since.