A Better Version of Me

My eyes weren’t even open yet. The pain was exquisite. My belly ached with hunger.

Good. That means it’s getting smaller.

My muscles were raw and sore.

Good. They’re getting stronger.

I opened my eyes and peeked at the clock on my Blackberry. 8:45AM. Seven hours. Plenty. It’s doing better than the nine or more. Sleeping, the perfect escape from consciousness. Nobody can get to me in my sleep.

But, I’m sick of it. I’m sick of that life. I’m tired of being stuck in my head with all of this mess. And I’m disgusted with myself and my body.

I am disgusting.

I always have been. At one point, I thought I had excepted and celebrated what I look like. Until, I hit 140lbs.

Most of my jeans were almost too small. A few pairs wouldn’t actually close. I looked in the mirrors at the pounds of flesh I attempted to cram into clothes that were just plain too small.

Sausages have neater packaging than me.

I jiggle and wiggle like jello from every flap and fold. I can feel every inch of my flesh move when I move, and continue moving when I stop. It’s revolting. The idea that I will become obese to the point of immobility, if I don’t get a handle on this, was too much for me.

I choke on the bile that rises in my throat every time I envision my rolls growing into flaps.

I have never wanted to be “skinny”. All that I have ever wanted was to be within the healthy BMI range. I’ve never made it under 25. I have tried, and tried.

Every single diet you can imagine. Crash diets, healthy diets, calorie diets, and portioning diets. No meat, no carbs, not fat, etc. And none of those alone or in any combination was enough.

There is one thing I haven’t tried. Food diary plus exercise diary. Mood charting. A chart for everything in my life imaginable. Because unless I cut it open and dissect it, I may never be able to understand it. I may never understand me.

And I will never have control.

Running. There’s nothing that feels better than that searing fire in my lungs. I am jogging for the first mile, and walking the second. By the last half a mile, I am crawling. Sweat pours down my face, and I am gasping for that one breath that will stop this feeling of dying.

Dying. For one moment, I have a reason to suspect that there’s an external cause for that gnawing sensation I feel at the edges of my soul.

Endorphins. If I can’t cut, and I’m too sad to laugh, then what is a person to do? Run. Period. The ache of the muscles the next day, it’s exquisite. The satisfaction that I am doing well for my body and it hurts is enough for me.

The satisfaction that I completed 5.5 miles in one day. Anticipation of pushing that further. Lulled by the extraordinary exhaustion. Peace and clarity of the mind. And the excitement that I shed 2lbs in a week.

The best part? I am doing this by adopting healthier habits. Smaller portions. Less soda. A person cannot run and smoke at the same time. I have two different trackers for my mood. Sleep. Medication. I can’t control everything. But, that doesn’t mean I can’t monitor it.

I am determined to be a better version of me.

Medicine from The Doctor

As of late, my disappearing act has largely been a result of the longest running series on television and the largest Sci-Fi franchise in the United Kingdom.  Some of my fellow Sci-Fi geeks may have already guessed it.  If you don’t know, then you may just be living under a rock.  I have been obsessed with Doctor Who.

At first, it started out pretty innocuously.  I am an avid Sci-Fi fan, raised in a family of Trekkies and long-time Doctor Who fans.  I recall my parents watching Doctor Who weekly in the evenings.  It would bore me to death and I’d end up going to bed early.  I detested it’s airing.  And now, I’m hooked.

Why the sudden change of heart?

Imagine watching this brilliant, lovely, quirky man traveling through time and space with his various companions.  It’s quite a spectacle to behold.  Alternate universes, twisting story lines, all contingent upon past and present events.  Even events that occur in the future that are yet to happen come into play.  When you are with The Doctor, anything is possible.  That’s the beauty of Doctor Who.

Today, I found myself searching for a sonic screwdriver replica for C.S.  He, too, is absolutely obsessed with the show.  In fact, he was so enthralled by it that he went out and bought a Doctor Who-esque coat.  I wanted to try to get him one for Christmas, but there’s no way that’s going to happen.  Why didn’t I think of this sooner?

In the meantime, I sidetracked with the plethora of Doctor Who backstory that exists from the previous series.  I came upon a timeline of the history of the various incarnations of The Doctors, when they appeared in the series, and who their companions were at the time.

In fact, there was a clever graphic I found:

Doctor Hoo!

And then I saw it.  The 4th Doctor, Tom Baker.  I remembered Tom Baker very vividly from my childhood.  He was the only Doctor that ever existed to me.  He had this curly, puffy hair, smashed down by a fedora he wore.  And there was the long, autumn colored scarf.  It was tangled all over the place and hung to the ground.  He was quite a character.

I was prattling on and on about my recent Doctor Who findings to C.S. in the van-buggy when POOF! – the realization hit me.  Certain things about this man had been subconsciously affecting me for years.  The scarves.  I’ve always been obsessed with the multicolored scarves.  And the coats.  There is nothing more sexy on a man than a trench coat.  There was always this idea in my head that quirkiness and eccentricity were preferred traits.  It conveyed a certain cleverness, imagination, and intelligence.

The 4th Doctor has been there all along!  The only thing that brought it to the surface was my admiration and fascination with the 10th Doctor.  Fantastic!

But, I can’t help but wonder – what else has Doctor Who left subconsciously dormant in my mind?

What secrets lie beyond?