I don't need a therapist; I need a nutritionist. I spend about 60% of my couch-time worrying over my diet, wondering if it is reflective of a national norm or if it's some kind of aberrant program of self-abuse. Each week, I begin our sessions by running down a list of everything I'd eaten that day, and sometimes the previous day, making sure to withhold at least one dietary offense - bacon strips, scrapple, an entire box of Red Hot Dollars, etc. - because lying to one's brainfixer is my compensation for the judgment in which I'm surely being held. (is this the wrong approach?)
My brainfixer, who is as interested in the body as she is in the mind, will make suggestions and issue warnings. Yesterday she told me my diet seemed no worse than the average American diet, and applauded me for resisting fried foods. (it's true. i'd rather be punched in the stomach than chew through a handful of deep-fried batter, and deny myself the true flavor of good foods like chicken, shrimp, vegetables, and cheese. nonetheless, i don't take a self-righteous view on fried foods. dip the aforementioned items in a sugar-glaze or caramel sauce, however, and i'll attack the food greedily, and swallow without biting. we all gots our problems, ok, pal?) In the past, she has suggested I might have a wheat allergy, and recommended something called "spelt" as a bread substitute. Spelt, when it is formed into a loaf, looks, feels and tastes like a painting of bread. It is a crime against people who long for flour.
My adventure in spelt became just another therapy homework assignment I'd failed, with all the accompanying guilt and anxiety that comes along with disappointing one's brainfixer. It will be remembered alongside with the incomplete two-column list I was supposed to create, indicating reasons why I was ready for a loving relationship listed in column A, alongside reasons I was not ready. Column B was extensive, beginning with items like "easily distracted", "chlid of a narcissistic mother", and "uses relationships to ignore creative responsibilities, and uses failure in creative responsibilities as a means of escaping from 'smothering' relationships," to far more nit-picky complaints like "messy bed" and "doesn't own a hair dryer with diffuser attachment." Column A - or reasons I was ready for a loving relationship - was a disaster. After hours of deliberation all I could come up with was, "gives good hugs." And, frankly, it's not even true. I need to trim my nails.
One things my therapist cum nutritionist and I seem to agree upon is that I have a very unhealthy relationship with refined sugar. Can I help it if I like a little bit of refinement in my life? She seems to think I can, and she's probably right. My sugary prison has definitely been hell on my energy. I crash and burn early, and never take off again. My immune system is as delicate as one of those crazy African flowers Superman picks for Lois Lane in Superman II.
I'm ALWAYS under the weather, or at least in the process of crawling underneath the weather. I think my co-workers have decided I'm a terminal case, as I call in sick with enough frequency to earn a solid gold anti-bacterial bubble upon retirement. The president of the company will shake my hand through a great Vulcanized glove in my bubble and I will timidly shake it back, using my free hand to shove peanut brittle into my toothless mouth sac.