Hungry Girl Part 1

It's been a very "hungry" week.  Seems pretty typical at this point in my pregnancy, right?  My belly is growing rapidly, and I'm finally over the morning [and night] sickness that left me without an appetite for the entire first trimester.   Now I must be making up for lost time.

Except, that's not the whole truth.  Whether I've been pregnant, or not, I occasionally have days... weeks... when I eat, and eat, and eat-- until I can no longer look at food without feeling gross.   No matter how much I eat, I am never satisfied.   During these times, I know that I am not physically hungry.  I am trying to soothe an ache, relax, or entertain myself.  No amount of food will do the trick.

My binging is a dirty little secret that I have carried with me since 7th grade.

I graduated from a sixth grade class of around a dozen, and convinced my parents to enroll me in the local private school that my best friend was attending.   I went through a lot of changes in the summer of 1994.   I got my period, I got my hair straightened, and my body took on a womanly form.

Not gonna lie--I relished the novelty of attention from the opposite sex.   I enjoyed having a fresh look and identity as the new, mysterious girl at school.

However, the friends I followed to this new school changed, too.  They had moved on and seemed to quickly make new best friends.  Being a shy girl by nature, I struggled to make friends, especially with other girls.  I was teased for various reasons, especially if I had a bad hair day.  Though the population at school was not much larger than my old school's--there were enough students to bundle themselves into several cliques.  The smarties, the athletes, the musicians... I couldn't find a place to call home, to feel like I belonged.  I often felt like I had no one to talk to, and that I was left to navigate this period of awkwardness, alone.

I was starving for connection, and security, and acceptance.  I went home from school famished every day, and dove headfirst into two, sometimes three full bowls of cereal in a row until I was too full to eat dinner.  Which, I ate two or three plates of for good measure.  Food didn't solve any of my problems, but it made me forget them for a moment.  Food never rejected me or turned its back on me.   It didn't abandon me to struggle with my awkwardness.  I knew where I stood with food.   We were old friends, forever friends.

To be continued...

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