Growing up, my mother and I always watched the Academy Awards together. We both loved movies and adored the fashions. Before Joan and Melissa Rivers, there was Mom and me.
We loved Academy Awards night. However, the difference between Mom and me was that for a few hours each year, she focused on movie stars and what they wore. For me, that’s all I focused on – famous people, how they looked, how thin they were and of course, what they ate.
For years, Mom and I lived alone together. Often, we’d read side-by-side; she re-reading Proust; me studying People magazine.
My mother was a brilliant musician and piano teacher. Students traveled from far and wide to study with her. She had many and diverse interests and loved to try new things and explore.
Outside of the antics of celebrities, I only cared about weight, food and my body. My eating disorder made me less than a fully formed woman. It held me back. I dropped out of college five times, because I couldn’t stop eating and live a life. Sophomore year, I gained 70 pounds in six months. I paid no attention to classes or classmates and have very few fond memories of my time at any of the universities I attended.
My sister and brother always lived life to the fullest. Both married and had children. Both enjoyed lots of different activities and hobbies. They traveled, took classes, joined political organizations, etc.
I just ate. Or didn’t eat. Took laxatives. Threw up. Weighed myself. Binged.
My eating disorder took many years of my life that I can’t get back, but I do have right now, and right now is very different.
Tonight, when I sit down to watch the Oscars — well frankly, I will probably get bored.