This is the rework of a self-published auto-biographical story (2008), rewritten for this blog. Names of characters have been changed.
Content warning: mental and physical abuse, misogyny.
Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in getting up every time we do.
Weight problems (2)
Continued from… Weight problems (1)
Determined Annie walked into the consulting room of the doctor.
“What can I do for you?” the middle-aged man asked friendly.
“I would like to lose some weight. Even though I tried in the past, I didn’t fully succeed.”
“Have you brought the urine sample with you?”
“Yes,” Annie answered. She handed him the small bottle.
“Please go into that room and take everything off except your underwear,” the doctor requested. Call me when you’re ready.”
Annie did as the doctor said. He joined her in the small examination room when she called him. He had the bottle with her urine sample in his hand.
“Lie down on the bed,” he requested, after he had weighed Annie on the scale next to the bed.
The doctor put a broad, thick, rubber band around her right wrist and another one around her right ankle. He attached several electrodes to it. The wires attached to the electrodes ran to a machine next to the bed. Once all was attached, he measured her blood pressure.
“Please relax. Close your eyes and let this machine do its work,” the doctor said in a calm voice, pointing to the machine to which Annie was now attached.
Annie followed his instructions. She heard some humming and the sound of a printer, but she kept her eyes closed and tried to relax.
“Okay, ma’m,” the doctor suddenly spoke next to her, while loosening the bands around her wrist and ankle, “you can sit up.”
He continued with a general examination of Annie’s eyes, throat and ears. Then he listened to her heart and lungs through his stethoscope. He turned around, opened the bottle with the urine sample and put a special strip of paper in it.
“I see you had already started a diet,” he said when he checked the strip after a couple of seconds.
“I’m only eating less,” Annie admitted. She didn’t say that since Fran called her the day before, she had eaten almost nothing.
“You can get dressed,” the doctor said after her had given her an injection. He left the room.
“The tests that I just ran,” he said when Annie sat in front of him again “showed your fat percentage is higher than what it should be for your length and build. You are nine kilograms overweight. The injection I just gave you will help to break off fat in your body. Contrary to what some people believe, there are no hormones in the fluid I injected. You will have to follow a strict diet and I will give you a prescription for pills that will help restrain your appetite. If you strictly follow all the instructions, you will quickly get rid of the excess weight. Please make an appointment for a week from now. The nurse will then weigh you and make a note of your progress. Good luck!”
Annie left the doctor’s office, and went straight to the pharmacy. She didn’t make any effort to visit Fran, who worked on another floor in the same building. Once she was back in her own office, on the other side of town, she didn’t phone Fred, as she would have done under normal circumstances. She was ashamed and not at all in the mood to speak to him. This needless feeling of shame and the reason for it, unleashed a fury towards Fred, but she knew that she would have to hide it from him.
“Annie,” Fran asked when she got home that afternoon, “why didn’t you come to visit me after your visit to the doctor?”
“Oh, I had to get back to the office. I didn’t have time for a visit,” Annie lied and then she told Fran what happened during the consult that morning.
That evening and the many evenings that would follow, Annie ate alone. While the rest of the household had a fully cooked dinner, she went to her room to listen to music.
By now, Annie had an outlined routine for her diet. For breakfast, she had a glass of low-fat milk, a couple of grams of cheese and four whole-wheat crackers. Lunch consisted of a banana, a tangerine and an apple. For dinner, Annie had a very small piece of meat, one grated carrot and an unlimited amount of cucumber, onion, tomato and lettuce. Annie used the carrot, cucumber, onion and lettuce to make a salad. She flavored it with vinegar, salt and pepper. Annie had to drink at least two liters of water every day. With each meal, she had to take a tablet to stop her from feeling hungry between her meals.
Fred’s was slightly warming up towards Annie now he saw how faithfully she kept to her diet. He made fun of her by offering her sweets and chips, but then hugged her to show her that he was only fooling around. Not once did Annie waver. On the contrary, she stuck to her decision to lose weight. Where Fred was warming up towards her, she noticed that she was cooling off towards him. Looking back on this period, Annie didn’t know for sure whether it was her diet or her cooler attitude towards him that caused the positive change in Fred’s attitude.
To be continued… Helena (1)
© Rebel’s Notes