tuesdays and thursdays functioned mechanically, like a clock.

eating and vomiting breakfast; managing laxative consumption of the prior day; lunching with coworkers; vomiting lunch between afternoon sales meetings; and craving to pass-out from exhaustion, in the car, whilst my sales manager blabbed about “killing the big boss with kindness” because that’s what one does in corporate america, i wanted to tar and feather my body.

luckily, fetching gwendolyn from doggie daycare highlighted the tunnel’s end.  this tunnel eventually collapsed, however, like taggart transcontinental’s disaster upon accepting a steam locomotive into a tunnel unfit for coal steam consumption.

regardless of my daytime idiosyncrasies, i fetched gwendolyn from daycare, only bringing her home to observe my heavy consumption of wine, consumed directly before yoga class.  gwendolyn wanted to play with her mommy, but mommy was getting drunk.

and then mommy was drunk at yoga.


i practiced, and still do, with conservative people, good people with families and functional lives, making my drunken state difficult to hide.  alcohol suspended my regular $200 evening food binges on those tuesday and thursday nights, only replacing a problem with a problem.  my downard facing dog was more like “yea!  woof!  i’m a dog!”  but i didn’t dare talk… because everyone would know.

traditionally, the end of yoga class is characterised by savasana, or rather, ‘final rest.’  one drunken thursday, several months before gwendolyn saved my life, i silently laid on the ground, upper arms tucked under my back, palms turned upward, feet relaxed, and i observed the pulse of my body as it slowed.  my teacher said, “feel and appreciate your body as it falls into the mat.”


after spending the afternoon calculating ‘calories in’ minus ‘calories out’ whilst figuring device locations for a client’s fire alarm system in a 300,000 square foot facility, appreciation was the least of concerns.

in doing the aforementioned calculations, one determines where power supplies and boosters must exist for bridging communication to the fire alarm brain.  similarly, with my body, i calculated exactly how to induce purging and when, for final reporting to the porcelain.

that was rather complicated.

but as i rested in savasana, i realised that my body naturally facilitated these life safety calculations, without supplement.  despite how terrible i treated it, my heart beat naturally, functioning without a battery, without a power supply.  it beat with love for my dog, family, friends, and yoga.  at that moment, mesmerised by the body’s power, i appreciated it, for the first time.  although i continued to binge, purge, and repeat, i knew that i could love my body. and i would figure it out.

then on 4 July 2010, I did.


© nicole marie story and nicoleandgwendolyn.com, 2011.