Monday, March 12, 2007


Molly is continuing to be the popular girl I prayed for, but sometimes I don't quite know how to handle her. Friday I picked her up from school, and we went out for supper and shopping. We had a lot of fun together, trying on sunglasses, looking at jewelry, and talking. Well, she was talking. I think both of my daughters were born with the ability to talk incessantly without taking a breath. She's going to try out for cheerleading for next year. That is so far out of my realm of experience, all I can do is promise to root for her (and try not to calculate the cost of uniform, shoes, etc). Tomorrow she's singing the National Anthem by herself, acapella, at a wrestling tournament. She didn't even get to finish the song to try-out, the band director was so impressed he gave her the job before the rockets red glare. It amazes me how the Lord gives us children who are so unlike us. Molly isn't afraid to sing in public or try out for cheerleading or wear trendy jewelry or teeny bikinis. I don't remember any of those things coming to me naturally. It's not always easy to understand her, because she's so different from me, but I am so glad that she is, and I'm so proud of who she is.

Gaining by Aimee Liu is the story of Liu's trying to understand what made her become anorexic as a young girl and how it still shapes the actions she takes today. She interviews psychologists, reads tons of research papers, and talks to people still suffering from and who have overcome eating disorders. It's not just rich white girls who have eating disorders. They stretch across income levels, race and gender. Liu finds that genetics play a large part, as does personality type. Anorexics tend to be introverted perfectionists while bulimics are often more spontaneous and outgoing. A variety of factors work together to create the disease. Lie doesn't fill her research with clinical data and dry statistics, she fills it with powerfully moving stories about women and men who are working every day to keep the monster at bay. While hearing her subjects' stories, Liu also learns more about what brought her into and out of anorexia and how she can stay free from it. I think that if you have a young daughter it is vital to read this book to see what kinds of girls are most likely to be affected by eating disorders and how parents can help. And God bless Liu, she makes sure that this book cannot become a how-to-manual for those wanting to learn more techniques to lose and control their weight the way many other books about the disorders do. This book is enlightening to anyone with preconceived notions about anorexia and bulimia, and it's written in an engaging style that is open to all readers.

The new pills are kicking in, and I'm starting to feel a little like myself again. Unfortunately the neurontin makes me woozy and groggy, so it takes me a few hours to get moving every morning. But I can function the rest of the day, it's worth it!