Department Store Parking Lot — Day
A tall, slender brunette, age indeterminate, maybe late fifties, early sixties, emerges from a chocolate brown Fiat and walks toward a department store. We’ll call her Ava.
Ava rifles through tops on a rack marked “small.”
Used to be, I detested clothes-shopping. Hated. It. When you’re overweight, it’s hard to find a garment that’s flattering and comfortable. Consequently, I was never a fan of anything remotely “form-fitting.” Like this shirt, which, since I have a lipstick this exact shade, I’m going to buy.
She pulls a cherry red, short-sleeve T-shirt with a deep V-neck from the rack.
When I wasn’t paying attention, menopause and my nearly non-existent workout routine took a toll on my body and my head. And my eating was out of control. I thought nothing of having second and third portions of a dish I really enjoyed. Like pasta. I could bury my head in a friggin’ bowl of noodles.
During this period, after a hell of a lot of work and aggressive self-promotion (I was unrepped at the time), one of my short screenplays attracted the attention of an indie producer who paid me actual money for the script and produced it in Los Angeles. The filmmakers were a great group of people who kept me in the loop through the entire process. At the end of production, I was invited to the L.A. Film School for a preview screening followed by a question and answer session with the audience.
God, I loved it. Talk about an adrenaline rush! What I wasn’t so jazzed about: The way I looked in photos. All I could see was the extra pounds and it was demoralizing to me.
To be clear, I was never “obese” per se, but I carried too much weight and no longer felt good about myself. Nor, sexy.
“But at least, I’m relatively healthy.” Or so I thought.
When I returned home from my L.A. trip, I decided to overhaul my body via diet and exercise. And when I decide to do something, I do it.
I gave up all carbs, red meat and dairy and ate primarily chicken, fish and vegetables. And, I began…