I stepped on the scale and saw the unexplained weight loss nearly every woman dreams of. I weighed 57 pounds. I knew that couldn’t possibly be right, so I stepped on it again.
Sure enough, 57 had been a bad read. The scale said I actually weighed 58.
Technically, I should be traveling in a car seat. That’s me, the one in the driver’s seat of an SUV strapped in a pink Cosco juvenile car seat with tilt recline and the side beverage cup holder.
The last time I weighed 58, I was probably in the fourth grade. I knew all my states and capitals then. I loved converting fractions, wrote a poem once a week, was a jump rope champion, had legible handwriting and enjoyed recess twice a day. My mother did my laundry and cooked all the meals and I could still overpower my younger brother. It was a good year, one I wouldn’t mind revisiting.
It was nice to weigh 58 again. It made me feel light, inside and out. My clothes fit better. My jeans felt loose. I felt healthier. More energetic. More vibrant. Maybe I’d swim a couple hundred meters. I’ve never been a swimmer, but why should that stop me?
Yes, it did occur to me that the digital scale was on the fritz, but I immediately put that thought out of my mind. Why let practicality ruin a wonderful start to a beautiful day?
We went out to lunch later and I had biscuits. I don’t eat biscuits. I don’t even like biscuits, but when you have unexpected weight loss, you feel entitled to eat biscuits.
Pass the butter.
I had ice cream, too. Not much, but a little. It’s been months since I had ice cream. It’s on my banned food list. But I was eating ice cream now.
As I poured a little chocolate syrup on the ice cream, I wondered if I should call the doctor so he could update my medical records. Maybe my cholesterol numbers had taken a dramatic dive, too.
This was the most excited I’d been about a failed household appliance in ages. I was disgruntled when one of the lights over the stove went out. I was downright surly when the hot water heater turned into Old Faithful. Don’t get me started about the combination digital clock/radio /iPod anchor with the alarm that goes off every day at noon and can’t be shut off. But the digital scale falls apart and I have a new a skip in my step.
Later that night the husband walked to the ’fridge, opened the door and casually said, “I weighed 75 pounds this morning.”
“Really?” I asked. “I only weighed 58. You should go on a diet.”
We ordered pizza.
Life was good for a few days. We ate what we wanted, pretended we were both grossly underweight, and then it all came to a crashing halt.
We bought a new scale. We’re back to reality. The memory of biscuits lingers. In more ways than one.
Lori Borgman’s new book “The Death of Common Sense” is available online. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org