Yesterday I saw some photos one of her husband’s coworkers posted on facebook. I’m not on facebook, but I have coworkers who are, and they felt the need to share. They all loved Meredith.
I saw two pictures, and what I saw broke my heart. She is not doing well. She has gained a lot of weight since I last saw her seven months ago. A lot of weight. From what I know of her past she hasn’t been this size since before 2010. She was very depressed then, and she tends to eat and stop taking care of herself when she is stressed and depressed. Hence the weight gain. She was very ashamed of how she looked before, even though she was still quite beautiful.
But it was more than that. I could see how she posed her hands, and in her smile, that she was very self conscious and unhappy. It was a brave face, but hiding a lot of turmoil underneath.
She is very concerned of the example she is setting for her daughter as well. I know that it is eating at her. She wants to set a good example. To eat healthy and to be healthy without focusing solely on body image. The stress is causing her to fail at setting the example she wants to be for her daughter. That is probably what hurts her the most.
Meredith loves feeling beautiful. I mean who doesn’t, but when she was with me she would often wear very revealing outfits just to try to get a reaction from the men around her. She would even tell me various times in the past when she got a reaction out of me, and she remembers every outfit I commented on. I know that now she is hiding. Ashamed. Oh it kills me to not be there for her.
Her husband is not supportive. He’s heavily overweight himself. He never tells her she is beautiful, and frankly supports all the bad habits. She thinks he would be happy if they were both about 40lbs overweight and just lazy together. It is where he is comfortable. A thought which makes her very sad to think about. As if her best days are behind her, but now it is happening.
When she left the company I work for she moved back to her hometown. She loves her hometown with a passion. She is closer to her family. She is working at her dream job, and it’s only a 5 minute drive to work. But I can clearly see she is not happy.
Now comes the speculation, which is probably fairly accurate except for anything new that may have happened since we last spoke months ago. In fact when we did speak she was sure to tell me she wasn’t taking care of herself and had gained weight. I thought it a bit odd, but now I can see why. She is really stressed.
If all the peices of her life are falling into place why is she doing so poorly? Well in a word, marriage. She feels trapped in her marriage. She does not want to be married to her husband, but due to children and his recent medical condition she feels she can’t leave him. She knows she would be blamed in a million ways if she leaves him. Everyone would judge her harshly. For leaving him post diagnosis; for leaving him during residency; for leaving the promise of a great life; for leaving their daughter with a split household; if I were implicated then leaving as a home wrecking whore. It would all be on her shoulders.
She is still in love with me as well. The marriage she wants is with me, but she knows, for at least right now, that isn’t a possibility. It’s a long stretch to consider that we would ever be married. Even in that remote possibility though there would be a lot of stress to deal with to get there.
She knows there is no perfect ending, and I can see the stress impacting her physically. Which in turn makes her more depressed. You know, I glanced through the back photos and there were no photos of her since October last year. She managed to stay out of the photos, and I’m fairly certain that is on purpose.
Oh Meredith, my heart is reaching out to you. I’m worried about you.