It’s been a while since I’ve posted a review with Blogging for Books. I’ve had my most recent book, It Was Me All Along by Andie Mitchell, sitting on my bookshelf almost all year. I just haven’t had time, or motivation, to pick it up until recently. When I did, I simply could not put it down.
In It Was Me All Along, Andie Mitchell tells the story of her relationship with food. From the description, it sounds like a weight loss story, but really, at its core, this book isn’t about food. This book, sometimes painful, sometimes funny, and always brutally, charmingly honest, is about Mitchell’s relationship with herself and the ways she learned to cope with an unstable childhood, an absent (though loving) mother, and an alcoholic father. The fact that her food addiction was her coping mechanism is almost beside the point.
Perhaps I see it in this light because, in spite of a few obvious differences in our childhoods, they sound alarmingly similar. Mitchell’s primary source of love, support, and stability was the food she ate: both the junk food she would binge on while sitting at home and the gourmet food her mother would make during her few hours at home between the four jobs she worked to put said food on the table. She speaks of being alarmingly obese to the point that she couldn’t find age appropriate clothes to fit her and where doctors constantly pressured her to diet (without, of course, ever giving her the tools to do so successfully). The picture she paints of her childhood is a tough one, but she remains generous to parents whose habits could have destroyed her and charitable to the people who were cruel.
Mitchell’s story is about fighting for herself—both for emotional and physical health—and at the same time, fighting to accept herself. Many of the points she makes about the time after her weight loss success, including further eating disorders, poor mental health, and anxiety, are things we don’t usually think about or consider. She is open as she explores what it means to learn about oneself and to truly identify the reasons that we do what we do. Her memoir is an interesting exploration of the relationship between food and the way we experience the world and it will inevitably offer a challenge to anyone who reads it.
I highly recommend this book and give it a five star rating.
It Was Me All Along
was provided for free by Blogging for Books so that I could write this review. This in no way affects the way that I read the book—my thoughts are my own.