Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain

Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain

Portia de Rossi

Language: English

Pages: 320

ISBN: 1439177791

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain

Portia de Rossi

Language: English

Pages: 320

ISBN: 1439177791

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


In this searing, unflinchingly honest New York Times bestseller, actress Portia de Rossi shares the truth of her long battle to overcome anorexia and bulimia while living in the public eye, and details the new happiness and health she has found in recent years—including her coming out and her marriage to Ellen DeGeneres.

Now in paperback, the New York Times bestselling memoir from Portia de Rossi explores the truth of her long battle to overcome anorexia and bulimia—“an unusually fresh and engrossing memoir of both Hollywood and modern womanhood” ( Los Angeles Times, 5 stars).

In this groundbreaking memoir, Portia de Rossi reveals the pain and illness that haunted her for decades, from the time she was a twelve-year-old girl working as a model in Australia, through her early rise to fame as a cast member of the hit television show Ally McBeal. All the while terrified that the truth of her sexuality would be exposed in the tabloids, Portia alternately starved herself and binged, putting her life in danger and concealing from herself and everyone around her the seriousness of her illness.

She describes the elaborate rituals around food that came to dominate hours of every day and explores the pivotal moments of her childhood that set her on the road to illness. She reveals the heartache and fear that accompany a life lived in the closet, a sense of isolation that was only magnified by her unrelenting desire to be ever thinner, ever more in control of her body and the number of calories she consumed and spent.

From her lowest point, Portia began the painful climb back to a life of health and honesty, falling in love and marrying Ellen DeGeneres and emerging as an outspoken and articulate advocate for gay rights and women’s health issues. In this remarkable and landmark book, she has given the world a story that inspires hope and nourishes the spirit.

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six small protein-enriched meals a day. She told me to keep a journal of what I ate. Chicken, turkey, orange roughy, tuna, egg whites, oatmeal, blueberries, nonfat plain yogurt, steamed vegetables, brown rice, wheat bread, bran muffins, nuts—all weighed and documented—were my stable of foods I was allowed to eat. Most other things were not part of the program. As I left her house that day I felt an overwhelming sense of relief. I had heard that in order to know how to overcome difficulties, you

in front of me and try to think of one of my own. Hands? No. I hate my hands. “I like my hands,” says Jan, looking down at her fatty, pasty hands. I wonder how she can like her hands because even if she thought that her right hand was graceful and slender, her wedding band on her left hand, barely visible through the mounds of flesh suffocating it, tells the story of the big fat body attached to it. As she waves them around to help her mouth make a point, I wonder who put that band on her finger

not eaten any lunch. Then again, what if I had skipped lunch just so I could eat the cookie? How could she have known what I wanted? By the time dinner came around, I was asleep. Actually, I pretended to be asleep. I didn’t want anyone to know that I didn’t eat anything during the fourteen-hour flight. Something like that could leak into a tabloid. And while I enjoyed the speculation that I was too thin, I didn’t want them thinking I was sick. I wanted people to admire my tenacity and

film as Malibu was a hot spot for paparazzi. Without hesitation, when Carolyn asked me if I had binged or purged since my last session, I would reply that no, I hadn’t. I hadn’t binged or purged or even thought about bingeing or purging. I would tell her how healthy I was and how great I was doing. I don’t know why, but it was very important to me to not appear sick to the only person that could help me get better. However, Carolyn had herself recovered from an eating disorder, and combined with

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