12.12 is a heavy day for me because two years ago today I met with my then attorney about a lawsuit against Jenny Craig. It was a very bizarre time in my life and frankly it was turned upside down. I’m going to be honest with you, I have moments where I’m angry at my higher power/God. The moments where I feel dropped on my head and don’t understand why I have to struggle so much.
When I tell my sponsor of these moments, yes, he does yell at me…”God isn’t Santa Claus.” and “You have to get a better connection to your higher power because the God you have isn’t working for you.” Both statements are true but don’t take away the sting of disappointment when my attorney dropped me AFTER filing the case because my surgeon wouldn’t get involved with my lawsuit. I could have easily gotten another attorney or started a class action but I started this blog instead.
I don’t handle disappointment well, I don’t. I go down a rabbit hole and give up on everything. Thankfully, that only happens for days where as in the past I would have been in a state for months to years. It still is disappointing that I didn’t have my day with Jenny Craig and that this blog isn’t making a bigger impact on the dangers of the dieting industry. All that says to me is that my expectations were too high and that I don’t know what kind of impact my words are actually having.
So, today I’m sad and disappointed with how things went down and wish that things had gone differently but I know that as soon as I get my connection back to my higher power, I know that everything happens for a reason and that I am always being protected.
So below is a little piece I wrote about the strangest day in my life, 12.12.12.
12.12.12 was the day it all came to a head. Number sequences had been popping up for past 5 years now. Every day on the clock of my computer screen at my 9 to 5 (more like 9 to 8) job I would magically stare at my computer clock and it would read 12:12pm. When I went to buy lunch my receipt would be $12.12 and if I took a flight the flight number was 1212.
It’s hard for me to write about these strange occurrences because I fear I may sound like a Birkenstock wearing, hairy arm-pit having, vegan, freak! So I kept quiet about it and let the weirdness continue while walking around feeling like Shirley McClaine on acid.
Then one day I decided to confide in a particularly hippie friend of mine who said to me, “girl, you’re a lightworker!” To which I replied, “I’m a sober, stand-up comic/writer who works at as a legal secretary …What the fuck is a lightworker?”
She explained to me that lightworkers are souls who volunteered before they were born to help the planet and human kind heal from the effects of fear. Every lightworker is here for some sacred purpose. She told me that 12:12 was a date of ascension for me where my purpose will be revealed and that I would be perfectly qualified for this role.
She also told me that lightworkers are people who have been through every imaginable trauma and usually suffer from addiction. Well you can check trauma and addiction on that list for me. At the time I found out that I was a card carrying member of the lightworker party I was five years sober (I am soon to be, God willing, 8 years sober). She said that often lightworkers are writers, teachers or healers. I was sounding like more and more of one. My friend admitted to being one too but that her purpose she was told was to help other lightworkers with their missions. A cosmic Yoda if you will.
I was completely disbelieving in what she was telling me but as the date drew nearer to 12.12.12 strange thing after strange thing occurred.
In September of 2011 I joined a diet program called, Jenny Craig. I joined because my former landlord, Carrie Fisher (I lived with her when first getting sober) became their spokesperson. Everything was great. I ate their pre packaged, processed foods for just under a year and lost over 20 pounds.
Then starting in August of 2012 I started to feel really sick. My nails were dark yellow and had these black vertical lines on them. I also had no appetite. When I went to the bathroom it was green. My migraines were intensifying and I was this ghostly white color with a yellow tint
I went to every doctor imaginable and no one could quite figure out what was wrong with me. So I did what any girl living in Los Angeles would do…I went to my acupuncturist. Who diagnosed me liver qi stagnation. He said my problems had to do with my former drug and alcohol abuse. That I could understand, I took more pills than Betty Ford and Kitty Dukakis combined.
I continued to go to my acupuncturist to repair my, so I thought, damaged liver. I let him stick needles in me in places there were just not right. I also took these liquid herbs that tasted like a barn floor.
I wasn’t getting better and in October of 2012 I was at work when this horrible pain came over me. It felt like I was having the worst acid reflux mixed with maybe a burning ulcer in my stomach. I was carrying a file and dropped it as I doubled over onto the floor.
Crying from the pain, I picked up the phone and called my fiancé to come get me and take me to my internist’s office. When we got to my doctor’s office the pain had passed. My doctor gave me some ulcer medications and I was on my way back home.
At home, a few hours later the pain was back but this time it was radiating from under my right shoulder blade. Then there was projective vomiting. I threw up all over my fiancé and his poor white Ford Focus on the way to Cedars Sinai Emergency room.
After the intake in the ER was done I was wheeled in to get an ultrasound of my stomach and abdomen. The results showed not just one gallstone but over a thousand! The gallstones had traveled and were cutting off the ducts to my liver, small intestine and pancreas. In other words my organs weren’t functioning which is why I was yellow and so sick.
I was rushed into emergency surgery to take out my gallbladder and remove the blockages to my organs. I spent a few days in the hospital with complications then was released.
When I got back to work a friend of mine asked me, “weren’t you on Jenny Craig?” She then showed me an article in the LA Times from 1994 that talked about a class action against Jenny Craig. 360,000 people claimed they got gallbladder disease from being on their diet. Jenny Craig settled but didn’t admit to any wrong doing and DIDN’T CHANGE THEIR DIET.
I knew I was in good shape because just two months before starting Jenny Craig I had uterine fibroid surgery and had to have a full physical with MRI’s and blood tests. I was perfectly healthy (except for the fibroids).
I had to do something, I couldn’t let this multi-million dollar company (who is now owned by Nestle) get away with this criminal and immoral behavior. I let it go for a little while so I could recover from the surgery and then I got a call from a friend. “Hey do you have a lawyer for your Jenny Craig case?” She asked. “No. Not yet.” I said. “Well, I’m good friends with Tom Girardi. I told him about you. He is the Erin Brocovitch attorney, the one who sued PG&E for 333 million. He’s expecting your call.”
The next day I called Tom Girardi and scheduled an appointment. “The only day he is free is on December 12th at 10:00am, does that work?” Tom’s secretary asked me. “Yes, 12.12.12 at 10:00am works for me.” I said smiling.