I seriously don't even know where to start with this one. I read it so fast because I knew if I stopped, there was no way I was going to pick it up again. It was just too heavy.
I guess I'll start on something ironic. I love eating while I read. And I spent the majority of my time reading this book while I munched on a bowl of popcorn. If Portia de Rossi was still crazy-starved all the time, she probably would think I was insane for doing that.
This book was like watching an epic bomb go off in super slow motion. At first, you notice she's a bit nuts about food. It seems it started at such a young age, getting ready for auditions and photoshoots. Starving to look great for the one day. It seems rationale enough. But over time it just snowballs, binging as a reward for the photoshoot, guilt over binging, throwing-up, followed by getting ready for another audition.
I am too young to really remember the show Ally McBeal. But I do remember Calista Flockhart and how scary skinny she was. She looked like she was trying to become invisible. The images of Portia in her book looked just like that. Suddenly the obsession to fit into a skirt becomes overwhelming. I'm convinced if I truly wanted a successful hollywood career, I'd probably starve myself too because - how the heck else can you get that thin? I honestly don't blame her.
It just started to get sad after awhile. Chain-smoking, portioning out canned tuna, oatmeal and fake butter spray. Her anxiety around frantic exercise. It exhausted me as the pages went on, and all I kept thinking was "Where the hell is Ellen? Can we skip to that part so we can all relax?"
The lesbian thing never even bothered me, but I was so amazed at how clear it was to Portia that she was gay the entire time. And living with a secret so deep can drive one to madness. I don't even know how to describe how I felt when she lived in constant fear that the person she really was would be revealed, and she risked losing everything she had worked for. All because society paints the gay life as an unfortunate life, or atleast an unacceptable one.
I would say her struggle to hide her sexuality was far more interesting than her struggle to fit into the sample sizes on the Ally McBeal racks.
Her story is a powerful one, but a dark one, and when Ellen actually enters the book - the pages are nearly running out. This is sincerely a story about Portia and a road to recovery that travels down many difficult paths I didn't even know could exist.
My advice is, if you get half-way through and you are looking for Ellen to come to the rescue, it's not written on the pages, but it's very clear that in real life - that's exactly what happens.
[Get your read on!]