In the past, I’ve had a date every Friday night. Can you guess where this is going?
This Friday was going to be no different.
I get a lot of feedback that my honesty is refreshing, so I’m going to keep open here. I have a tendency to do the following:
-overeat at some point…work out or go shopping…decide to ‘kill time’ (i.e. go to Winner’s, Shopper’s, Loblaws, etc.) until I get hungry…end up ravenous…go home, frantically fix dinner, eating while I prep…inevitably overeat and feel guilty…sometimes continue to overeat
-eating the same meals over and over again (see dinner photo), leaving me unsatisfied while still feeling somewhat guilty for having them!
…amongst other things, of course. These are just some of the remnant ways Ed still has a hold on me. And today I did both of these and ended up with my head in the freezer. It started innocently enough. A few chocolate chips turned into a few too many and then I got into the frozen yogurt. Then into the ice cream. At the time it felt out of control and I knew I needed to stop. So, I did. I got out of the kitchen, sent some texts, and started my laundry (removing myself from the situation is the best thing but also the hardest thing). I kept feeling like maybe I should have a bowl of ice cream with the chocolate chips on it, but I had this strange feeling that it was Ed telling me to do that. I was ready to put on my pajamas and do just that when I realized that I didn’t have to let the night be ruined. I may have felt sick from eating too much dinner (I ate leftovers that I was putting away in the fridge, plus dinner, plus the stuff I snacked on as I made dinner…urgh) but I still had a feeling chocolate was a necessity. Part of me heard myself saying “eating more is never the answer” but I had a stronger, truer feeling that I could come out of this situation strong.
So…I had my shower. I put on my new tank.
I got in my car and drove to Starbucks because even if I’d eaten an entire tub of ice cream, I don’t have to be miserable. I don’t have to stay home and feel bad about myself. I knew I didn’t want the ice cream but that I wanted something, so I decided to buy a candy bar and eat it in public. Not right before bed. That’s two very different things for me!
I’m aware that for some people, eating a chocolate bar in public after having a big dinner would not be a good thing. For me, today turned from something potentially devastating (I would dare say that I was on the verge of a relapse) to something so powerful that I’m getting a little emotional just thinking about it!
The truth is, even if I ate a chocolate bar every single day, I would not be obese. I might gain some weight, but I would not balloon. The truth is, I don’t need to eat a chocolate bar every day. The other truth is, I will figure this out. The more often I can turn these really hard challenges into really strong victories, the more I will learn.
The questions I’m left wondering are: even though I’ve firmly held the belief that I should keep ‘junk food’ around to give it less power, are there times when not having it around is a better choice? I’m definitely going to discuss this with my dietitian at next week’s appointment (I’ll keep you posted). How long will it take until I don’t feel like I have to fight with Ed on a regular basis? Will this ever be easy? I saw a clip on the Today Show the other day about adult eating disorders (something I read about and really found fascinating in “Gaining”) that was kind of disappointing in that they said that it’s something that will always be hard. I hope they’re wrong! I know they’re wrong! One of my favorite reminders of this is the support letter I signed up for written by Andrea Roe.
In closing, I’m sitting here at Starbucks without my normal Friday night date, but I’m feeling perfectly content. Not stuffed. Not fat. Not hungry. Not even lonely. In the words of Britney, I’m strongerrrrrrr than yesterday…
What’s the hardest thing you’ve ever overcome in life?
Do you think that things like eating disorders, alcholism, etc. will haunt you forever?
If you’ve struggled with bingeing in the past, how do you keep from relapsing? Interrupt a binge?
Have you shared any kind of struggle with people? Do you find it therapeutic (or am I weird like that?)?
Who wants to be my date next Friday? 😉