Friday, February 24, 2012

Turns out I AM the kind of person that...

...can have Reese's cups in the house.

I often used to eat a King size Reese's (4 cups) on the drive back from the grocery store when I was carrying out a binge. I'd select my main binge foods--ice cream, donuts, snack cakes--and grab Reese's at the checkout as an afterthought. 4 cups in 5 minutes or less on the drive home was just a way of kicking off the binge. And obviously, I "couldn't" keep peanut butter cups in the house without eating them all or feeling tortured until I ate them all. They've given me trouble the last 6 or 7 Halloweens, to say the least.

Now: I bought a King size 4 days ago and I've eaten one cup each day, very mindfully. I enjoyed them and while eating the last one today, I felt somewhat bored with it. So I will enjoy a different treat tomorrow.

...can throw away fast food.

The other day I was ravenous and went to McDonald's. I ordered a small fry and their new Chicken McBites (regular size, not large size). I got halfway through both, realized my hunger was quieted enough for the time being, and threw the remainder away. I used to eat a medium or large fry like it was nothing, hungry or not. And throwing away any part of a burger or chicken McNuggets or whatever? Previously unthinkable.

...will walk away from subpar cake.

There's a new deli-bakery that I've meaning to check out near the Trader Joe's I frequent. Went today, ordered a piece of cake. On the first bite, the cake tasted chemically. Took a few more bites, still bad. So I left it despite having paid $4.25 for it. Who needs it when there's so many good things to be had?

But throughout my past, I have eaten more stale and gross-tasting goods than you can imagine--even freezer burnt ice cream.

I know my consumption of Reese's and McDonalds and cake is nothing to brag about; most people with weight to lose steer clear altogether. But after years of thinking "I'm not the kind of person that can _________" (control herself around x, y, z, basically) I am pleased with these changes. And these changes are only my initial baby steps.

I was sick of fearing specific foods as though they had special power over me, and sick of fearing myself at the same time. Now I'm wary of certain foods, thoughts, and situations, but no longer terrified.


  1. Actually, I'm of the mind that it is a far greater accomplishment to eat small amounts of treats and empty calories than to banish them forever. Moderation is a much harder thing to master than strict avoidance. In the long run, few people will be able to sustain a "perfect" healthy eating routine. If you can accomplish the things you have mentioned here, you are well on the path to having control over your eating much in the way thin people do. They don't avoid everything. They just don't eat too much of anything.

    These are all enormous victories. You shouldn't feel you have to say that you shouldn't "brag" about eating these foods. You are just feeling the weight of diet culture judgment and are trying to diminish your accomplishment. Don't do that to yourself. This is notable progress and anyone who says otherwise is projecting their own issues onto you.

    1. Thank you for the feedback! The way you call things as you see them makes me smile. In one breath I'm stating that I have no basis to brag and in the next breath, I'm stating how proud I am of the changes I'm making. You are correct that I am anticipating negative judgments and reactions (from who, exactly? don't know. "them.") and I'm trying to preempt it somehow with my little disclaimers.

      I find blogging to be psychologically challenging in ways I didn't anticipate. I record my food on here for my own learning purposes, but I'm sometimes worried about what people might think of my dietary choices--people I will never meet! I worry about stalling out or backsliding and people (again, who I will never meet) being validated in their belief that my approach will never work. Why should I care? I want to change my life on my own terms and in my own time, not win an argument or competition.

      I've had nothing but kind and supportive commenters on this fledgling blog, but I see what goes on other blogs and I suppose I am afraid that the mudslinging will begin sooner or later. But that's what comment moderation is for, right? :P

      Overall though, I feel that blogging is helping me and so I will continue to do it.

      Thanks again for reading and commenting!

  2. I count that as a victory. I like your blog because you are thoughtful and I hope the mudslinging stays far away from here.

  3. Those are great victories! Especially the part where not only do you toss the gross cake, you don't turn to some other snack to "make up for it". I have a lot of trouble isolating things like that, I want to make connections where there are none.

    1. Hi Arwenn! Thanks for the support. I do sometimes experience that "gotta make up for it" mindset, but it is fading. Hope you are doing well. :)

  4. No mudslinging here. I think you're on an extremely good road.

    As Voltaire said, (in translation) "The perfect is the enemy of the good."

    It is impossible to eat "perfectly" all the time. So many people give it all up and binge just because they ate one Reese's piece, or a small slice of cake. I agree with SFG, it's much harder to learn to eat mindfully and eat in moderation (including eating a bit of "junk food" from time to time). But it's so much healthier, both mentally and physically, in the long run.

    Keep up the good work.

    1. Hello, NewMe! I love this statement of Voltaire's--it applies to pretty much anything we undertake in life.

      I'm in total agreement with you and SFG. I've done all-or-nothing approaches in the past, including OA. Noooo thanks. Moderation, the Middle Way, trusting oneself...that's the life I want.

      Thank you for your kind words!