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Monday, December 6
That kind of FRIEND....
Kids, I’ve got to be honest with you. This week is going to be a rough one.
Without going into major details, this Thursday I will be facing one of the greatest giants in my life. Some of you know what’s going on, others don’t. But I’m going to ask that you keep me in your prayers this week as I do some major battle that has been 7 years in the works. Because while I can pretend that I am totally 100% perfect and have it all together, the reality is I’m just as “normal” as the rest of you. Which means I’m far from normal. I have fears, flaws, imperfections, and a whole bunch of (as the southern gals say) “ISH-YOUZ.” Therefore I am not going to act like this week isn’t shaking me up, because it is.
But there is one thing this week isn’t doing to me.
Making me eat.
I’m sitting pretty at 171.0 this morning. Actually that’s what I was last night. I didn’t weigh this morning. I needed an immediate infusion of the java, so I guess I can weigh later. Fact is, I’m learning that food is NOT a comforter. Food isn’t a friend when I’m feeling scared, sad, angry, or alone.
I know that sentence sounds like it came out of “Remedial Dieting for Dummies 101” but that lesson right there is the product of 2 years (almost 3 now) of hard work, sweat and tears. It’s something I wish that you could learn by my mistake of shoving calories and fat and carbs down my gullet in times of hardship. But you probably won’t. Heck, I’d read that statement several times coming from other books, blogs, and user manuals of the body. But it hasn’t ever sunk in like it has over the past 2 weeks.
Food was my friend. Unhealthily so. The one friend you have who always getting you into scrapes and trouble. Seriously. That’s how it is. I can prove it too.
I would look around on a website (most likely Dominos) and check out all the options. I’d feel my mouth start watering at the thought of what I was going to get. Which was the same, all the time. Forget that the one item I wanted most had more calories than I needed in a day (for the whole day that is, and part of the next one too…), that was beside the point. I was already typing in my order. Any variation to the item was quickly put back the way I wanted it to taste. I needed consistency. I counted on exactly how it would taste, and wanted no mistakes. Any difference would leave me feeling gyped. I would wait the next 30-60 minutes, listening for cars coming up the road, waiting to hear footsteps on the porch. And then the delivery driver would show up bearing gifts like a Santa in a greasy checkered hat. I would eat the item in the same place (on my couch) in the exact same way.
It was never about the food.
My relationship with food was really about control.
Because when everything in my life felt out of sorts, I could control the one part that was consistent.
Taste. Texture. Temperature.
Am I speaking anyone’s language?
This week, because I am facing that old issue of control once again, I’m fighting it differently. I’m looking at food as fuel. Not like a friend. Because it’s not. It only accelerates the problem I have with my weight. And control. Food has never wiped away my tears of frustration. It has never made my heart feel light and free. In fact, it only leaves me feeling heavy and weighted down. Worse than before.
So if I’m struggling this week, I’m making a vow (publically) NOT to go the old route of emotional eating. I’m going to do other things. Things that help.
Hug my kids. Laugh. Peel ugly wallpaper. Laundry. Paint my living room. Worship. Pray. Have kittens with the Mattster. Dance. Call a friend. Sing. Scrub my floors by hand. Run.
All of these things are proven methods for me to workout stress and frustrations. After I do these things, I feel better. I feel lighter. They help me break the bondage food has over me, and the shackles of my own self inflicted prison will fall to the floor.
I know this isn’t a funny post, but they will come. Because part of freedom is laughing when the chips are down. It’s learning that when we are standing in the storms of our fears, we can walk away feeling refreshed and clean. Perhaps a little windblown, but that’s part of the process. It gives us the chance to put things right again. Sometimes we get to put them back in places that are even better. And I’m excited for that.
That’s all I’ve got for today. I hope it helps someone out there. Besides me, I mean. But it helps me tremendously today. It gives me a game plan. And as long as there’s a plan, I can relax a little. I will relax.
Do any of you have an unhealthy friend relationship with food? Is it something you have recovered from? Are you still recovering? I’d love to hear your thoughts!