Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Monsters

This post is actually a revised letter/email that I sent to a good friend. Both he and I are struggling with old demons at the moment that are keeping both of us from getting in shape and me from eating a healthy diet. This post basically outlines in detail my monsters and hopefully, by bringing them out into the light of day, I'll be able to destroy them for good or at least leave them in the past where they belong.

I'm struggling with my eat for comfort mode. When I was little, whenever I'd come home from school upset over something, my mom would first cook me a warm and comforting meal before she'd ever ask a question. When I became a teenager and I was dealing with a father who drank too much and I coped by hiding out in my room and avoiding friends so that I wouldn't be embarrassed by him drunkenly flirting or saying something inappropriate to my girlfriends and boyfriends...well, forget that.....both of my parents either "bought" me off with food or tried to comfort me with it. Whenever Daddy made his nightly trek to the store to buy his booze, he'd also get me bags of candy which I'd eat while I watched TV at night, shutting out every thing else. My mom made cookies and popped herself and me popcorn every night to enjoy in front of the "escape hatch" called TV. My house was full of junk food and I called it comfort. It was a wonder that I didn't weigh three hundred pounds then but thank the heaven for a teenager metabolism and my active lifestyle when I wasn't hiding out in my room. I'm not trying to get you to feel sorry for the teenage me, that girl learned how to cope or at least hide well but my point is, these deeply embedded habits are very hard to break and I've carried them with me most of my life. Whenever something happens that tips over my emotional apple cart, I do what I've been doing lately, I eat and usually I do that eating while losing myself in front of the TV. Of course it isn't healthy foods I stuff down my emotions with, it's cookies (I've managed to find a gluten free one that I absolutely breath in), ice cream (the expensive gelato which I can't afford to constantly keep on hand so that's what's saved me from weighing even more than I do right now.), chips, pizza (gluten free of course and its prohibitively high price is also its saving grace...or mine) and a new passion I've discovered, gluten free hot dog buns that I can turn into sandwich rolls, fill with cheese and meat and dip in olive oil and herbs...my own invention. Add to that the fact I've stopped exercising and started watching TV again (so much better now as a means of losing myself with thousands of movie and TV choices at my fingertips...but not better for me) when I want to escape. I've never admitted this to anyone not even myself. You're all serving as my confessors whether you want the job or not. What I'm hoping is, by finally admitting that I'm doing this to myself, maybe I can finally break these habits. Exercise would be a much better outlet for my negative energies and certainly less fattening. Heaven knows that I'd feel better and more energetic if I were eating fueling and nourishing foods instead of junk. I'll admit something else to you that I've admitted to no one even though this one is like pulling teeth to get it out...I weighed in this morning at 212 pounds! After months of struggling and my weight yo-yo-ing by as much as 20-30 pounds and finally falling below the 200 mark for the first time in years, I am right back where I started from last year when I swore to myself that I was going to lose the weight. I'm not happy with myself right now but realizing and admitting what I've been doing to myself, both the comfort and sabotage, might be the catalyst I need to finally change my habits and lose the weight. It is discouraging that the weight is so hard to lose at my age but here is the kicker, every time I have started shedding the pounds, I'd suddenly get scared and digress to old habits. I don't know what that's all about...maybe that once the pounds are gone, I'm afraid that I'm going to have to actually start living my life again! Maybe it's because I won't have anything to hide behind any longer, not the weight, not this computer screen, not my distractions of food and TV.  I am battling some old habits that are not wanting to die but  I found a very appropriate and inspiring saying that I posted on Facebook a few days ago. This may not be the exact wording but it said something like, the rest of my life will be the best of my life.  I'm tired of being on the sidelines of my own life. I am sick and tired of being a spectator. As my friend Brandy McDonnell use to tell me, "It's time to cowgirl up!" 

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