Thursday, March 1, 2012

Old Habits Die Hard

Even after years of attempting to deal with my emotional eating - and great forward strides - I still struggle with hiding my emotions under food.  Let's face it - hot fudge feels a lot better than tears do (tastes better too).  

Most of the time I have a good handle on it, but when things go really wrong I can easily lose control.  Within minutes of receiving the call from Chrissy's mom that she had slipped into a coma I found myself in the refrigerator reaching for pretty much anything I could get into my mouth, and it grew progressively worse over the next few days before I got a handle on it.

Truthfully, excepting a few sugar-laden granola bars and yogurt that I allow the kids to have for snacks (and currently those damn Girl Scout Cookies) there's not much worth over-indulging on in our kitchen.  That doesn't usually stop me, however.  Remember, I started dieting and binge eating around the age of 9.  I'm a master at creating something horribly caloric and disgusting out of virtually nothing.

We didn't often have sweets in the house when I was growing up.  It's not that it wasn't allowed, but rather if it was there it was hidden. Yes, I said hidden. My mom would actually buy or make things and hide them from my dad and I.  It wasn't as cruel as it sounds - she knew that if they were in plain sight we couldn't help but eat them (all of them), so she was trying to protect us. Over time Dad and I got pretty good at her little game of hide and seek (there are only so many places you can hide a cake) and she eventually gave up on fooling us and just stopped buying them.  So when I wanted/needed to binge I had to be creative.

Therefore in my tween years I became the MacGyver of the kitchen - concocting things like mock ice cream sundaes made out of stale marshmallows leftover from our last trip on the river smothered in Hershey's Chocolate Syrup (for some reason we always had a can of this in the refrigerator) and "peanut butter cups" from baking chocolate and peanut butter (drizzling a little of that chocolate syrup on the top helped cut the bitterness).  And if we had white bread? The sky was the limit!

I don't go this far anymore, but I have been known to invent some crazy combos in the middle of a sleepless night (which usually involve peanut butter) and I can brew up some really interesting combinations with just a Laughing Cow Cheese Wedge, a bobby pin and a refrigerator door full of condiments.  

Old habits die hard.  But they do die. I'm going to make sure of it. 



  1. My mom would hide food too, but she was hiding it from my brother. He has Prader-Villi, which means the part of your brain that sayd "I'm full" never says that amd you just keep eating. So if she wanted to keep little debbies for our lunches durin the week, there were strategic reserves. I'm pretty sure there's probably a box of something still hidden somewhere.

    I don't really stress eat, I Bored Munch.

    The exception might be chocolate milkshakes. I know I can gauge how truly awful I feel if sick if a milkshake sounds disgusting. But I woyld solidly qualify it as a comfort food. And of course, now I want one.


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