Snack Attack

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Food is my vice. Despite the chaotic and emotionally traumatic roller coaster of a life I have had to survive since day one on planet Earth, the only vice I have truly had is food. I have dabbled with cigarettes, alcohol and drugs and have never become addicted. So I can even say that I don’t have an addictive personality, it’s not that I can say no and never try things. I have even tried things and then never become addicted and had it been a mind over matter situation and chosen to not become addicted to any of those substances, ever.

But food/sugar. That’s another story altogether. I have struggled with it for as long as I can remember. I would struggle to stop at just 3 cookies. I could scarf down an entire bag of double stuf Oreos all by myself in one sitting. And I always knew that I ate primarily out of boredom or for psychological reasons. But I could never get a handle on it. The only time I seemed to be able to get a grip on it was when I was sort of forced via pain and working out when I started karate. Pain because I had braces that they were trying to get two years worth of work done in one year, so I got them double tightened each time, so I could barely eat for days after each orthodontist appointment. My senior year of high school was the best my body ever looked due to those two things. I have a big build. When people say some one is big boned, that isn’t a cop out for some people. I was truly the skinniest I probably could ever be as an adult that year, and I was still a larger size in women’s clothing. I will never be a size 0 or a size 2. It’s physically impossible for me.

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That’s my graduation picture from high school, at the lowest weight I’ve ever been in my fully grown body. It’s now a pipe dream that I know I’ll never achieve again.

My husband pointed out when I got my non-identifying information from the adoption agency when I put in to search for my birth mom that it had reported on there that when I was in foster care that I was becoming irritable and the doctor recommended for the foster parents to put honey in my bottle….so….let’s analyze this a moment. I’m irritable (probably from the trauma of being ripped away from my mother and not knowing who these people are that are “taking care of me” and who knows how much they were cuddling me and giving me the emotional side of what a baby needs to thrive) so the doctor says to placate me with honey (something sweet)……fill the emptiness, the longing for what’s missing with sweets….hmm, no wonder I’m addicted psychologically to sweets.

Whenever I’m bored or feeling empty, lonely, unloved, unwanted, fearful, angry, self conscious, anxious….you name the negative emotion….I feel a snack attack coming on….

Until recently. With my life spiraling out of control, once again, without warning and with me working on self love and having worked so hard for 6 months to work my way out of a 3 year depression, I was not about to let myself slip back in to another one. So I began to cling to one thing I knew I could control, regardless of how psychologically hard it has always been for me, I knew I COULD physically control the food that goes in my mouth, or doesn’t. I put on 15 extra pounds while I was on an extra anti-depressant to get out of my 3 year depression. I was on that med for 6 months and gained those 15 pounds all within that time frame. And I wasn’t happy at the weight I was at prior to those extra 15 pounds. So now I was SUPERBLY depressed about my weight. But I was finally able to come off that medication in January of this year.

After coming off of that, starting my ADHD meds again (which also help me shed some weight), upping the dosage on one of my migraine preventative meds (which also helps me shed weight as well), starting to take diet pills and finally starting to become OCD over controlling what I eat, I am finally down the 15 pounds I had gained. I dipped down one extra pound earlier this week but put it back on in the past couple of days. The method I have been going g with has been to watch very carefully what I eat for many days in a row and then for a couple of days (typically weekends) to not count anything. I often gain back a couple of pounds during those days but then they come right off and then I lose another one or two during the week as well. So it has been working pretty well for me and has actually been keeping my metabolism tricked so that it doesn’t ever go in to that starvation mode since I am eating pretty well one or two days during the week. So even though the scale weight goes up a couple days a week, I am consistently losing weight week to week, which is the important part.

It has become something I am now OCD about and something I want to prove to myself and others that I can control and also something that I can have in my back pocket in case I ever have it thrown in my face if things ever get ugly in my life that I am not able to control my addiction. Since I have had my addiction my entire life, and we will always be exposed to sugar, I will always be tested with my addiction the rest of my life. I will never have the opportunity to fully walk away from it and stay away from it, which is easier once you kick it fully. I need to do this to help empower myself so that I feel I have a stance to take if and when I am ready. More likely when. I have been taking almost daily pictures of myself in the raw to help me with my analysis of my body image, to help me accept myself as I am and to know what I want to change. I am going to be completely raw and brave and post a collage of those selfies here of my daily selfies in different outfits over the time frames that I’ve been trying to lose weight so that I can see how I look in different outfits and know myself and help myself to become more comfortable in my own skin. Most of them I am not posing and dont have makeup on and don’t have my hair done etc….these were strictly for body image, not facial image. So I’m being very vulnerable in doing this.

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2 more weeks until I get on a cruise ship and am surrounded by women in bikinis where I will feel self conscious, even though I made a point in telling my husband I don’t want to go on any excursions that make me have to be in a bathing suit or be around people in a bathing suit. But there are pools on the ship. It’s not like I can avoid being around beautiful bodies in bikinis sitting by the pool that I can never look like and never measure up to, or down to technically. This world just sucks for people like me who have to work so hard to even look somewhat average, and still know that I can never compare to so many of the other women out there and that it’s just yet another area of my life that I can never be first choice in to anybody. Classic Adoptee theme, always second best (if that), constant rejection feeling, always feeling unwanted….

 

My song of the day…Unpretty….by TLC…I don’t feel the exact lyrics, especially since they talk about feeling too skinny, that’s clearly not my problem, but still many of the lyrics and feelings of it resonate with the theme of my post…

 

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/snack/

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Restaurant Catering

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From the time I was pretty young, it always bubbled underneath the surface. Eating meat felt inherently wrong to me. If I stopped to think about it, I quickly fell down the rabbit hole. While I’m on the topic of rabbits, it was even so apparent that anything that looked like an animal would get under my skin. I used to save alot of my chocolate bunnies at Easter time because I just couldn’t eat them because it made me think of eating animals in some strange way (even though I intellectually knew it was just chocolate), but because they had faces on them, and I knew I couldn’t control eating meat at that point in my life, it seemed like something I could have some control over in some ridiculous way in the mind of a warped 8 year olds mind.

About a year and a half ago, I decided to finally try being a vegetarian to lessen some of the guilt I felt in my life (guilt is a real issue for me). I made it several months without eating any meat at all. But there were certain situations that made it very hard. And because of those situations, I have modified my diet in to what I call (thanks to a former student of mine for coining or passing along this term) a Flexetarian. I eat animal meat on certain occasions but try to refrain when I am just at home on a day to day regular basis. I eat meat on special holidays that involve traditional meals such as Thanksgiving. I eat meat when I am at other people’s houses so that I don’t have to imposition anyone, or make anyone feel uncomfortable due to my own decisions in life. My husband also is more of the chef in the family and he enjoyed making specific meals and was very disappointed when I chose to become a Vegetarian because it would mean missing out on sharing those meals with me, and I didn’t like seeing him disappointed or feeling as though we were losing something we enjoyed doing together (including going out to eat and often sharing meals etc…)

Which brings me to my last reason for modifying. I am a picky eater. And it was often hard to find things at restaurants that I could eat or modify or that would be satisfying beyond a side garden salad. I really feel that restaurants need to implement a couple of different universal standards in their menus. There are certain groups that I think they should have options available for as the numbers within these groups increase. I think there should be some options that are peanut free, as this is a life threatening allergy that has increased exponentially. There should be options that are gluten free. There should be options that are vegetarian and/or vegan. And I think for those 3 categories that the options should be meals that are fairly base standards that could please a good majority of people or could be added to should others want extra flavor, like a build your own pasta type options.

And then I think for kids menus there should be certain standards in every single restaurant. I was honestly ASTOUNDED when we went to the Be Our Guest restaurant in Disney World, a place that caters to children, and even though they are looking to have a hoity toity ambience, their selections on the children’s menu were all abominable for a child who is a picky eater. And my child is a picky eater, not because I’m a bad mom and wouldn’t refuse to be a short order cook and gave in to her and didn’t force her to have what we were having, but because she has Asperger’s Autism, and textures bother her and smells bother her. She’s even picky about types of pizza. There’s only about 2 places she’ll eat pizza from. It’s not because she’s a spoiled brat. She’s very sensitive. I think every restaurant should have the following on children’s menus: (and no, these are not all things my kid eats, but things I think would cover almost all bases)

Hamburger/Cheeseburger, Chicken Nuggets, Hot Dog, Mac and Cheese, Grilled Cheese, Pizza Slice (Cheese or Pepperoni), Spaghetti (with option of meatballs or meatsauce or just sauce).

Forgive me if I am forgetting another large category of “special eaters” out there. That isn’t my intention. I hope that I do not come across sounding like a Veruca Salt spoiled brat that feels like the world needs to bend it’s ways to everyone. I just feel that these groups of people have either health issues or a world philosophical reason that is worth having a standard menu that can be counted on being at any restaurant they visit, and then hopefully more available within that restaurants particular cuisine as well for each subsection. I don’t think that’s too much to ask, but then again, I’m not in the restaurant business. And maybe I am a stuck up food snob that is perpetuating some of the rigidity that is rampant in the world today. But my parents were the type that made me sit at the dinner table till I finished everything on my plate and made me eat everything they ate (the only thing they spared me was the liver-thank God). But, everything my parents made me try as a kid that I didn’t like back then, I still don’t like as an adult. The only exceptions to that are that I like some of those things of they are prepared differently than how my mother cooked and prepared them (ie: caramelized onions (which I now like) vs. onions just thrown in every dish raw and cooked in the meal- or raw onions in my tuna fish sandwiches-which I despised). So, that method didn’t do anything for me. I liked what I liked…Period.