Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Oh food...I just don't know how to quit you.

Thanks to years of self-analysis, and Dr. Phil's "Ultimate Weight Loss Solution" (whaddya know...sometimes Dr. Phil actually IS useful!), I have learned that I am an emotional eater. (It was more of a "duh!" moment than a lightbulb moment, I admit.) I eat when I'm happy. I eat when I'm sad. I eat when I'm stressed. I eat when I'm bored. I eat when I'm frightened. Basically, if I'm breathing, I'm eating. As you can imagine, this has not worked out well for me. (Unless I was prepping to become the fat lady at the circus, but those jobs are hard to find nowadays, what with all the political correctness about circuses out there.) So not only do I consume food, food consumes me. I think about food constantly. I think about what I'm going to eat all. the. time. Something has to be wrong if you're thinking about eating while you're actually eating. You know you have a problem when your inner dialogue goes something like this, "Dood, why are you eating that? You're not hungry. In fact, you're so full you feel like you're going to hurl." Self-awareness I do not need. Self-control...well, I'm kinda short on that.

Food is my drug of choice. I was always too much of a 'fraidy cat to try the illegal drugs, but lucky for me, food is not only legal, it's something EVERYBODY does! There is no stigma attached to eating a nice big juicy steak. Smoking pot...stigma. Cheesy hash brown casserole...totally cool. Sometimes, (and I don't mean this in an offensive way at all) I wish I had turned to an illegal drug. I think it would be easier to quit. I mean, you can quit pot cold turkey, but you can't quit food. Because you will die without food. (I truly am not making light of drug addiction. I realize there are drugs that have powerful withdrawal symptoms, death being among them.) And while I want to be thin, I also like being alive. So you can see my dilemma, right? A drug I can't quit because I will die without it. *sigh* Certainly doesn't make it easy to overcome my addiction.

So here I am, almost 40, 100+ pounds overweight, and on medication for high blood pressure. When did that happen? What happened to that fit, active young woman who loved to dance and was always on the move? (I'm pretty sure my current self ate her. Probably with cheese melted on top.) It's frustrating because I know what my problem/s is/are. Fixing them is where I draw a big fat blank. How do I make myself like what I consider boring food? Will I survive without cheese? (Seriously. I LOVE cheese.) Will I be condemned to a life of broiled chicken breasts with a plain baked potato and steamed broccoli? Will I ever eat butter again? At some point will my life stop revolving around food? Can I learn to eat to live and not live to eat?

That's a lot of questions. I suspect finding the answers will be more difficult than I'd like. But I think without those answers, this journey is doomed to fail as so many in the past already have. This isn't my first time down the path of weight loss. Hopefully, though, it will be my last.

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