When I first saw May’s Life Matters meme I thought it was a wonderful idea. When the first month was Food Matters it seemed it was meant to be for me to participate. I was after all just starting out on my own journey towards fixing my relationship with food. Reading everyone’s stories has been amazing. We learn that we aren’t alone and we see how other people are dealing with their own food issues. Though of course not everyone has issues with food.
Food is a complex beast, especially when it becomes an addiction. If you become addicted to drugs or cigarettes or gambling, you can give them up and not have them again. Sure it may be difficult, but you can give them up without ever having to include them in your life again. You can’t do that with food. Without food you will die. So how do you overcome a food addiction when you still need to have it every day? I’m not sure I know the answer to that yet.
For me food became a comfort during times of loss and depression. Eating dishes of baked macaroni and cheese was like wrapping myself in a warm blanket. It felt good, so I would eat more and more of it. I’d eat until it hurt. That was good, in the moment, because it took away from the other pain I was constantly feeling. It wasn’t really good for me though. Not by a long shot.
Some days I would come home from work and have a nap, before eating. Then I’d just order delivery because that would be faster than cooking myself and I wouldn’t have to bare the pain of using the stairs or standing on my feet to prepare and cook a meal. Surely that was better than taking pain medication or falling asleep right after eating. Sure, until I needed the pain medication regardless and my bad eating habits continued to get worse.
There was no sense of what a proper portion size was or what went into the food I was eating. Too much salt. Too many carbs. Too little movement. Too much food. Too much money. Too little thought about it all.
I ordered food delivery on Friday, for Valentine’s Day. I was at home with my son. Ordering for a special occasion wouldn’t be a big deal. It was though. I overdid it and realized just how much my eating habits have changed these past two months. I ordered Indian food. A small vegetarian appetizer plate, alloo paratha, and an alloo gobi curry. Not bad. Still too much for one person for one meal. I ate it all and my tummy hurt. I didn’t eat anything for the next 24 hours. That never would have happened before.
My relationship with food is evolving. Some days I still falter, but there are many more good meals and good days now. Will it be enough to rule out the weight loss surgery? I don’t know. It would be great if it is, but it will not be the end if it isn’t. I am finally on the right path and that is what matters.