Last night I carb-loaded like I’m running a marathon. (I’m not.)
I was eating for non-biological hunger reasons, but that’s pretty much where my awareness ends.
Was I eating because I was bored? Feeling lonely or depressed? Feeling lazy? Anxious? Hormonal because I’m going off the Pill? (Sorry Dad.)
It turns out I eat to numb myself to emotions. Negative or positive.
I’m pretty good at numbing myself without food too, but if I have a stack of delicious chocolate chip cookies at my disposal, I’ll eat my face off.
I would rather be too uncomfortable and full, than just feel what’s going on inside my head/body.
I blew through 6 chocolate chip cookies, 2 bowls of cereal, and a couple handfuls of tortilla chips without tasting a bite.
That honestly made me tear up, because I put effort and passion into those cookies, and now 6 of them are gone, without me enjoying and appreciating my own work.
When I’m eating my chocolate chip cookies, I should be sitting down, closing my eyes, and loving every delicious brown-sugar-chocolatey mouthful.
I should be marveling that I can create this decadent dessert out of a few simple ingredients.
Chocolate chip cookies should not be used as weapons to beat back uncomfortable emotions.
Well, neither should anything else, but I feel like I have a personal tie to those cookies, and shoveling them in doesn’t do them justice.
They are seriously delicious cookies, and I feel like they deserve to be savored and thoroughly enjoyed.
Note to self: cookies are not people or living things.
Oddly enough, Can You Stay for Dinner? wrote this awesome series at the perfect time. It was sitting in my Reader this morning, just waiting for me to read it and mentally break down because I want a healthier relationship with food.
I want to savor food, not snarf it. Taste it, not toss it back. Enjoy instead of inhaling. Don’t waste my tastebuds on food I don’t like (such as poorly cooked steak, bakery cakes that are always wayyy too dry and have some gross custard in them, veggies that are good for me but taste like green butt, foods that aren’t peanut butter..).
However. When I’m already in the claws of an emotional eating sesh, I probably won’t remember that.
I’m going to challenge myself a little. Bake up a batch of chocolate chip cookies (or peanut butter.. Mmmmm, peanut butter..) and stash them away in their cookie jar.
When I find myself reaching for one, give myself permission to have one, but ask myself some questions first.
. Am I hungry, or even craving these cookies? Is it physical or emotional hunger?
. Am I eating it just because its readily available?
. Is there something else I want? Like a hug, a good cry, attention, some exercise, something to do?
. If I eat this cookie, will it be the special and delicious experience I want?
I’m hoping this will slow me down, and get me thinking about what I’m eating before its already gurgling away in my stomach acids.
Ask questions. Answer them.
Eat it if I still want to.