Archive for the ‘binge-free’ Tag

23 Months of Binge-Free Abstinence!

I can’t believe it, two days ago I hit the 23-month abstinence mark.  For almost two years I have been binge-free.  I have kept off my weight loss for 14 months.  I am SO happy to be able to make both of those statements.  It has certainly been quite challenging, day-to-day, hour-to-hour, minute-to-minute, but  if I can do it, anybody can.

Looking back on these past 23 months… In the beginning, I enjoyed going to one certain OA meeting once a week for about a year or so, but then I found out that a friend was also a compulsive eater and my daily email shares with her took the place of the weekly meeting so I stopped going to the meeting.  While it would certainly not hurt to go to the meeting, my work load has picked up, I feel like between this wonderful friend, my husband (and now this blog!), that I am able to talk about whatever is on my mind and put it out there in the universe. As my blog tag-line says, “you are only as sick as your secrets” and I find that really holds true for me.  When I come clean about my thoughts and any little slips I’ve had, it makes it much easier to move on as oppposed to keeping them bottled up inside of me.  My honesty sets me free.

I did not work all the steps of OA.  For me, the first two were enough (for now anyway) to put me on the right course.  The first two steps gave me the ability to take ownership of this eating disorder, which for the past 30+ years I didn’t even know I had. 

I know that I will have food issues for life.  I am a work-in-progress.  I know that once you are a compulsive (over)eater, you can never totally leave the “title” behind no matter how many years you are in recovery or abstinent.  I think that totally sucks, but I have taken ownership of it.  I do hope that with therapy and whatever else I can pick up along the way, that in the future, easier days will become the majority, and the hard days, the minority.  That is what I’m striving for.   I want to turn 23 months into 23 years. 

I know that I may never have a normal relationship with food, but I want to get as close as possible, so that food, and thoughts of food, will not rule my world anymore.

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Holiday Cookies

Warning: there are some graphic food descriptions here, so beware!

There is a man at my husband’s office whose wife every year bakes these huge, decadent, multiple- types-of-chocolate-chunk cookies and gives them out to everyone in the office.  The couple also happens to throw a holiday party every year.  When we went to the party a few years ago, I totally gorged myself on these cookies that she had stationed, along with other goodies, in just about every room of their huge, beautiful home.  I hardly knew anyone at the party, so after eating one of these delicious cookies, the whole rest of my evening there was devoted to eating as many cookies that I could find, they were that good.  Never mind that I was completely stuffed to the eyeballs with them and feeling sick, those little details were completely irrelevant, I just had to have more.  I really had no one to talk to, as I’m not comfortable going up and introducing myself to people, but alas, the cookies required no small talk.

Last year, as a work-in-progress trying to stay binge-free, we got invited to the party and I told my husband to go himself, that the pull of those cookies was just too strong for me and that I didn’t want to put myself in that position.  While it was a hard decision, I made it and was proud of myself for doing something that was in the best interest of myself for a change.

Yesterday though, my husband brought home some of the cookies, that the baker’s husband brought to the office, for our two kids to enjoy.  Just seeing them made my heart palpitate.  I broke off some chocolate chunks that were hanging off the edges of the cookies (they were just asking to be pulled off!) for really, while the dough is good, the chocolate chunks are better, and I was content to just eat that part.   So the cookies are a bit misshapen now, but hey, my kids won’t care.  One was eaten by my son last night, so there are three on the counter.  They are not calling me right now, but you can bet that I will try to get my kids to eat the rest of them today just so they will be away.

And yes, I may steal some more of the chocolate chunks off, but I will account for them with my calorie intake and I consider (after much therapy) that to be a normal behavior. : )

Before You Take that First Bite…

One of the things that really sucks about this addiction is that when trying to be abstinent, you know that you can’t even eat just one or two of something because you know that one or two is not enough.  I mean, who can really eat just two m&m’s or two potato chips and be satisfied?  A person who has a normal relationship with food can, but not us lucky folks who are compulsive overeaters.  One of the key sayings in OA – “before you take that first bite…” is not a key saying for nothing.   They are truly words to try to live by because that first bite always gets you into trouble.

It’s really, (no pun intended!), hard to digest that there are some foods that I will never be able to eat for the rest of my life if I am to live abstinently/binge-free.  Take for instance, one of those delicious gazillion-calorie blizzards at Dairy Queen.  If I were to indulge in one, two things would happen:  1) I would literally eat up 1/3 to 1/2 of my allotted calories for the day, which would leave me pretty darn hungry for a good part of the day (which would suck!), and 2) I fear that eating it would send me over the edge into bingeland .    Neither of these things would be a good situation.   I don’t want to lose almost two years of abstinence and start from scratch again.  No enjoyment of food, no matter how good it is, for a mere few minutes, is worth that.

This being abstinent thing is something that I want to do for the rest of my life, because I don’t want, for so many reasons, to go back to binging.  And to be abstinent, there are foods that I will probably never eat again for the rest of my life and that kinda sucks.  But being abstinent is a not just a temporary diet, it is a life change.  It is a life change that has many benefits.  So while it’s quite difficult, almost impossible sometimes, I believe it is worth it.

Less Than Two Weeks Until Halloween…

What used to be one of my favorite times of the year is coming up – Halloween.  While it is really fun to take your kids trick or treating , to see and enjoy the holiday through their eyes, it is also fun to hold their candy bags for them (which of course always get too heavy for them to carry halfway through your trek around the neighborhood) and be able to take and munch on your favorite treats. 

It’s so easy to justify that you are doing so much walking, surely you must be burning off the calories from eating X amount of candy bars, right?  Then you have all that candy sitting at home – the stuff your kids collected, plus the stuff that you gave out to trick-or-treaters.  Talk about a nightmare for a compulsive overeater!

If that wasn’t bad enough, in an attempt to make things even more fun and memorable for the kids this year, last weekend I decided to bake a pumpkin pie with them and to roast the pumpkin seeds we scooped out of the pumpkins we carved.  While it is a good thing the pie came out tasty, now it is sitting on the counter beckoning to me, along with the different flavored seeds we roasted.  

If I could just grab a few seeds or cut myself a small sliver of pie and be happy, all would be well with the world.  But of course that is not the case with me.  The sickness in me rears it’s ugly head and has me going back for more.  Though I count the calories as best I can, work them into my day and at the end of the day it all works out fine, it’s this crazy compulsive, addictive behavior of mine that I wish I didn’t have to deal with.  It would be so easy to just devour all the baked goods and subsequent candy that will be all over our house soon, but I have to stay in control.  I need to reach another monthly milestone of remaining binge-free, abstinent.  It’s just not worth it, to break all my hard work and start over again.   The delicious taste of the food for the 30 seconds it takes to scarf it down, isn’t worth all the digust and fullness I feel afterwards.  I don’t ever want to go there again, but it’s hard.  Every day is a challenge, halloween season or not.