No, I don’t want your diet food…I’m not on a diet.
My boyfriend called me the other day and asked me if I wanted to go out to a restaurant for a sit-down lunch. It was spur-of-the-moment, but I went on line and looked up the lunch menu of the place he wanted to go. It looked like it was going to be no problem.
He picked me up and we went. I asked the waitress some basic questions about how things were prepared, and ordered. Yes, I asked for things to be modified. She told me it would be no problem.
Several minutes later, she came back and told me that she could not, in fact, get the brussels sprouts just sautéed. That they were already prepared with cheese and bacon on them. (I don’t mix my protein and vegetables. Portion control is a huge part of my boundaries.) So I changed my order and asked for sauteed broccoli. I was a little disappointed because I freaking love brussels sprouts, but I like sautéed broccoli just fine. Had some today, as a matter of fact…
When my food finally came, it was a giant plate of steamed vegetables.
I hate steamed vegetables. I don’t make myself steamed vegetables. I sauté . I roast. I bake. I do not steam.
But I was hungry. So I was just going to eat it. But when I went to eat it, I realized that the salad I ordered without cheese, had cheese shredded all over it.
It was an iceberg lettuce salad, too. Which I never eat except in restaurants where that’s the only kind of salad they have.
That was just one disappointment too many. I decided that instead of sending it back, I would wait and eat at home. I ended up taking my meal to go. And adding those steamed vegetables to a decadent salad with arugula, radishes, mushrooms, red onion, artichoke hearts and cucumbers with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
See, it’s not that I can’t eat out. But it can be very difficult to find good, fresh, food that I both can eat, and want to eat. I find that food is either breaded, drenched in wine sauce, cooked with honey, sugar or maple syrup, or just plain steamed. Either you get it full of things I happen to be addicted to, or you get “diet food”, because you must be on a diet. I mean, seriously, iceberg lettuce and steamed broccoli? Can I get that with a side of cardboard? It might add some flavor.
I want to eat well. I want to enjoy my food. Always. How am I going to have the will power to not eat chocolate cake if I’m eating iceberg lettuce and steamed broccoli? Maybe somebody can, but they are a better person than I am.
Eating yummy food within my boundaries is how I defend myself from crossing my boundaries.
Don’t get me wrong. I would have sent the cheese salad back and asked for what I needed if I didn’t have the option of going home and making something actually yummy. The most important thing is eating within my boundaries. Which steamed vegetables are.
But if I can eat well, I’m not going to punish myself. Eating within my boundaries makes me feel good. And keeps me free from food obsession. It is a gift. Not a punishment.