This week I am going to talk a little about the practical aspects of keeping my eating boundaries.
I work on the office side of construction. I do things like make sure workers get paid and keep the paper trails of what was built when, and who signed off on it. And a lot of times, the thing getting built is getting built where there was previously just a big field. So often there are no restaurants or grocery stores close by. When I have a job where I go into a physical office, especially when that job is in the middle of nowhere, I keep backup food on the job site.
Today I will cook and pack meals for the week. And every morning I will pack my bag with a breakfast and a lunch to bring into the office. And they will be decadent and delicious.
But sometimes something happens. Sometimes things go wrong. Food spills or spoils. Or heaven forbid, I *forget* to pack my food and I drive the 45+ minutes to the job site.
In my office I keep an emergency food bag. It has an extra food scale and extra batteries. It has canned pineapple and a can opener. It has boxes of milk that last for months without refrigeration. It has several kinds of protein options like cheese crisps, bags of pepperoni, and soy nuts. Plus a jar of wheat germ and a jar of pickles. It is more than enough to feed myself within my boundaries for two entire days. I keep all of it in a little box in the corner of my office. In a perfect world it will all go bad and get thrown out at the end of the job. But it is not a perfect world and I am not perfect.
The items in this box will not add up to a decadent meal. They will be fine. Even tasty. But not anything as delicious or exciting as the meals I will make myself today in my kitchen with everything at my disposal. But they will make meals that are 100% within my boundaries. And that is the most important thing for me. Even if the meal is meh, I will still have my abstinence. And the chance to eat another guilt-free, 5 star, 10/10 meal at dinner.
I have kept my eating boundaries for over 15 years by doing things like this. By having a plan for trouble. By putting preparations in place in case trouble comes. By protecting my eating boundaries from circumstances.
Getting my eating under control is still the best thing that ever happened to me. I want to live like this for the rest of my life. It is not a chore or a punishment to me. It is a gift and a blessing. And I will do whatever it takes to keep it.
When I think about the things I did to get sugar – the lying, cheating, stealing, manipulating, the ways I ignored danger – just to eat, I think that keeping a box of food in my office may be the least weird thing I have ever done with food.