One of the hardest things about writing a weekly blog about a specific topic is sometimes nothing interesting happens in a week. This past week was one of those weeks.
It’s not that nothing happened. At the mall I found a spring jacket I had been longingly imagining. My mouth is healing nicely from my pulled tooth last week. I did my writing and my jogging and my meditation. But the food and body image and eating disorder parts of my life were pretty much non-issues.
I guess the only thing I have to say about that is this is not the time to get complacent.
I am vigilant about my food boundaries all the time because easy weeks don’t mean I’m “fine” now. I don’t have a healthy relationship to food all of a sudden just because at this particular moment in time I don’t hate my body and I am happy and peaceful. It’s true that I almost never worry about eating foods that I am addicted to anymore. After over 11 years, the way I think about sugar and carbohydrates is certainly different. I do not desire them in any way. I do not think nice thoughts about them, or wish I could have them. I think of them as poison.
But here is the point: It is not only that I am vigilant with my food boundaries because I think of those foods as poison, it is also the other way around. I think of sugar and carbohydrates as poison, because I am vigilant about my food boundaries. The two feed one another. They are a virtuous cycle. They are the opposite of how I used to use foods I am addicted to to mask how I hated myself, which made me fat and crazy and made me hate myself even more, which made me eat foods that I am addicted to.
For whatever reason, pity or discomfort or whatever, many people really want to believe that so many years with my food under control means I have proven that I am all better now. They think surely I can eat like a normal person now, after proving my willpower year after year.
But I have to remember that I have a physical allergy to sugar, grains, and starch. That eating it sets up an unnatural craving for more of the same. I have to remember that one bite would set off a wild ride of physical, mental, and emotional turmoil, not to mention, most likely, a 150 pound weight gain in less than a year. That’s not an exaggeration. 12 or 13 years ago, before I gave up sugar, after I relapsed on a diet I was on, I gained 60 pounds in 3 months. That’s how I eat when I don’t keep strict boundaries.
Don’t be fooled by 11+ years of respite. The food addict in me is still there. She’s on a tight leash, but only because I am meticulous in my food life.
But having said all that, it’s still nice to have a peaceful week where the most exciting thing to happen around my eating is that nothing happened around my eating.