..what it’s like to eat around people who don’t know about my eating habits. I was tucking into my lunch today in the office – oatcakes, hummus, black grapes, walnuts – and at least a couple of people, including a colleague who was also having her lunch, nomming on a massive pile of chips (fries) and coleslaw, commented that I was “being healthy”. On only my second day, I didn’t feel comfortable saying “I’m just eating what I fancy eating” or going into an explanation of my eating ethos. So I just smiled weakly and said “It’s nice”, and hoped to god no one would say anything about “being good” since it makes the red mist come down in front of my eyes.
It’s very odd, I am equally uncomfortable being “food-praised” for eating something supposedly “good” as I am being food-shamed for eating something supposedly “bad”. One of the most awkward things about it is feeling that when people praise your apparent healthiness they are drawing attention to their apparent “naughtiness”, and it almost feels as though I am also doing that by accident just by eating something they deem praiseworthy. I don’t want any part of that. I just want to eat what I want to eat without anyone making value judgments on mine or their food. Why is it acceptable to do that? It’s not a competition. 15 months ago
By which I don’t mean eat more and not gain weight, I mean literally fit more in. The fridge is full right now with delicious foods – a massive stash of yogurt brought back from Yorkshire, a big bowl of salad left over from last night, tonight’s Quorn tikka marinating away. There’s a cheeseboard, bought for Christmas, which we still haven’t even opened (and the use-by date has long gone). I wish I was hungry so I could eat some of them, but I am not, and it feels like I rarely am, no matter how little I eat. Especially at a time of celebrations, which often centre around food and the excessive consumption of it, it’s really irritating not to feel able to eat through the lack of hunger. And especially since I’m still way above my IVF weight and not dropping any. How can this be fair?
On the other hand, there’s an upside to this. We went to my parents’ this Christmas and my Mum, who lives in a WeightWatchers trance and has shrunk her stomach to the size of a pea, had significantly under-catered, to the extent where HA spent most of the visit with a rumbling tummy and a growing sense of frustration. For Boxing Day lunch, she split two 10-inch pizzas between six adults and added a bit of salad – bear in mind that HA, at well over 6 foot and not of a slight build, will normally eat one of those to himself, plus chips and salad – then at dinnertime casually mentioned that as we had “lunched so substantially” people could just help themselves to some crackers and cheese or something, “if they felt hungry”. My current flatlining hunger levels combined with a heavy Christmas cold meant that, although this bothered me on an emotional level, because when I visit home I often feel dictated to and bullied into eating the way my parents feel is correct (indeed, I packed a bagful of Nakd bars, fruit and nuts in anticipation of feeling both the hunger and the binge urges brought on by food restriction), on a physical level it didn’t really bother me that much because I had more or less no appetite at all. Handy.
But even so, I wish that I was hungry. I like tasty food. 16 months ago
I’m not quite sure where to put this but this goal seems the least inappropriate place.
Tonight at Zumba they were giving out Roses chocolates to celebrate Christmas. My friend L said that eating chocolate at Zumba defeated the whole point of the class. I said “Not the whole point – Zumba makes me feel happy and good about myself and the world. I’d still do Zumba if it made me gain weight.” My friend N (a very large lady, maybe 300lbs at an estimate, and one of the best dancers I’ve ever seen) said “Me too, it makes me happy. I’d still do Zumba if it made me fatter. I used to eat two extra-large Dominos pizzas in one sitting to make myself feel better and I knew that was making me fatter but it didn’t stop me from doing it. Zumba works much better at making me feel good than pizza ever did.”
Amen to that, N. I have noticed that since I picked up this obsession and ran with it, my emotional eating has reduced to almost zero, because I’m managing my feelings. 17 months ago
Planning a “big shop” and wanting to free up some freezer space is not a good reason to eat up the remains of a tub of home-made Nutella ice cream. Now I feel like crap.
Apart from that slight “learning experience”, this is still going pretty well. 19 months ago
I cannot believe what I ate on the train today. OK, I’ll tell you: most of a cup of potato wedges; a perfectly reasonable tuna sandwich; a bag of crisps; and most of a bag of chocolate-covered toffee popcorn. The last because A was a couple of steps behind me and was slowly nibbling his cheese puffs, leaving me free to devour the choc.
Ugh. That’s almost a day’s worth of calories, and I did eat a healthy breakfast of raisin toast with peanut butter (um, and I’ve gotten in the terrible habit of spreading butter on the toast before the peanut butter).
I will not punish myself for this. Instead, I will try, starting tomorrow, to notice what I put in my mouth, what’s going on emotionally when I want to eat, and also how much attention I put on food when I’m not actually eating: e.g., browsing food websites, looking at friends’ photos of baked stuff, research recipes, &c. Another goal is to work on my internet addiction to give myself more time to do other stuff. What’s good to both of these ends is that I have a new work idea that does not involve food, so I have no ‘professional’ excuse for constantly obsessing.
I will also make another stab at exercising more, now that my nagging neck injury is pretty much healed. 21 months ago