Friday, August 3, 2012

The "M" Word


1. the quality of being moderate; restraint; avoidance of extremes or excesses; temperance.

I'm still struggling with this eating plan and it's not entirely because of all of the work commitments I have right now - although that certainly isn't helping.  It's the damn chocolate that calls my name and insists on jumping into my mouth and onto my hips.  It's the 3:00 pm time slot in the afternoon when there are cookies the size of my head left over from the catered lunch.  It's the tortilla chips and fresh salsa from Sam's (so good) that call to me when I'm bored in the middle of the afternoon at home.  It's the nighttime eating that I do without even thinking about it.

Don't get me wrong, I'm still committed, loving my new attitude, twisting myself into a pretzel every day and reaping the benefits, but (and this is a big hairy but), I'm still fighting those alcoholic tendencies - the inability to moderate.

Example #1 - Tuesday night I'm on day four of the Anti Bloat thingy.  I've just come home from yet another function, but happy because I've managed to stick to the plan in spite of all the bar food to which I was exposed.  I'm snuggled into my big green chair zentangling and listening to whatever is on TV.  Then I hear this small, wee little voice calling to me from the cabinet.

"Psst...hey Sherry...we're still in here you know."
"Shut up.  I'm not interested."
"Awwww, come on!  You know you love us.  Crunchy Heath toffee covered in smooth milk chocolate....yummmm.  And we're fun sized!  You only have to eat one or two!"
"Um...yeah...have we met?"
"Come on.  You're whole attitude has changed.  You can stop at one or two."

And that's it.  I'm up and in the cabinet before you can say Keebler Elves.  I have every intention to sticking to two small, fun sized Heath Bars.  Except that four fall out of the bag and into my hand, and then I grab one more 'cause I like odd numbers when it comes to my candy.  It's how I roll.

Which is still not too bad.  Except that I do the same thing three times.  After 12-15 Heath Bars (I intentionally didn't count - denial is not just a river in Egypt) I felt sick to my stomach and had to take three Tums before bed to avoid middle of the night reflux which happens when I eat too much chocolate. 


And it doesn't have to be Heath Bars.  It can be chocolate chip cookies or, gasp, favorite cookie of all time on any planet!  It's not even stuff that I've bought.  Sometimes it's stuff the boys have bought and stashed for when they get a sweet tooth, which isn't very often and when it happens they have two (who does that?) and leave the rest alone (that's almost as bad as leaving wine in your glass when you leave a restaurant!).  Or it's stuff that's left over from a party or stuff that's just in the cabinet or it's just stuff.  You know, like the chocolate chips left over from the last time I baked that I eat by the handfuls when I'm desperate.

Read that last sentence again...look familiar?  Yep - classic alcoholic behavior.  I've just traded chardonnay for chocolate and being drunk for a sugar coma.

Seriously though, I'm becoming aware of the transference of addictions, which is both good and frustrating at the same time.  It's good that I'm aware and that I can see the behavior and that I know it's not good for me.  It's frustrating because although I am in a much better place than I was even six months ago, I still have more work to do and the work is a lot harder than putting aside a substance and fighting some cravings.

The thing is, this time it's not about going cold turkey with anything because I don't think that's going to help.  I love chocolate.  I love good food.  I love to bake for special occasions and share it with people that I love.  I love to lick the beaters.

And life is just too short not to have these things in your life - in a controlled manner and in moderation.

Uh-oh...the "m" word.

Now, something you should know is that back in the day, when I couldn't moderate my drinking (like EVER) I could moderate my sugar intake and my control poor eating habits.  In fact, my diet was very healthy except for the 1-15 glasses of wine per night.  Maybe it was because cigarettes and alcohol was filling that addictive spot in my life or maybe it was because I was just able to do it.  I don't know.

But I'm going to find out because I'm on this road to recovery and I've entered the light after many years in the dark and (with apologies to the Cornelius Brothers and Sister Rose) it's too late to turn back now.


"Out of moderation a pure happiness springs."
                                        ~Johann von Goethe

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