Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Are You A Pusher?

Are you a pusher?? If you had a friend who was a recovering alcoholic, would you offer them a tall glass of beer? What about just a small glass of wine? If they turned you down, would you offer them a shot of liquor, or just a tiny sip? If you would, shame on you, but I hope you don't! What about a friend trying to quit smoking? Would you push them?

  If you had a friend who was a drug addict and who was trying to quit, would you offer them heroin? How about a couple lines of crack? What about just a quick puff? NO! You wouldn't (at least, I hope you wouldn't). Because you love your friend, and you want them to better themselves, right? You want what's best for them, right? If you are a good friend, you don't want to drag them down, you want to be supportive in helping them reach their goals.

 However, so many times when we have friends who are trying to lose weight, we seem to try and convince them to try just one bite. "One bite of chocolate isn't going to hurt," we might say. "Just try one bite-size piece of cheesecake," "or it's only one cookie." Unfortunately, food addiction is real. And just one piece of sugar-inundated dessert/candy/thing we-are-trying-to-avoid is enough to send our friend over the hill.

 I thought I could eat just one Girl Scout cookie. Yeah, cue an entire day of binge eating, trying to up the sugar high again.

Let me be frank. If you offer someone something, be it alcohol, drugs, or food, and they turn you down, it is not an insult to you. We are not trying to tell you your cooking is bad, or make you feel guilty for indulging yourself. When we turn you down, we have just surmounted the most difficult thing, I think, that we face. Turning down our addiction is so hard, especially when you hold it right in our faces. And I promise, if you continue to press us to partake, it will only make us either a) mad and defensive, or b) feel like we are hurting your feelings by not partaking, and lead us to making a difficult decision, even harder, or possibly c) we may need to re-evaluate our friendship, because quitting an addiction is hard, and we need people who will support us and help us quit. We need you there, in a supportive role.

Let me put it this way. That one bite, one sip, one time COULD hurt us. That one incidence of partaking could be likened to a bite from a cobra. It IS dangerous for us. Overeating leads to obesity, obesity leads to heart disease, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, heart attack, stroke, lost mobility, and so many more problems, all of which can lead to death. It's as simple as that. We know that that is not what you intend. There are a variety of reasons a person might become a pusher, and those are important ones. Reasons that the 'pusher' should examine within themselves, some reasons may include feeling guilty, perhaps they struggle with the same addictions, or others. It could be fear that drives someone to be a pusher, fear of losing their friend, or the relationship changing. It could be any number of other reasons. But the bottom line is, no means no. Please don't push us. Please respect us enough to love us and support us. We need your help. We need your support. We need your love and friendship. Thank you.

Monday, February 4, 2013


I miss my junk food. I miss being able to escape pain and depression with food. We have had a couple of really sad events in my family of late. Three of my dear family members have suffered miscarriages. One of them is currently going through it right now. My heart is broken for her and her husband. And I know from experience that that pain is not nearly what she is going through. But I ache and grieve for them. And their loss brings up the memory of my own, and of my other family members and friends. And it's a lot of pain to deal with.

We also received word that my husband was turned down for another job. I don't talk about it much, and I don't wish to elaborate much, so let me be brief in saying that my husband has been looking for better employment for a long time. I have lost count of how many applications, interviews and rejections we have been through. It's really draining on me.

And I am dealing with some other personal issues that I also don't want to discuss right now. Maybe some day I will, but not now, I need to sort it out in my mind more, before I share it.

Suffice it to say, I am very overwhelmed. And I am tired. I have a 9 week old baby, and four other children. The oldest is 7.5 years old. Needless to point out, I am sleep-deprived and tired and probably over-worked, and exhausted in every way.
I joined this fitness challenge. I'm going to lose it, I am sure. It cost $10 to enter, which I felt was fair enough. One week in and I have lost a measly 1.4 lbs. Which is okay I guess, but nothing compared to those who lost 6 or 7 pounds. The contest goes for 90 days, winner takes all (highest percentage lost).

Anyways, as part of this challenge, and as part of my healthier lifestyle, I am trying to boycott sugar, like as much as I possibly can. I am not perfect at it, not by any means, but I am trying. I am also trying to limit excess fats. Unfortunately, when I am anxious, stressed and discouraged/depressed, those are the things I turn to. I turn to candy and cookies and pizza and ice cream. They have always been there for me, like a friend to lay my shoulder on and cry. So here I am, grieving and depressed and tired and stressed, and I want my drug, my junk food. I know it won't fix anything, it won't help, it won't solve the issues, nor will it help me to solve the issues. But I don't want it because I think it will. I want it because I know that it will dull the senses. For 5 minutes I will be able to escape the worries and the pain. For 5 minutes I won't have to feel anything. Maybe even longer, if I eat enough. Sure, I will feel worse after it wears off. Like a hangover after a night of drinking (I have never drank alcohol before, but I have heard), when the effect wears off, I will feel worse than before, sick and bloated, crabby, and probably a headache too. But today is so heavy on my soul, that it sounds worth it for right now. And as I struggle to put it off (stores closed at 10 pm, so I am safe for tonight), I find myself trying to figure out how to get rid of the pain. There is only healthy stuff here. Won't do any good to binge on that. I should go to sleep, it's 11:17 pm right no. My kids are all asleep, the dog is asleep, the hubby is asleep. But no, I am awake, my mind turning gears and bringing up more and more pain. And there is no junk food in the house. If there was, I could eat it, then go to sleep and escape the anxiety, stress, pain, until the baby wakes up to eat. But still, the food would shut my brain off for a bit. It would shut out the emotions I am dealing with, and allow me a respite.

Then I realize what an addicted statement that is. 'I could shut off my brain for a bit.' This wonderful, impressive, fascinating organ, I want to turn it off?' I want to numb my brain, to cause damage to myself? All at the expense of what? 5 minutes? 10 minutes? an hour? Followed by feeling sick for at least a day, destroying my body, and cutting my life and health short. I don't have anything left to fight off the emotions and grief I feel. And I know food won't help it. I don't know what will, or if anything can. My mother said I needed to turn it over to God. But I don't even know how to ask Him. I thought about asking some family and friends to pray for us, but I don't even know what I want anymore. So I soldier on, feeling very alone.

And so, I sit here, hoping to feel tired enough soon, so that I can try to go to sleep. So that I can try to rest up and replenish my store of 'willpower' in order to live another day and fight off the desire, the addiction to food.  I feel bad that this post is rather sad, perhaps even unhelpful. But I am trying to be real. I am striving to be authentic and vulnerable (read Brene Brown's book, The Gifts of Imperfection" or looks up her TEDx talks on YouTube). The point of this blog is to chronicle my journey, and to be honest and real with anybody who might happen upon it. So that's what I strive to be, Honest and Real.