Today's my birthday, and this week my gift to myself was a meeting with an eating disorder specialist.
Technically, I don't have an eating disorder (I learned that this past summer), but I decided to treat losing weight like substance abuse, so I found someone who specializes in substance abuse treatment and eating disorder treatment. I had my first appointment yesterday, and the first thing we did was come up with some rules because I seem to do well with those:
And in the 24 hours since yesterday I'm feeling very in control. While not eating out of original packaging doesn't seem like a big thing, it's going to make a huge difference in my nighttime grazing escapades. It's not just cereal boxes -- it's things like peanut butter jars, hummus containers and, yes, marmalade jars.
That's my deep, dark, ridiculous secret: I often don't eat "food" -- I eat "anti-food." What's a spoonful of strawberry preserves or an index finger (or four) of hummus?
That sort of nonsense never makes it into the food journal. How embarrassing is it to write down "9 p.m.: 3 spoonfuls of catsup, 2 index fingerfuls of hummus and some spaghetti sauce." I'm also supposed to show her my food journal -- good, bad and BBQ sauce -- so I've decided that if I'm going to write EVERYTHING down, I might as well not consume the embarrassing stuff.
The no eating after 8 p.m. just frees me up to not have to finagle some sort of evening snack out of leftover calories. If it's not eaten by 8 p.m., too bad, go drink some water.
There are no scales, tape measures or diet plans -- just getting inside my head and fixing what has been broken with my food relationship since the age of 10. I'm sure we'll come up with more rules as the weeks go by but these are my two rules for now.