and immediately felt guilty. I felt like a terrible person. I felt like a failure and a loser and bad parent and a poor example and really, quite honestly, worth, well, less.
I ate this. While I was alone. All 400 ml, a mere 100 ml shy of two cups. All 340 calories. I ate it all. And I ate it in the same manner in which I consume the majority of my ‘bad’ calories. Alone. Not in front of my children. And I can honestly tell you that I felt more guilty than I did that time that I snuck into my son’s room while he was eating breakfast to play ‘tooth fairy’ because I forgot to do it the night before. And once switching the tooth for the Twoonie, I casually sauntered back downstairs where he was eating his cereal and I asked him if the tooth fairy had come to our house the night before. He sadly shook his head, no. I told him that he must be mistaken and that he should look again because he probably just missed it the first time he looked. Yes. I did that. It’s a true story. And no, I am not proud of my actions that day. But I felt then and feel now less guilty for lying to my child and making him think that he was unable to find a Twoonie under a pillow than I do about eating less than two cups of ice cream.
But why should I feel ashamed of eating ice cream? Or anything for that matter. Is it illegal, immoral, or completely deviate behaviour? Does it make me a bad person? Does it mean that I am a weak person or worse yet, parent? Does it make me stupid, talentless, worthless or criminal? It can’t. It is impossible for eating ice cream to mean any of those things. My logical brain knows that, believes that, but try as I may, I remain unconvinced. Because it very much feels like it does mean all of those things about me. It very much feels like it means all of that and more.
So, what is wrong with me? Why is my moral compass so skewed? Am I the only one who can bend or break the rules with little remorse but then eat something unhealthy or fattening or calorie-laden and instantly feel completely unworthy of love, respect or kindness? Why do I use food to punish myself, reward myself, comfort myself and hurt myself? I know I’m not the only one who does this, there are lots of us around, but why?
And why, does every, single calorie I eat triple the second I swallow it?
My issues with food make me a hypocrite. Because I do not eat what I feed my children. Or, more accurately, I would never allow my children to eat as I eat. Their diets are over-flowing with fresh fruits, vegetables, homemade this and chemical-free that. Low sugar whatsits and naturally coloured whosits. They drink WATER or plain milk. No juice, iced tea, pop, energy drinks or Sunny-D for them. And all this means? It means that I know better but somehow, and for some reason, refuse to DO better for myself. I do it for my children. I do it for my husband. I don’t do it for me.
I do not drink, not even casually, haven’t in over ten years. In part because I don’t understand my unhealthy relationship with food and really do not want or need to find out how easily I could develop the same unhealthy relationship with alcohol and in part because I’d rather use those calories for chocolate. I do not do drug because I’m scared of them (even if they do make you skinny) and I have no idea where to buy them anymore (teenagers always know the hook up to buy drugs, even if they never do it themselves). Oh, and of course, I’m too cheap (read: frugal) to add ‘recreational / life-destroying drugs’ as a line on my budget.
So why do I feel this compelling need to eat? It is beyond a survival. It is beyond emotional. It has become my sport. And my head knows that my choices are excessive and unhealthy and I definitely know how to make healthy choices vs. unhealthy choices. But even a healthy choice, at 6 times the serving size becomes a problem. Because ya’ll know that I’m not eating six servings of steamed broccoli.
And don’t be a smartass. You know that I’m too full for broccoli. I just ate 340 calories of ice cream. Houston…We have a problem.
P.S. I post a lot of nonsensical blithering on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. It’s worth ‘Liking’ ‘Following’ or just checking out The Keswick Blog on those sites as well. I’m not always a debbie-downer, I promise. Sometimes I’m ridiculously happy, sappy, ranty, braggy and occasionally funny. Unfortunately, micro-blogging is all that I can squeeze into my day at the moment far too often.