April 21, 2008

Managing expectations, keeping up appearances

Posted in managing food addiction tagged , , at 1:42 am by foodaddict

If this new ‘thin mindset’ is going to work for me, I’m going to have to manage my own expectations about food, and manage other people’s expectations on how I’m supposed to be eating.

Today, for example, I had to work on a Sunday, and we customarily get a free lunch in exchange. I *really* wanted to show up early, around 12pm, and claim my free lunch then, but…I wasn’t hungry. And the thin me is not supposed to eat when I’m not hungry. So lunchtime ended up being around 4pm. I knew I was going to be meeting some friends for dinner in the early evening, so I didn’t want to overindulge in advance. I asked if I could order a dessert to take home…and they were out of dessert. Strike 1. Minor panic. What the fuck was I supposed to do now? So I ordered a small appetizer.

The food came, and I picked at it. I knew right away that I wasn’t going to eat the whole thing. I offered the rest to one of my co-workers, who gladly started munching. I was expecting that I would get some comments from my co-workers, because the food we get for lunch is always from a fabulous restaurant, and it’s always delicious. Sure enough, one of them pipes up, “That’s all you’re eating for your meal?” But, I was prepared, and I replied nonchalantly, “Yeah, I’m meeting some friends for dinner soon, so I didn’t want to eat too much now.”

So maybe I do have enough confidence to pull this off…I just have to stay strong. As long as I can come up with a convincing response to their queries, I can do this. What seems to be working for me is to not eat a lot during the day, and then at night, I can eat like a normal person. I know it’s going to be tough when I start getting into more social situations during the week at work….so far I haven’t had to go to lunch with any co-workers, I just eat my small snacks during the day and, let’s face it, starve myself until 8pm. I would freak out if I had to go to lunch with people. Seriously, I would either have to start pushing food into my napkin like a 5-year-old, or I probably would gain back all the weight that I’ve lost over the past weeks.

Oh, and to briefly touch on ‘managing my own expectations’ with respect to food — two days ago, I actually felt sad at the thought of all the food that I’m not ‘allowed’ to eat. I was literally nostalgic over cookies and ice cream. I was a little surprised at that. They are not going to be a part of my life any more, and I miss them in a visceral way. I’m not sure what I can find to replace them. Endless cans of diet soda, I suppose.

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