mrsmole's Journal, 27 March 2014

I hope I don't bum anybody out with what I'm about to say, but I feel I need to share something and I'm not looking for pity. It's just a share, nothing more.

I realized recently that my thoughts and feelings about food are Just. Not. Normal. Period. And it's okay! It's not my fault. I'm just hardwired that way.

I remember being about 6 years old and hiding a 16 ounce bag (a whole POUND!) of M&M's under my bed and eating a handful every day for a few days until one day I was shocked when I went to my stash and not finding them there, realizing that my Mother must have found them. I went out and asked my Mother if she had been under my bed. She smirked and said, "You looking for your M&M's? I threw them in the trash! You won't keep that sh#t in my house!"

I remember going back to my room and crying and wishing I had more M&M's to make me feel better.

Now I'm thinking, how did I have them in the first place? Where did I get the money? How did I have access to a one pound bag of M&M's at that age? I have no idea. I just remember feeling sorry for myself that my Mother was a health food nut and that she was so mean about it.

Looking at it now, I see that she could have sat me down and explained that candy wasn't something I should have everyday...or something. I don't know. Something, but not that.

I just know that it made me want to hoard food and stash things for the rest of my life. To this day, I feel more secure if I know I have lots of food in the house. Not sure if it's because of that or if I felt that way to begin with and that's how I ended up with a pound of M&M's under the bed in the first place? Who can say? I just know that between our parents screwing us up and things that happen in life screwing us up even more, it's a miracle we turn out half normal at all.

I do recall at that time being bullied in school and I think the chocolate made me feel better about my situation at school, so that might have been what got the candy under my bed in the first place. Just thought I'd share a little story about why I believe my thoughts about food are not normal.

Mom's long gone. I've made my peace with her, and I believe she did the best she could with what she had (which wasn't much, having been a single parent and fighting me about food every single day). She was into health food, and all I wanted was white bread and pop tarts. Hell, it was the 60s and 70s. Who could blame either of us? She had her good moments, too, so please don't let me paint her like a monster. This was just a rough memory.

I was wondering if anyone else feels like they don't feel "normal" when it comes to food, or obsess about food the way I do sometimes? If so, today's the day to share about it. That's my theme for the day. I spilled my guts. Who's next. Any takers?

Thanks for listening.
224.0 lb Lost so far: 56.0 lb.    Still to go: 44.0 lb.    Diet followed 100%.

Diet Calendar Entries for 27 March 2014:
1047 kcal Fat: 26.13g | Prot: 83.45g | Carb: 121.43g.   Breakfast: Cottage Cheese (Lowfat 2% Milkfat), Tyson Foods Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts. Lunch: Slim-Fast Snack Bars - Peanut Butter Crunch Time, Roast Beef (Lean Only Eaten), Pineapple. Dinner: Lean Cuisine Chicken Parmigiana, Cantaloupe Melons. more...
2475 kcal Activities & Exercise: Sleeping - 8 hours, Resting - 16 hours. more...
on diet mrsmole's own diet   losing 1.8 lb a week

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Comments 
OK...I am a salt-aholic! My first comfort food is not sweets...it is salty. I will grab a bag of potato chips and before I know it that sucker is history! That was not something that we had a lot of when I was growing up. My second comfort food is chocolate...I stash it. I try to ration it out. As of late the salt craving is out of control. I have done better with the chocolate. I do really well while at work because I pack my lunch in the morning when I am strong. Then I have only that to eat while I am at work. When I get home in the evenings and the weekends all bets are off. Need to get through this and get back on track. The shoulder that I was battling with is slowly improving. so that excuse is gone. My Mom stockpiled food in the cupboards. Once for a school project we had to make a graph of something that we had in our home. It could be anything...but we had to have more than one or two of them. Now I also grew up in the 60's and 70's. I graphed the amount of jello mix boxes that we had...no lie... I then broke it down into flavors. We had at least one of every flavor that they made. Some we had multiple boxes of. Her food stash was impressive. I think she forgot when the older kids started moving on that there were not 8 of us at home anymore. She had soups and canned veggies. Then there was all the home canned stuff and jellies and jams. We could have lived for at least 6 months with all the food she had. She constantly had something baked around. I guess that is why I don't crave cookies, cakes and bars. I always could have whatever I wanted of that whenever she made them. She was an amazing woman! I miss her even though she has been gone for over 25 years. I have boxes of jello in my cubboard. I don't make jello. Have no reason to have it...but if you look there is at least 6 boxes on the shelf...Cheers Mom!  
27 Mar 14 by member: kmunson
Don't be so hard on yourself! Forbidding foods usually makes kids want to try them more. There are a lot of us who suffer from food programing as a child. My family rotated all their social life around what food they would eat. I used to hide and binge all sorts of naughty food. The worst thing was those containers of frosting. I would buy them, as an adult mind you, and stash them in my closet to eat when no one was looking! It has taken years to have a healthier view of food. I eat so little sugar now, it doesn't even sound good any more. A piece of cake is sometimes icky tasting. My weight problem now is a result of changing hormones and a slowing metabolism.  
27 Mar 14 by member: IvannaBLean
You have hit on a memory that makes you realize food was something to soothe you. I can relate to that.  
27 Mar 14 by member: Deb_N
Don't feel alone most of us have thoughts that aren't normal about food which is why we are here. You are right she could have sat you down and explained, however, maybe your parents were like mine thinking children should be seen and not heard? Not hard to see why we turn to food, its taste seems to satiate our need for comfort/love when we weren't being heard. I hear you! 
27 Mar 14 by member: Kris AZ
I definitely can relate. I wrote my entire journal on this subject a few days ago...I "think" like a fatgirl. Just some of the stuff that immediately springs into my mind is not stuff that normal people (wherever they are) think. I really like food. REALLY like food. All kinds. Different regional dishes (made Indian today). I just like food (as did my grandmother and mother before me). It ain't right :oD I am a product of nature and nurture to be a foodie. Which would be okay if I didn't hate exercise to boot -- Come to think of it, exercise never lasted long in our house as a kid. Somebody had reached their max weight, would hop around for a few days and then go buy a bigger dress! LOL!! I am here to break the cycle for myself and my sons...finally. And you (read: all of us) are not alone in this. 
27 Mar 14 by member: LuC2
Ahhh thanks for sharing this. I actually appreciated the part about wishing she would have sat you down to explain. I tend to rip into my mother sometines like a "tough love" approach on some issues. Maybe I just need to sit down and explain ;)  
27 Mar 14 by member: lauraab
Wow, thanks to all who wrote. Those of you who were not my buds, I sent you invites because you "get me". :) I don't think I was being hard on myself. I was more of a realization. Just sort of thinking about it and going, "Oh, so this is why I'm like this, because of that." It's like a puzzle when the pieces fall into place. I don't feel bad about myself, just enjoy solving the mystery, that's all. So nice to hear the dirty little secrets of everyone else. Salt. Frosting. Jello, or rather, not jello. LOL. Indian food. And so on. I'm now on day 184 abstaining from refined sugar and it feels really good. I'm going for a year, for fun, just to say I did it, and it really helps me to avoid temptation. I don't want to screw up my record! I'm halfway there. Thanks again to all who support me and shared. You guys are great. 
27 Mar 14 by member: mrsmole
I was a sick kid. They did scratch tests on me when I was about two and forbade me from eating for 2 days. Then they started me back on food. The first thing got because it was just starch was a slice of home baked white bread. Oh, how many of you remember that stuff. I'm told I grabbed the slice of bread and crawled under the table to eat it. Mom said I looked like a little animal that thought it would be taken away from me. Maybe that's why homemade bread (and I can bake it myself. Honest!) is still such a temptation to me. Popcorn is my bad one. Healthy choices can be tough until suddenly they become what you want. It's pretty cool. 
27 Mar 14 by member: northernmusician
Childhood food issues are a bitch, aren't they? My dad loved to give me candy and sweets. He owned a bar and I have distinct memories of getting up at 1am to eat fried egg sandwiches on white bread with him when he came home. Mom had been very thin until she had me. She was bound and determined that she WOULD NOT HAVE A FAT KID. Pretty much a recipe for disaster. I remember being on perscription diet pills before age 12. It was the 60s so probably not as awful as it sounds today. I remember fasting from Friday nights until sunday nights. Many crackpot diets that came down the pike. None of it worked. Like you Mrs. M, it's a journey to figure out how to change the mindset. I've spent decades trying to lose weight to make someone else happy. They were never quite happy enough. The rest of the time I was being defiant about my weight. NOBODY was going to tell me what to do. This time, I'm doing it for me. Yeah, I've only been at it 7 months and I'm not 100% hard core, but it feels different this time. Wishing you great luck with your puzzle pieces!  
28 Mar 14 by member: Vickie 5966
My childhood and a the thoughts and feelings that came with it were one of my biggest issues to get over when I started. I also used to hoard food as a comfort. We lived with my grandma until I was ten or so, she was a feeder big time. We always had ice cream, baked goods, chips, candy out the ass, and it was always available 24/7. When we moved out my mom worked late hours and always got pizza or fast food, every single day. My world revolved around food. Even as an adult I would pick the biggest combo option available because one regular sized sandwich just wasnt enough. I cooked enormous meals for my family of four, still working on learning how to only cook what we need. The further I get into this healthy lifestyle the more my disordered past with food becomes obvious. Thanks for sharing, you helped me reflect :-),  
28 Mar 14 by member: Yolanda9179
OMG -- thank you so much for the share! I too have hardwired, unhealthy thoughts & feelings about food, that I'm trying so hard to re-wire. And, I've been recently trying to think back about when it started, but my memory is so vague… maybe a coping mechanism? When I look book, until 2nd grade, I was normal weight. Sometime between 2nd & 3rd grade, I ballooned up & cannot think of "an incident". My Mom was just the opposite of yours, mrs, as we had dessert after every meal & always had sweets in the house. She continues to be a proclaimed chocoholic, and has no problem with people knowing. My sweets addiction though somehow became a thing of shame & I too hid it from family & friends. I still feel anxious eating sweets or junk in front of others. Of course from 3rd grade on, as so many of us, I was teased by classmates & ostracized from the "in crowd". Food became the enemy and my love/hate relationship with it began. Finally, through all of you here & with the help of therapy & learning to eat mindfully again, I'll feeling better about my relationship with food again. That wouldn't be happening if it weren't for the amazing support & wisdom shared here, my such wonderful buddies, like you! xoxox 
28 Mar 14 by member: Ruhu
I had a mom and stepdad that were extremely rigid with eating a certain way. I was around 10 years old when overnight they decided to have a complete health and diet overhaul. What made it more problematic (for me) was that I knew the diet change was for him (a person I despised at the time) it was nothing about my health but I had to participate because I did not have a choice. I remember coming home from school and finding that dinner was a raw onion sandwich. As a result I became a food hoarder, a binge eater and a few other things. I was quite a miserable kid and young adult. I think most parents miss the opportunity to educate their kids properly about the benefits of eating a certain way. They also don’t factor that most kids are already little junkies and cold turkey is not the best method. Great topic, thanks for sharing. 
28 Mar 14 by member: ChicaLean
Personally, I think that a handful of M&Ms a day is not a lot for a child. Most children love candy and will sit down with their Halloween candy and eat until their tummy's hurt. Because you had a bag of it, it is normal that you wanted a handful every day. It's actually healthy that, as a child, you didn't need more than one handful. It reflects moderation, normalcy, and NOT having a food problem. However, your mom's reaction to what you did is what could have caused your food problems, because it instills shame, a warped perception of food, and a realization of its comforting ability. Or, because the M&Ms - or other unhealthy foods - were forbidden by your mom, they would have become more appealing to you, and you could have wanted to rebel against your mom by eating unhealthy food. It all leads to food problems that are mental - they're in our head. I've had them and they still linger slightly, but they're much better now - 2 years after I started my health journey. When I taste a yummy food, I still want to eat a lot of it and it sometimes increases my appetite. But that's it, really. My food addiction is pretty much gone; I just have some remaining feelings about associating food with pleasure. I'm telling you this, not to brag, but to let you know that food problems can go away as you get to your goal weight - slowly, and while changing your eating habits and becoming a healthy eater for good. What really helps - and has helped - me is trying to only eat when I'm physically hungry. I'm not always successful, but eventually it becomes a habit and will overwrite your bad perceptions of food. It IS possible to lose your addiction to food, so please have hope and faith that it is not hopeless or that you will struggle with food for the rest of your life. Just keep going on your journey and you will see gradual improvements in your perception of food, until you realize how much you've changed and it has become easier for you :) 
28 Mar 14 by member: ChristyLA
Are you kidding me? I have a food complex that is just so so bad, and have no idea where it originated from. My sister and I used to buy condensed milk tins and eat them sneakily in the room. Seriously. A whole tin of condensed milk each. We'd sneak the tin opener into our room, and guzzle away. It's horrible to think of now, then again, i still love me some condensed milk, but my issue now is that i permanently think of calories. I'm always thinking of food in some way or another.. what to eat when I get home from work, what i'm going to eat the weekend.. or while im eating its, 'how many calories are in this'.. 'I hope my metabolism eats this up'.. It's just this constant battle and struggle. It's a lovehate relationship that I honestly wish I wasn't so obsessed with. I applaud you tremendously for your openness and honesty. When reading what you wrote, it opened my eyes a little, feeling like I need to acknowledge certain food aspects in my life. I too was never the skinniest or prettiest kid. I was always trying harder to fit in and I may have been in the 'in crowd', but I was the one constantly bullied by them. For years. and sometimes it would get so bad there would be a big fight and I'd end up spending break-times in the toilets so I wouldn't look like a lonely loser. I have however flourished into my own person since then and have more respect for myself. But with that respect comes a weight on my shoulders. Weight about food. Weight about weight. 
28 Mar 14 by member: Tamzen
I don't think your way of thinking about food is abnormal. What is normal? We each bring something of our childhood into adulthood. I lived on a pound of peanut M&M's in college. Instead of the Freshman 10, I gained the Freshman 40. It is hard to let go of thought patterns and re-wire our way of thinking. You are on a right track. Thanks for sharing your story. 
28 Mar 14 by member: tunalw
This better than therapy...less expensive too...FREE! Just unraveling why you do some of the things you do is such a release. I remember being a teenager and a lady at church was talking to my godmother (as if I wasn't standing there). My godmother was discussing how pretty I was and it was such a shame I was carrying so much weight -- mind you I was probably 12 or 14 and maybe a size 16...not a huge girl. The other woman expressed how when I got interested in boys it would all change and I'd want it off. That REALLY p*ssed me off! Why would I let some boy change me or redefine myself. It really had the opposite effect and I, like Vickie 5966, really became kind of defiant. It's amazing what you NEVER forget. It is different this time. This is for me, my health and my body -- the one I want to be proud of. Just finished my 2-mile aerobic walk. We WILL do this!! Have a great day, All. 
28 Mar 14 by member: LuC2
My mother used to call me "bottomless pit" and would shame me in front of everyone about how much I ate. I was super skinny then too...but after years of hearing it, then I wasnt. She even came into my office a few weeks ago and was telling my boss how I would hide apple cores and chip bags under my bed when I was a child!!!!!!! I am 41 years old and she made me feel like I was 9 again. I dont know WHY she did that to me then, and I dont know why she did it to me recently, but it made me feel like s##t all over again. I know food was a comfort for me for a long time, and I can relate to the struggle-I still have it. It's a never ending fight.  
28 Mar 14 by member: notjune1
What I am seeing here is exactly why I believe I am the way I am. I can't speak for everyone but this story seems pretty close to the life I've lived, with my family killing my self esteem right from the time I could understand what they were saying to me. Just gonna have to learn to love yourself because you are worth loving.  
28 Mar 14 by member: LadyBea40
If I am not mistaken, all she wanted to do was share something she was Feeling. In my personal opinion Bwy39, you went alittle to far with your comment, although I kinda see what you are saying, but the approach was off. 
28 Mar 14 by member: SherrieC
I agree. Plus, any of us who have food issues MUST be able to identify the root of the problem, when it started and triggers that may hurt our efforts...otherwise, we dont deal with the WHY....and if we dont deal with the WHY or worse, eat our feelings instead of venting them, we will end up right back where we started. 
28 Mar 14 by member: notjune1

     
 

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