Good morning 🙂 Now we can say TGIF!
I promise not to make you jealous in every post about how every day is pretty much Saturday for me now, with the exception of those pesky exams. But who needs to study for those anyway? (Unfortunately, me. But let’s just ignore that for now.)
I’ve had something on my mind over the past couple of weeks, and I wanted to address it in today’s post. Earlier this year I struggled with a lot of food-related issues. I reached my lowest point (both physically and mentally) around March, and since then I’ve been fighting to get myself out of it. And a huge part of that involves me letting go of my control over food.
Although my issues reached their worst this March, they’ve been ongoing for about three years. For three years, I’ve despised eating out, consuming a single morsel that I haven’t prepared myself, and have been utterly obsessed with calories and macronutrient ratios. And while I’m eating a fairly decent amount right now (still too low, but not vastly) I can’t quite let go of my control.
That leads me to the point of this post. I add up all my calories at the end of the day now, instead of tracking them throughout (a serious win for me), but I still judge my day based on my food intake. If I had I was under x amount of calories and carbs, it was a good day. If I was over, it was bad. I despise the fact that I do this to myself. I hear about women on diets where they count carbs and I laugh, because it sounds rediculous. And then I realize I do the exact same thing.
And why? It’s just food. Food is fuel, and it is meant to nourish our bodies. Fats make our hair shine and our skin smooth. Protein allows us to become strong, and carbs give us energy to live. Every macronutrient, along with sufficient calories, are essential (to me) for a happy and healthy life.
Why is food so often associated with emotion? Why do I base my worth on something so irrelevant to my character? For example, I’m passionate about writing. I should be spending my free time working on my novel or reading, not searching for the “golden macronutrient ratio” and planning my meals. It’s just such a waste of time.
Clearly, if you are a fitness competitor/model or have goals that require a highly specific diet, this doesn’t apply to you. However, what I’ve come to realize is that for the average human being, it is totally unnecessary to track food with such precision.
We should be spending that time living! I know I miss the days where my friends and I would all go for ice cream spontaneously. Or when my parents would do a Starbucks run and I’d ask for a hot chocolate and a banana loaf without a second thought. I don’t even have the ability to have a burger at a school barbecue anymore <– I watched my friends eat them while I ate celery and carrots. I’m not proud of it. I need to realize that the world is not going to crumble, nor am I going to explode, if I have a muffin and a latte at the same time.
This used to make me happy. Now it just makes me want to cry. (Source.)
So, I suppose the question is now, where do I go from here? I have come to the realization that food should not be up on the pedestal I’ve put it on, but I don’t know how to take it down. I don’t know how to relax and have the pasta my mom made for dinner or drink something with unknown calories in it. I don’t know how to let go.
If you read all of this, thank you. I know I’m nowhere near a “real” blogger yet and most of you probably couldn’t care less about my struggles, but having gone through the isolation that tends to come with an ED, it means a lot to me when people care.
Do you associate food with emotion?
(If you had to) How did you let go of your control over food?