Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Celebrating two years dessert-free

Yesterday, Valentine's Day, marked 730 days free of dessert for me.

It had taken me about three years of therapy to get to the point where I was willing to not eat dessert no matter what. I had taken a first step six months earlier in giving up my specific drug of choice: Dreyer's Slow Churn Caramel Delight ice cream. But giving up ice cream had resulted in my consuming more chocolate bars, more cake, more whipped cream on just about anything. I was still bingeing and still hating it.

My spiritual director seems to have infinite patience with me. She doesn't complain that I circle around and around and around the issues, one step forward, five steps back. But I'd reached a point of discomfort both in my physical body and in my emotions that I was willing to let go.

And so in mid-January I chose Feb 14 as the day. The best way I could think of to love myself was to give up sweets. And so I did.

I am not sugar free. In fact, I had a little brown sugar on my oatmeal this morning, and several weeks ago I had jam on my toast at breakfast one day. I don't fanatically read all labels and I know enough about the current American food industry to know that much restaurant food is laced with salt and sugar and fat. I try to avoid that when I can but I'm not rigid about it. For jam on toast or brown sugar on oatmeal weren't my downfall. Neither are dried fruit or a low-sugar granola bar. It was dessert, high-fat, high-sugar treats.

Just as with alcohol it has become easier and easier with time to forego dessert. I just don't eat them. I give away the cookie in the box lunch. I bypass the sweets tray at a conference. I have learned to breathe and drink decaf coffee if someone serves dessert (and I will eat fresh fruit if it's served).

I still overeat some of the time. But I don't binge any more and I don't feel run by sugar any more. And that's the best gift I could have given myself.

1 comment:

Lily Gael said...

Thanks for sharing how it works Jill. Inspiring!!