I’ve found that temptation is everywhere. At my coffee shop, every day that I get my vanilla chai tea, I am subjected to looking at beautiful pastries, cookies, cupcakes and bars. They are like delicious little bits of artwork.
The little devil on my shoulder says “What’s the big deal? Just one little bite of a cookie won’t hurt you. Just eat less later.” The little angel on the other shoulder says, “Don’t do it. Don’t go down that path. You will undo everything you’ve done.”
The angel has won out since June. I’m always listening to the one in the white. I order my tea and I get out of there.
But lately, I do buy a bagel for my son. My son has very peculiar eating habits that go hand in hand with his autism. Bagels happen to be one of the foods he will eat and that he loves. And it kills me. They toast it. It’s warm. It smells delicious.
He usually eats about half. The top half. I have to cut it into bite size pieces, smear it with cream cheese and feed it to him. He does not have the skill or the ‘sensory control’ to cut himself a bite, bite it with his mouth, or tear it. He cannot use a utensil without some serious distress. He cannot determine how much food is too much. That means that, if left to his own devices, he would melt down trying to eat it on his own, or stuff too much food in his mouth until he chokes and throws up, or holds it in like a chipmunk.
So, sometimes, when I feed him the bagel, others are around and this happens:
“Just eat it!! Eat the bagel!”
No, this is not me talking to my son. He loves the bagel. These are my so-called friends, trying to get me to break the diet. Now they are all dressed in red with their pitchforks.
It doesn’t work. They can say what they want. When I have the will, only I can break my resolve, no matter what they say. The dreaded pizza bagel, slathered in cream cheese, sent me up the scale before the diet. I refuse to allow it to take me back up there again, despite the enticing smells as I feed it to my son.
When we leave the coffee shop to pick things up at WalMart or Target, I have to pass a Krispy Kreme drive-thru that opened up between Target and WalMart. I have to ignore the image that little red devil places in my head of that glazed donut. You know the one. So light and fluffy going down, but not so light and fluffy after. You don’t see drive-thrus for healthy food on every corner, now do you?
I make it to WalMart or Target. Right in the entrance, there sits a sea of orange, wrappers covering chocolates and candies, orange frosted cookies and cakes. On sale for Halloween. Right along next to that little red devil costume. My son begs for this or that. There is no Halloween candy in my house. But there are cookies. And, once again, I must break them into bite size pieces for him so he doesn’t stuff or choke.
Once we make it home, and I put all the food away, my husband jokes that he’s “gonna bring home some PF Changs. I know you’ll eat that.” No, I won’t. You and Mr. Chang with your red suits and pitchforks are not going to undo all this hard-worked for progress.
Why is there so much sabotage going on around me? I understand the WalMarts, Targets, the coffee shops, the Krispy Kreme, the fast food. That’s how they make money. But why my friends and my family? Everyone’s a comedian. They think it’s funny to lure me away from the diet. Ha ha, yes, very funny.
I have lost a little over 23 pounds. The weight I was at before the diet was affecting my health. My feet hurt carrying that extra load. They don’t anymore. I feel better. I feel healthier. This is important to me because I take care of a little guy who is very dependent upon me.
Maybe they think it’s easy for me because I’ve actually done it. It isn’t easy. It isn’t fast. And I have come to realize, I have to make these changes on a permanent basis because I’m not getting younger. Even though I don’t want to face it, as I get older my metabolism is slowing. Sadly, I need 300-500 less calories per day now, than I did when I was in my 20s.
Each day is a struggle. When I go to Weight Watcher meetings on the weekend, I get good information but sometimes, I feel out of place there as well. They talk about good food and food that is good for you. Sometimes, what they say will work for me (like the ice cream). But who am I kidding? I’m not going to roast a parsnip or cut up and eat some jicama. I’m just not.
I’ll eat some good things every day. I will also spend part of my daily allowance on things that aren’t so nutritious. Things I can still enjoy while losing weight. It isn’t all carrot sticks and toast, you know. Otherwise, I think that little tug-of-war going on in my head might have the red team winning instead of the white.
But I know I’m on team white for good. It will always be my choice to resist the temptation and stay on track. And I think I finally realize now that this is not just until I get there. This is for life.
The best day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. No apologies or excuses. No one to lean on, rely on, or blame. The gift is yours – it is an amazing journey – and you alone are responsible for the quality of it. This is the day your life really begins. ~Bob Moawad