Saturday, December 22, 2007

It's the Most Wonderful(ly dreadful) Time of the Year

What would a weight-loss blog be without an obligatory kvetch-fest about the holidays? That time of the year when you're supposed to smile and act like the plate of cookies on the table next to you isn't screaming out to you, taunting you, daring you to "eat, eat, eat!!"? When the urge to bake gingerbread and eat chocolate feels like a primal instinct and fighting it feels akin to trying to cram the sun back down below the horizon at 6am. When you sit back, having failed miserably at controlling yourself, the sickly feeling of fullness pushing against the waist of your pants and vow that tomorrow you will undertake the diet to end all diets; you will make anorexics envious with your willpower--starting tomorrow.

I hate the holidays. There. I said it.

Sure, sure, I like presents and it's nice seeing family, the Charlie Brown Christmas special makes me cry, and the lights are freaking pretty and all that. But if I could trade all of that for this week to be just another week, with just the regular week food temptations, instead of the shmorgasboard of fat and calories I know is waiting for me starting tomorrow, I would give it all away.

I realize that sounds vaguely eating-disorder-ish (especially the part about making anorexics jealous) and I will concede that it is 100% body-image disorder-ish, but I assure you I love food in all it's forms too much to ever actually develop an actual eating disorder (although I'd be lying if I said I hadn't prayed for one when I was younger, before I saw that havock it could wreak on a person's mind and body). So let me assure you, internet, while I will play weird little eating-related mind games with myself ("let's see if I can get to 4pm without eating"; "I can have that piece of chocolate tomorrow if I still really want it") and I will secretly wish for food poisoning, the stomach flu, or a tape worm, I will never be 'able' to develop a true eating disorder, "try" as I might. Sigh...

But I have to say I have been dreading the next week's festivities. It is hard to have your positive energy and excitement for the season sapped by the focus it takes to keep on track and the self-loathing anger that consumes you as you swallow the last bite of (tenth) cookie that represents your complete and abject failure to get through the holiday without undoing all the good you've managed to do in the past few weeks. It is an atomic bomb of shame, and yet, it's almost impossible not to deal with it, as how can you watch every. single. other. person. in the room eat to his or her heart's content, all the while saying, "oh, it's okay, Sarah! It's the holidays! Just eat!"

They are so well-meaning. They truly don't realize the battle that's being waged inside the tubby girl's heart when she's faced with a plate of cookies and all the smiling faces saying, "eat! eat!" The message they're trying to send is, "We don't see your weight. We love you for who you are on the inside, and we show our love by offering you tasty yummy treats!" How do you say "no" to that? How do you reject that love?

But they don't have to be there with me the next time I step on the scale and see 5 extra pounds; the same 5 lbs I've worked to get rid of for the past month. Back again. I'm the one who deals with that, and the feelings that come with it, all by myself. Every holiday season.

Well, not this one. I am going out on a big massive scary limb here, because I've been so honest in past posts. I did have a piece of baklava at dinner last night. But for the rest of the season I will not cave to the "It's the holidays!! Live it up!" mind-set. I know it's not "every other week" with the same mundane temptations. I know it will be harder. And I'm not saying I won't eat anything or be a big old party-pooper. But I will NOT gain weight this week.

Today I weighed 160 lbs. When I step on the scale on January 2nd, I will not weigh more than 160. I might not weigh less, and that's okay. But I will not weigh more. Not 162 or 165 or even 160.3.

Ugh. Wish me luck.

1 comment:

Becca said...

Oh man, that is so hard! At every party I get a nice plate of cherry tomatoes, turkey, and one "treat" and feel really good about it until fifteen minutes later when I help myself to another glass of wine and another handful (or two) of cookies.