So, here we are at the holidays with all the accompanying temptations...cookies, candy, gingerbread... yum, huh? But, not an easy time for anyone struggling with binge eating or any eating disorder. For me, the temptation to sample or to my mind "cheat," even a little, is tantamount to opening the floodgates to an all out binge. And with so many readily available goodies at every turn, the battle to eat healthily is as difficult a fight as ever. That's the thing about an eating disorder which completely blows me away. You think you have it beat and in the blink of an eye you are right back at the starting gate. What the hell just happened here??!!?
For me, one night of binging can quickly lead to a week of binging and onwards from there. I cannot easily regain my control and the situation can and has gone on for months. The last time I binged uncontrollably I ended up in treatment and I am really not planning on a return visit.
I have to ask, is there any middle ground? Why can't I have a few treats at Christmas like most people will without sneaking back into the kitchen later? What is it that compels me to do this? I doubt that I will ever truly understand it other than I KNOW I am an addict and food is my drug of choice. BUT, why would I choose to binge when I am so much happier when I am not binging and I am eating normally? It always circles back, for me at least, to the rigid need I have for controlling every bite that goes in my mouth. If I open the door even the tiniest of cracks, my brain goes haywire and I am back in a tailspin again.
I recall realizing when I was so desperate before entering treatment (or was it afterwards?) that I will never be "normal" when it comes to food and eating. And how it bummed me out to imagine this problem would be with me forever. Well, it is and I actually feel better embracing that truth. This my reality. And, that being said, I remain very grateful that I understand this about myself and know how to get it under control again.. Maybe someday, in the distant future, I will be able to relax around food. But for now, we have an uneasy truce.