In 2001 my husband and I drove to Jacksonville, Florida, to retrieve my mentally ill (schizo-affective disorder) sister from a crisis situation. It involved police and resulted in 2 ½ years of legal wrangling. Stress … you bet! I don't remember how much I weighed at that time; but, by 2007 I weighed 224 pounds. When I saw a photo of myself, I couldn't believe it! I was dumbfounded and disgusted. I had to do something.
I read the Sugar Busters book like an academic and made myself a diagram so I could understand their theory. I slowly lost weight until I weighed 170 pounds. I felt such an empowerment and my confidence was reinstated. I did make an important discovery, too - I am addicted to sugar. My weight now fluctuates between 170-180. I wanted to lose more.
In early March of 2017, three of my women friends became widows. Their husbands were my friends, too. Then, my sister was exhibiting combative behavior with the staff in the home where she lives. She was hospitalized for two weeks while her psych meds were adjusted. Stress --- you bet! The Easter candy was out on the grocery and the drug store shelves. Perfect timing!
My favorite EE “emotional escape” of the seasonal Easter sweets was the malted milk ball robin eggs made by Whoppers. I tried another brand; but, they were such an impostor! I ate two entire bags. I didn't record the weight of the bags; but, they were (what I would call) the regular size. They didn't come in any other size. What I did record was total calories (1,410), total carbs (256) and total sugars (197) in those two bags. It was as if I couldn't get them in my mouth fast enough. Finishing the second bag, they had no pleasurable taste at all. Was I relieved of my stress. What do you think?
This frantic, out-of-control, eating really scared me and I was in a panic. I didn't want to go back to 200 plus pounds! I read about the Beneath the Weight program in the newspaper and attended the three sessions. I realized I had to engage in the program if I was to benefit from it. I did engage and benefited in recognizing how my emotional escapes sabotage my weight control efforts.
So, the blaring question is … when will the stress of life end? The answer is … never.
So, it's up to me to face that fact and see beyond the stress, the emotion of it all, and open the door and become my Right Weight Self. This is not at all easy. With a better understanding of why I use food as an emotional escape, I am in the process of refining and living a strategy to accomplish my goal. ….. exercise, meditation, nutrition, yoga, and using coping strategies other than food to handle stress. It's all about loving myself enough to make the best choices for myself. Another lesson I taught myself in Beneath the Weight.