I’m just getting home from an epic run. I mean, I pushed it. Four times around the park when the most I’ve ever done is two. This whole month has been off the charts because I finally made a decision to lose the ‘baby weight’ after carrying it around for four years. It meant going on the Master Cleanse fast and drinking nothing but cayenne pepper, lemon juice and maple syrup for two weeks, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. Some people don’t like that fast because they say you put the weight right back on when you get off, but the truth is I lost 15 lbs. and I’m now within 5 pounds of my goal weight. I’ve been off of it for two weeks and I haven’t put anything back on, nor do I plan to. I’m wearing clothes that I forgot I had and it feels damn good.
As I’m walking into my apartment I stumble over a box. Oh, shoot, it’s from my mom. The last time she sent one of these boxes it was bursting at the seams with sweets. When I sit down to open it I almost OD on the fumes. There’s chocolate chip cookies, Gummy Bears, Skittles, Oreos, lollipops, and wait for it, a pecan pie! Only my mom. I’m about to stick my whole head in the box like a Swan diving for a fish when I just stop. Wait a minute; I just lost all this weight. I can’t eat this.
I think about my neighbors because they love sweets too and though the two teens have been putting on weight I never hear them complaining. A box like this would make their week. Why don’t I just give it to them? But then again, if my mom found out it wouldn’t be cool. She doesn’t have money like that, but she makes sure to save up enough to send these boxes every now and then. It’s her way of showing her granddaughters that she loves them, and it’s become their thing.
Okay, it’s settled. I’m keeping the box. Besides, it’s not fair that I deprive my girls of their fun because I have an issue with sweets, a very long-standing issue.
Later that evening, my girls are in bed after crashing from a sugar high. They tried to swallow the whole box at once. As for myself, I’m pretty proud to say that I didn’t eat anything. This may be easier than I thought.
It’s 2am and as I’m passing by the kitchen on the way back from using the bathroom, I spot the Oreo Cookies Double Stuff on the counter. My husband must have left them out. I wanna keep walking, but something tells me that I should put them in the cabinet. A second later, I’m holding one up to my nose. Damn, it smells good.
The next few moments go by in slow-mo as I’m jamming cookie after cookie into my mouth until the whole pack is gone. Then I find the box and grab the Skittles. At this point, I already messed up so I might as well keep going. I don’t stop eating until my stomach is in knots.
I wake up the next morning feeling icky all over. I’m thinking about my bulimia days when everything seemed so much easier. Back then, if I ate a gallon of ice cream I’d just throw it up. Now that I don’t do that anymore the damage stays with me and it’s hard to deal with. I’m contemplating how I’m going to move forward when my daughters come running into the bedroom booming with energy. At least, they’re happy.
“Mommy, can we have some cookies?!”
“How about some Gummies?!” “Please! Please! Please!”
They’re like two crack heads trying to get a fix, and it brings me back to when I was a kid, sitting in front of the TV on a Saturday morning with my brother, eating one-hundred pieces of penny candy in one shot. It was some of the best days of my life. I had no idea that it was setting me up for a lifetime of struggle. Now I’m seeing the same thing happen to my kids. What can I do?
I need to do something that I should have done a long time ago. I need to call my mom and tell her that these boxes disrupt the whole household and they take me places that I don’t need to go. I wish I could be stronger, I wish I had the discipline, but I don’t. And it’s hard because I know she means well. She grew up in a house where food was scarce so having an abundance of sweets is the highest form of love. But love has to evolve, right?
Later that day, I call my mom and I explain to her that while I appreciate it, I don’t want her to send us anymore boxes. It won’t cure all my eating issues, but it’s a start.