As I have mentioned several times, it has come to my attention that dieting, for me, is not something that is going to work. My issues with food run deeper than the willpower I always thought I needed to stick to a diet. Even the best diets, the kinds that emphasize healthy choices and lifestyle changes and moderation, are, at the end of the day, a scorecard system where the expectations (my calorie goal) are weighed against the reality (the “good” days and the “bad” days). In my mind, I recognize that this is not going to work for me. I have other “stuff” to figure out.
So the general consensus seems to be that, when we find ourselves in this place that I have found myself, it is time to eat with mindfulness. It’s time to pay attention to our hunger. It’s time to eat what we want, as much as it takes to make us feel satisfied. It’s time to stop vilifying carbs and praising low fat foods. It’s time just to EAT. So a couple of days ago, I started just to eat. Some things I have discovered: I really like bread. But good bread, like from the bakery at Wegmans. I also really like to start my day with a bagel with cream cheese. When I start my day with a bagel, I am satisfied with the bagel. It takes a conscious effort at EVERY meal to stick with my goal not to eat when I am distracted. I still sit on the couch for many of my meals, but the TV is not on, and I am not on the internet, and I am not reading. I am eating. That is it. Occasionally, I am halfway through a meal and realize that I am watching TV and have not really tasted one thing that went into my mouth. And then I turn off the TV and try to return to my meal.
It still feels like an interesting experiment. I still, occasionally, wonder when the next great diet idea is going to come along, the one that I can stick to. I still don’t trust that this can work for me. But right now, I like the way that bagel tastes every morning. And I like that it doesn’t follow me around all day, telling me that I was “bad” for indulging in it. And that feels like a little bit of peace in my day.