Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Comfort and FOOD

My mother has been staying with us since her surgery on Friday last. It hasn't been bad but I am here to say that I have gained a much greater appreciation for anyone who works in a field that involves caregiving.

I can also say that I now know why it is a really good thing that I did not go into one of those fields.

Providing care and comfort to others is not an easy task. I might go as far to say that it's annoying. Bothersome. Tedious. And that's from the perspective of the care giver--(me- I doubt qualified folks feel the same way). I can only imagine how it is for the person in need.

Maybe that's why I used food as a means to comfort myself all these years. It's so much easier to just pop something in my mouth than to actually get up and take care of something or deal with a troubling issue.

I've gotten away from---what would you call it? Food abuse? Seriously. I'm not sure there's much difference between food abuse and drug abuse other than the object that is abused.

For me, that was food. And it hasn't been pretty. At all.

There were times when I would wake up in the middle of the night and go grab a bite (or five) of ice cream and go back to bed. If I was upset- I ate. Angry- I ate (this one was accompanied by some yelling, maybe). Sad- food to the rescue. Bored- eating took the edge off. Get the picture?  Not pretty.

The good news? It's over now.

If I'm upset---well, I don't really let myself get upset BUT, if I feel it coming on, I deep breathe. If I get angry, I might still yell (I really prefer to call this venting) but mostly, I write my anger out. If I get sad, I let Hubs or Tucker help or I write it out. If I get bored- I do something like knit or write, but I do not eat.

I've redirected my responses to my emotions.

Funny thing is, once I started letting others help or dealing with things in a more productive and constructive manner, the reliance on food disappeared. Also not appearing so frequently are the emotions themselves. I seem to have gotten them in check. Who knew?

Don't misunderstand. I still enjoy eating! It's just not my number one hobby anymore. It's not the one thing I turn to for comfort anymore.

The pay off? A healthier me? Yep. A more food savvy me? Yep. A calmer me? Oh yes indeed. A more energetic me? Definitely. A more...spirited me? Yessiree.

A word of warning to the lovelies, however. After this next 30 pounds is off, you might want to knock before you come in the house instead of using your keys... 


  1. We must've between twins separated at birth.

  2. Michele- Oh no! Not you too! LOL What are we going to do? Let's get together over some shrimp and grits and discuss it!

  3. I've learned (the hard way) that I'm not cut out to do long-term care. ha!

    Excellent insight to how your emotions drove your use (abuse) of food. And how you're working on dealing with the emotions in a healthier way. Good for you!

    Here's to another 30 lbs. off! You go, girl!

  4. OMG, the food parties I had when I was single mom after Hannah went to bed? So crazy! Think whole frozen pizza for 1 and a container of ice cream (of course, this was after having tacos for dinner!).

    And I wondered how I suddenly became 210 pounds! :D

    Good for you - you are doing great!

  5. Kathy- It takes a special person and I am not it! It only took me 53 to figure it all out...better late than never? LOL Thanks!

    Biz- I've had a whole frozen pizza to myself---on more than one occasion. And the container of ice cream in one day...or afternoon. Yikes! LOL Thanks!

  6. Yep this caring lark is bloody hard going! LOL

  7. What an awesome post!!

    I agree completely on the caregiver issue. My mother fell and broke her kneecap last winter and stayed with us while recuperating. I tried...I really tried. But I'm just not the comforting, nurturing type. (Although, oddly, I think I was when my kids were younger). I think the people who do this day in and day out are saints. They clearly have WAY more patience than I do!

  8. lyndy- You know I thought about you the whole time I was writing this! I seriously do not know how you do it!

    Mommie-Thanks! I know what you mean. I was like that with my kids but now, not so much. Also agree about the saints---I don't know how they do it. It must be a calling.

  9. LOL on that last line. Hubby better watch out. haha
    I totally get this post. So much is true for me too, especially eating when I´m bored or angry.
    And the care giving! I could NEVER do it either. I can´t even muster some sympathy for hubby when he has a "man cold". haha

  10. That's why I became a teacher - and my BFF a nurse. She actually wanted to take care of people. It did - and still does - make me cringe to think of being the caregiver. Funny, how it never bothered me when my kids needed care. Wonder why that is?

  11. Betty-I can't muster the sympathy for the 'man cold' either! And it isn't totally horrible having Mother here and caring for her. I just don't like it. Does that make sense? I loved it when the lovelies were growing up. Not so much now.

    Stephanie- Same with me. I don't know- I guess maternal instinct kicks in with our own kids.

  12. Thanks for stopping by and leaving me such a great comment. I really try to do my very best for each company because they do give us free products and I don't want any of them to think I take advantage and just sit here like a robot and do the same old thing over and over. I try to put as much of my personality as I can into it. So, thanks for noticing, I really appreciate it. Have a great night!


  13. Oh, how proud you must feel! You've achieved something so very many just cannot seem to do. I don't doubt you're feeling better - bet you're feeling better about yourself, too. As for caregiving...hands down, those who do it are beyond human. Congrats! And best on that 30 - easy-peasy, eh? ;)

  14. Great post--especially that last paragraph! ;-)

  15. Loved that last paragraph! Hee Hee!! You must be so proud and pleased that your relationship with food seems to have been completely turned around. Well done you! I can imagine that it's not easy being a carer for someone. Hopefully your mum will be up and running again soon!

  16. Love those last lines. You can always change the locks. ;-) And the food issues? For me it was stress that caused the sugar response. Now I have firmly in mind that when I eat a carb I eat a protein too. So unless I'm willing to eat a good hunk of meat with that box of DOTS, I forego the DOTS. It has really helped me a lot.

  17. mmbear- You're quite welcome! I meant every word of it! You do a fantastic job!

    Kim- Easy peasy? I sure HOPE so! Maybe even a lemon-squeezy thrown in. LOL

    Beverly-Thank you! LOL Yeah, Hubs really liked that one.

    Diane-So did Hubs. LOL I really am. It took a reeeeally long time. I sure hope she is. I am not liking this.

    Judy- Thanks! Hubs liked them too. I agree- DOTS aren't worth it girl! LOL

  18. thanks mom, I have just enough time to vomit before my next class!

  19. Boy you just described my food addiction to a t. I do most of my eating at night. During the day not bad but I can't sleep much at night from stress and I'm up eating cereal or ice cream or whatever i can find. I've got to stop. I wish we didn't have to eat to survive. I quit smoking no problem, i quit drugs no problem, but food....man oh man.

  20. Good for you. I know we can accomplish things when we set our minds on it. I am still using food to cover up pain.


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