Emotional eating – probably my number one downfall to nutrition. I eat when I am sad. I eat when I am depressed. I eat when I am mad. I eat when I am happy. Pretty much, I can constantly be eating, cuz I am a very emotional person.
So during the next 30 days, I am going to blog about emotional eating and hopefully, I can pinpoint the reason why I do it. This 30 day blog series will be very reflective of my personal life – but as you read – hopefully, you too will begin to understand more about emotional eating. This first week, I will dig deeper into who I am as a person, what I want out of life, how I can invest in myself, and I will try to determine if there are any patterns or understandings about myself that cause me to emotionally eat.
The first thing to do, I guess, is to answer the question who am I? Who have I been? Who do I want to be?
Let me introduce myself. My name is Debbie – short for Deborah. I like my name because its Biblical. I love the story of Deborah in the Bible. Deborah, in Hebrew, also means “bee.” Bee’s may be tiny, but one sting from them can make a person miserable. I try to “bee” a nice person – most of the time – but when crossed, I can get mean.
I married two weeks after I turned 18. Now that I look back on it…It was kinda young – but I wouldn’t change it for the world. It’s just that I never truly got to know who I was as a person. I went from being a daughter, to being a wife and a few years later to being a mom. I never really knew myself. I think it put me in a constant identity crises, which never really hit home until the empty nest started. I was a daughter, a wife, a mother, a homeschool teacher, but I didn’t know how to be me! I didn’t know how to just Be Debbie
I think this is probably one of the number reasons, I started gaining weight right after I got married. I was homesick. I was living 2,000 miles away from home. Our first duty station was in Alaska and I was from Arizona. Talk about culture shock! I went from weighing 110 pounds to weighing 163 in the first six months. Then, I got pregnant with my first child while we were still in Alaska. Two other babies followed close behind. The second child, was born with severe club feet and had to have surgery. He was in casts pretty much the first five years of life. We also found out he had high functioning autism. Being a mom to a special needs child causes a lot of emotions – which led to more eating.
I went on a roller coaster of weight gain and weight loss. By the time I had the third child, I weighed well over 200 pounds. Then at the age of 36, I survived bacterial meningitis and the stress of being a homeschool mom, my husband retiring from the Army after 21 years of service, being unemployed, a myriad of health issues, my weight steadily increased and by the time I took myself to the gym for the first time – I weighed 300 pounds!!! See – I eat my emotions and stress is a big trigger!!! Plus, our last duty station was in Virginia and it’s not my fault they had a Krispy Kreme donuts! Right?!!!
I love food. I love food that tastes good and gives me comfort. Carrot sticks and celery never really brought me much comfort.
Once, I started at the gym and took a weight loss exercise and nutrition class. I finally realized that it is okay to just Be Debbie. I realized I didn’t have to stay overweight to Be Debbie. I lost 115 pounds!!! Back down to 188 pounds!! I felt great!!! But then… life began to happen again. The husband started doing contract work overseas and is hardly ever home. I’m beginning to feel like I’m single. The kids are grown and working full time jobs. And I feel like I have no purpose to even being alive. Depression hits like a ton of bricks and ever so slowly – all those healthy nutritious eating habits begin to fall to the wayside as I once again begin to emotionally eat. Depression and nutrition doesn’t mix well.
But I don’t want to be like that!!! I want to be fit. I like being able to run 5k’s and 10k’s without having an asthma attack. I like the way being fit and healthy makes me feel. I like the way I feel after I have a good workout. The more I stray from my healthy nutritious habits the worse I feel and the worse I eat. It is literally a vicious cycle.
But to be Debbie – I want to inspire people. I like to inspire people. I have always wanted to inspire others. I love to write. I love fitness. I want to be a fitness trainer and teach others how to live a Positive Journey of Healthy Living. I want to be an entrepreneur and a professional vendor/buyer and crafter. But I have 50+ pounds to lose. I had surgery on my ankle and was in a cast and on crutches, and then a boot. Definitely, a time of stress and more eating. Cook? I can’t hardly stand – let alone cook! Doesn’t Taco Bell sound good?
But to break this emotional eating cycle – I need to figure out what I want to do with my life. I need to figure out what it exactly means to Be Debbie!! What do I want most in life? How do I get it? Is the answer in food? Stay tuned – tomorrow, I will answer these questions.
What are some struggles you have with emotional eating? Why do you think you emotionally eat? Leave your comments below.