The timer goes off for the nutritious lunch I have put in the oven for my little ones. Once they are safely ensconced in their high chairs, I casually move the Ben & Jerry’s container into which I have been digging for that elusive ribbon of caramel, over to the other side of the fridge so they cannot see my gluttonous indulgence.
What I realize as I shovel in the very tasty and oh so satisfying treat, is that I used to do this in college when I was a young and angry girl. Down with every spoonful or forkful of attractiveness prohibiting food I ate, went my misery, anger, sadness, whatever the negative emotion of the day was. My lips coated in sugary caramel, I ponder that which has been eating at me (pun intended) of late. Family issues rooted in childhood. Ok, now that sounds pretty much like everyone I know, so why is this still lingering? I could answer that, but I won’t here. I already know the answer. The problem isn’t that I don’t know the problem, or the answer. It’s how it works its way into my mouth instead of out of my head.
Why then, do I not turn to something with protein, like chicken? Or steak? Food like ice cream is supposed to be bad for you, and supposedly I am punishing myself by eating it instead of working it out in some other manner, like exercise, as a healthy person might. (I do exercise, but it is just not enough to account for what I eat.) Therefore, I am indeed punishing myself. When I am at the market next time, picking up more ice cream for my husband (it was his stash I delved into), I will inevitably see a magazine with a skinny bitch airbrushed on the cover and sigh because I would give my eye teeth (what IS that anyway?) to look like that. The truth is, I would like to know what it feels like to look like that, but I am apparently unwilling to do the work it takes to get that way, minus the airbrushing. So I stand here, hiding behind the fridge, eating my punishment, which feels so much like a reward it’s no wonder women have a hard time with body image. It’s a mixed signal I am not sure I want to figure out.
Clearly I ought not be eating this, or like this, but I do nonetheless. Hypocrite that I apparently am, I sneak it thinking my kids won’t figure it out. After all, I can’t have them picking up my bad habits.
This is an original LA Moms Blog post.
Lexi posts at Thirty Fingers and Thirty Toes, though searching for an appropriate picture for this post rapidly dissolved her goal to write more and stop eating ice cream. She might be licking the inside of the carton by now while glaring at the treadmill from behind the fridge.