Missed Moments

Sometimes a memory is so vivid you feel liked it just happened yesterday. You know what I mean? You are sitting at home and you hear some music on the radio, and suddenly you are transported to a different time and place, without ever leaving your chair. The following story is a memory from over 30 years ago. It wasn’t triggered by anything romantic, like a familiar tune. Rather it was triggered by the smell of chlorine, when I was cleaning my bathroom.

I was in my apartment, having finished a six-month trip to Israel. The experience has been amazing — new friends, new travels, and of course, new foods. And — I had gained 15 pounds. Joan, one of my oldest friends, who I hadn’t seen in years, called me. “Let’s get together at the Jewish Community Center swimming pool. We can meet for a while, have a short swim, and then go out for a coffee! This was such a wonderful thought, and I really did want to see Joan. But I remember telling her I was busy, sorry, I couldn’t make it, I already had plans, maybe another time.

Guess what my excuse really was? I felt I was too fat and didn’t want to be seen in a swimsuit! And so I sat, alone in my apartment, doing absolutely nothing, because I didn’t want to see an old friend since I was fat! I thought she would judge me, and, believe it or not, stop liking me because she thought I was fat. I just knew she would think I had become sloppy and lazy, and I was no longer worthy of her friendship. And do you know what I did next? I punished myself by staying alone and eating, proving that I was not worthy of being around other people.

How many missed moments have you experienced because you didn’t like the way you looked? We miss out on family get-togethers, on visiting old friends. We stay home by ourselves, punishing ourselves for a crime we believe we committed: the crime of not looking the way society says we should look, the crime of wanting to eat foods we’d like to enjoy, but can’t because we feel guilty.

Becoming “at peace with food” is a journey that involves developing a new relationship with food. Instead of feeling frustrated and disappointed, instead of feeling fear and competition between you and the foods you eat — food becomes one of the many normal activities of daily living (as it should), along with being with family, friends, work, play. And, like these other activities, it becomes pleasurable.

In order to be at peace with food, you need to learn about yourself and why you have the relationship you do with the food you eat. Like all relationships, your relationship with food took time to develop, and it will take time to change.

And when you are at peace with food, you will look forward to being around your friends and family, and the food that many times accompanies these get-togethers.

Life is too short. Please stop missing out on those significant moments in your life. Go swimming with Joan.

Become At Peace with Food: Stop Dieting and Lose Weight

NOTE: Information in this site should not replace any medical advice you have
received from your primary care doctor or other medical professionals.