I was sick the past two days, just a flu. As I was getting better, it hit me that I had never once considered food to “soothe” me or as a “comfort”. It didn’t even occur to me. That is a complete departure from my former self, who self-medicated with food on a regular basis: for feelings, for physical discomfort, anything would do as an excuse. Whether or not I gave in, the point is that my mind went there automatically. I couldn’t prevent it from going there, it used to be such a long-established tought pattern. So the fact that it didn’t happen filled me with immense gratitude to Greysheet, and made me think of how much I’ve changed since getting abstinent.
Someone called me the other day about coming to a meeting, but she didn’t want to weigh and measure without exception. She thought that would dominate her life. Ironically, my life has been set free – un-dominated from food – by Greysheet: the exact opposite of what she feared! The truth as I see it is that as a compulsive overeater, which I will never NOT be, food will always have more of an influence on me than on normal people. It will dominate my life. However, on Greysheet I learned that I can confine its dominion to three meals a day, rather than having it take over my entire thought and emotional life. If I have no boundaries around my food, or if I have to determine them myself, I have to dwell on it and think about it, which means that I compromise my freedom by giving food much more time of day than it deserves, certainly much more than “normal” eaters will. The only way for me to have a relationship to food that resembles that of normal eaters is to be Greysheet abstinent.
And this recent experience of not even considering food for comfort is a direct result, which I appreciate, yet with I can’t take for granted or use as an opportunity to become complacent. It is only because I am vigilant about weighing my food that I find my mind falling into “normal-eater-like” patterns.
So because there have been quite a few posts lately about the difficulties and white-knuckling abstinence, I just want to offer the perspective that yes, it does get easier, and no, white-knuckling isn’t going to be your day-in day-out experience on Greysheet. It may be necessary on occasion, especially in early abstinence, but as they say: if you find yourself in hell, keep walking. There is light at the end of the tunnel.