June 18, 2012

...But there was a chocolate fountain!

Seriously, who doesn't have the desire
to put your entire mouth under the
flow of milk chocolate? I wonder if
they make special goggles for such
an occasion?
I was at a business and professionals event last week....being all professional and businessy. Things were going fairly well as I extended my hand out to everyone I passed; introducing myself and asking if we could be friends (kidding.....really, I'm kidding).

It wasn't until desert that I had noticed the chocolate fountain. I had heard of such things and saw pictures, but have never seen one of these babies in real life. Surrounding the fountain was a moat of delicacies such as fruit (um, ya....booooorrrriiiingggg) and Nanaimo bars, and butter tarts, and cake. At that point I lost all propriety, picked up a fork, stabbed this teeny tiny butter tart (sitting there minding its' own business) and held it under the chocolate body of water until it screamed for mercy. Then, under the influence of sheer happiness and great joy, I grabbed the pound cake slices and pieced them together with the caramel slices, and the room started spinning and my vision became blurry...and by that time, I had chocolate all over me (and getting funny looks from all the professionals in the room).  The scary part to my story is I was restraining myself! If there was no one to watch me, I would have done a lot worse (dreams of hanging my head upside down and letting the chocolate drizzle all over me comes to mind....). Thank God for my fear of public ridicule and shame.

What if?
It reminds me of my latest turmoil and personal challenge I have been grappling with over the last two weeks. I'll start by saying I have been wanting a pug (in case you need a visual...it's a short, stout, dog with a squished face that has a strong personality and great sense of humour) for years and years. Lately, I have been dreaming about getting one after my man-friend and I buy the house and do the marriage thing, but I have held back. I know...good for me, right? Waiting for the right time. Not losing my head about it.

Two weeks ago I was driving home from work, minding my own business, when I saw I sign on the side of the road that screamed PUG PUPPIES FOR SALE! I nearly crashed my car. Should I drive in? Should I get one? Is this a sign? All I could think about was that stupid sign and imagining all those cherub-like puppies jumping on top of each other ready to be taken home. I know I'm not ready for one. I know I am too busy for one, and I know my lifestyle isn't conducive to support one the way it needs to be supported....but come on! Really? Seriously, the mental strength Ineed to NOT drive in and grab a couple.....I swear I could bend a spoon if I tried.

Why am I telling you this? Both these stories relate to "will power" and "self control".  A pug puppy for me is a box of donuts sitting in the common area at work for someone else. It takes much self talk and much thought to walk away. Although eating a donut isn't going to effect your life for 10 - 12 years like a new puppy would, it certainly does get in the way of your best intentions to eat healthy.

The night of the chocolate fountain I had entered that dinner with the intention of eating my usual veggies and protein...no desert, no drinks, plain and simple. But, as it does, life will always offer a test through temptation and the more you are able to say "no" the easier it gets. You just have to take that first step and say "no" for the first time...which is harder than it seems (for me anyway). I recently read a book on habits that suggested that will power is just like a muscle and the more you exercise it, the stronger it gets. I have never been a believer in will power, myself, (I tend to look at the psycho-socio-environmental reasons why we do what we do). I have to say, based upon my own experience, that the more I turn down the opportunity to eat junk, the easier it gets (maybe the author has a point).

Really? How unbelievably-gut-wrenching-I-need-to-take-you-home-this-minute cute is THAT? One day, Kathi.....one day.
Again, I wonder if my purpose in life is to help people change or is it to just serve as a warning to others. I'm thinking it's the latter....for now. I don't believe I'm ever going to get up on a stage and proclaim I have solved the problem of emotional eating or healthy eating adherence......but I can offer strategies that have helped me in the past and really funny stories of how I fell (and continue to fall) off my wagon.

Have a great week and thanks for reading.

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