Okay, I’m going to cut to the chase – weight has always been a BIG issue for me. I’m not trying to blame all my bad eating habits and body insecurities on my mom or advertising, although both are certainly contributors. Instead, I’m blaming it on the awful food I consume, all those emotionally charged face stuffing sessions, and my lack of time (motivation) to get my ass to the gym.
Now that I’ve made it clear that I’m not blaming my mom, can we please talk about her? My family never had a pantry or a snack drawer. I was a chubby eight-year-old child that pouted and was sad that I had no chips or cookies at my beckon call. By the time I had access to vending machines and was allowed to ride my bike all around town I learned the art of closet eating. My drawers were strategically stashed with chocolate bars and candy.
Mothers often do more harm than good – especially when trying to control their child’s weight problems. Now that I’m a mother, I want to minimize the amount I screw my kid up so I’ve been spending a lot of time reflecting on my childhood and observing mothers and children around me. I found some healthy tips for parents of overweight kids. The article breaks it down based on the child’s age, a healthy goal, menu advice, and guidance to parents.
I’ve also been doing some research and I read that when a woman becomes a mother, she unknowingly passes off her own insecurities. I’m not done with the book yet, but so far, I highly recommend it. It’s called “My Mother, My Mirror.” My mother is beautiful. As a young woman, she was gorgeous, curvy, and always insecure about her body and weight. I never felt beautiful enough for her so I sabotaged myself. I did things that I thought would make me unique or interesting instead. I got tattoos and piercings, got involved in art and music and I ended up fitting into the more “alternative” crowd rather than trying to conform to the mainstream. My mom hated this and never understood why I wanted a nose piercing and spent my time skateboarding rather than joining the debate team and trying out for cheerleading. My family labeled me the “artsy one.” My sister was the smart one – she knew she wanted to be an economist by age 10 and was a star debater. She was also thin with no tattoos or piercings and she didn’t smoke or drink.
Sorry – I got carried away. My self-esteem was very low. I couldn’t look in the mirror without hating myself. When I moved out of my parent’s house, my relationship with food changed and so did the way I perceived myself. Instead of using junk food as rewards for good behavior or a way to make myself feel better, I allowed myself to eat chocolate whenever I really wanted it. I made all this junk food I was never allowed to have totally accessible and all of a sudden I didn’t really crave it as much. And when I did, I was okay having a little and feeling satisfied without beating myself up over it or feeling ashamed. I’m not a crazy Dr. Oz fan but he had some pretty good insight on food hoarding and hiding. If you or someone close to you is going through this, his explanation may help you understand the situation.
Now that I’m almost 30 years old and living with my parents again, food is still a huge issue in our house. My husband and I have a secret junk food drawer in our room. Tonight I found my parent’s secret stash of chocolate and I feel awesome about it. I wasn’t snooping or anything. My mom asked me to get something and must have forgotten her secret chocolate stash was in the same drawer. I felt so justified in having my own stash. So this is what our life has come to. In front of each other, we’re all eating super healthy and giving each other judging looks when someone opens a bag of chips. But in the privacy of our own closets, we’re stuffing our faces full of chocolate.
If you need to come up with your own secret chocolate stash, check out the best places to hide your chocolate article. I think the cleverest idea is in a shoebox that everyone thinks is empty. Or, if you feel sort of bad about your secret stash, Stephanie Dalle Molle, a Certified Holistic Health & Wellness Coach and Plaid for Women contributor takes on a healthier approach, “First Comes Love.”
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