Skinny Daily Post

Invincible.

Celebrate Change!

I wrote this a few days before Christmas, but I think it still applies. In fact, Iíve read this several times since writing it, and itís helped me realize just how far Iíve come. Here’s hoping that 2005 brings you all closer to your goals, whatever they may be.

For the first time in at least 4 years, Iím making chocolates for the familyís Christmas celebration. Delectable, eagerly anticipated, made with love and the best ingredients I can find, itís always been a process Iíve enjoyed on every level: the sensuousness, the alchemy, the smell, and most of all the TASTE. But last night, I surveyed the wreckage of pans, spoons, bowls, and molds, and the little mountains of paper towels smeared with chocolate left on every kitchen surface, and fought the urge to give it all up and run out of the kitchen. What happened?

Well, for the first time in my life, I wasnít licking my hands, or the spoons or the bowls!!!! I forced myself to dip the tiniest little tip of my finger into a warm ganache of peanut butter chips, heavy cream, and peanut butter to see if it was too peanutty, and YUCK! And grabbing some paper towels to wipe off my fingers, I swore never to do that again. I checked the temperature of the chocolate with a finger, and instinctively went to lick it off, and found it too gross. And grabbed more paper towels. And so it went, with each type of candy, until I had to change the roll of paper towels and took a moment to survey the scene.

It took a couple of minutes for it to sink into my consciousness. After all, a person doesnít get to a high weight of 500 pounds by consciously eating or being aware of her body! And then I realized what an important moment this was: Iíve changed dramatically. Things donít always taste the way I think they will. Iím more conscious of what Iím eating, and I stop eating when I donít like it anymore, or, amazingly, I donít even start! And wouldnít a nice hot bubble bath, surrounded by candles, be a more relaxing choice than food after a long hard day at work and the stress of all that cooking? And itís all OK.

My point is this: Those of you who have made ANY changes in your life over the past year Ė 6 months Ė 2 days Ė whatever Ė be proud of what youíve done. And hold onto it. Even if itís as small as switching from regular soda to diet, or walking for 5 more minutes every couple of weeks, look at the progress youíve made. The pessimists among you are saying, ďBut I have so much farther to go!Ē Maybe you do. But I promise you, every single tiny change you make and sustain is progress and worth keeping, even during this season of too much.

Instead of celebrating the season with food, celebrate with pride in your progress, and hope for future accomplishments.

PS. The story ended in a hot bubble bath, where I promptly fell asleep [and please note: 500 pound people do not fit into bathtubs!]. This morning, I packed up some samples for my oh-so-willing tasting panel at work. After all, SOMEONE has to tell me if these are any good! And so far, itís been rave reviews. Iím drinking tea and avoiding the treats in the office kitchen. Just not interested. Itís hard to believe that this is ME talking, but itís true!

15 thoughts on “Celebrate Change!

  1. Quinn says:

    This was good to read.

    I’ve been trying to explain to people for what seems like years that if you can give up a food, like, say, m&m’s for at least a 3 months, at the end of those three months you won’t like the taste of them any more.

    Same with sodas, diet or otherwise. And junk food. And fast food. (The last time I bought “food” from Mickey D’s, it tasted so bad that I couldn’t finish it. Into the trash it went.)

    Yeah, it does take time and a little self-discipline. But golly! Look at the results! ūüôā

  2. Carrie K. says:

    I needed this so much! My husband and I had planned to fast completely from any refined sugars for a month starting Jan. 1st. This hasn’t happened, for either of us. My excuse: PMS — it’s just too hard. His: trying to quit chewing tobacco, so he needs the sugar fix. BUT, I have resisted buying ice cream for the last three weeks, and my sugar consumption has cut at least in half. So I will celebrate that change, and continue to persevere into a bigger one. Thank you again.

  3. JB says:

    I have, actually, found that to be true about junk food, fast food, sodas, chips, and even the Lower Class of chocolate.

    But this weekend, I had a steak for the first time in perhaps a year, and it was darn good. So even moderation sometimes calls for moderation.

  4. Cathy says:

    What an awesome entry, Jane! It’s amazing the way our tastes change if we will just allow them to. Several years ago I took myself off of soda and started drinking water instead. At the time it was simply because pop didn’t quench my thirst as well as water, but now I can honestly say that I don’t even like the taste of the carbonated stuff. It burns my tongue, makes my teeth feel gross and tastes chemicalish (if that wasn’t a word before, it is now…heh). I’m trying to do the same thing with processed foods these days, and really needed the motivation provided by your post. Once again, thank you!

  5. Sara says:

    You are right.
    Lately, I have been taking allís advice and I am taking my weight loss step by step. I plan meals a week at a time and I exercise one day at a time.

    This week I have actually got on my exercise bike three times and I have turned down pizza in favor of chicken soup.

    I am more conscious of my little successes now.

    Oh, and about losing the taste for food, I have not had a donut for a couple of years and over the holidays someone brought in a box of Krispy Kreme. I took one bite and had to spit it out and they tasted horrible!

  6. j @ road to ambition says:

    Thanks Jane. I really needed this today. I started over again a few weeks ago and I’m a little overwhelmed by how far I have to go. You post is helping me keep things in perspective and I’m patting myself on the back now for making a little progress.

  7. rebeka says:

    I am all for celebrating change because over the last 6 months I started seeing the rewards. Sometimes it takes us a while to realize that all the efforts we are making are setting us up for a lifetime of being someone different.

  8. Marisa says:

    Wonderful essay. I’m so glad that Juju found such good writers to make it possible for skinnydaily to appear more frequently.

    I’m not sure it takes 3 months, Quinn. I’m in my third day without sugar, and I now find sweet foods revolting. Before that, I was perfectly capable of eating an entire bag of gumdrops, three donuts, or 40 ounces of Coke (not diet) at a sitting. I’ve done all three in the last week. I craved sugar in all its forms. And yesterday I easily passed up a lovely homemade angel food cake, and today I couldn’t bear the thought of eating a tiny mint. I’ve been sticking to WW CORE foods, and I feel much stronger and calmer.

  9. lauren says:

    Interestingly, I’ve got the same thing going on right now and it’s not weight-loss related. I’ve just become more interested in cooking good, simple recipes with fresh food. It’s fun and it’s delicious and now ramen and boxed mac&cheese gross me out. Our default quick meals have become pasta with fresh-made sauce (from canned tomatoes, but no salt added!) and salad with apples and walnuts on it, or grilled sandwiches with fresh tomatoes and fresh basil and carmelized shallots. I think weight loss does/will come along with it but even if it doesn’t, the mental change in the way I think about food is remarkable.

  10. Sandra says:

    I know what you mean about losing the craving for sweets…..which has been a long time in coming for me… because I LOVE sweets and they became my downfall and barrier to losing the weight I needed. BUT it can be done without really realizing it! The other day my Aunt (85 yrs) sent me home with some cookies and sweets (she means well) for the family…. we ended up throwing most of them out… because everything was just too sweet. That would not have been done at all just a few months ago….(just please don’t tell her) Great article… thanks!

  11. Susan says:

    Jane, what good news! And a belated congratulations for your remarkable achievement. It’s so encouraging to hear that you’re now “Just not interested” in the endless assortment of goodies we face every day.

    So permanent aversion to formerly favorite and fattening foods is possible. You just gave me a big shot of hope!

  12. Alecia says:

    Just found this site. It’s so encouraging. Had Hamburger and sm. fry from McD’s after a month with no fast food. I was dissapointed. It did not taste good to me. Now, I’m not dissapointed. I don’t want to eat that. I want high fiber meals, lean protiens.

  13. jean says:

    Great post as usual but we seem to have backslid to a post a week, not exactly daily…what’s up with this?

  14. Poly says:

    Thank you for clearing up a mystery:

    After weeks of avoidance, I finally chose to sample a piece of the gourmet chocolate generously left in the break room by my boss. I read the label and carefully calculated how it would impact my eating plan for the day. I decided 1 piece (a third of a serving) would be acceptable.

    Lo and behold, not only did it NOT taste good; it gave me a stomachache. This from a former hardcore chocolate addict! Thanks so much for the wonderful way you affirmed a positive eating transformation.

  15. nanny says:

    Glad I stopped by today and got to see this post (better late than never!) because it was great. Not just for us readers, but for YOU–I don’t know you but I’m proud for your accomplishments.

    Sometimes I notice that when we eat unconsciously we don’t really “rate” our food; we just eat whatever is before us without deciding if it’s worth it. Last night, for example, I should’ve been thinking along these lines, but I wasn’t. I ate a piece of mocha mudslide that was SOUR. After the first bite, I thought, “yuk!”, but did that stop me?

    Sigh.

    Onward and upward. Climbing isn’t easy, but man, are the rewards awesome! Thanks for this post.

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