Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Step right up!

I work really hard at having a good attitude about my body and the way I eat, but every once in a while, I find a situation that causes me to struggle.

One of those situations is when my husband doesn't want to eat anything and I do.

For some reason, it makes me feel like a horrible person if I want to eat and he doesn't. I'm not sure why I feel this way. I wish I could blame him—because that would be so much easier, right?—but in truth, he's the most supportive person in my life. He backs me up even when I tell him I want to eat ice cream from the carton or an entire box of processed mac 'n cheese by myself. Okay, so I only do these kinds of things about once a year, but still, the point is that he's there for me when I do.

Which raises the question why do I feel guilty when I eat without him? I'm not really sure, but this weekend I finally decided I was sick of it.

We went to Cincinnati to celebrate a friend's wedding—Congratulations, Katie and Murray!—and see our moms on Mother's Day, and per usual, being on the road meant that we ate WAY too much unhealthy food.

(We did manage to exercise two of the four days we were gone, so not all was lost.)

After two and a half days of subsisting on fast food and an all-you-can-eat-Mother's-Day buffet, Dave hit the wall and declared he didn't want to eat another bite until we got home. (Yes, he's prone to these kinds of extreme statements.) That was fine for him, but this was Sunday afternoon, and we hadn't had dinner yet. No way I was going almost twenty hours without food.

But that meant doing something I loathe—eating when he doesn't.

To make matters worse, we were staying with friends, and by the time we got back to their house after a long day with Dave's family, they'd already eaten their dinner. This meant that not only would Dave not be eating with me, but they wouldn't either. AND on top of that, I'd have to eat my meal while all three of them watched me do it.

In other words, I'd be the floor show . . .

Step right up, ladies and gentleman, and see something that will make you cringe in horror. Appearing in this tent right behind me is the curvy lady who eats by herself. Yes, that's right—a curvy lady who eats by herself! Come inside and see her do it . . . if you dare!

Needless to say, the idea wasn't very appealing.

On the other hand, neither was skipping dinner.

As far as I could see, I had two choices: miss a meal or pressure Dave into eating with me. And I knew the latter would not be pretty.

And then it occurred to me I had a third choice: I could eat by myself and not let it get to me. After all, it was up to me whether or not I wanted to feel uncomfortable about eating alone in front of three other people. I could just do it and not make a big deal out of it, right?

As soon as I realized this, I felt like a new person. A person who didn't worry about eating when no one else was eating. A person who doesn't mind eating in front of others. All I had to do was be that person.

So I put on my big girl panties, walked right up to Habañero, and got myself a veggie taco and some chips and salsa, which I brought home and ate in front of three people who couldn't have cared less.

I am not kidding when I say it was one of the best meals I've ever had.

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