I am addicted to chocolate. And I have decided to give it up.
All four bags of it...
That's right, you are looking at four garbage bags full of chocolate. This is embarrassing, as it should be. I took a picture of it not to amuse you, but to show myself. Between the Hershey's bars and the ice cream bars, the pudding mixes and the cake mixes, the baking chocolates and the granola I eat for breakfast, I filled four garbage bags with the chocolate that I had stashed about my house.
The frugal part of me (and admittedly that is a small part) wanted to save it and offer it to my friends instead of wasting it. But the honest part of me (and that is a larger part) knew that if I did, you wouldn't be the ones eating it. I would.
I woke up Tom in the middle of the night and asked him to help me with it. We rounded it all up and set it out to the trash. Um, and not just to the trash. I had him put poopy diapers in it so I wouldn't go digging for it before trash day. Never thought I'd have to use my babies like that, but what's a mommy to do.
Just Saturday I stocked up on chocolate bars because I was planning a trip to Cincinnati and I knew I wouldn't have easy access to chocolate there. Yep, I've discovered that it's not easy to stop at a gas station and run inside for a quick fix when there are two babies in the car. So instead of giving up the fix, I have planned ahead. Do you think I planned one bar for the way down and one for the return trip? No. I had two 6-packs of candy bars. And they weren't all still hanging around to throw away this morning either.
Three and a half years ago, I had surgery to remove 90% of my stomach so that I would be forced to eat less and would lose weight. The surgeon had me go to every type of doctor known to man before he would cut. I had to go through a battery of psychological tests, and believe me, they showed that I have an addictive personality. I was sent for counseling, and was warned repeatedly that this surgery was not a cure, it was just a tool. The psychiatrist hesitated to okay me for the surgery, but eventually she did. I'm not sure why.
They were right. The surgery did help me lose weight. I lost 55 pounds through sheer will power, just to qualify to have the surgery. I had to prove to the insurance company and the surgeon that I was serious about losing the weight. Then for six months after the surgery it just hurt too damn bad to eat much of anything; I lost another 65 pounds and I was closing in on my goal weight. I was very motivated, because I was trying desperately to get pregnant and not only was the weight hindering my progress there, I knew that I wanted to be healthy and active to raise my children once they were here.
But you know what. The day I was released from the hospital, I convinced myself that if I melted a Hershey's kiss on my tongue it counted as a liquid. And I ate it.
That 65 pounds is back. One bite of chocolate at a time (okay, maybe more like 10 bites at a time) I have regained the weight. And the gain is not slowing down, it has been gaining momentum.
I want to be healthy. I want to feel good; I felt so much better without those pounds. I want to be able to do fun things with my kiddos. They deserve that, and so do I.
I don't know why, but I know what. I don't know why I am addicted to chocolate. I don't have some big story of childhood trauma that led me to it, but I do know that I am addicted to it. I love the stuff. I dream about it. I treat it as an object of devotion. It is alarming how many life lessons I am able to liken to chocolate. It is alarming how many Relief Society lessons I have taught with it.
Chocolate has become my god. I'm pretty sure that if I had been as devoted to my Heavenly Father as I have been to chocolate, I would be a translated being sitting in heaven right now. It is a good thing that I do have a loving God who is forgiving and who has been waiting a long time for me to admit this to myself and come back to Him.
This morning when I sat down to write this post, I checked in on Facebook first. Okay, that's another addiction, for a whole nother day. Anyway, what I found was this...
Thank you, Emily Jane, it was just what I needed.
Maybe I will figure out all the whys of it some day, but today, and tomorrow, and the day after that, I just need to stay away from chocolate.
I told you all of this to help me be accountable. I need to have people know that I am really working on this addiction. So mock me if you must, but please do it behind my back. In person, please just help me. Treat me like you would if I were your friend who has a problem with alcohol. Don't point it out to me everywhere I go, and there's no need to forgo it yourself, but please don't offer me the drink either.
It had to end somewhere. And I'm just glad it's ending before I made the asparagus brownies.