As anyone on my Facebook knows, I was having a rough day last Friday and wanted chocolate for dinner. The only chocolate in the house was part of a jar of hot fudge topping for ice cream, and it was extremely tempting to just eat that and skip dinner.
I have very good children, most of the time. And when they aren't being wonderful, they're not (usually) horrible. Little Mister is extremely busy, and if insomnia hits or the baby doesn't sleep well, I don't have enough energy to keep up with him the next day. Runner Girl is a preteen and ... well, that should say it all right there. I had been sort of dizzy all day Friday, so Friday night, I just wanted to go to bed with the baby (at 6:30) and was NOT up to being a good mom. Runner Girl and I had had a fight and I really wanted some alone time, but decided not to go to the grocery store in the middle of the night when I was mad. I probably would have bought a lot more chocolate and/or ice cream.
Ice cream ... oh that stuff. Cool, creamy, smooth, any flavor you can think of ... in a cone, in a cup, right from the carton! how it melts on the tongue ... I lurrrrrve it.
When Japan Boy and I lived at home, we'd watch movies together on the weekend and eat Ben & Jerry's Chubby Hubby (long before the name changed) until the 'rents came home. When I lived with Kaje, we used to keep pints of B&J's in the freezer. One of my son's favorite words? "Ice ceam."
Ice cream is to me as video games are to The Rock. Completely and totally necessary. At least, that's how I used to view it.
As I've gotten older and my hips have gotten wider, I've realized a few things.
First, I can live without ice cream. *sob*
Second, I can live without ice cream longer than The Rock can live without games. teehee
Third, if I'm really craving ice cream and I refuse it for too long, I will become the Fridger Raider! and gorge myself on other foods that are more unhealthy, and I will still want the ice cream. I will eat anything I can find in the fridge or pantry that might curb the craving. And eventually I will buy and eat the ice cream, and will probably eat more ice cream than I would have had I just gone to the store or the ice cream shoppe around the corner and just had a scoop or two in the first place. That means I will have more than quadrupled how many calories I've eaten! I will also have spent more money avoiding the craving in the first place.
The Rock's vice is Chinese food. It is his comfort food. It is like chocolate to him, engaging those great endorphins and makes him feel more calm. The problem is that I am not Chinese and I don't cook Chinese food very well (drat), so it does tend to cost us a bit more money. But he has finally learned this theory as well, and instead of becoming the Massive Fridger Raider and cleaning out the fridge, freezer, and pantry when he is craving a bit of Chinese food, he goes and gets it. And then he isn't bloated, gassy, or over stuffed for hours afterward, too! Doing this has also helped our money budget since I don't have to figure out how to feed us all for a week after he binges right after I've been to the store!
I'm still learning portion control on a few things, especially ice cream, but I really think that giving yourself permission to have a bit of a comfort food or a sweet on occasion is one of the keys to success.
So Friday night, instead of eating the rest of the jar of hot fudge or going to the store and eating a pint or more of ice cream, I ate dinner and then had a couple of spoonfuls of the hot fudge. And you know what? The endorphins kicked in and I was better able to take care of my kids all night, then hit the store Saturday morning. And no chocolate or ice cream found its way into my cart!