Let me just say that addiction, in any form, sucks! I had a relapse the past week. I am not proud of it. I had worked so hard to get to the point where I felt like I was in control of my food addiction, not the other way around. But, as I dealt with life the last couple of days, I learned something about myself. I learned that I took my recovery for granted. And that's one thing that shouldn't happen.
It's funny. I haven't given my food addiction much thought lately. I hardly acknowledged that I had that problem. Because I had no instances of binge eating, I (stupidly) considered myself "cured." Here's the thing though, an addiction is never cured. It's always there. Lurking. Waiting for you to let your guard down. And that is exactly what happened. I let my guard down.
I have never handled stress well. Eating has always been my outlet. My way to cope, albeit not a very successful way, but it helped me. I had done pretty good handling things. Ignoring the urge to binge. But, then, the bottom fell out. And as I scrambled to try to make sense of the things that were happening, I lost the hold I had on my food addiction. And it raged out of control.
Yesterday, was the worse day by far. I found myself searching the cupboards high and low for my next fix. I think I downed 3-4 cans of pop. I ate. Nonstop. And while I don't know what my calorie count came out at, I am sure that it wasn't pretty.
I am no stranger to the crippling guilt that follows a binge eating episode. And yesterday was no different. The guilt brought me to tears. I felt like a failure. Worthless. I hated it.
But, if I have learned one thing over the last two years, it was this. My food addiction doesn't define me. It isn't who I am. And one binge eating episode doesn't mean I failed. Doesn't mean I am worthless. I just means I need to work harder. Be more aware. Make better choices.
So, instead of wallowing in the guilt that plagues me after binge eating, I am instead choosing to turn this into a learning experience. And move forward.
Shit happens. It's how you deal with it that matters.