Have you ever noticed that if you listen hard enough the answers we are seeking are out there? Sure, they come in various forms. Sometimes they’re obvious and often they’re not so obvious but they are there all the same.
On my journey towards a healthier self I’ve realized that I’ve got plenty of questions. For instance, Why is food so hard to resist? Why can I not stop at a handful of Doritos? Why, oh why, can I not stop snacking after dinner?
Honestly, late evening snacking has been one of the hardest of my many bad habits to tackle. There is something so therapeutic about cuddling into the sofa with a glass of iced tea, bowl of Cheezits anda DVR’d replay of GilmoreGirls onthe TV. And my apparent need for, ahem, therapeutic intervention makes it very hard for me to give up this particular vice.
But, I recently resolved to end that unnecessary snack attack and ban any eating after 6:30 p.m. because there is absolutely no question that I manage to ingest my daily caloric allottment (and slightly more) by dinner’s end. I asked Jeremy to help me on my quest because I’m nothing if not completely impressionable and easily swayed.
Jer: Min, are you hungry?
Me: Nope. Not at all. Totally full.
Jer: Oh, because I was thinking of having a bowl of ice cream.
Me: Oh, great. Grab me some too, will ya? Oh, and throw some chopped walnuts and Hershey’s syrup on that bad boy while you’re at it.
Yep, my willpower is not so stellar. So I recruited Jeremy to help me stay accountable to my newest self-imposed restriction. And, quite honestly, his arteries could certainly go without his nightly dairy craving.
And I must say,I’ve done fairly well. For the past two weeks I have shut the kitchen down. Literally. Once dinner is cleaned up I shut the pantry door and exit the room. I strut out of there with confidence that I will not be back. Goodnight kitchen! Until the morning when I will be back for a meal rich in fiber and protein. Or Frosted Flakes. Whatever.
I retire into the living room (a mere five feet from the kitchen) after putting the kids to bed, prepared to sit in comfort for the night, the Cheezits replaced by a good book and comfy blanket.
And this strategy has been working. Until one very fateful night this week.
I assumed my position on the couch with my book and blanket and settled in for a few chapters of unadulterated literary pleasure. And then it started. My stomach started growling like a bear waking up from a long hibernation. I couldn’t ignore it. It was making the kind of grumbling noise that typically only occurs during silent prayer in church or just as the lights dim in a crowded movie theater. The urge to snack was upon me and I knew the only thing I could do was call for reinforcements.
“Jer! Come here!” I yelled, a bit frantically.
“What?” he asked,rushing into the room.
“It’s bad. Seriously,” I answered.
“What’s wrong?” he asked.
“I’m super hungry and about to rush in and devour that entire pantry. I’m not kidding.”
Jer, as if talking me down off the proverbial edge, begansoothing my frantic worry. “Mindy, you’re not hungry.You really aren’t.”
“But I am, Jer. Listen. Can’t youhear my stomach?” I asked. Oh, man the urge was getting bad.
And then very suddenly I hear,
“Ma…ma…you not hunnnngryyyy…no….you nnnnooootttt…”
“You tomach’s not growwwwwllllinnngg…no it’s nnnoottt…”
Okay. Either Jack is admonishing me from the depths of his sleep or I am receiving a message from Heaven. CouldGod be using Jack as His instrument to relaya very important reminder?Did God sense my suffering and recognized a need for intervention? Was Jack a Holy vessel?
In all actuality, I thinkit’s more likely that Jack was skirting the little issue of his bedtime and doing his best to eavesdrop. However, it really makes no differencehow or why I received this particular revelation. The fact of the matter is that the timing was impeccable.
I did not get up and grab that bowl of Cheezits. But, I did go into Jack’s room threatening his life if he didn’t get back into bed (after I kissed his little baby lips silently thanking him for his interference.)
The answers are definitely out there, but they can certainly come in the darndest of packages.
You can do it, Min. Apparently snacking runs in the family, but if you can stop then so can I. We can be strong together!
Oh my goodness, I feel your pain. I love a snack in front of the TV after the kids are down. More than one night I have taken a benadryl and gone to bed early just so that I don’t eat.
If I truly do think I’m hungry though, I allow myself a small bowl of Cheerios with cut up fruit (no sugar).
I envy you your willpower, regardless of it’s source.
I try to park one of the cats on my lap, so I CAN’T get up, but the cats really don’t care all that much.
In fact, I think they’d like it if my lap was LARGER.
Stay strong, woman!
Hang in there…when in desparation to control my appetite, I brush my teeth when I am done with my dinner….some stuff just doesn’t taste the same when you have minty fresh breath 🙂 Proud of you!
You have a ton more willpower than I do! If my stomach were growling, I’d be eating. (really growling, not imaginary growling) Seriously, how can you not eat when your stomach is telling you, loudly, that it needs food? I’ve even tried to go to bed, but can’t sleep through the growling. Then I end up with a headache. Yeah, eating is better than being headachy and suffering insomnia because of it … I’m sure of it! 😉
I know how hard this is. I really do. I love that Jack was coaching you from the bedroom or from above.
I started my journey April 6th and yes the hardest part is the not eating at night. So I changed my snack of whatever popped into my mind, to a 80 calorie yogurt from Light N Fit. It has helped me a lot. Plus I too Kathryn’s advice and started chewing gum while on the computer. I have lost 4 pounds already.
If I can do it–You can do it!
I’m hungry right now. But I want chips & salsa. The only salvation at this point is that I’m out of chips. And salsa. Which is a small miracle in itself…Divine intervention? Hmm…
So the right answer wasn’t to let Jack get up, and come cuddle you with a couple of Hershey’s kisses thrown in for extra bonding? Damn. This explains alot.
This was too cute. Jack’s a real character. Reminds me of Sean.
My husband has the metabolism of a horse. He’s been that way his whole life. So I’ve observed his eating…because I figure he is not plagued by emotional eating at all. Interestingly enough, he is really very disciplined. He doesn’t go back for seconds or thirds. His big tip? He brushes his teeth after he’s done eating. Once you brush your teeth, you don’t want to mess that up by eating more. I do that and it really does help. Either that or maybe you should record that voice saying that so you can replay it whenever you think you’re hungry!