Sued51's Blog

This is an example of a healthy meal in my world: no meat and a vegetable is prominently featured. But it sure tasted decadent! Anyone who has read my food posts knows that my husband is a fabulous cook; he believes life is too short to eat ordinary. Every day for dinner we have something incredible. He loves cooking for me because I love food and I am open to food experiments. In this case, he took a recipe for pumpkin pappardelle and made it with buttercup squash. He used fresh ground nutmeg and fresh parsley — mmmm.

My husband is French so he likes to cook with butter and cream. I appreciate the wonderful food he cooks for me; I am a lucky woman. But I don’t appreciate the fat collecting around my middle and having to burn over 600 calories in my workout just so I don’t become HUGE! I can’t complain about the food…I am so grateful that I eat well and that he cooks for me. But I am so conflicted! I barely eat the rest of the day and seem to be always hungry.

Should I just keep working out like a fiend? Should I work harder on accepting myself with some fat on my body? What’s a former borderline anorexic to do??

I was a picky eater as a childĀ  — high maintenance for my mother — but not in the way a mother would be mad about. I loved fruits and vegetables (especially raw ones), which were healthy for me, but I didn’t like sauces and condiments. For example, I liked tomatoes, but not ketchup or spaghetti sauce. My mother would make me “milk spaghetti” (spaghetti with butter and milk) when the rest of the family was having spaghetti with tomato sauce. Not too much extra effort…she just put mine aside before she put the sauce on.

The kids at school would call me “rabbit” because I would eat celery sticks, carrot sticks, even green pepper strips for lunch — no salad dressing of course. I became a favorite target of teasing because I would have a gag reflex whenever I was in the vicinity of bowls of ketchup, mustard, and relish. Of course they were always putting them near me and laughing. Lunchtime wasn’t enjoyable for me.

After my “healthy” phase, I went the other way in junior high — I ate an ice cream sandwich and a milk every day, until I couldn’t bear to eat another one. ( I still don’t eat them!) That led me to my borderline anorexic phase, which lasted through high school: I pretty much ate nothing but toast and tea, soup, and…milk spaghetti.

It took a lot of comments from strangers — “Your friend looks like a boat person,” “Is your friend an orphan?” — before I realized how I looked to other people. But it was a bout with the flu, during which I lost 10 lbs I couldn’t afford to lose, that changed my eating habits. At one point I couldn’t even drink water…I didn’t know that I was allergic to the codeine cough syrup the doctor had prescribed. I was lucky that my mother was taking care of me; she called the doctor and he told me to stop taking it. Nothing like the fear of not being able to eat again to scare someone into wanting a steak!

Little did I know, a wonderful food future lay in front of me…

et cetera
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