My five-year-old granddaughter is already getting excited about Halloween. She loves going to the fall festivals, pumpkin farms, and most of the activities she attends have their own Halloween parties. The candy she receives comes home to sit on my kitchen counter, and this is all occurring well before Halloween Trick or Treat night.

I am grateful my granddaughter isn’t a food addict like I was at her age. By the age of five I had already honed my skills. I ate sweets, treats, snacks till they were gone as though I had done a good deed by quickly getting it out of the house thru my stomach. I ate all of the junk food items before my 3 older siblings even had time to notice them. I ate in private, so no one noticed who ate all the snacks (as if they couldn’t guess since I was the only obese person in my family). Every time my dad went to the store, I was right there to go with him. It was my duty to help him because in my opinion I was a responsible, dutiful daughter. I felt like I was doing him a favor choosing the best snacks to have in the house so he could focus his attention on other food necessities for our family. My character defects served me well for over 50 years.

This Halloween/Christmas/Valentine’s Day/Easter are reasons to celebrate, but it tends to be centered around food being the focus and that all are encouraged to imbibe or overindulge. At times I struggle with self will, rather than God’s will for me. My HP has guided me to loving self care ideas that are useful at any time that I would like to share:
*I ask my husband or granddaughter to put the candy out of my sight, or out of my reach because I am highly allergic to it. My granddaughter understands allergies and I’m sharing a truth/fact about me and focusing on nothing else.
*I tell myself it is not my candy and it is not acceptable to steal what isn’t mine.
*I remind myself I would owe an amends for stealing candy that isn’t mine. It would be objectionable to me to hurt my granddaughter by stealing from her. I want her to know she can trust me.

*I have love notes posted around my bathroom mirror and on the refrigerator to remind myself self-care is all about loving me today. I don’t need to abuse myself today by ingesting sweets that are deadly to me. One cookie is too much and 1000 is never, ever going to be enough.
*I follow my food plan and send it to my sponsor. Be mindful so mindless eating isn’t a possibility. Having enough protein throughout the day helps me with cravings.

*One day at a time. I can get thru the hours of today by taking the next right step. I go to meetings or add extra meetings when I’m struggling. Zoom meetings are easy to access at any time. Making outreach calls or texts are monumental, especially to my sponsor. I look forward to getting outdoors in nature for a walk and talk with my HP.
*I have a mantra I use to get me thru tough moments in a day. My HP knows all of me. My HP willingly, lovingly gives me what I need for each day. When I’m honest, open, and willing I’m able to take the next right action step.
*Find your talent. Take joy in creating and expressing yourself.

*WE can do this together.
Wishing you all happy holidays!

Sue S., Compulsive Overeater in Recovery