Denise (again) makes a very good point by mentioning my silence on the emotional issues that have helped hoist my chubby little fist full of snackies. I'm going to take a stab at revealing some of the emotional issues I have, and the way they have twisted my relationship to food.
Demon #6 - Recognition and Appreciation
Food has long been a way to reward myself. From my earliest years:
"Finish your dinner, and you can have a popsicle."
"Get good grades, and we'll go out for ice cream!"
Let's not forget the Starving Children in China argument. I'm making it sound like my parents were plying us with sweet rewards daily. This isn't the case at all. But times of celebration, large and small, generally called for something yummy.
In my adult life, a job well done has always been marked by a little something edible. As an office worker, a balanced ledger meant it was time for a visit to the vending machines. As a new mommy, every breastfeeding session 'earned' a little treat. The thankless day-to-day grind of dirty diaper and dirty laundry and dirty dishes was sweetened by a little "thank you, Jenny!" in the form of a Pumpkin Spice Latte, or a handful of cookies. This last year has brought me major improvement on that front. No longer do I 'celebrate' each folded load of laundry with a fun-sized Snickers (or three) from a hidden stash. No longer do I 'celebrate' the end of the day by polishing off a pint of Ben & Jerry's.
However, the snacking urge remains. I believe that there are several complicated emotional triggers behind this. My need for appreciation and recognition is abated and soothed by chocolate and sweets. I realize that I cannot continue to feed this need with food - but I am not sure how to fill the hole. At the risk of sounding like an ungrateful wretch, I will admit that I find many of my hausfrau duties to be completely mundane. Not only that, but I'm not particularly good at them. Which brings me to Demon #7.