It is time to go over the river and through the woods to other people's houses and food stuffs and preparations and eating patterns. Whether I am traveling into a happy gathering or an emotional minefield I have to know thyself and pack my own Bullsh*t Meter. If I am faced with an array of choices from many other kitchens I guarantee you I am going to find at least one to eat 'as a treat' and conveniently 'forget' that it could be a trigger. I have to watch that I do not show up at the party in HALT mode: TOO Hungry or Angry or Lonely or Tired. Any one of these can nudge me over into food amnesia. I need to confer with my personal BullSh*t Meter.
Here is an example of a conversation at many holiday meals at the homes of others:
Didn't you consider that the cranberry jelly was sweetened with sugar - the way it has been made for the past 50 years? I make it without sugar at home so I just thought.. . . . Just thought what? Did you ask? You know very well you did not. Do not take that unless you can be satisfied with a spoonful instead of the portion you are eyeing right now.
What did you think was that white sticky stuff on top of the sweet potatoes you dolloped on to your plate? I thought I could brush the white stuff off. Oh come on, stop calling it white stuff. You know damn well it's marshmallow. Oh, and by the way, marshmallows still contain sugar - nothing new there. I know you brought your own plain baked sweet potatoes. Why don't you go and have one of those.
Did you consider there was butter in the mashed potatoes when you saw it melting all over the top of the pile? Did you take that butter into account when you took your scoop? I don't think I got that much butter. . . Then why did you lick the residue on your hand like a crazy woman. Account for the butter and skip that extra gravy.
The dessert table is over there. . . are you really going to look over there? Well, there might be something I can have. Go eat a fruit off the centerpiece and stay away from the dessert table. There are desserts I can eat just one of. Did you bring any of those here today? No. Is anyone else here on your food plan? No but there are people on diets. Does that mean you can eat whatever they can eat? No. Then your magical mind is just trying to cause trouble. Get away from the dessert table. Put this piece of spearmint gum in your mouth. Wash some dishes or walk their dog. Be useful. You will feel good about you and about today's food when you stop pondering the 'what ifs.'
People are going to say I am being too restrictive and that it is unhealthy to deprive myself at the holidays. Are you eating a full meal with protein, lots of vegetables and some complex carbs in the form of whole grains? Is there fat in the turkey and the oil on the roasted squash? Yes. Is it a healthy and satisfying meal when there is no holiday attached to it. Yes. Are any of those people keeping the pounds off your body? Are any of them willing to gain weight for you? If they are, let them eat the stuff they want you to have. You do not need it. Are you willing to gain weight to make other people happy? Why would that make them happy? That is for another post. . . .
Are you going to go to every party with me this season? You bet your keeping the pounds off ass I am!