I chose crying in a restaurant over eating the entire menu.

Couple wearing bags.
Last week, I told you how I had lost five pounds by eating only when I was hungry and stopping as soon as I was satisfied.

For a recovering emotional eater like me, this means being willing to allow my emotions to surface instead of stuffing them down with food.
I told you about how messy and loud it can be.
When I was alone. In my car.

This week, I had a harder choice to make.
I went out with one of my best friends for dinner.
Trendy new restaurant – been wanted to go all summer.
My friend works long hours during the year, so summer dates are a rare opportunity to connect and enjoy each other.

As we walked in, she saw people she knew, and went straight to their table to talk to them.
For twenty minutes.
As I sat at our table, I could feel my unease growing.
And I noticed that I wanted to order the entire menu.
Including the meat.
Which I don’t eat.

Normally, I’m pretty comfortable being alone in busy restaurants,
so she would have expected me to simply have enjoyed the atmosphere while she was catching up with her friends.

Not now.
Not since I lost my mother.
I felt very alone and vulnerable.
When she finally joined me at our table,
I told her how upset I was,
and she reacted in a lighthearted and defensive way,
and I started to cry.

So much that we needed to leave the restaurant.

Seriously.

Those of you who know me will know that this is very unusual behaviour for me.
My friend was pretty shocked.
She didn’t believe me at first.

But I knew that I had 2 choices here:

1. order and eat the entire menu in order to stuff my emotions so far down that I could stay there and pretend that I was okay,

or

2. dissolve into a puddle.

So we left.

And I dissolved in her car.

And we drove around and talked,
and connected on a deeper and more intimate level than we ever have
in our 20 years of friendship.

And then I came home and ate dinner.
Because I was pretty starving by then!

This feeling your feelings work can be pretty messy sometimes.
And hard.
But it’s soooo worth it.
And it beats eating food you don’t even taste every time.
Hands down.

Not all of us would eat the whole menu to avoid feeling pain.
I have clients who would have ordered six pairs of shoes from Zappos,
or drunk a bottle of wine
while waiting for their friend to join them.

We have all developed our own ways to numb our pain so that we can pretend we
are okay
when we’re hurting inside.

It really helps to have a safe space to share your messy
when you finally decide you don’t want to numb anymore.
I can stand by you.
I’ve helped so many women find peace.
I would be honoured to be your safe space.

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About Forever Free with Bev Aron, Certified Weight Loss Coach

I work with emotional eaters who desperately want relief from emotional eating, but can't seem to do it on their own. They know they need to eat less and move more, but can't figure out why they aren't doing it. My specialty is showing them the why and the how. I also work with parents who are worried about their children's weight. I help those parents encourage their children to have a healthy body image and a healthy relationship with food.
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