Noticing

I noticed a few things over the weekend – some delighted me, some bothered me. 

First the delightful:

I have reached that sweet spot where I am now cognizant of the fact that good food makes me feel good, and not only that, my taste buds prefer it. I keep trying to give my old favorites (read: processed/sugary) second, third, and fourth chances, but I have finally really honestly come to accept that those foods just don’t taste as good to me as they once did. And I can’t deny the difference in how I feel when I eat certain things. I did an accidental experiment over the weekend wherein I ate very good foods all day Saturday and I made a mental note of how great I felt all day long. I started the day with a whole wheat pancake w/ 1tbsp of peanut butter and a side of fresh strawberries. Lunch was a salad with greens, chicken, tomatoes, sunflower seeds, and a couple of other things I can’t remember right now, but oh em gee it was delish. Afternoon snack was a deep chocolate Vitatop (needed a chocolate fix – yum!) and dinner was grilled steak with sweet potato and more salad. So good. So, so good. I had energy, was in a good mood, felt really balanced. 

Aaaaand then came Sunday. Since it was Father’s Day, I made Belgian waffles with bacon and fried eggs before church, then since I was was starving after church, I ate another Belgian waffle folded over some bacon – one of those “I just need some food in my stomach NOW” kinda things. Then I ate a pbj on wheat bread, because…hangry. I thought the hubs would want to go out to eat, but he was pretty happy in his recliner, so the waffle/pbj ended up being my lunch. We went to see my dad in the afternoon and I had a piece of my mom’s homemade chocolate pie (totally worthy), then we met my husband’s family for pizza that evening. I had a salad and one slice of pizza. All day long, I felt tired and cranky. I took a 2 hour nap at home after church and still felt lethargic. I just felt plain awful the whole live long day (which delighted my husband to no end. Happy Father’s Day, honey!!). 

So lesson learned: whole, fresh food makes me feel GREAT while processed, sugary food makes me feel (say it with me) HORRIBLE. I’ll be sticking with healthier fare from now on. 

 

And now for the thing that bothered me:

My daughter is 13 years old, tall and thin. She plays sports, so she’s gaining some muscle now and is in no way overweight. More than once this weekend I overheard well-meaning family members make comments about how much she eats. And yes, she does eat a lot – Girl can put away some groceries (it’s impressive, really). And of course she eats a lot – SHE’S A GROWING GIRL. She also sleeps a lot too because, again, GROWING. What really ticked me off is that each time a comment was made toward her, no one even thought of making a comment about how my 17 year old son eats, and he was right there sitting next to her the whole time. Why is it okay to comment on how much a growing teenage girl eats? My SIL, when we were at the pizza restaurant, said to my daughter as she was getting a slice of pizza ‘That’ll make you fat!” but said nothing when my son ate 3 slices of pizza and 3 hot wings plus a salad. Now, I believe my SIL was joking when she made her comment, because my SIL is every bit of 300 pounds herself, but still it made me want to come over the table at her like a spider monkey. I don’t believe that any of the relatives meant any harm or were being snarky or anything like that, but it really bothered me that they would even dare to make comments to a teenage girl like that. To my daughter’s credit, she just ignored all of it and let it roll off her back (at least that’s how it looked on the outside) – she’s the kind of girl who isn’t afraid to tell someone they are being rude or let someone know they’re out of line. So maybe I’m just projecting my own issues onto the situation, but the whole thing left me feeling rather Mama Bear-like. When any comment was made, I added my own comment: “She’s just the size she needs to be” or “She needs fuel to build those muscles” or something along those lines. I just want her to be proud of her body and everything it can do for her. She’s so impressed with her newly found calf muscles, so I encourage talk about how high her legs can jump (she does volleyball and high jump in track) and how her body is amazing (in terms of functionality). Young girls have such fragile self-esteems, it just makes me cringe when anyone (even well meaning family members) makes unhelpful comments. The whole thing just left a bad taste in my mouth. 😦 

I hope I can keep my kids from struggling with the same food issues I have struggled with my whole life. I’m trying to show them what it means to be a healthy eater – I just hope I haven’t started too late. 

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6 thoughts on “Noticing

  1. I think that society thinks food and fat shaming is the best thing for girls, and the sooner the better. The one ones you can’t do that with are the ones that go anorexic, but hey, we’d rather have an anorexic girl than a fat one any day! Haha – NOT. That’s society. However, I will say that people make an effort to comment on what BOTH of my kids eat, so we’re gender neutral jerks up here apparently. What I don’t understand is why anyone thinks they need to make ANY comment at all. What I try to remember is that when a comment like that is made, it’s actually about the commenter – and trying to see how that relates. Is it likely your sister was feeling bad about what she ate and decided to share, or something like that… ?

    Anyway, YAY for feeling good by eating good! Nice job! I’m the same way.

  2. When I was growing up I always remember people laughing and joking that my brother could eat so much, so much so that they were more encouraging it than anything. But if I was the one who got an extra plate at the family function I was being pulled aside by my mom to tell me Aunt So-and-so was concerned that I’d been eating too much. Unfortunately no one was there to tell me that the time I grew 6 inches in less than a year was probably the time I was going to be eating a bit more. Because of this I spent three years fighting an eating disorder, and now I’m slightly terrified that I might someday have a daughter who could experience the same thing. It’s encouraging to hear that you know your daughter and are encouraging her to love her body.

  3. I am learning how different foods impact my body. I think by just reminding myself of how it impacts me it helps me make better choices without feeling like I am giving something up. I am so glad that you are aware of how what people say about eating could impact your kids. I so wish my parents had been more aware.:)

    Leslie
    http://www.weight4baby.com

  4. Hi Fellow BLT’er. I agree with Carla that it is never too late to start eating healthy and show your kids the way as the things they learn now will help keep them on course for life. They see your efforts. It does matter!

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