By Reba Phelps
Some of the best advice that I never took was, “Do not eat off of your kid’s plates.” When I initially heard this unsolicited advice I was pregnant with my first child and had no intentions of doing this in the first place. It just seemed odd and something I had never even thought about. Why would I eat my kids food? The friend went on to tell me that it was the worst habit that a mom could have.
Looking back, she was correct. It is definitely the gateway drug to overeating. Being raised during the “Happy Plate” generation made this habit virtually impossible to break. My parents firmly believed in waste not, want not…particularly when it pertained to food. I can remember sitting at the kitchen table for hours on end because I had not finished all the food on my plate. This should have made me loathe food, but it took the opposite affect.
Unfortunately for me, this was the beginning of my dysfunctional relationship with food.
I can almost remember the day that I polished off the rest of my daughter’s chicken nuggets and macaroni and cheese without a care in the world. The guilt soon set in, but, I told myself it would only happen this one time and I convinced myself that I was still hungry, but I wasn’t. I was simply stressed out and while cleaning the kitchen I decided to treat my body as a garbage disposal.
Oh how I wish I could say it was the one and only time. That was the very early stages of the demise of a healthy relationship with food. There were times when I was cleaning the kitchen, I was actually eating leftover food from my children’s plate. Cleaning the kitchen had a new meaning for me. Binge eating for no reason, followed by a strict diet that even the super skinny super models couldn’t obey…It would always seem too impossible, so this was followed up a complete throwing in of the towel. This was a vicious cycle that grew and grew.
No pun intended.
Sometime during the early fall of 2020 I started taking an inventory of my horrible habits and decided I do not want to live the rest of my life with a complete food dysfunction. I hear rumors that there are humans who only eat when they are hungry and stop when they feel satisfied. And, I also hear they make healthy choices without feeling like it is a punishment. I really want to be one of those normal humans who only use food as fuel to nourish the body and not to sooth whatever is stressing me at that moment.
Having attempted every diet known to mankind I have decided that there has to be a better way to a healthy relationship with food. As with everything else in my life, as a last resort, I am turning to my relationship with Christ for help. My faith has seen me through the worst of times and this is one of the areas I have not yet totally surrendered to the Lord.
I am Christian with so much faith in our maker. He has healed the leapers, he has parted the seas, he has made to blind to see, he has raised the dead… so why can’t he just make his dearest child, Reba, skinny? I ask him that simple question all the time and he never responds to me with results. When I wake in the mornings I am still trapped in the plus-sized body that I had the day before. I cannot imagine why he would take a vow of silence on this teeny-weeny request.
Would you believe what the still small voice that whispers to me actually had the audacity to say?
“You have not put in the work”. The plain-spoken, still small voice would be very accurate as I have never fully committed to a healthy lifestyle and prayed asking for forgiveness of treating my body like a garbage disposal. I decided that my first steps towards being normal is tracking my food, honestly listening to my body to find out if I am truly hungry, bored, or just trying not to be wasteful. I also decided to whole-heartedly pray before each meal.
I know that God has big (no pun intended) plans for me and the healthier I feel the better I can accomplish his purpose for me. The scripture I am sharing with you was found in my daily devotion on the day that I decided that something had to be done with my food addiction.
I clearly understand that God is probably not talking about my weight in this scripture. I know he loves me unconditionally. I think he was just winking at me and telling me that I can do this when I found it.
“Dishonest scales are an abomination to the Lord, But a just weight is his delight”. – Proverbs 11:1