Easter, another holiday which appears to be fueled by chocolate and candy.
When I was a kid I had this friend, I would go to her house after school and hang out on a weekly basis. I would eat my dinner with her family, and it was always something frozen, I would look forward to these meals, because we didn’t eat frozen foods at home. One day I went there, just after Easter break, and I noticed a lot of Easter eggs on the dresser. I asked who they were for, she said they were hers. She probably had 15 different full size Easter eggs.
I was shocked.
How did she end up with so many Easter eggs? Why hadn’t she eaten any of them already?
I got to a certain age and I used to hear the same thing each spring from relatives ‘we will give you cash, you don’t NEED the chocolate’. I was thrilled to get the cash, but also a little disappointed that I wouldn’t be getting chocolate again.
It felt like I was being treated differently to my peers.
I can’t really blame them for not getting me chocolate, at the age of 6 I hid under our stairs and broke off pieces of a chocolate bunny I had won at school. I re-wrapped the foil in my best attempt to hide the evidence that I couldn’t wait until Easter Sunday.
Six years old.
You see hiding food was instinctive for me, chocolate had become this ‘naughty’ food, that I shouldn’t have because I was overweight. I felt deprived, so I binged on it whenever I could.
When I was 16 and in the midst of my first real dieting phase, that Easter Cadburys brought out these little egg boxes with four eggs and a spoon. I was so excited for Easter, I couldn’t wait to have just one of these eggs. I carefully opened the box, unwrapped one egg and made it last all evening, I was satisfied and it took me another few weeks to finish the box. This is the only occasion I ever remember not bingeing on chocolate.
As I have got older, Easter has become about having a break from work, and spending time with family. I have had Easter eggs, and they have lasted longer than the weekend. As Greyson gets older I am reminded of my childhood, he had Easter eggs this year, he also had new PJs and a book, and he was more excited by the latter.
I am fascinated that small memories from childhood have such an impact on our attitude to food as we get older. Hiding chocolate at the age of six, created a mindset that I couldn’t shift until my mid twenties. I had created this scenario, I am overweight, therefore I should not be eating chocolate, if I eat it then I must hide it from others.
From my personal experience it wasn’t just the chocolate that was causing my weight problems, it was the mindset I had with food. The more I deprived myself the more I would binge, it had become a viscous cycle.
This year my husband bought me some mini eggs, and a chocolate bunny, it wasn’t a lot of chocolate, but just enough to keep me feeling satisfied. They lasted me a few days, and because I now allow myself to have dark chocolate everyday, I wasn’t as bothered by it.
I also didn’t have to eat it, hiding under the stairs.
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