When you’re at work early one Tuesday morning and you hear your boss place an order for a couple of dozen chocolate croissants to pick up and bring to the office the following morning.
Let me explain.
We have this tradition in our office that anytime someone is going away on holidays they bring in treats for everyone on the last day before they leave.
My boss is very generous and goes all out in bringing in these very decadent treats. She gets the same order every time and places the two huge boxes in the kitchen for everyone to help themselves.
Had I not been in relapse for a year, I would never know what these pastries taste like. However, last winter I was ‘in the food’ and I finally tasted one of these sinful looking things. The good news is that I held off for most of the morning so there was a reasonable dent in the order, and I was only able to eat three of them, discreetly. Of course I didn’t stop there on that day, far from it, I’d just gotten started. What that lapse did though was make me vulnerable to my boss’s future vacation plans, if you will.
So this past week, I wasn’t feeling all that great or particularly strong and food was loud. I didn’t know my boss was going away until I heard her on the phone asking for her ‘usual’ order saying she’d be in to pick it up at 7:15 am the next morning. My eyes started to fill with tears, yes I was driven to tears over pastries that I wouldn’t even have to deal with until the next day!
I reached out immediately to someone, another food addict, by email saying I didn’t know if I had the strength to deal with having to be at work for a day with these things taunting me. She asked me what I was prepared to do to protect my abstinence. Would I book a vacation day, or was there some other way I could think of to deal with this? That question may sound extreme, even ridiculous, to some, but it’s just that serious for me. If you’re a food addict, and want freedom from this insidious compulsion than sometimes the solution will be a little extreme. The question is always what am I willing to do to protect my abstinence?
The next morning I missed my alarm and slept in, not on purpose, and went straight to a two hour medical appointment that was previously scheduled. When I got to the office most of the offending goods were gone, and what remained was boxed up in the kitchen out of sight.
I made it through the afternoon and left the office grateful that day. Grateful I didn’t have to deal with the aftermath of a binge that once started who knows where, when, or if it would stop.
Taking the action of reaching out for help, immediately, is what really saved me that next day. This is not an issue that can be dealt with in isolation, none of us can do this alone.
From the path….