We all do it. We all have some vice that we can or have fallen victim to cover our pain and or shame. I have to admit mine is Sugar. This week I watched This is Us and it was the Season 1 Christmas episode where the mom asks the daughter if she did this to her. The daughter is severely obese and is contemplating gastric bypass. That is really something to think about, did my parents to this to me? I actually think it is much more complex and something to look at in an overall view. It is too difficult yet simplistic to say one person made this happen. I think I remember sugar as a childhood reward. I can attach it to many memories that make me feel so good and happy. It would be great to recreate those with the loved ones who have passed. The Easter Egg hunt for Chocolate Easter Eggs at my Aunt Kay’s house every year. The french toast with Mrs Butterworth syrup that my grandmother would make for me if I asked when staying at her house. The visits for Ice Cream at Cock Robin on my Grandmothers lunch break near Hines Hospital with my grandfather. The trips into Fannie May with my grandparents to pick out my favorites. The raiding the pantry at Aunt Kay’s because Aunt Jo had brought home seconds and we could have a treat. The birthday party cakes. I could go on and on and I am sure you can too. The memories we attach to the food we are eating with the people we love(d) that are so precious to us. When we are down or sad or lonely we miss those feelings and those people. The state of Love that I attach to the food is not healthy. When I miss those people it is so hard and I ache so much to be with them and tell them about my day. I miss my Uncle Tommy and want to share Pizza and wine with him. I want to tell him what I think about sports, politics, and most of all my life. But I cannot do it in that sense because he went before me. I cannot wait for him to greet me when my time on this earth ends. I know I will see all the loved ones then but sometimes it is so overwhelming here and I want to recreate that love feeling. I gorge the pizza, overeat the chocolate trying to bring peace or eat the whole quart of ice cream. The only thing that I feel afterwards is guilt and shame. These are NOT the goal nor do I want to associate those feelings with those people I love and miss so much. So I have to stop the behavior. Dear Sugar, You are a shallow ghost. You do not bring me any of the love, happiness or joy that I seek when I dive deep into you. I let you wash over me and try to cover the pain, feeling of loss or unhappiness. You do none of that, you mess with my body in all kinds of ways that I know are not healthy for me. You destroy me from the inside out. I gain weight, I feel shame and instead of it being a positive feeling I hate myself. I beat myself up and you do not care. You do not love me. You do not fill me up with good. You put a coating on me and my cells that I cannot tolerate any longer. I hope you understand that I need to break up with you because I am worth more. I want to enjoy my life. I do not believe your lies any more. The fact that the Mainstream Advertising world has shoved you down my throat literally and figuratively must be stopped. I know you are now in pretty much in every food. I must monitor you and break up. I would be a lie if I said I wish you well. I hope you stop the torment of everyone and they find the Peace I am seeking. Joyce Dear exercise, You and I have been frenemies for a long time. I wanted to reintroduce myself so we can have a fresh start. I think we will have a great future and I hope you will go easy on me since I have ignored you for so long. Sincerely, Joyce We cannot recreate memories in food, we have to find new ways to remember the good times and feel that positive love that we had in those moments. I am working towards it by journal work and this blog. I wish you peace, love and happiness. Enjoy the moments and I think enjoy the meals, but realize it will not recreate the happiness or fill the void someone has left.