Denial is a real thing, you know. For a long time I rolled my eyes a little at the idea, which was solely being used in my life when talking about addiction. By then, I’d long since passed denial on my road to rock-solid compulsion. I knew what I was doing. I just couldn’t stop.
I decide to look back through blog posts this morning, though, just for a few minutes, and I saw it firsthand. There I was, mentioning from time to time that my weight seemed to be decreasing a little every week. It seemed like a fine idea to me, even healthy.
It was actually the opposite of healthy, and denial was strong in this one, since I had the numbers right in front of me. Back in June 2015, when I tried to switch my diet around and avoid so much refined sugar, a common reaction in my family once my grandson’s diabetes was diagnosed, I started keeping careful track of what I ate and what I did. More careful than I ever had. My goal was health, and if I lost a few pounds along the way I could probably stand to do that.
I knew that at certain points along that particular nine months or so, I lost my appetite completely, barely able to eat a few bites. This never lasted very long, so I just noted it and tried to find things to perk me back up. I was aware that there were some days that I didn’t eat more than 700 calories, which is nearly a starvation diet. Try to avoid that, I thought.
It was right there, though, in that careful spreadsheet I kept. I just never saw it. I didn’t have days when I only ate 700 calories. I had weeks.
All better now. But it’s made me a believer in the lengths any of us can go to hide from ourselves. The truth is harder to swallow, but then swallowing is sort of the point.