Tuesday, June 18, 2013

If nothing changes, nothing changes.

[Credit to Nicole for that title, which is my new mantra.]

Let’s talk about the fact that in about four days, I’m doing a five-day sugar detox.

Yes. You read that right.

A five-day sugar detox.

Me. The girl who eats a bag of marshmallow circus peanuts nightly and, most likely, other candy and cookies on top of that. The girl who goes shopping and comes home with something sugary every single time. The girl who would live off of vanilla cake batter and frosting if it was nutritionally sound.

I signed up for Nicole’s Sugar Detox program after Vegas for a few reasons. I had been thinking it over before Vegas, but when a bunch of BiSCuits joined the program, I took it as a sign and threw my myself into it. And guess what? It’s the fucking best thing ever.

There have been several times when, as I was reading the different materials, tears welled up in my eyes because finally. Finally somebody understood that it’s an addiction, that it’s not easy to give up, but also, that it’s accomplishable.

My brother and my parents have said a hundred times, “just stop eating sugar, it’s as simple as that.” Why I listen to them, I don’t know. My parents refuse to work on their own unhealthy habits and my brother is some magical unicorn who’s been able to make dietary changes with the snap of his fingers. (Seriously. He had little trouble going to vegetarian to gluten-free to a two-week diet of flounder and rice for an allergy test.)

It was always so disheartening because it isn’t that easy for me. If it were, I would’ve stopped already, no? They convinced me I was lazy and lacked willpower. They dismissed arguments that sugar is addicting or that I need to connect with the mental/emotional ties to sugar before starting to let it go. My brother basically scoffed at the idea that I was participating in a sugar detox that wasn’t just “Step One: Stop eating sugar.”

Even having someone telling me it’s okay, and it’s common, and it’s normal, made me feel ten thousand times better. Dismissing someone and blaming them for things that are not 100% in their control isn’t going to motivate them. Trust me, I’ve experienced it far too often with my family and nine times out of ten, it defeats me and nothing gets accomplished.

The program has also made me more confident to challenge my dependence on sugar because I am armed with information and coping mechanisms, along with a bunch of really specific guidelines (which I love, because I’m a rule-follower). I’m actually looking forward to five days of absolutely no sugar – I feel like I’m up for the challenge, despite having a stressful time at work and missing a weekend with Erik to do it properly.

The truth is, I've realized I'm strong enough to get through life without pacifying every problem with sugar. It's time to flex my muscles and show sugar who's boss.