Louise and Julia you are my comrades for sure!!
Louise, I LOVE this: “The great thing is, I remembered how much happier and better I feel when I eat more sensibly (not perfectly!). That meant working through desire quite a few times, but I just kept doing that, fully, every time it came into view. Knowing something is an addictive desire, and naming it as such is so helpful to me – it grounds me and helps me see what’s happening instead of going into a fog of overeating.” And how funny about using the mask to mutter to yourself when you have a desire. I’m going to steal that.
Julia, if it’s any consolation, I feel the AD after each meal, almost always. It’s just that most days it is only a little niggling thought, not too intense. Here’s something else, with practice, I feel like we just get better at calling it out, not that it goes away.
I noticed upon returning to work after 6 months working from home that I was suddenly MUCH “hungrier” after lunch and dinner, that I had all these great “reasons” for needing more food. I was able to catch myself and saw it was just my AD which hadn’t been activated in that context in 6 months. ALL the things came up – wanting to eat more after lunch (instead of prepping for teaching or sitting in a long meeting), wanting to binge on my way home from work after a very frustrating day of work (just like I had done for months back in Jan/Feb), wanting to take extra food after dinner (well that one I know well). Anyway, in every instance I went “Oh that’s just my AD” and I am going to allow it and move on and I’ll be really glad later. And man am I glad.
But it does take allowing for discomfort. It wasn’t “easy” in the moment every time, but it was so much easier after not having to live with the consequences of overeating.