Eating for Power

As a stay-at-home mom I don’t always feel like I have power outside my household. Frankly, I don’t even feel like I have power to take a shower when I want or sit down and relax. The problem is sometimes I don’t like feeling powerless, even when the lack of power is my doing–me saying I want to put my kids first–and I turn to food.

I am powerless, half of the time, to culinary temptation.

I can’t always DO what I want or get my family to behave accordingly to plan so I eat. At least I can choose what food goes in my mouth.

Of course, this power is the kind that ultimately makes me feel like a failure. I look at myself and feel like a sub-par wife/mom/friend/daughter because I’m overweight so when I go out in the world I feel even more powerless.

But I am not a victim: I’m guilty too.

Guilty of not treating my kids and husband with the respect they deserve all the time. I feel powerless so I make them feel powerless too by not listening fully. Certainly, not doing justice to the ideals of attachment parenting. Sometimes I feel like I’m 85% great at fully supporting my children’s needs but that other 15% potential gets wasted. I’m too in my head and not present enough to always parent fully.

Do other moms feel this way too? Because for me the problem isn’t just about eating too much food–that’s more of a symptom–and if I can somehow work out this issue with my weight I truly think I’ll improve as a mom.

Power, it’s what we have as consumers of food and also what we have as parents. I love the idea of attachment parenting because it has to do with not making kids feel powerless. I don’t want my daughters to feel any more powerless then the world already does. As a person so entirely grateful for the gift that is my children not making them feel powerless seems like the least I should do.

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4 responses to “Eating for Power

  1. Funny how I just finished…..two….bowls of ice cream right before you posted this. Today has been trying. You bring up some really great points and I can relate to what youve said. I too feel like my weight/food problems are going to interfere with my mothering abilities. More than that though I think figuring out how to have a healthy, loving relationship with myself is the only cure for me being unhealthy and what jack needs to see. Unfortunately … Im not at that point.

    • Oh, Lori..I’ve been there with the two bowls, and the trying day. Olivia won’t stop eating and I can’t sleep. It’s hard enough to deal with our own emotions but throw in a moody baby and it’s hard to be perky and healthy all the time, or some of it 🙂 It makes me feel better that you struggle with food issues too. Maybe we can share healthy recipes or meals

  2. vegquestbayarea

    Food is such a hard one!! I have a sugar addiction – I cannot NOT eat sugar. And then that addiction has now been passed on to my kids – which I hate. I think to myself – if I could just not buy sugar, then they wouldn’t eat sugar, and then that would be awesome and I’d feel like a great mom! But then, I always do. I”ve actually contemplated getting hypnosis for it (I tried the NAET which didn’t work that well I don’t think). However, I do think it’s okay – there are worse things, right? We all do the best we know.. and no one can be or has to be perfect. Someone pointed out to me once that if we were perfect, our kids would think they would have to be perfect, and that would NOT be a good thing! The mere fact that AP is a part of your parenting style – your kids are more blessed IMO than many, many others. I think you (and you too Lori!) are beautiful 🙂

    • You are so kind and thoughtful. Thank you for your very nice words! And agreement on Lori being beautiful, and so are you Awesome AP Mama! 🙂
      So I was just reading an article on sugar cravings and it suggested substituting the more processed or less healthy sugary foods with fruit–not that you or I always want to pick up a slice of pineapple when we feel like pulling our hair out, but apparently for some people knowing what situations make you crave sugar and then coming up with a back-up plan sometimes helps. Thanks for reading and for commenting.

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