Chipmunk--the Clinicial psychologist/psychiatrist
Now--aunt of Later
Minny--older black woman who is totally channeling Octavia Spencer from The Help. No joke!
Marge—older white woman with a raspy smoker voice. She just makes me think of a Marge.
This week, Blondie took the night off, and we had a guest leader whose first name was a cute little furry animal---so for privacy sake, I'm going to call her Chipmunk! Using the actual cute little furry animal might be too much of a giveaway.
Chipmunk was there to help us learn to recognize why we eat, and what triggers our eating habits. It's a topic that would have been interesting to pursue more in-depth, as I know that this is one of the issues I need help with. What DOESN’T trigger me to eat is a more valid question.
Some highlights of the night are below. Unfortunately, my BBF was absent because she’s on an awesome vacation, where at last email, she was having an eating blowout. And Amber was also absent for reasons unknown. Tennessee was also missing again. I hope he didn’t give up already! And apparently, in Ambers absence, Dundalk plopped herself RIGHT NEXT TO ME for the night, so I got to be HER new Best Friend. I actually spent most of the class with my head turned away to avoid breathing in her cigarette smoke and unwashed state of dress. At least Amber is clean, even if she's wearing PJ's.
Chipmunk: Okay, now I want you to think about reasons why people eat? What kind of triggers involve food? What makes you eat when maybe you really aren’t hungry?
Now: Celebrations. People always want to celebrate things with food.
Chipmunk: Good, anyone else?
Chipmunk: Okay, that's a good answer as a trigger food--but I'm actually looking more for trigger behaviors.
Minny: The smell of it cooking. The way it tastes.
Dundalk: Spicy food!
Chipmunk: Okay, so spicy food makes you want to eat?
Dundalk: I LOVE spicy food. I can eat it all the time. (wait for it--contradiction to follow!)
Chipmunk: Okay, but what I'm really looking for is an external trigger that makes you want to eat. Things like celebrating an event. Birthday parties, for example.
Chipmunk: Yes, depression can be a trigger.
Marge: No, I meant a funeral. You know, when people bring a lot of food to the house.
Chipmunk: So not actual depression, but just the availability of food?
On recognizing hunger:
Chipmunk: How do you know when you’re hungry? What signals you to say that you need to eat?
Now: Your stomach growls.
Chipmunk: Good. Anyone else?
Dundalk: I don’t know. I never get hungry.
Chipmunk: You NEVER get hungry?
Dundalk: Nope. I’m forced to eat three times a day, but I don’t ever get hungry.
Chipmunk: You’re forced to eat?
Dundalk: I’m never hungry, so I have to be forced to eat, and I have to take pills for nausea because thinking about food makes me sick.
Marge: I get a headache.
Chipmunk: (to Marge) Good example. Sometimes, that’s an indication of low blood sugar.
Dundalk: I hate eating (another contradiction—we are in a weight loss class!).
Chipmunk: (you can literally see the wheels turning in her brain). I see. So you are never hungry? You are forced to eat, and you take pills just to contemplate eating?
On signals for being full:
Chipmunk: Satiety. Do you know what it means? It means to be satiated, or to feel full or complete. So, what does being full feel like?
Now: Being full feels like being satiated.
Chipmunk: Yes, but I just said that. What does being full FEEL like to you? How do you know when you are full and when to stop eating?
Minny: When I’m stuffed and I can’t eat another bite!
Dundalk: When I’ve eaten so much I can’t possibly eat anything else, and I’m vomiting because my stomach can’t hold anything more?
Chipmunk: Yes, when you have eaten so much that your body can’t hold anymore food and is forcing elimination, that would be the point that you are past full.