Saturday, June 16, 2012

Not Just Another Recipe for Chocolate Cake

Far from it! This recipe is for those of us who eat too much, or too little.
Do you crave food even when you know your body’s nutritional needs have been met? Do you get out of bed at night to eat when you know it’s really sleep you need? Or do you avoid food even when others are telling you that you’re already too thin, but you feel fat?
I know these feelings . . . the first two are my own, the third is one that has been confessed to me many times by others. They all belong to the condition called disordered eating, which is bingeing - or self-starving - that is emotionally driven.
Karen R. Koenig, LCSW, M.Ed., is a therapist and author of many books (her newest is Nice Girls Finish Fat ) who specializes in treating Eating Disorders. To my surprise, she reviewed my book, Someone to Talk To, on her blog, Normal Eating.”
if you are a disregulated eater who is trying to fully heal from deep emotional wounds,” she wrote, “this memoir gives you a recipe for getting from here to there and will speed you on your journey.”
When writing the book I thought about people suffering from loss – of a person, of health, home, job, etc.,– but I had not specially considered those who have lost control over their eating. But of course, people engaged in any compulsive or addictive behavior are self-medicating to ease suffering, and whatever the reason for our emotional discomfort, we’re all seeking peace and calm within, the cessation of pain that feels beyond our control.
Karen went on to say, “Many of you have suffered loss through death, chronic illness, divorce, miscarriage, and trauma, and have gotten stuck in a food or weight obsession which has prevented you from healing. You may be depressed, steeped in grief or victimhood, or feel immobilized to take any, or more than minimal, steps to reclaim your life. You may have turned to food or a weight preoccupation to bring you joy, solace, or a sense of purpose rather than step out into the world to find the real deal. If you’ve already started on the path to health and happiness, this book will lay out road markers; if you’re still mired in suffering, it will show you how to take those first steps. Someone to Talk To will take you out there with Samantha and teach you how to live again.”
I am deeply honored to have my book acknowledged by an expert in the field of Eating Disorders for its potential to help the millions of us who seek happiness where it cannot be found, in a dysfunctional relationship with food. The ingredients of the Recipe for a Healed Life are even more than I realized. They turn out to be health-giving alternatives to using food to make ourselves ill. 
I hope people who struggle with food will find this Recipe, and from it find healing.