It’s hard to get psyched up for Easter now that I’m educating myself about sugar and also trying to lose weight this week –
As soon as that sentence flew out of my fingertips: lightbulb!
Hold up. Easter shouldn’t be about chocolate, should it? Just like Christmas shouldn’t be about wine, or a birthday shouldn’t be about cake (and/or wine).
[A note on religion: we are not particularly religious. My husband and I are still grappling with how to introduce and teach religion to our kids. So I’m writing on the topic of Easter acknowledging that it is a religious holiday that we do not celebrate in a religious way.]
So, taking religion out of it, what is left, besides chocolate? Family. Fun. And a little bit of magic, as my kids still believe in the Easter Bunny and delight in hunting for eggs around the yard (much more than I delight in waking at 5:30am to hide them).
Now, what is more important, family or chocolate? Easy question. So why am I so bummed to be on an Easter candy boycott tomorrow? I should be focused on having a lovely morning with my sweet clan, not on denying myself sweets.
It’s those pesky neural pathways! Just as I had always linked enjoying holidays with imbibing alcohol, so too have I always linked enjoying holidays with indulging in treats. And there is certainly nothing wrong with the occasional indulgence! But when removing the indulgence from the picture actually causes me to don my cranky pants, that is a problem.
I am on the sugar struggle bus. It is difficult for me to imagine enjoying Easter – or any other holiday – without treats. Tomorrow will be my first candy-free Easter ever. I know that if I were at my goal weight, tomorrow would be a cheat day. But I’m not. I’m 3lbs over my goal, with a Lifetime weigh-in looming. I could still choose to have a cheat day, but I know I would feel super guilty. So I’m going to take this opportunity to consider the possibility of enjoying Easter without chocolate.
This is not quite as scary as my alcohol-free birthday or Christmas. But it’s not easy to anticipate, either. I don’t want to feel tortured. I don’t want to miss chocolate. But I probably will.
And guess what? That is ok. This is a process. An experiment. All I can do is stay true to my commitment and see how it feels.
The boycott is on. Happy Easter to all who celebrate, however you celebrate!