Thursday, February 3, 2011

Let Them Eat Cake or, Aversion Therapy: Is it Worth It?

Yesterday was my birthday. Due to circumstances, the folks at my office celebrated today, with lunch and the traditional cake. Now, I was approached by the woman who organizes such things, and asked point blank if I wanted to have a cake or not. As my co-workers are very dessert friendly, I would have felt bad saying "Hey, let's have Jell-o!", I declared that if a yellow cake with chocolate frosting were to magically appear...I wouldn't say no.

 Lo and behold - the cake appeared today. Smelled heavenly - thickly sweet, massive sugar and chocolate. I sliced large pieces for my co-workers; I didn't want to bring any home. I cut a piece for myself. Not too big, not too small .

That first bite was fantastic. I haven't had anything even close since August. I savored those first few bites. Then words from my dear friend rang in my ear - and I stopped eating halfway through. I was satiated.

The next hour, however, was horrible. I was sick to my stomach. The sugar was heavy in my gut, and a few times I thought I was actually going to be ill. I commented to a co-worker how bad I felt - and he admitted the same. We are both eating a lot healthier these days.

My stomach clearly wasn't happy. I've changed my body's internal chemistry, its preferences have been reset to the factory settings - and the sugary mess abomination.

I said yes to the cake not because I really wanted it - but because I didn't want to let others down. Upon reflection this evening, I see the correct thing to do should have been to politely decline cake, and have the luncheon we had ( the Mediterranean wrap I had was good and Clean ) stand as my celebration. Instead, I chose others over myself.

Is the right move a selfish one? Could I have said yes to cake and not eaten any? ( I seriously have been thinking about that ... )

I don't know the answer - but I do know, the wrong answer made me sick. I used to crave birthday cake. After this afternoon's experience, I can't believe I'm saying these words: I don't think I want another piece of cake.