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My co-worker brought pizza into the office this morning. Yep, I had pizza for breakfast. I knew I was going to. Since there’s only three of us in the newsroom most mornings, we’ve decided on a “Friday Feast” snack rotation schedule. As part of an end of the week celebration, one of us buys breakfast for all of us. We don’t go overboard, we only got one pie today. But it’s just a little treat, just for us, care of each other’s generous nature. I guess I started it when one morning I wanted Dunkin’ so I texted them before work to see if they wanted some too. Thus, the birth of this new Friday ritual, which will continue probably until the rest of the office comes back this fall. I’m not made of money, guys.

Either way, I decided to plan out my meals today, because I knew I was going to have exactly two slices of pizza in the morning. I had some leftover shredded chicken in the fridge from Thursday night’s quesadilla. So I figured for lunch I could throw some of that on a bed of lettuce, add a little lemon and tons of hot sauce. It turned out to be a nice substantial meal. So nice that I haven’t even eaten dinner yet. It’s past 10:30PM and for once I’m not having my three “square” meals a day. I’m hungry, but I’m choosing not to eat. It’s a choice I haven’t seemed to have made in a while, and I feel good enough about it to not even question it.

I’ve been giving in to a lot of my baser instincts over the course of the last year. I think this is a bad habit I had long before the pandemic began. It just exacerbated it. So I’ve been trying to get myself back on a track that I may not have ever fully been on. My weight has been an issue all my life, and I’ve been no stranger to sharing it with you in this space. But I need to mention this, if ‘m going to keep our conversation going about things happening and the worm turning and everything changing overnight.

It says something for me to just simply be able to make a decision for myself, right here, right in this moment. I may go to bed soon with an empty stomach. I may not. It would be very easy for me right now to order something via delivery and just pig out, feeding my craving for something sweet or crispy or cheesy or whatever I’m thinking. But for the first time in a long time, I wonder what I’ll feel like when I wake up knowing I made the better choice. Where I didn’t stuff my face in order to feel temporarily better, and instead attempt to push myself and see how far my willpower can take me.

It’s these little victories that I don’t feel like I celebrate enough. The problem is twofold. One: I think it’s lame to be a cheerleader. The high school emo chick persona never really left, I guess. And two, I would like some outside validation to let me know I’m doing okay. And that can be a tall order in such a harsh, cruel world.

I feel like a lot of people care about me, because I care a lot about them. I’m in a working environment that’s encouraging and kind. It’s a bond that’s strong and I’m grateful to have. But at the end of the day, we still have to have a working relationship. Until my co-workers are no longer my co-workers, it can’t ever really progress to a different level. I consider them my friends. My work friends. So it leads me to think: who knows what will happen when we no longer work together? Things change, people change. We may still speak. We may go our own way. We may fall in love. I’m open to anything. But as it stands right now, I cannot expect the kind of validation I’m looking for from the people I work with. It’s all so personal, and it does them no good to be thinking about my problems when they have to rely on me to get our job done. So I won’t burden them. I’ll just use my words to burden the entire internet I guess.

Either way, I’m grateful for my co-workers and I’m glad we’ve made this choice to intertwine work and food. In a way, I think it can help me plan my meals and make better choices for myself. It did feel good to have a plan today. Perhaps it’s something I can keep trying. I didn’t even take bags of chips from the endless baskets that have appeared in the kitchens. They refill them every three hours. It’s very tempting. But come Monday, I hope to make better choices in the morning. It does feel good to sit with it on an empty stomach.

But I must confess, as I wrote this, I had the Seamless website open. All I wanted was a little Dunkin’ delivery.

They’re all closed this time at night.

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