You are what you eat
A while ago someone sent me an email that correlates your personality to your favorite dessert choice. It caught my attention because it was oddly accurate.
If all of the eight desserts listed below were sitting in front of you, which would you choose? You can only choose one:
1. Angel Food Cake
3. Lemon Meringue Pie
4. Vanilla Cake With Chocolate Icing
5. Strawberry Short Cake
6. Chocolate Cake With Chocolate Icing
7. Ice Cream
8. Carrot Cake
Keep reading and you will soon enough find out what your choice says about you.
I had dinner with my mom the other night, and her favorite dessert is a crème puff. When she ordered, it made me laugh. The email was fresh in my mind, and her choice was so fitting to her personality. My mom seems tough, but beneath the exterior she is really light and fluffy at heart – really delicate and “light”-hearted, just like a crème puff!
Crème puff was not on the list, but it was so appropriate for my mom that it really got me thinking… how often have you heard the phrase “You Are What You Eat?” When I was reviewing which personality traits were allocated to which dessert, I was amused and surprised at the accuracy of the definitions when I shared it with several of my friends.
Growing up I remember a sticker on the refrigerator that would greet me every day, “Life is short… eat dessert first.” I loved that saying, which is ironic, because at that time I wouldn’t eat dessert at all, nevermind eating it first. In fact, there was nothing in my life that even felt or tasted sweet…
For a time, food for me was nothing more than an aspect I could control in my life; I had no desire for it in the least. In fact, I gained strength in not desiring it at all; to be able to dictate when I should eat versus reacting to my body’s desires. At the time, I believed I deserved the very minimum in life, and food played heavily into that belief – I didn’t realize the complete correlation between the two. In other words, I felt so emotionally empty inside that I made myself physically empty.
I can still remember my daily eating regimen. Everyday for breakfast I would have one cup of black coffee with sweet and low, half a grapefruit or cut papaya followed by a two-hour workout. For lunch, a large bottle of water – 1.5 liter Chrystal geyser, which I carried everywhere I went. During my last college class of the day, around 4pm when I would feel my energy levels bottom out, I would drink the remainder of my water while sucking on a cinnamon jolly rancher to get a little energy. I know what you are thinking, but when you are starving yourself, a jolly rancher will give you quite the sugar rush. On days when I felt I would pass out on the freeway driving back home, I would have a date or a few raisins. For dinner I would have steamed vegetables (usually Brussels sprouts) or vegetable soup – with no oil.
My concern with food never began as a desire to lose weight; I had always been a healthy and consistent weight my entire life. It was a way to gain control of my life at a time when I felt everything was out of control. The result was a 3-year battle with anorexia and body dismorphia. My perception of myself during those three years was distorted. It was the darkest and saddest time of my life. I felt so alone, so lost, and without a clue as to who I was.
Throughout the process, I incessantly asked myself, “What is propelling me to starve myself nearly to death? Why would I do this to myself? What is it that makes me feel so empty? What is so unfulfilling in my life that I would hurt myself in this way?”
I have never believed that anyone was meant to live a life of unhappiness – even during that time of my life, and yet for some reason I did not hold that same belief for myself. I didn’t feel that I deserved love, or happiness, therefore I didn’t give myself the permission or the voice to express any desires for myself, “How dare I ask for anything?”
Every day I would go into the bathroom, and conduct a pinch-test – grabbing bits of skin between my thumb and index finger to ensure I had no fat deposits. Sometimes I did this more than once a day (if I’m honest, I did this anytime I passed by a mirror in private.) It was a thorough investigation I performed every day, and yet I still could not see what harm I was doing. In order to heal, I first had to SEE what I was doing to myself, and that happened one fateful morning.
I was in the midst of my morning pinch-test investigation, and I caught sight of a reflection in the mirror, a skeletal, virtually unrecognizable stranger stared back. I was horrified. I mean truly horrified. Where was the reflection that I was used to staring back at me for the first 18 years of my life? I broke into a sweat and started to panic, screaming for my mother at the top of my lungs, “MOM, MOM, COME MOM!” shocked by what I had done to myself.
My mother burst through the bathroom door, panicked herself, because during that period of my life she was concerned that my heart would give out at any time, from lack of nourishment. It was the first time I could see what I had actually done – the skeleton that had been created by none other than me. My mother held me as I sobbed and screamed, “Oh my God, what have I done?” After having finally SEEN myself and realized the damage… the damage I had done.
Later on in my life, once I reached a deeper understanding through my studies in Kabbalah, I came to call this moment the Gift of Sight. Although my moment of clarity was only a brief five minutes, it was in that moment that I knew I had a problem. I needed to fix it, and I had to believe that no matter what false “sense of reality” I would see after that moment, it was not true, no matter how real it felt.
There is a portion in the bible called Re’eh, which means “To See.” It really relates to the revelation I had at the time. Re’eh is about the ability to see our outcome. We are given the ability to SEE the blessings and curses that manifest according to the energy with which we act. When we can understand something, we say, “I see” referring to our cognitive understanding of a concept, not the actualization of a physical manifestation.
In that moment I saw it all. I could see where my choices and behavior were going to take me, and I made a conscious decision to change the outcome while remaining realistic about how difficult changing would be.
Kabbalists say that each and every blessing, moment of joy, and life event has an essence, a physical presence, which each and every individual is MEANT to see.
Imagine how different life would be, how the choices we make would differ if we COULD physically view their outcome from either a positive or negative action?
Over those three years I did a lot of soul searching! I found me. I felt like I found my soul again – the truest aspect of my essence, which became so covered and masked through my high school years; acting in way and participating in things that brought me down and made me feel empty. I remember this one particular day, as I was looking though a childhood album of myself, I was overcome with emotion, crying; it had saddened me to see myself as a child, because I felt like I had lost my simplicity and purity.
Through great effort I rediscovered my simplicity, I discovered my voice, and over time I learned to listen to it, respect it, honor it and develop it. It’s that voice that got me HERE today.
Listen. Stop. Hear YOUR voice. Don’t ignore it, don’t medicate it, integrate it… because your voice is YOU, and you are in constant flow.
Today I can tell you that I have the most wonderful and loving husband, three pretty special kids, an amazingly lovable dog with epilepsy and my dessert of choice is Lemon Meringue. Sometimes it’s a toss up between Lemon Meringue and Carrot cake, but maybe that’s because I’m moody. And hey, life IS short… so eat dessert first.
What is your favorite dessert and what does it say about you? What dessert did you choose? Share your dessert of choice in the comments section.
1. ANGEL FOOD CAKE
Sweet, loving, cuddly. You love all warm and fuzzy items – a little nutty at times. Sometimes you need an ice cream cone at the end of the day. Others perceive you as being childlike and immature at times.
You are adventurous, love new ideas, and are a champion of underdogs and a slayer of dragons. When tempers flare up you whip out your saber. You are always the oddball with a unique sense of humor and direction. You tend to be very loyal.
3. LEMON MERINGUE
You are smooth, fun, & articulate with your hands, you are an excellent caregiver and a good teacher. But don’t try to walk and chew gum at the same time (that part doesn’t apply to me. LOL) A bit of a diva at times, you set your own style because you do your own thing. You shine when it comes to helping others and have many friends.
4. VANILLA CAKE WITH CHOCOLATE ICING
You are fun-loving, sassy, humorous, not very grounded in life; very indecisive and lacking motivation. Everyone enjoys being around you, but you are a practical joker. Others should be cautious in making you mad. However, you are a friend for life.
5. STRAWBERRY SHORTCAKE
You are romantic, warm and loving. You care about other people, can be counted on in a pinch and expect the same in return. Intuitively keen. You can be very emotional at times, but are a true person in every way. You like to do things for yourself and help others learn about themselves.
6. CHOCOLATE CAKE WITH CHOCOLATE ICING
You are vivacious, always ready to give and receive. You are very creative, adventurous, ambitious, and passionate. You can appear to have a cold exterior but are warm on the inside. Not afraid to take chances, and you will not settle for anything average in life… and you love to laugh.
7. ICE CREAM
You like sports, whether it is baseball, football, basketball, or soccer. If you could, you would like to participate, but you enjoy watching sports… you don’t like to give up the remote control. You tend to be self-centered and high maintenance.
8. CARROT CAKE
You are a very fun loving person, who likes to laugh. You are fun to be with. People like to hang out with you. You are a very warm hearted person and a little quirky at times. You have many loyal friends. You were meant to lead and teach others – you are a wonderful role model.
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I loved this blog! Thank you for sharing your experiences with all of us. Your words are truly enlightening because they are so real and deep. Your personal evolution that you describe in this blog is a big inspiration for me.