I am aware that part of it is habits and some of it is passed on behaviorally from several generations back. I used to watch my parents and grandparents having a cocktail before dinner every night. For them the single cocktail was often doubled, tripled and so on until the pre dinner wobble was sometimes present. Often there would be wine with dinner and an after dinner drink as well. Prodigious amounts of libation were consumed for generations before I came into my majority. I fell into line and learned to enjoy pairing good wines with dinner and acquired tastes for the sweet cocktails of youth and then the robust adult cocktails as I grew older. I worried for a minute or two whether I was an alcoholic and stopped drinking enough times for long periods of time with no effort to realize that I wasn’t. (Now I know there are some 12 steppers out there who may be reading this who have all sorts of wisdom about these thoughts and multiple theories around denial and enabling, I want to thank you in advance for thinking about me and wanting to help me and I know that I am NOT an alcoholic or an addict. I am REALLY clear about this, so if you try to help me or suggest I need help I probably will not follow your advice.)
Well why I bring this all up is that I am realizing that in a program that is about consciousness: A) it is truly difficult to eat a conscious meal when impaired by a drink or two. B) I have noticed that alcohol before a meal makes me feel hungrier then I am. In my pot smoking-hippie days I would have said that it gives me the munchies, a desire to eat almost anything and eat it in copious amounts. So that even if I am cooking a great meal that has been well planned and executed, I will taste more then I need to taste while cooking and eat more then the 1/3 of what I have prepared and most importantly of all I will eat unconsciously, except maybe for taste. I do notice that I still taste the food well, I just don’t care much what happens after it leaves the taste buds. I have noticed that if I don’t drink a cocktail before dinner or while preparing dinner and then have a glass of wine with dinner this problem pretty much disappears.
Yet I still like a cocktail in the evening. So I think what I am going to work on is two different fronts. I am going to have a cocktail on 1/3 the amount of evenings that I normally do and have 1/3 the amount of drink in the cocktail. So that would mean that I can have a cocktail 2.3 nights a week (interesting how the math works out isn’t it?) This is not about deprivation it is about restraint and moderation.
This is great news for my conscious dinner eating.