baseball rituals; food confidence.

I spent last night in one of my favorite summer locations: Yankee Stadium.  We made it through eight innings until this happened:

downpour at yankees stadium

Regardless, there was such electricity radiating throughout the stadium – the eardrum bursting thunder, the literal sheets of wind and rain, the screams of the sopping crowd.  This is how I know I’m a city girl – I may be an introvert, but living constantly amongst crowds is still exhilarating.

Let’s back up a few hours though.

carrot tahini sandwich ingredientsleslie food: tahini carrot sandwich

My family has a tradition associated with baseball games, dating back to my father’s childhood.  Piling into the car on Friday afternoons, my sister, father, grandfather, and I would begin the drive from Connecticut to the Bronx, chatting about stats, pitchers, and listening to stories of the old and classic games.

We parked the car under the subway tracks, where my sister and I would turn our heads upward in fascination, never imagining that we would ride those very trains to the stadium later in life.  The four of us crossed the street to Epstein’s, a classic Jewish deli, while my grandfather pointed out the Bronx block he grew up on just around the corner.

My father and grandfather slowly savored their favorite indulgence: corned beef and pastrami on rye, with lots of Russian dressing and mustard.  It was tradition, and to this day, I can’t imagine a baseball game without the deli associations.

Now that we meet our parents at the stadium, my dad always offers to order sandwiches for us.  When I’ve turned it down, the only answer I can come up with is, “I just don’t feel like it.”

There have been times when I’ve felt self-conscious about my food choices.  Ordering a salad when no one else does; craving ice cream when everyone else turns down dessert.  But what I am finally learning is: as long as you make choices that satisfy what you want, nothing, and no one else’s opinions really matter.

I can’t say I don’t eat this or that, because I don’t classify myself under any food categories.  But I have reached a point where I can sincerely honor the choices I desire.  So, I enjoyed my own sandwich in the company of my parents, the Yankees, and the New York humidity.  An ideal summer evening.


Do you ever second guess your food choices?

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12 Comments

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12 responses to “baseball rituals; food confidence.

  1. “as long as you make choices that satisfy what you want, nothing, and no one else’s opinions really matter.”
    I agree, but I also do think there are some circumstances when you should follow other people’s choices, esp in a large group. But you’re right that we shouldn’t be so self-concious about our food choices…truthfully, nobody really cares!
    I also second guess my food choices a lot, esp when I order richer and more calorie-dense meals than others. But you know, as long as I enjoy my food and have fun with others…that’s what matters!

  2. I think being in tune with what YOU want is so important…to follow the signals your body sends is something that is really hard to do. If you feel like a deli sandwich, go for it. If you feel like tahini, that’s a-okay. Your body knows what it wants. I find myself second guessing a lot of the choices I make- I worry that people are judging me and assuming that I am eating XXX because of my past history/being ‘afraid’ to eat stufff. It’s hard because I am still learning what I do/don’t like and I don’t know if I genuinely DO prefer my hummus salad or if I’d rather have something else, you know? Oy. it’s complicated enough in my own head without my family making me more confused about what i want to eat 😛

  3. Brandi

    i totally agree with you. it’s so strange that we can feel so intimidated simply on what other people are eating compared to ourselves! It seems like food just shouldn’t be such a big deal, but food is such a big part of life and celebrations that it takes more of a focus that it should in some situations.

    but we should always just feel comfortable eating what WE want and need when we want it. definitely easier said than done, though 🙂

  4. I always second guess my food choices because I assume everyone is judging me based on what I eat. Last night I went out with a few friends and I ordered a gigantic salad and pita bread with hummus, and every time I went in for more hummus and pita, noticing that nobody else was touching it, I thought that surely they would be judging me. But in the end, it shouldn’t matter what others think and I know that, yet it’s so hard to let go. I totally relate to what you wrote above and often struggle with it. New goal: stop caring what others think, or stop thinking that others actually care, because I’m sure most of them don’t.

  5. I just found your blog and it’s adorable – love your writing!

    Second guessing my food choices is something I really struggle with in social situations. It’s easy as pie at home in my comfort zone but I’m a big social eater and tend to follow cues from others – and sometimes I end up regretting doing so. On the other side, when I let myself choose that salad when noone else does or pass up on the pot luck desserts at work I do sometimes feel super self-conscious that everyone is judging me. You have to own those choices though and know you’re doing something that makes you happy.

  6. I always feel like people judge me on what I’m eating. If I’m eating a salad I think people are thinking “she must be on a diet” then if I eat ice cream or chocolate etc I think people are thinking “greedy cow should go on a diet” I know I shouldn’t, I mean I don’t think that when I see people eating. It definitely has more to do with today’s society of women wanting to be thin and being judged by their size.

  7. i love this post! for so long I became stressed about what others would think of my food decisions — i would drive myself crazy feeing as though everyone was judging me and i was being scrutinized for what i was eating! now i’ve realized .. in the simplest terms.. who the heck cares?!

    thank you for this empowering post and wise words! you are such a great example of strength and courage!! 🙂
    lots of love,
    Jenny

  8. Leslie!!

    I am so glad you are getting more confident about food choices — or at least exploring what makes you nervous sometimes. So, so proud of you.

    And thanks for the comment on Mel’s site! Glad you liked my neurotic yoga story!!

    xoxo

  9. Rain on the ball field. No fun! 😦

    I don’t really second guess my food choices. If I ate it, I ate it. I’ll balance it out later.

  10. i ❤ the yankees.

    good for you for standing by your choices. i struggle with the same thing, and over time it does get easier. but it takes a while, and it sounds like you're on the right track.

  11. “I can’t say I don’t eat this or that, because I don’t classify myself under any food categories. But I have reached a point where I can sincerely honor the choices I desire.” – You could not have said how I feel any better.
    The weekend was really interesting when I slept over and spent a day with somebody who was my exact opposite when it comes to food. We discussed different things and I felt empowered to stand by my choice of bananas and water when she suggested we go to McD’s for breakfast. She doesn’t cook at all and only had bananas at her place. The food I take in are my choices (which may be affected during social situations) and no, I won’t care what others will think of me.

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