Tiny Bit of Crazy

A chronical of the laughter, revelations and transformations that are possible when you embrace the crazy

New Year’s Resolutions Progress Report July 2, 2012

Remember back at the beginning of the year when my bossy know it all, very wise BFF, over at Do These Kids Make Me Look Crazy? wrote my New Year’s Resolutions for me? Well, since we’re about half way through the year, we thought it was time for a progress report.

I have to admit, I took these resolutions much more seriously than I’ve ever taken any of the resolutions I’ve ever written for myself. I’m not saying my success rate will be any higher, but I definitely thought about them a lot more and have more guilt over the ones I ignored failed to achieve. Although, the year isn’t over yet, and like in grade school, a progress report is nothing more than a heads up to get your act together. I expect to report nothing different great things at the end of the year. And also like  school progress reports and professional performance evaluations, I’m full up on defensiveness an creative explanations.

Behold:

1) Find and make a home. A real home. Whether it’s by yourself or with your man or with a cute little kitten named Rhett. Find a place you adore and want to stay in for a long time. A place that feels like yours. It has to hold all your important stuff, like your shoes and your books and your random photos. I’d really like to add a caveat about keeping it orderly and clean-ish, but I feel that might make your place less yours, which entirely defeats the purpose.

Technically, I didn’t do this. BUT, I would like to encourage a more liberal than literal interpretation, in which case I’m not doing too bad.  I moved out of the crazy place I was living in, and into a (so far)  nice normal place, and I like the room very much and feel more comfortable and more at home there than I ever did in my last place. And Chris gave me a key to his place, which made me feel more at home there as well, so I think if you add up my place and his place, I’m at least more settled and anchored than I was when this was written. Grade: B-, and I suggest that it get carried over for next year. Bonus Points: my room is actually quite neat and orderly, which I’ll bet no one saw coming:

2) Do not text and drive. Ever. As your mom says, you need to “concentrate”.

I do a pretty good job of this although, in all honestly I could probably be a little better. Grade: B+. Bonus Points:  I NEVER talk while I’m driving without my hands free device.

3) Continue to stay in touch with your body. Exercise, nourish, and strengthen it in the best way you know how. I want you to feel and be healthy for a very long time. It’s not impossible that we’ll be in the same nursing home someday and I want you to stay cute enough to rock a colostomy bag.

I’d like to say I thought about this resolution a lot, but really, any achievements I’ve made on this point are coincidence. But that still totally counts. So, I got back into Pilates, and its made a huge difference in how my body and I get along.  Chris and I have also made an effort to be active as much as possible on the weekends, and I can now hike 3 miles without wanting to stab him in the eye, so that’s something. We also joined a gym (that’s technically still under construction, but whatever) but I’m very excited for their big indoor pool and Pilates/yoga room. OH, and I’ve also gotten really good at following my new low sugar, gluten-free diet and have learned more about what my body responds best too.  Most significantly I’ve learned that if I under-eat by even a few hundred calories a day, my body will retaliate by swelling up like a water balloon. So I don’t do that anymore. Grade: A. Bonus Points: I’ve taught myself to like buckwheat granola. Its got all kinds of raw, and “sprouted seeds” in it, which are super healthy (apparently) but taste suspiciously like dirt.

4) Decorate your own Christmas tree. Like a real one, where you go and pick out at least 75% of the decorations and put a lopsided star on top. May I suggest candy canes as decoration?

I totally get a pass on this one because it would be weird if I had decorated a Christmas tree between January and July. Ohhhh, but if I was smart, I totally would have gotten a tree and decorated it, just so I could get an A+ on this one. Damnit. Grade: N/A.

5) Get moving on this book we’re supposed to be writing. I look to you to be the leader on this project. Lead by writing, as I’m greatly influenced by peer pressure.

Ummm, well. Ok, here’s the thing. I have written a couple of essays that would go with the book, but then I started rethinking the focus of the book, and then I got caught up in learning how to publish books, which is totally going to help us when we do finish this book. And that is taking up every minute of my free time right now, so… technically, the book hasn’t moved forward. BUT because I’m becoming an expert at publishing and promotion, once we do finish the book, everything else will go so much faster. Grade: C++

6) Keep your standards high when it comes to your romantic partnership. I know this whole “grown-up relationship” thing is kind of new to you, but I really think you’re getting the hang of it. I would like to shake you really hard to ensure that you learn from all of my mistakes, but I think this long, drawn-out, whiny way that I communicate about my failed relationship seems pretty effective.

I think I’ve made some progress here. I’m much more comfortable with the whole “grown up relationship” thing than I was this time last year, or even six months ago. I’ve still got some work to do, but I’m actually pretty impressed with myself. Most of the time. Grade: A- (But maybe I should actually have Chris grade me on this one?)

7) On a somewhat related note; don’t be afraid that you’re going to screw up this whole love story that you and Chris have going on. You’re not. If it gets screwed up, both of you will be able to take a bow. So just . . . be present in your relationship. Recognize where you are emotionally. And please, don’t be afraid to plan ahead for the life you want to have together.

I’m working on it, and as I said above, I’m getting better. But I still have attacks of insecurity that make me ask, in all seriousness, if the fact that I don’t like roller coasters will one day make him feel like he settled. I see now the absurdity of that question, but at the time, it felt really reasonable. And I’m totally better at the planning for the future thing. I mean, I signed a year contract at the same gym as him for Pete’s sake.   Grade: B- Bonus Points: For doing this.

8) Keep storytelling. It’s a gift you have and it should be shared. Most importantly, make sure to post it on YouTube. If I can’t be there, then I need to be able to access it later.

I’m assuming you define “keep storytelling” as getting on stage and telling stories. Which I did. Once this year. BUT, if we define “keep storytelling” as “stay a part of the community, keep learning about the craft, keep finding new ways to stretch myself creatively” then I’m rocking this. So far this year I’ve: taught one class and one boot camp, directed my first show, started writing a weekly column for the SpeakeasyDC blog, which, by the way I also started and am the Managing Editor of, so…  Grade: A-.

9) Consider getting a kitten. Like, one you’ve picked out yourself and named after some random fictional character or a TV star from an 80s sitcom.

I wish! I want a kitten so bad. One that will cuddle with me, and chase imaginary bugs along the wall, and let me make funny YouTube videos of her…but kittens aren’t allowed at either of the places where I live. So really I’ve made the responsible choice in not following this resolution. Grade: A Bonus Points: I haven’t bought a stuffed kitten yet that I pretend is real.

10) Self-host your blog. Get legit, girl.

I have plans. It’s not time for this yet, but I have plans. Grade: C+

11) Tap into your insight when it comes to your own emotions. Listen to yourself. Listen for that little tingly noise that sounds when your comfort level has been surpassed. Once you hear it, do something about it. Talk to someone, write it out, sing in the car in your loudest voice. Just don’t stuff it down until it erupts in a flood of tears and incoherence. You’ve got a bunch of people who’ve got your back but we’re only useful when you communicate, even if it’s initially in a series of bumps and false starts.

I think about, and reference this resolution ALL THE TIME.  Usually when I’m crying incoherently. I think I’ve made some progress… Ok, so I WAS crying when I asked Chris about feeling like he’s settled for me over the roller coaster thing, BUT I was not crying incoherently. Grade: C-

12) Leave the country at least once in the year 2012. You’re the type of person who may very well get old and become a homebody who doesn’t drive and eats ¼ cup of raisins for breakfast every morning. You need to travel while you’re still spry and can figure out how to use a bidet and tolerate people with weird accents.

This might not happen. I was going to go to Denmark again this summer, but the discount airline stopped flying from the US, and as of now I can’t afford to pay normal airline prices to go to Europe. Plus, it ate up a lot of my vacation time last year and I’m kind of liking the idea of having flexibility for more domestic travel, like, ahem, trips to Charlotte, NC. For example. Grade: N/A Bonus Points: we could decide go to the Canadian side of Niagara Falls when we go visit my parents in August.

13) Make a three-year plan for your career. Map out something long-term and realistic, but challenging. It could be writing a novel. Officially becoming a freelancer. Searching the want ads until you find something that you’ll really love. I can’t pretend to guess what would be the absolutely perfect job for you, but I want you to focus on figuring it out. You are so talented and I would like you to be emotionally and financially satisfied by the work you do.

I think I’ve figured it out. I’m not ready to lay it out for public inspection yet, but I’ve got the makings of a plan and I think it’s a really good one. And might happen in less than three years. Grade: A+

14) Attend BlogHer’12 with me. I promise you, you will be inspired.

Did we miss this? Because I’m totally in. Grade: N/A

15) Challenge yourself physically at least once this year. Like, run a 5K. Swim across a small lake by yourself. Go camping without the benefit of an electrical hookup. Something outside of your comfort zone that requires the use of your body.

I was totally going to do a 5K run thingy, but it sold out before I could register. But, I did go to a giant amusement park and rode several rides, including a roller coaster, which was WAY outside my comfort zone, (and technically required the use of my body – there was a lot of walking and climbing into and out of seats. Fun Fact: I’m super uncoordinated when it comes to climbing into and out of rides) and I’m going to go back and do it again at least two more times this summer. I’m also going to go kayaking more than once this year, maybe one time in a solo kayak even, and that is definitely outside my comfort zone and requires physical exertion.  Grade: B

16) Acknowledge the fact that you are not some sort of grouchy curmudgeon who believes the worst in people. Yes, you had Drew pegged long before I did. Yes, you are better than me at ejecting people from your life who are toxic. But at the end of the day, you are this loving, positive force to the people around you. Own it. Own it enough to direct it toward yourself.

False. I AM a grouchy misanthrope, and my co-workers and anyone who calls my office will back me up on this. Grade: F

17) And lastly, I’m going to save the best for last,and quote your very words back to you. They’re brilliant. Never waste a second of your time or energy on anyone who doesn’t immediately find you hilarious, brilliant, talented, loving and perfect just the way you are.

Since I don’t like people very much its very easy for me to walk away from people who don’t find me hilarious. Not that that’s ever happened, mind you, but if it did, they’d be history in a nano second. Grade: A


You can go read her progress report on the resolutions I wrote for her, here. And I just want to say its totally not a competition.

(But if it were, I’d totally win.)

 

Buddha’s Diet November 23, 2011

Filed under: Food — Meredith @ 10:30 am
Tags: , , , , , , ,

I’m a slave to protein.

That’s what this whole diet has basically boiled down to: Protein, and my endless need for it.

It’s the master of my schedule, the ruler of my moods, and the deity to which I regularly bow.

Because that’s pretty much all I can eat. And when you only eat protein, it burns up fast. See the nice thing about complex carbs like the one I typical ate – with lots of whole grain and fiber** –  is that they are slow burning. Slowly burning into sugar, yes. But slow burning nonetheless. This is an attribute of carbs I took for granted when they were a part of my life.

But when protein is king, I can go from not hungry, to starving in less than 3 seconds. Every choice I make in my day somehow relates to, or is influenced by an opportunity to intake protein.

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I don’t want to sound like I’m complaining, because really, over all, this diet is the best thing that’s happened to me, health wise, in years.

Pounds and inches have been lost. (More inches than pounds actually, which seems impossible, but is apparently true and according to the doctor, not uncommon. But smaller is smaller, so I’m not complaining).

But more than anything, a lifestyle has emerged.

A lifestyle of mindfulness. Mindfulness about when I’m going to eat, what I’m going to eat, and of course, how much protein will be in the meal. I have to make daily decisions about whether and how much GF and sugar-free protein bars or apples, or cheese sticks, or nuts, I need to put in my purse.

Fast food is a thing of the past, we can’t eat anything out of a box, and very few restaurants offer us more than one or two options on the menu (although the few that do, like Mongolian BBQ, we patronize often.)

On Friday afternoon Chris and I start thinking through our weekend and what our schedule will be like, and before we can settle in for the evening, we have to make sure we at least have enough eggs, fruit and breakfast meat to make breakfast Saturday morning.

At breakfast we talk through our day in detail, thinking about where we’re going, what our food access will be, if we’ll need to bring food or come home to eat. If we’ll come home to eat, what will we eat, will we have time to cook or do we need something quicker.

Crock-pots are an invention of the gods.

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After a few weeks that all becomes second nature, especially to detail oriented planners like me and Chris.

But then there’s another level of mindfulness, having to do with correcting habitual eating and cravings.

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I realized that I used food as rewards- a diet sabotaging habit if ever there was one.

Several times a day I’d think, “I’ve made it through a hard day, I should get myself a cupcake,” or “I’ve had a great day! I should stop at Starbucks for a frap,” or “I just did the bare minimum amount of work I need to do to stay employed. Time for some M&M’s!” At first I just focused on not robotically steering into the Starbucks or bakery parking lot.

Then one day it hit me: “Why do I need a reward for every goddamn thing that happens in my life? Am I 4 years old? Should I get M&M’s for making a pee-pee in the potty?”

First I thought “Well, it wouldn’t hurt,” but then I thought “NO. This is no way for an adult to live!”Because, as an adult, I’m responsible for my life. I’m responsible for all of my choices and my actions. I shouldn’t need a reward to get through a day in a life that I created.

“But,” I asked myself, “what about when things go wrong, and you’re too sad to do anything but eat a cupcake one crumb at a time?”

That pulled me up short because, I mean, seriously, WHAT ABOUT THE CUPCAKES?

Well here’s the thing about the cupcakes:

They served as a pseudo solution for situations I didn’t want to resolve for real. Relationship trouble? Lets not look at the ways in which I’ve participated in letting him make me feel bad, that’s icky, I’ll just eat a cupcake instead. Pain from physical therapy after my car accident? Eh, getting perspective about healing time and the human body is hard, I think I’ll mope and eat a cupcake instead.

The sugar and the feeling of getting what I want would make me feel briefly better, but quickly disappear leaving me feeling lonely and sad again. A terrible cycle that has now ended.

I’m not saying I’ll never have another cupcake, but it will be when my sugar intake for the day has been low, when its GF, and when its only because I want a cupcake, not because I’m using it to hide behind. Because being mindful also means having choices. I can choose to have a peanut butter cup, or a slice of GF apple pie at Thanksgiving because I can make choices about other things I eat – skip the potatoes, go easy on the citrus fruit and pick carrots over corn so my sugar intake is as low as possible when I eat the pie.  I can pretty much do whatever I want as long as I’m always mindful of the big picture. Which makes me hate this diet a lot less.

Next, I realized that I mostly crave sugar and carbs when I’m dehydrated or just plain hungry. The body wants a quick fix, so it wants carbs and sugar. So I had to learn to ask myself what I was actually in need of – water? protein? just something in my mouth to chew?

What I didn’t expect to happen was that I eventually trained my body to crave what it actually wanted. When I’m dehydrated I crave water, when I need protein I crave cheese or meat, when I just want something to chew images of apples and carrots come to mind.

Swear to Protein, I’m telling the truth.

But it’s really easy to undo. One little slip – like eating rich chocolate desserts every night because you’re stuck in a hotel in the middle of the desert and you’ve only been able to eat like 20% of every meal and you’re sick of your protein bars and it’s not fair and a little bit of sugar isn’t going to hurt, and damnit why does everything have to be so effing hard all the time – and you kind of have to start the retraining all over again. But it is easier the second time around.

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I was explaining these details of this diet to my dad a few weeks ago, and he said “So its like a Buddha diet. It’s all about mindfulness.” Which is the first time I thought to put it into that context. Of course, if we wanted to be very literal, Buddha’s diet would be vegetarian, but I like to think he’s cool with my using his name this way. Mostly because Buddha is pretty much cool with everything.  But as soon as I re-contextualized this diet from a pain in the ass list of restrictions, to a lifestyle of mindfulness, everything got a lot easier.

For example, I’ve finally accepted that there were no short cuts anymore, that my idea of indulgent eating is adding kidney beans to my salad, and that I will spend an inappropriate amount of my life thinking about eggs.

And in exchange I have a clear mind, high energy levels, stabilized moods, a smaller waistline, and better functioning organs.

Seems a fair trade.

Except when I walk past a Starbucks and see a picture of their holiday drinks and wonder how many more times I can walk past before I run inside, order 12, and then sit in my car behind a dumpster pounding one after the other until I pass out in a pool of melted whip cream, chocolate curls and my dignity.

Those days suck. But mostly its, you know, the other way.

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**this is an after post edit for clarity. I realized that by just saying “carbs” as I did originally it was misleading and just plaing wrong. But I’d been eating complex carbs, and whole grain/fiber filled carbs instead of simple carbs like white rice, white pasta etc, for so long that I didn’t think about what I was saying.

 

I’ll Never Be Accused of Being A Foodie October 31, 2011

Today is the end of the formal 30 day sugar fast that was the kickoff to my new “eating lifestyle”.
Yay! Except that I’m so over (most) of my sugar cravings, and have adapted to my options so well over the past few weeks, I don’t really want to eat outside my diet.
Did. NOT. See that coming.

I’d planned to do a deep blog about all of the things I’ve learned over the past 30 days in terms of food, my body, my brain, Chris’s body, society, and American culture as a whole. I may also have some revelations about the state of the global economy and how to stop the polar ice caps from melting.

BUT.

Work and life is really busy this week, and I’m not going to have the time to write such a deep, informative, and dare I say it, life changing blog post for a while.

So since food is kind of the center of my life right now, I decided I’d just throw a blog together about what I’m eating.

For me and Chris the keys to success on this diet, is planning and creativity. I live in fear of getting totally sick of something, like say sliced deli ham, because if I take deli ham off my list, that’s like removing 25% of my options. Or something. I don’t know, I’m not a mathematician, but I do know it would be ugly.

Breakfast

Breakfasts are the most challenging meal of my day. At work I either eat some combination of hard boiled eggs, microwave sausage, fruit, or protein drinks.

On the weekends, we try to be more creative, because the idea that we could get sick of eggs keeps us both up at night. And yet… all of our breakfasts still include eggs…so there appear to be some kinks in our plan…

Moving on. You all remember the post about our Flower Power Eggs, right? Well, since then we’ve gone with more of a “throw a bunch of veggie’s into a pan with some eggs and meat and cook it up” approach.

Scrambled eggs with some tomatoes and cheese thrown in, some bacon and fruit on the side.

This was supposed to be a fritata, but then we realized we had way more filler than eggs, so we just scrambled it all together and called it a day. Sausage, tomato, broccoli and cheese.

Lunch

Lunch is a bigger issue when I’m at work than on the weekends, because typically on a weekend we don’t eat breakfast until around noon, so “lunch” is more a snack sometime before dinner. But at work, lunch is my personal challenge.

At first I made these big elaborate salads that required I spend at least 20 minutes chopping things up.

Then I started coming up with faster lunch options. This is Amy's Organic, gluten free Chunky Tomato Bisque, and a salad of: tiny shrimp, romain lettuce, feta cheese and a touch of vinegrette dressing. Not the most flavorful lunch I've ever had, but it got the job done.

I had a few bites of a flourless chocolate torte this morning (co-worker birthday) and the sugar nearly made my head explode, so I wanted a really basic lunch. Plain shrimp, frozen sugar snap peas thawed in microwave, then tossed in the toaster oven on 450 with sea salt for 2 minutes each side. Again, not the most exciting meal, but it hit the spot. And took me less than 10 minutes to make. Win.

I also made a couple of salads last week with either pear or apple on romain lettuce, with fetta cheese, walnuts, and vinegrette dressing, but forgot to take pictures because I was starving. But they were delicious.

Snacks

I like to think that snacks bring out my true creativity. Of course we have the standard apple/organge/banana/carrots/celery, with almonds, cheese or a peanut butter substitute like Sun Butter (made from sunflowers).

But then there’s the deli meat.

Chris started me into the habit of buying deli meat and then just eating it straight from the bag. But after a few occasions of standing in the kitchen at work self conciously shoving slices of ham or roast beef into my mouth, hoping no one would walk in and comment on my unorthadox eating habits, I got an idea.

I took a slice of cheese, and pilled two slices of roast beef on it, and then wrapped the cheese around the meat to eat it like a taco. I don't know why, but somehow I felt less self-conscious eating this way. Sometimes I put a second slice of cheese on top and pretend its a sandwich. Don't judge me.

The first couple of weeks of the diet/sugar fast were challenging because I was used to having granola bars or protein bars as easy portable snacks. But none of the bars I used to eat fit into my new diet. So I went on the hunt and eventually found a couple of options. This was one of them:

This sat in my drawer for more than two weeks before I was brave enough to try it. I think the "live" part scared me. But it was actually kinda good. And nothing bit back, so there's that.

But this my favorite power bar option at the moment. They are the perfect pre- workout snack:

It says its sugar free, but it does have sugar alcohols, which means...something. I don't really get it yet except that they are better/different than actual sugar...somehow...

This weekend we went out to run a quick errand and ended up at the outlets. About an hour into the outlet experience we realized we hadn’t packed a snack or lunch because we weren’t expecting to be gone so long. And one of the major challenges to this diet is that fast food is a thing of the past, and even places like Panera Bread offer few options because I don’t trust their salad dressings to be gluten free. But we wandered into the food court anyway, thinking at worst we could split some fries to hold us over until we got home. But we were actually surprised to find some diet friendly options. (I started to type “pleasantly surprised” but that would be a lie, because we were a little disappointing when we realized we couldn’t justify french fries). And then for another installment of “what the fuck happened to us?” we sat in the middle of the food court surrounded by pizza, burgers and fries, and ate apples slices,  cheddar cheese squares, melon squares and grapes, and tried to pretend we were enjoying it.

But you know what?

We would rather have had ANYTHING ELSE IN THAT FOOD COURT.

Seriously, if I could have eaten a slice of pizza or a burger and not felt like death for the next 24 hours, I would have. And I’m pretty sure that goes double for Chris.

But this is our life now, so the only thing to do is look on the bright side. Which for me is that I did not have to spend $200 on new clothes to go to this work conference next week because I’ve lost enough weight in the last month to fit back into my old, pre-gluten-allergy-making-my-body-go-insane clothes.

So at least there’s that.

OH, AND, today at the grocery store I found carrots cut into disc shapes! I don’t know why, but I find this extremely exciting.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go eat an apple with some Sun Butter for my snack.

Try not to be too jealous.

 

Flower Power My A** October 24, 2011

Filed under: Food,It Ain't Easy Being Me — Meredith @ 3:45 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

There isn’t a lot of room for creativity with this diet. Especially not in terms of the variety of foods we eat.

So we’ve started looking for ways to be creative with the way we prepare and serve those same few foods. Over and Over.

Eggs are big in our lives. They’re a big part of our weekend breakfasts, and hardboiled, often serve as breakfast/snacks during the week.

We’re in danger of getting sick of eggs, which would be a disaster. I’m not exaggerating. Our carefully constructed lifestyle of grain fee/low sugar eating would crumble the first Saturday morning we woke up and couldn’t face the eggs.

So Chris has put himself in the role of “Creative Director” for our meals. All of our meals, but specifically our weekend breakfasts.

I think he’s trying to distract himself (and me) from nostalgia of weekends were we just rolled out of bed and went to the bagel place.

This week he decided we should try a “recipe” he found on-line called Flower Power Eggs. He picked it because it looked like a quick and easy way to get out protein and veggies in – the goal for every meal.

I put recipe in quotes because really it was a self-explanatory picture and a little text about how fun and easy it is.

Ok, we didn’t actually read the text about how fun and easy it was. We felt like we got it all from the picture:

The finished product we saw on the internet.

Its sliced peppers and sunny side up eggs. Easy, peasy. Right?

I sliced up the green pepper while Chris got the skillet ready, and then I was put in charge of cracking the eggs into the peppers.

The egg whites spilled over the sides of the peppers, but for all we know that happened to the blogger too, since she conveniently leaves out a cooking picture.

And then…the finished product:

Our final product

NAILED IT.

And don’t worry, I know the egg “flowers” look lonely on that big plate, but we also had bacon and the rest of the peppers for our breakfast, see:

PS. While Chris is ready to cut Flower Power from the breakfast roster, I’m planning a rematch at some point. I will not be bested by an egg and a pepper.

 

All Good Things Must Come To An End. Evidently. October 3, 2011

I guess on some level I always knew it was too good to be true.

If I’m honest with myself, I’d have to admit, that I expected to have this bomb dropped on me at several different junctures over the past few months.

And yet.

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And yet,  it was still a shock when it actually happened. My brain worked overtime to reinterpret the words I was hearing as my stomach churned with anxiety and grief.

Even long after I’d left that little room, previously a place of calm and good feelings, the words looped endlessly through my brain:

“You need to cut all the sugar out of your diet.”

Take a minute if you must to absorb the gravity of that statement. I mean, it took me several days, so I understand.

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Now, I imagine you’ve probably got a million questions running through your head.

Such as:

“But why??? You’re young and have always seemed to have an impressive ability to metabolize sugar.”

“Who told you this and where the F* do they get off?”

“What about the cupcakes?! My god, the CUPCAKES!”

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And these are all very valid questions. Ones I’ve been wrestling with for several days now.

I’ll start at the beginning.

Remember in my last post I talked about how I’ve been…”off” for a while, but had a huge improvement after going gluten free? Well, in the course of investigating my gluten allergy, the doctor also took a vampire’s worth of blood and ran almost every test listed on the little lab sheet.

And what we learned is that my body is all kinds of buggered up.

My thyroid and pancreas have gotten lazy, digestive enzymes have gone missing from my stomach and white blood cells have run amok.

Most of these things are pretty easily correctable with minor interventions (like digestive enzymes and pro-biotics in pill form).

But that lazy pancreas… Now if that sonofabitch doesn’t decide to get with the program all kinds of bad things await me in the future.

So the solution to that problem is to eliminate sugar from my diet.

ALL SUGAR. As in, no bread or pasta (not even gluten free), definitely no candy or refined sugar, I even have to limit amounts of “good” things like certain fruits.

I had just gotten used to eating gluten free; had just found the best brands of gluten free pancake mix and recipes for gluten free brownies.

I’d even found a cupcake store that sold gluten free fudge cupcakes with cookies ‘n’cream icing! Which I will now never have again.

Sometimes life just doesn’t make sense.

The doctor tried to reassure me by saying “You adapted so well to the gluten free diet, I have no doubt you’ll adapt to this new diet just as well.”

I decided not to point out the fact that sugar may qualify as the longest running relationship in my life outside of my parents, and as such, isn’t as easy to cut out as wheat.

Sugar was who I turned to when I was sad.

Sugar was who I celebrated with.

Sugar could get me moving and improve my attitude when nothing else could.

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In short, Sugar solved everything.

Can carrots do that? Or Grapes?

NO, they cannot.

Has a hard-boiled egg ever turned a frown upside down?

No. No it has not.

And the worst irony of all? Sugar is my salve for breakups. But where do I turn for comfort after a break up with Sugar? Hmm? Seriously, I’m asking, because I have no idea.

.

But on the other hand.

It’s not like it was the healthiest of relationships. I mean what with it being all one-sided and co-dependant-y.

Like any dysfunctional relationship, it took time, energy, and attention away from other parts of my life.

And now I’ve got digestive enzymes to replenish, and white blood cells to chase away, and a thyroid to wake up.  I don’t have time to sit around savoring frosting or making gluten free french toast!

And I always suspected that my incredible ability to metabolize sugar was going to end one day. I just didn’t think it would happen so soon.

.

So Sugar and I are going to take a break. A four-week break, to be specific. Starting today.

And at the end of those four weeks, we’ll reevaluate. And who knows…maybe we’ll be able to strike up some sort of friendship.

Like…maybe instead of getting together every single day, it’ll just be once or twice on a weekend, at a wedding, or if I have a really bad day…

.

I know what you’re thinking. You think I’m grasping at straws. Telling myself stories so the break up doesn’t hurt as much. And maybe you’re right. But you know what? I’m 18 hours into this break and already white knuckling it through every goddamn minute – and when did minutes get so long anyway? Huh? So if I want to tell myself lies, I’ll thank you to allow me to keep my illusions.

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Sorry. Withdrawals are a bitch…

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But it’s not all bad news. Chris, in his apparent campaign to be crowned “Best Boyfriend Ever”, has decided to join me in this new adventure in clean eating. I tell him it’s not necessary, but at the same time,I’m pretty sure that if he were to sit down across from me with rice complementing his plain chicken breast and steamed vegetables, I might just be tempted to reach into his throat and pull that rice out so I could have some…

.

So he’s probably really just protecting himself. And rightly so.

.

Its probably going to be a long and interesting four weeks…

And I’m going to blog about it whenever I can, mostly because if my hands are busy typing, they aren’t reaching for those dman cookies in the kitchen of my office.

Wish me luck.

 

 
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