In Which I Give My Guilty Conscience a Well Deserved Break
Giving the stress a rest and taking good care of yourself.
By Kathryn Foss
Editor's Note: While this columnist is no longer writing for dLife.com and we have ceased to update the information contained herein, there is much to be read here that is still applicable to the lives of people with diabetes. If you wish to act on anything you learn here, be sure to consult your doctor first. Please enjoy the column!
February 2010 — Here we are, firmly entrenched in 2010. By now, my new year's resolutions are usually but a distant memory. The vows of losing weight, eating better and going to the gym daily have slowly morphed into maintaining current weight, eating ok and getting to the gym weekly. It's tiring to constantly lower your expectations. Deep down the guilt over not treating my body the way it deserves weighs heavily, persistently niggling at the back of my guilty conscience.
It's there each time I eat something I know I shouldn't. Donuts? Just one won't hurt! (Ok, maybe two.) Pizza? If I get the thin and crispy crust, it won't affect my blood sugar as much as the deep dish, so I'm actually HELPING myself. The donuts and pizza always lobby well and end up seeming ok at the time and probably didn't wreak too much havoc on my blood sugar, right? Yea, right. The guilty conscious is there when I intentionally wait longer than 2 hours after I have eaten said donuts and pizza to check my blood sugar, because I know if I check it when I should, the number will be much higher than I want it to be.
I'm being sly and tricky and sneaking around, but from WHOM? Myself? How crazy is that? Myself knows what I am doing, I mean, I'm there all the time! Who am I fooling? I'm a grown woman with a very real case of diabetes who regularly finds excuses to not treat my body with the kindness it deserves. When I write it down here, I feel such shame. The truth is shocking in black and white, and the funny thing is how much I've believed the lie that I can make mediocrity acceptable.
After my daughter was born, I endeavored to do better. To do everything in my power to gain control, not just of the diabetes, but of myself. No more empty promises. I want to be fully present and fully able-bodied as my girl gets older. To be a good example of health and fitness to this impressionable little human. That's so easy to say, but in reality, tackling demons is a tall order. I have to be willing to get to the root of the problem, to redefine my relationship with food. Oh, you didn't know you could have a relationship with food? Yes, you can, and my relationship with food is very intimate. I think about it all the time. At lunch, I am thinking about what I will have for dinner. I read cookbooks for fun. When on vacation, I go to grocery stores and explore the same way others would explore the local castle or ruins. That is why I can never stick with any diet past lunch.
No more. I want the power back. I want to control the food versus having the food control me. So, I started. I'm actually on a really strict protocol to lose weight and get healthy. I'm slowly learning the difference between feeling empty and feeling hungry and just because I am empty, doesn't mean I am hungry. That's deep, huh? It's a slow process, but it is so rewarding.
My ultimate goal is to reverse the diabetes. Is it possible? I don't know because I have never actually stuck with something long enough to find out, but so far I'm doing pretty well. I've lost 10 pounds and 11 inches and my fasting numbers are going down. I'm doing it. Clawing my way to good health and to the body and mind that I deserve. My resolutions are holding fast, one meal at a time.
Read more of Kathryn Foss' columns here.
dLife's Viewpoints columnists are not all medical experts, but everyday people living with diabetes and sharing their personal experiences, most often at a set point in time. While their method of diabetes management may work for them, everyone is different. Please consult with your diabetes care team before acting on anything you read here to find out what will work best for you.
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