I’ve mostly adjusted to my new way of eating. I don’t make perfect choices all day long every day by any means, but I’m definitely making better choices most of the time. Every once in a while, I’ll try eating the “old way” – and I’ll quickly be reminded, even in just one meal, that I can’t. There’s no going back, no matter how good I’m feeling.
Breakfast has always been my favorite meal – and going out to breakfast has been one of my favorite things to do. Brunch is absolute heaven. Was absolute heaven. I can’t eat most of my favorites anymore – certainly not all together at once. I can have a little here and there, but the thrill of mixing all of my favorites together and eating until I’m too full to continue … that’s a no go at this point.
I went out to breakfast this morning for the first time in over two years. I used to share a veggie omelet and strawberry pancakes with my daughter when she was little. That was my ideal – half of each. We’d also drink hot chocolate and orange juice. Those were the days!
There was nobody who wanted to share like that this morning, so I got the combo meal that had scrambled eggs, bacon, hashbrowns, and two big blueberry pancakes. I haven’t had pancakes in years and was also so thrilled to be out – I just wanted to feel that old feeling of enjoying with abandon, you know? I had water to drink – I wasn’t going totally off the rails! LOL
When the food came, I put one of the pancakes on another plate and offered it to the table. I only ate half of my hash browns. I didn’t even eat the whole pancake. I was indulging, but also being a little careful about it. My small efforts in that direction weren’t as effective as I’d hoped they’d be.
I noticed on the drive home that I was starting to feel a buzzing in my body. By the time I got home, I felt high as a kite. I took my blood sugar reading. 258. The highest it’s been in memory. It’s now almost four hours later and I’m still not feeling great. My brain is still foggy. I feel more like sleeping than doing anything else. And I am reminded why I usually choose to be so much more careful about what I eat. None of that food was worth feeling how I’ve felt since eating it.
It can be hard feeling like I’m leaving behind the fun and festivity associated with food. Many of my happiest memories are intimately tied up with sharing meals and snacks and drinks with people I love. It’s not as fun when I can’t eat all of the foods I enjoy and have to be careful in my food choices. That’s true – but it’s also not fun feeling like I’m feeling now with my blood sugar way up and my body clearly unhappy with me, signaling me with pain and fatigue and disorientation. Not. Cool!
So. What can I do?
Well, I’ve been happy and okay these past couple of years not going out to breakfast (or out to eat at all, really). It’s so much easier to stay on track when I’m eating at home. But if an opportunity like today comes up and I really want to go out – and I do enjoy going out! – then I just have to be mindful and more strategic in my choices. I know that potatoes set off my sugar, so hash browns aren’t a good choice, obviously. If I really want a couple of bites, okay – but half of a large serving is still way too much for me. The pancake was a huge letdown – it didn’t even taste that great. I don’t know why I had more than one bite! If I’m going to eat high carb foods like that, it has to be one at a time – and/or much smaller quantities. And if it’s not truly delicious – dump it!
One thing I’ve also found helpful since my diagnosis is to make sure I have healthy snacks available to me at all times. I’m more inclined to make better choices when I’m not super hungry (like I was this morning). In fact, that idea of eating smaller meals/snacks more regularly really has seemed to work for me when I’ve done it. There’s a sweet spot where I feel satisfied – neither full nor too hungry.
It’s also helpful to have some pre-made salads that I can grab easily, and/or veggies that are ready to throw in a wok or steamer, and chicken that’s already cooked and ready to eat. Making sure I’m well-nourished actually does take away a lot of the cravings for foods that are less than ideal for my blood sugar. I haven’t been as good at pre-planning lately as I was there for a while. I’m going to need to get better organized again – because that really was helpful!
I’m feeling committed again to feeling better and making better choices. I wish it didn’t have to come to this – but sometimes when we’re finding our edges, we do push past them and have to reign it back in a little. That’s life. It’s a delicate dance sometimes, trying to find our balance and our limits.
Disclaimer: Please be advised that I am not a medical professional nor a dietician. This site is not in any way, shape, or form providing any sort of diagnosis, advice, cures, or recommendations for medical or dietary treatments. I am simply sharing my own journey and experiences. Nothing I say is intended to replace proper medical care.