And for once I was SuperMom

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Ash Wednesday

"Do you have any chocolate?" I asked a friend.  It was five days after my father's death.
"Ah, so that's what you're going to do?"  She pointed out some Girl Scout chocolates at the top of her pantry and then acted surprised when I didn't bring them with me when I sat down on the couch.  She then recounted how in the days after her father's death she started a less than healthy glass of wine a night habit.  I told my stepbrother that I thought I was going to use sugar to cope,
"Be careful, that adds up," he said, not unkindly.
"It all adds up," I responded.

With the last few months of moving, renovation, and the loss of my father my ability to say 'no' to anything sweet has gone down.  I've only gained two pounds (I workout, a lot), so it hasn't been too detrimental to my waistline.  I know that it's potentially wreaking havoc in other ways, and eventually I won't be 32 years old, staying at a healthy weight only gets harder, so they say.

Some of you may have thought, 'she's only giving up sugar to lose weight, classic, using Lent as a time to drop pounds.'
You betcha.

I have felt that discrepancy.  I have also felt a bit out of control.  No longer capable of passing up treats when I didn't really want them, or not snagging morsels off my kid's plates, or not having seconds.  Stress breaking my will to say pass up on the huge amounts of food that pass under the nose of most Americans each day.

Today wasn't that hard.  I had successfully expunged much of the sugary goodies on Fat Tuesday.  Either by me or via my husband and children.  I wanted a treat after lunch.  I wanted one in the afternoon with my cup of coffee.  I wanted another one after dinner.  Some days I happily indulge each time.  That has to be too much, right?  Sweets are a luxury food, not made for daily consumption or hourly consumption.  They don't have much by the way nutritional value...I should be able to live without them.

Then I stood before my pineapple fried rice, dinner sizzling away.  The ingredients list had called for sugar, I ignored that.  I didn't need sugar in fried rice.  Then I tasted it.  The pineapple required some sweet.  Should I sprinkle some brown sugar on top?  I decided to add honey.  It's not refined, and the challenge I set before myself is refined sugar.  I wondered if it would spread or be enough.  Two teaspoons was plenty and it disseminated throughout just perfectly.

The two hardest spots were afternoon, when I am hungry for a snack and after dinner when I am hungry before bedtime.  This is when it is very easy to justify any food.  I ended up with popcorn and then crackers and brie.

I didn't do much spiritually.  Didn't need prayer...yet.  Didn't need the spirit to intercede for my lack of self control.  The need for God will come I am sure.  I am hoping that this time will bring to light places in my life where I've gotten sloppy.  Where I've allowed stress to take it's dangerous toll.  Where mindlessness has taken the place of mindfulness.  

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