There are two kinds of people in the world. There are the salt snackers and the sweet snackers. It's not really hard to figure out which one you are. If you're in the mood to munch, do you reach for potato chips or cake? Popcorn or candy? I'm a sweet snacker married to a salt snacker. For years when I thought munchies and snacks, I thought of M&M's and cakes and other various chocolate goodies. My husband thought in terms of potato chips and beef jerky. (That's a snack!?!) Something with chocolate in it would always hit the spot for me. Yeah, give me a chocolate chip cookie. Or a piece of cake. Or a candy bar.
But unfortunately, those days are over for me. I refused to admit it for a long time. I thought I could postpone the inevitable, but it's finally happened. I can no longer partake freely of the delights I once craved. (Who am I kidding? I still crave them.)And it's not just a case of it not being diet food. If you've ever seen me, you know that's not really an issue with me. Hey, I have my priorities straight! No, it's something worse than that. Something I can't ignore.
My name is Jill, and I'm a borderline diabetic. I had gestational diabetes with every one of my pregnancies, and that should have been the writing on the wall. I was warned by my doctors that I was a prime candidate for diabetes later on in life. It just shocked me to realize that "later on" is actually now. I can no longer eat sweets without it affecting my health.
I've known this for years, but I've not really acknowledged it before. Oh sure, I cut down on the amount of sweets I ate. But I knew that, as long as I didn't go overboard too much, I could have the occasional sweet. If I over-indulged, I'd usually pay for it with a sick headache, but that was about it. But I've discovered recently that I can no longer pretend to ignore the situation. Or maybe I've just matured enough to realize that, no matter how good it tastes, sweets are not worth the way they make me feel. Truthfully, as much as I still long for something sweet once in a while, I look at the forbidden item and I have to wonder if it's really worth it anymore. Do I want to give up my health--maybe even my life--for a bag of M&M's? I mean, come on. They're good, but not that good! What about quality of life? Diabetes comes with some pretty horrible side effects. How horrible would it be to lose my eyesight--or even a limb--because I couldn't control my own desires? That's just a little too pathetic for me.
So I'm off the sweets. Completely. No more assuring myself that one small piece won't matter. I went cold turkey. So far it's not been really difficult. I've been tempted, but thinking about how I feel after eating sugar is a pretty good deterrent to giving in.
I have no illusions about my ability to withstand temptation, though. I know there will come a time when the urge is overwhelming. But so far I'm taking it a day at a time. For today I won't eat sugar. I just wonder: do I get a thirty day pin if I hold out that long? Seems like I should get some kind of acknowledgement for this kind of sacrifice. Or at least a support group somewhere.