It often seems to me that I am constantly saying “no” to myself when it comes to managing my diabetes. “No, don’t eat that.” “No, you can’t skip exercise.” “No, eating peanut butter pie for dinner is not a good idea. Honestly Kate, what are you thinking?” (I really do talk to myself a lot.) I’m beginning to feel like the mother of an inquisitive toddler again; a toddler who is constantly doing things they shouldn’t. It sucks to always say no.
I’m really not feeling deprived, at least not to the point where I’m angry or sad or depressed, but I do wonder if I’m not doing myself some sort of harm by denying myself things that I want; things that seem important. At least they seem important at the time. It feels as if, every time I tell myself no, that I’m adding pressure to some big balloon that will eventually explode all over me, raining regrets and prompting a rebellion that would most certainly be ugly. What’s the best way for me to fix this without totally derailing my efforts?
Sometimes I say yes.
Today is a prime example. For some unknown reason, I found myself pining for cereal. I don’t know what it is exactly that makes me want to eat cereal. Maybe it’s harking back to my childhood; comfort food. Maybe I’m just lazy and want something quick and easy to eat. Maybe I just like the way it tastes! It doesn’t really matter why; the desire to eat cereal is there but it’s been a loooong time since I’ve eaten any. I always tell myself no, for obvious reasons. My body can’t handle carbs in the morning, as I wrote about here, so it seems ridiculous to even consider cereal. Call me ridiculous; I had raisin bran for breakfast. Today I said yes.
I know that you’re dying to know how it turned out, so I’ll tell you. (You’re welcome) It was a complete and utter disaster. Big surprise! I spiked to 198 at 1 hour after eating 1 cup of raisin bran with almond milk. Oh my. So how am I feeling now that this episode has ended? Liberated. Satisfied. Content. (and hungry).
First of all, I didn’t freak out when I saw the 198 on my meter. In fact, I expected it. (This is a huge difference from my reaction to spiking after spaghetti squash back in July. Silly me.) I power walked for 30 minutes and 2 hours after eating, my glucose was 98. (I <3 powerwalking). The fact that I was way too hungry, way too soon after eating is a reminder that I need protein for breakfast. Cereal just doesn’t cut it. These are good reminders to me of why I do what I do, so I’m happy. I gained some insight, yet again, and I slayed the “I want some cereal” dragon. I won’t be wanting any more for quite some time and that in itself was worth it all.
Sometimes when we allow ourselves to “splurge” we gain so much more than we might lose. This morning’s spike was just one number in a vast amount of numbers that I’ll look at throughout my life with diabetes. One higher number doesn’t mean anything. Repeatedly eating foods that cause higher numbers means a lot; it can be destructive. I let myself give in to the nagging want and now it’s gone. I can quit thinking about cereal and move on to more important things…like cheesecake or chocolate…or both of them together.
Sometimes I say yes, and my world is just a little better for it.