Thursday, July 23, 2009

Sugar

My mom went to the doctor several days ago and her sugar level was high. I think her fasting level was somewhere around 320. The doc didn't put her on any medication or anything just yet. He wanted her to cut out a few things first and see if it didn't set her straight before he slapped her with a diagnosis.

I went with her to the doctor that morning. She was nervous about her blood work. She hates doctors, so she came up with the excuse that we were going to go and work on her classroom so that I would go with her. I put on a big smiley face and bought her a diet soda. I told her that going without sugar wasn't that hard at all once you got used to it. There are whole wheat pastas and breads that help, and most of that other stuff is bad for you anyway.

However, when I got home that night I climbed into bed and just laid there with my eyes closed thinking about it. I've thought about it nearly every day since. I heard her last night talking to the preacher at church about how she misses potatoes and how hard all of it is. I wanted to scream at her and I wasn't sure why. I thought about it last night and came to two conclusions...

One, I need her to be ok. I need for her sugar level to get better almost as much as she does. It terrifies me to see myself in her and know that this may be the road I am forced to go down. My sugar has always been very low, but with PCOS that could change at any moment. My mother had PCOS too, although she never got an official diagnosis, because the only times she went to the lady doctor was for pregnancy check ups and when she was almost dead from blood loss. I hope I have taken steps early to help avoid the whole diabetes thing later on in life, but it is still really scary.

Two, she hates her new diet and is quick to tell you that. This is where I know I am being hard on her, but I can't help how I feel about it. I get a bit annoyed with her thinking it is the end of the world. I've been cutting sugar for three years now. In the beginning I guess I did say stuff once in a while about it. I talked a lot about the new foods that I had found to eat as replacements for my old favorites. She makes it seem like it is horrible to cut back on her sugar and buy diet sodas. It is just a way of life for me, and unfortunately, in a house with a sugar addicted husband, it is a very difficult battle to fight. I tend to fail miserably, but I know I am pretty hard on myself with it, despite two doctors telling me to lighten up a bit on my sugar free ways.

My grandmother's best friend lived right beside her for many years. Her husband had diabetes among other things, and I watched him struggle with it my entire childhood. His health deteriorated dramatically when I was a teenager, and it scared me. As soon as I found out what PCOS was, I remember instantly picturing that man, sitting in his chair with those special socks on, scowling while he ate his breakfast. I didn't want to be like that, and I strove for sugar free perfection in the beginning because of him.

Right now it is summer and like everyone else, we are having a hard time financially, so a lot of the healthier options have taken a back seat to cheaper meals that fill us up more quickly. Hubby quit smoking a couple of months ago and has replaced his habit with a very sweet tooth, which I tend to give in to. I know once my routine is back in order when school starts, I will get back on track, but it doesn't ease my fears at all.

Do you find yourself struggling to eat healthier and what are some ways that you combat money woes to buy the more expensive sugar free options?

2 comments:

Kristin said...

It would be so much easier to eat healthy if it wasn't so damned expensive. The big thing we watch out for around here is Carbohydrate levels. If my hubby limits his overall carb intake to about 150 for the day, his blood sugar levels are much better. Also, if he eats sweet potatoes instead of regular ones, they don't spike his blood sugar because the carbs they contain are complex not simple (like in white potatoes). Even pancakes are doable if you make them with whole wheat flour and get some low sugar syrup. Its hard to make the adjustments but it can be done.

eden said...

Firstly, congrats on the writing gig!! That's fantastic Arian.

Sorry about the worry with your mum, and I hope she is ok. I'm a severe shocker when it comes to sugar - my poor liver. Sometimes I trick myself with fruit ... what really works for me is dates. So juicy and sweet - I call them Gods jubes.

XO