Coming Home To Roost.

I had to take my mum to the fracture clinic at the hospital on Monday. I swear, her right arm looks like it belongs to a six foot tall navy blue body builder, it’s so swollen and bruised. My mum is tiny, I mean she can’t weigh more than about eighty pounds, so right now it probably outweighs all her other limbs put together. The doctor was fairly happy with her progress though, so I feel a bit more able to breathe, and a bit less strung out.

By the time we’d done the rounds of doctor/more x-rays/doctor/made-to-measure-sling lady, almost four hours had passed, and we were starving. Actually, that’s not strictly true… I was starving. Mum doesn’t have much of an appetite these days, and she’s so fed up at the moment she probably wouldn’t have even noticed if we’d skipped a meal. Like that would ever happen on my watch, right?

We agreed it would be nice to eat lunch together in the hospital canteen, which has a fabulous salad bar. I parked mum up at a table in her borrowed wheelchair and went back to join the line. Boxed salad for me, tuna sandwich for mum. Oh, and the puddings…sugar free jelly for me, and an off-the-chart awesome hand-made coconut slice with jam and pastry for mum. Oh my god, that coconut slice looked so moist I could’ve wrung it out, no doubt about it. There were about ten slices on the cake stand, and I wanted to lick every single one of them as I walked past.

Now, picture the scene. Mum, after half a tuna sandwich, was feeling quite full, and she didn’t want the coconut slice. She wanted the jelly. I may or may not have been able to predict that scenario in advance on account of the fact that 1) mum really loves jelly and 2) she’s not really that big on coconut.

Buying it was okay though, right? Look at this innocent face…it wasn’t for me. It was a treat for my mum. Except if I’d paid attention to what was really going on as I handed over eleven pounds thirty for my tray full of booty, I would have known immediately that the jelly was for mum and the coconut slice was for me. Of course it fucking was.

I tried to sigh and look disappointed, as I agreed mum could have my sugar-free jelly. I was prepared to let it go and take one for the team, or at least that’s what I was desperately trying to make my face say as my insides started breakdancing behind the scenes at the thought of all the coconut and pastry and jam that was coming my way.

I ate it. I ate every last moist coconutty crumb, and I’m here to tell you I was transported to heaven and back again right there in the canteen. It was the most awesome thing I’ve ever tasted. What I wanted to do was go buy the rest of them. Every last succulent slice. But I didn’t…I stopped at just the one.

And you know what, stopping at one is fine, I mean yey…go me.  Except one is all it took to tip me into dieting quicksand. Let’s face it, it was always going to, wasn’t it? That generous slice of heaven was loaded with sugar, and now I’m loaded with sugar, which means my inner sat-nav is trying to steer me towards disasterville. Again.

Sunday was so-so. Monday’s coconut slice was compounded by an un-calorie-counted chilli for supper, and yesterday there was an incident with an unplanned frittata at lunchtime, not to mention delaying tactics at the office engineered by yours truly which pretty much guaranteed I’d miss the exercise class I’d been planning to go to.

That’s the sound of wobbly wheels right there…looks like my anxiety is coming home to roost in the form of self-sabotage. Just for a change.

Today is a new day. It was just a blip. I’m not putting pressure on myself to be perfect.

Yes, you are…

No. I’m really not.

It happened, get over it and move on, right?


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6 thoughts on “Coming Home To Roost.

  1. This post has a lot of positive points.

    A ton actually.

    Your title. Chickens coming home to roost. I was familiar, it is used in the US and in literature a lot. But, I looked up the origin (I do that a lot) and it was interesting.

    So your title struck me as positive, because it was ownership. “I did it.” Not your mom’s doing, not a third party, not an inanimate object – me. That is very good.

    And you recognized that you stopped at one. You did stop at one.

    And you also recognized that you manipulated from the beginning. Recognizing, seeing, is a valuable tool. And again, you took ownership.

    You have a good bulls**t meter and that is a valuable tool. Next time you may be able to move the thought process up a bit. Nothing off the dessert tray for anyone. Or even – I can’t trust myself to eat here, mom and I are heading home to safer food. Or earlier still – I need to pack food, it always turns into a long day.

    And you recognized that part of the fallout was not tracking something later. And I encourage you to add that chili to that day’s total NOW, if you have not already done so. And anything else you did not log, go log it, now. If you have to guess at the size or total, just use things other people have loaded. Take the average or slightly higher than average. Not logging is a very slippery slope that often lands six months or even a year later.

    Slippery slopes are just that, slippery.

    And once those taste buds get fired up, yes, they expect a party, a continuous party in fact. So as you said, the fallout can be a struggle for days. (Another blgger was just writing about the fact that they realized they wanted every single thing they ate to be a party. Water too.)

    There is also a food=location=memory thing. Next time you go to that facility, probably, you are going to want to repeat.

    If I stop at drive thru on the way back from dropping one of my kids at college, I am going to want to do that same thing each and every time I make that trip. I am absolutely going to remember.

    AND the sugar-salt-fat loop intertwines. If I get something sugary at that first stop, then I am going to want to stop at subsequent highway exits to pick up salty and fat, in turn, to complete the loop.

    I personally have switched businesses over the years because of this location thing. I realize you can’t switch your mother’s medical care. But I am saying that food=location=memory thing is powerful. Recognizing it is a tool.


    Three things that can help a lot.

    Being proactive can help a lot too. If most of your food decisions are made at one time, at the grocery store/by what you stock in your home/eating from home, then you do not have to make hundreds of food decisions. That can help.

    I try to think of food as infrequently as I can. (I can have a lot of anxiety. So I try not to ruminate on a lot of things.) My therapist has taught me to turn it off, by repeating a safe phrase in my mind. And for me that has been a valuable tool.

  2. It happens. It does. Today …. load up on water, take an extra short walk if your knee will let you. Take a dozen or so deep breaths and stop beating yourself up. You are in survival mode right now. You are going to be okay. One slip does not have to mean you are completely derailed. Drink water. Walk. Breathe.


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