Friday, May 28, 2010

"F"ruit This!


It was 10:30 at night and I was lying down on my bed, looking down at my belly. I did not like what I saw. Back in the day, I used to be able to take a piece of string and hold it from hip bone to hip bone while lying down and my lower stomach would not touch the string. Back then, I used to be able to pull my pants on without having to lie down on the floor to zip them up. Back then…I wasn’t about to turn 51.

I was so disgusted with the “mind-of-its-own” stomach that I decided right then and there to go on a fruit fast the following day. I heard that running on fruit for three days will give you a certain “glow.” I also heard that the stomach shrinks, things flow through the colon a lot faster and you’ll have energy like you haven’t experienced in a long time.

So this is how my first day of the “fruit only” went:

5:45 A.M. Wake up to the vibrating alarm. Try not to think about “not” having oatmeal for breakfast

6:10 A.M. Go to the grocery store and buy fruit already cut up along with two kinds of fruit juices.

6:35 A.M. Arrive at radio station with fruit.

6:52 A.M. Eat first piece of fruit before craving cereal.

7:05 A.M. Go on the air and talk about how I’m going to try and do a fruit fast for three days.

7:25 A.M. Eat another piece of fruit and try not to think about “not” having a veggie burger for lunch

7:50 A.M. Talk to weatherman on the air. Ask him if he ever did a fruit fast. He said, “no.”

8:20 A.M. Eat more fruit.

8:39 A.M. Eat more fruit. Wonder what the special is at the Mexican restaurant.

9:22 A.M. Go in back office and stare at my instant oatmeal package. Read the label to see if there is any dried fruit inside.

9:45 A.M. Are potatoes fruit?

10:15 A.M. Went for a walk with an apple. The apple just doesn’t taste the same when I know I have to eat it.

10:40 A.M. I wonder what the lunch special is at the Italian restaurant today?

11:05 A.M. Eat more fruit. Is it my imagination or is the cantaloupe making my tongue itch?

11:45 A.M. Do news and other stuff at the radio station that I’ve been meaning to do for a long time so I don’t think about eating more fruit.

12:38 P.M. Go home and open the refrigerator. Stare at my homemade corn chowder.

1:23 P.M. Does it count if you have a piece of bread with fruit spread?

1:25 P.M. “F” this fruit thing. I don’t feel better at all.

1:47 P.M. Decide that fruit is overrated.

Friday, May 21, 2010

From Pizza to Prune Juice to Pizza

During the months when I consistently...and I do mean "Consistently" got my period, I would allow myself during the first two days of my monthly "time" to eat anything I wanted. I figured that if I was bleeding then I needed to re-supply my body with something. I couldn't very well go to the local hospital and ask for a couple of pints of A-Positive blood to guzzle with my morning oatmeal in order to replace the blood I was loosing now could I?

So instead, I re-supplemented with an order of french fries or an onion bagel with cream cheese or a Three Muskateer's Bar or my favorite, pizza! Not just any pizza, it had to be thin crust (therefore justifying eating the combo of flour and water) with pepperoni and pineapple and light on the cheese. And I got the individual pizza, the one that is cut up into six small-ish slices.

"Not too bad," I would say to myself. I would justify being able to eat pizza because I was bleeding and it was a small pizza. The normal person would probably eat only two or three pieces and save the rest for a future meal but what the hell...I was I would eat the whole thing.

It was toward the end of last year that I had my first internal run-in with pizza. Maybe because at that time, I wasn't bleeding. Maybe it was because it was pizza from a restaurant in McKinnleyville or maybe it was because that the combo of cheese, pizza crust (flour and water) and the other stuff just didn't digest like it used to. Whatever the reason, it took days before the pizza finally made its way out of my body and into the sewer system...even with some help from prune juice.

After that very, VERY uncomfortable experience...I no longer ate pizza. Until a few days ago, that is.

We had a guest from and he wanted pizza. Who could blame him? After all, he was hiking the Pacific Crest Trail from start to finish. He deserved pizza. He deserved to eat an entire pizza all to himself but on that night, we all shared a pizza. The next day my system went into hyper-yuk.

You know that video that has recently been making the rounds on YouTube where hundreds of baseball-size hail spearing down from the sky landed into some guys pool somewhere in the midwest? That's how my stomach felt the day after I ate pizza.

Has menopause put a kabash on my ever eating pizza again?

So of course the next day I had to down gobs of prune juice (aka PJ) but guess what? The PJ made me sick to my stomach. Not quite, head-hanging-over-the-toilet-bowl-sick...just gross.

And to prove a point to myself (because the second half of my life will be all about proving points to myself) I had to order another thin-crust pizza with pepperoni and pineapple. And I ate the whole, individual thing. can guess what happened next.

No more pizza. No more periods on a regular basis. No more eating what I want, when I want.

What next!?!?

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Dear Grandma Toby and Bess

Dear Grandmothers:

Oh how I wish you were around so I could have asked you important questions about how your bodies worked when you were in your 50's and 60's. It didn't seem important back then because in our family, we didn't talk about things like menopause out loud.

We talked about family dramas, about my kids, about my marriage and divorce, the histories the both of you shared with me about your childhoods but never about what "the change" would be like once I got there.

I'm here.

I want to know if your middles seemed to grow between the time you stepped into the shower and got out of the shower. I want to know if one minute you were happy as a lark in a tree and the next minute wondering if it would make the news if you started to walk eastbound on the west side of the local highway?

I wonder if you craved chocolate one minute and then ran to find the nearest bag of Corn Nuts at the local convenience store the next? I wonder if you threw open the door to the back yard and rolled in the snow, which sizzled under the weight and heat of your body only to run back into the house piling all the blankets you could find on top of the same body that was hotter than the back of a sun-baked lizard in Death Valley only minutes before?

I wonder what advice you both would have given me? I remember when the both of you were in your 50's and 60's and nothing was said at all about menopause. At least I can't remember if it was ever brought up at family events or during phone calls.

Would you have told me to wait it out? Would you have recommended the patch? Would you have sent me to buy some organic supplement?

Or would you have recommended that I just drink tons of water and try to flush it all out?

I wonder.