By Shannon Magsam, Ladybug’s mama
OK, so I don’t regularly make a habit out of cursing in front of small children. I don’t regularly make a habit out of cursing out loud, period (it’s something I struggle with in my head; I worked in a newsroom for years, after all).
BUT. I dropped a chicken nugget on the kitchen floor and I was so angry I spat the “d-it” word under my breath. I then realized with horror that I’d said it in front of my daughter and her play date. Fortunately, they didn’t seem to hear, just kept right on licking their ice cream cones and chatting about music class at school that day.
Can I give you some background about that nugget and the carbs it represents? You see, I’ve been on a no-carb, no sugar, no white foods, no fun – I won’t say diet, because we don’t say that around here, remember? – “lifestyle change” for about two weeks. Ladybug isn’t aware of this alternate lifestyle because she sees me munching down plenty on healthy foods – like nuts, fruit and eggs, things she likes — and I don’t say stuff like “I can’t have that” or “That’s bad”. I keep it to myself (well, I’ve occasionally explained to my husband in clipped tones why I just might be a little snippy).
But I have started dreaming about pizza, doughnuts, cinnamon toast and full-fat Ranch dressing. I have continued fantasizing about sugary, carbohydrate-crammed foods while driving down the road or taking a shower. When my mind wanders, it travels to lands dotted with lightly-breaded chicken drumsticks for trees, Doritos for kites, chocolate fountains a-flowing and Kobe’s shrimp fried rice for snow.
So the chicken nugget was supposed to be a cheat. I had snagged it from the girls’ Happy Meal and was going to indulge in some BAD food. Just one. But then I dropped my precious and it felt like one of those moments where you float out of your body and see yourself screaming “NOOOOOO” in slow motion below while scrambling to catch the nugget before it hits the floor. Only you don’t succeed and the nugget hits the floor anyway with a thud. And I don’t really implement the 5-second rule when this kitchen floor is in such dire need of a sweep.
It certainly wasn’t worth cussing over, but you can understand my annoyance, no?
Of course, no one has a gun to my head to stay on this modified South Beach lifestyle (I’m eating fruit, remember?) but I really want to lose some belly fat and become more fit. I could take the slow route and just watch what I eat and exercise, but this route is faster. And I’m an impatient woman.
No lie, I weigh about as much as I did when I was six months’ pregnant. I know it’s not about what the scale says, but I don’t feel healthy. I want to turn back the clock a little, then I can go with “moderation” and occasionally have my favorites. I just know myself and if I say I can have a little sugar, it turns into a lot. So saying none at all works better for me right now. Otherwise, it’s a slippery slope straight down a caramel-coated slide and into a pool of half-melted Braum’s peanut butter hot fudge sundae.
And do you know what’s sitting outside in the back of my recalled Rav4? Girl Scout Cookies. That I ordered pre-“crazy lifestyle change”.
Shannon Magsam is mom to 8-year-old Ladybug, married to Ladybug’s dad, John, and co-creator of nwaMotherlode.com. To read previously published installments of Life With Ladybug, click here. Comments welcome!