23 August 2006

Its a Whinge

Everybody is whingeing. Everybody is tired, stressed and paranoid (except when it happens that others really are out to get them). War or some sort of hissy fit is in the air and everyone is showing their true colours, whether that's self involvement or abuse of power, or just a desire to hide under a rock and chant (or whimper) until peace is restored.

Friendships are breaking down and the trick, I suppose, is to walk away with your head high. We have no control over the behaviour of others, we can only choose whether or not to go to war or to extract revenge.

This is only me grumbling. I needed somewhere to do it, and here it is.



Went to physio yesterday.

Its a day trip - two hours there and up to two hours in transit twice a week, plus the attendant faffing about at home before and after.

Lets just say I could really do with finding or founding a club/moaning corner for pre-menopausal women on blood thinners. Belt and braces just isn't doing it. On top of that it takes water retention to a whole new level (you haven't turned Violet, Violet), broken nights have become discomfort 'broken' by occasional sleep, oh and I found out that waving your arms about in time to the music can be a really, incredibly stupid thing to do if there isn't enough blood left to go round your system. Thank God that was in a gym, surrounded by nurses, and strapped to a heart monitor, although to be frank, if anyone suggested I 'throw my arms about' or be in any way enthusiastic about anything outside of the cardiac rehab twilight zone, they would receive the derision they deserve.

Hey, so I got that pre-med trippy sensation for free, so what; I managed to look like the weak, silly one in a gym full of comparative geriatrics (next youngest is about 20 years my senior), half of whom had heart surgery or a stroke. It also made the glands behind my ears hurt, a lot, and put me off throwing myself into anything else, which rather defeated the object of sacrificing another weekday to get there in the first place.

After an hour walking through circuit training, there came the lecture/education session. This time the video was all about cholesterol. Most of it I knew and rather disconcertingly I was already a reasonably healthy eater before this all went on, so have been frantically trying to scrabble for any idea of other things I could do to lower cholesterol, such as living off algae and sand.

Listening to these nurses, going vegan would be a good start, although to be fair most of the questions came from portly old men blinking like lost children at the thought of having to cut the fat off their meat, stop the missus doing roasties in lard every day of the week or go without Brie on the cheeseboard (the idea of 'no cheeseboard' was beyond their comprehension).

I was reminded of the granny in The Royle Family who, desperate to feed a vegetarian, refused to accept that anything with just lettuce in it counted as a proper sandwich and asked "Could she just have wafer thin ham?" Like if it was 'wafer thin' then it wouldn't really count as any ham at all....

I never meant to write a long post. My children have left the front room and gone to play and now I feel guilty again and know that I need to get off the computer.

The whole point of mentioning this medical palaver was for one fact.

Husband is like an unwilling dieter and is fixating, somewhat, on the things that have registered with him as 'forbidden'. When we were both seen together before I was let out of hospital, we were told little gems like how rarely we should eat pizza, how we should stick to plain biscuits like rich teas - general information that didn't really relate to our diet. We never used to have biscuits in the house, but now he just keeps on coming home with new varieties of plain looking biscuits. We're drowning in the damn things. The funny thing is that yes, they all look very plain and boring, but looking as appetizing as a lump of cardboard is no guarantee of a low fat content. He just cant wrap his head round the concept that less sugar generally equates to more fat and that therefore all varieties of crackers, with or without sun dried tomato flavour, are generally listed on the 'so you want to die' diet sheet under the heading 'yes now you're really asking for it'.

I have this theory that for men, standing in a supermarket aisle, in public, and being seen to turn a packet over and read the fat content is something so grossly humiliating that they can't even admit they are too embarrassed to do it, for fear of womenfolk falling on the floor with laughter. So they go (he comes) home after every independent shopping trip and performs an award winning impersonation of a total idiot who just didn't think, again...

So here I am waiting to find out if I am condemned to live on rabbit food and lentils like some antisocial walking fart machine, yet I am faced with a house full (courtesy of husband) of:
  • Glossy, glamorous, beckoning biscuits ("well they looked low fat")
  • Slabs of high strength cheese, tainting the fridge with a heavenly scent that screams 'toast me' ("Well I won't eat any at home, but I need it for my packed lunch". Yeah, right)
  • Crisps and chocolate biscuits ("For the kids")
Bastard. And he wonders why I tear into fruit and wholemeal toast and veggies, sort of non-stop.

Doh! There was a point to this, wasn't there.

Husband has always been the most boring man I have ever known. If you want a laugh, or to get onto theories or to have a heart to heart, he's great. If you want to get off the sofa and remember what the end of your own street looks like, he's too tired. He wouldn't choose to go out at all and hasn't attempted a fairground ride for the last fifteen years that I know of, so we are more than used to not drinking at all - perhaps a single bottle of red on one night over the weekend. Heaven forbid if I started to feel like a party - if he couldn't pull the 'too tired' card he could still choose between saying he'd got a headache and saying his acid was playing up. I haven't owned nor needed a 'going out' dress since he left the last company he worked for that ran a Christmas do, about twelve years ago.

Why am I still here? I love him. And the kids. Part of the mental crisis that has come out of this heart attack is realising that I was saving up things to do, biding my time until the children were old enough, and now I have to realise that I am probably no longer physically equipped to do any of them. I doubt anyone would let me go parachuting, let alone go on some of the bigger, newer fairground rides.

Boring, boring, boring, boring, boring, as far back as I can see, and now as far forward, too.

And that still wasn't the point.

The point was that his panic buying extended beyond biscuits to red wine, as we were told we could have one or two units a night up to five nights a week.

Suddenly he's after a bottle of wine 3 or 4 nights a week and a can of lager on the other nights. Still pretty moderate, many might say, but 'many' doesn't include the cardiac nurses.

Nope, the whole point of this post is that yesterday I discovered that red wine is good for you if you have a single glass, and that's a pub size glass, not a home size one, and that any more drink than that will mean the alcohol undoes all the good of the flavinoids, or whatever.

A pub glass, 125 mil.
Not a drop more, or there's no point and no benefit.

I must admit even I am thinking 'fuck that, I just wont bother at all then'. I'm just not exactly looking forward to telling husband, I have a feeling he's going to flip out like I have told him to choose between me and a life.

And I don't suppose it'll help one bit to point out how he already put me through the same choice. Shame, that, really.


zilla said...

So the cookbook was not well received, eh? Not your fault; you didn't ask for it.

Oh, crap! It's just so hard that diet is so emotional with some peope, and so ... utilitarian with others. Here, we battle with it daily, and none of us has been hospitalized recently.

I hate it when Mr Z ventures to the grocery store. Men buy the strangest things -- things in pretty packages I could whip up from scratch for half the cost and twice the nutrition, if only he'd mention he thinks Thai food sounds good, or that he's got a hankering for curry. Sigh...

Interestngly, I think Wulfie might be going through what I started going through after the families were combined: new constraints befuddled me. I'd go to the grocery and buy nothing, because all of the things I bought before Mr Z and Beanpole had to be considered, were things they would not tolerate; and the things they tolerated well were not things I considered to be a part of a healthy diet.

Shit, girl. I truly wish I could help. Is there any possible way for you to shop together? (I suggest this even though Mr Z and I always end up in a tiff when we attempt shopping together, but in your case, it might be worth the effort.)

Atyllah said...

I suggest you make husband read Atyllah's recent post on "The world is getting fatter" - perhaps it will make him sit up and think before he loads the shopping trolley with still more biscuits.
What is it with men, anyway? Why are they so stubborn, short-sighted, rhubarb, blah, fishpaste?
I suggest you don't let him near a supermarket on his own.

Cheryl said...


The cookbook is wonderful. Thank you!!!!!!!!!! (I HAVE said thank you already?!)

Once I have some control over the shopping it will have more influence than now, but really Husband is being pretty good with meals, he just seems to be clinging to his right to snack. Nobody is scarfing this stuff down, he just seems to feel safer with it in the house. My tough luck.

ME Strauss said...

My husband does stuff like change my favorite comfort foods, with sincere good intentions, mind you. But does tortellini in brodo, Italian chicken soup, made with beef stock sound right to you? Ugh.

Would you like pork chops spiced with ginger and nutmeg? Don't.

Of course, that makes ME a picky eater . . . which I am, but not in these cases.

He does this stuff when there is something going on that he doesn't feel part of or feels is out of control.

So I start asking him questions about stupid things and he backs off. :) I even tell him I'm doing that and it still works.

fineartist said...

Bless your heart. Bless it and you and the entire fam.

Strange and difficult, about two years ago my daughter had a blood clot, a huge one, from the birth control patch...bad shit that one...anyway, they had to blow the thing apart, and put her on blood thinners for six months all at the age of twenty four. They also told her that she needed to eat typically UN healthy foods for a time, to thicken her blood back up.

So you are on blood thinners, and they are telling you you need to eat HEALTHY foods. I am so confused.

Bless your heart, that's all I can say. And I miss you, and am glad to see you posting more, and hang in there and well, I'm babbling....hugs you across the ocean, Lori

fineartist said...

OOPs, I meant to thin her blood. I guess. I'm feeling a little un balanced and especially dingy tonight. Forgive me for leaving a comment that made very little sense?

Anonymous said...

so, somebody said "biscuits" and, by golly, he's gonna get some biscuits - from this distance, I can go aww, he's Trying to Help. ("feels safer" - yes) In that husbandly way that's only cute when it isn't your own husband who's doing it. Mine persisted in buying gooey ice cream concoctions when I was pregnant, and I politely ate them for awhile, until a threat of gestational diabetes appeared, and I became impolite.
After the baby was born, I came home to empty fridge and cupboards, no food at all, yet there were bags and bags and bags of cotton balls. Someone at the hospital said to clean a baby's eyes with cotton balls, and that was that. I certainly wasn't going to stick something so thready in a baby's eyes, so I couldn't figure out a use for them until the girls were old enough to do crafts - and believe me there were still plenty about!

Best of luck with physio, and playing seek/destroy with any vestiges of cloresterol in your diet. Maybe the cheese should stay in a cooler in the basement - Cheese Teasing is unfair to the injured party!

Stegbeetle said...

I'm sure he means well.
Some guys have a problem moving from "well-intentioned" to "useful in practice".
*sigh. offers glass containing exactly 125ml of a good Merlot and large sheet of bubblewrap for therapeutic popping*

Writer Mom said...

Just wanted to say this is a brilliant post.
Wish everyone would read it.
We could all strive for moderation and taking better care of ourselves, and deprogramming our coping mechanisms from comfort food to physical acts...like laughing over feather dusters.

*Got the Charlie in the Chocolate Factory reference, and smiled wide.
Just thought I'd mention that.

I'm starving. Biscuits for me are what host a steaming pool of white sausage gravy at breakfast. Much worse than a doughnut, I'm sure, but oh dear. I love 'em. If only I was still working sun up to sun down in a rocky field with a grumpy ox. Beating clothes with brooms. Milking cows. Walking up hill both ways. Carrying bath water on my head from the creek a mile away? *That's the stock my genes come from. I'm about twenty years behind on physical labor, so I'd better make some other adjustments.

Peace back atcha. The beginning of this post...I agree. People are not right right now.