I love Thanksgiving…time with family, delicious food, a day off work, and the reminder to pause and reflect on all I have to be thankful for. That being said, I will admit…I loved Thanksgiving much more a few years ago before all these stomach issues. I loved the stuffing (especially the oyster stuffing), Aunt Linda’s date pudding, sweet potatoes oozing with brown sugar topping, buttered dinner rolls, Buckeyes (a delicious chocolate peanut butter combination), and all the pies. It was also much easier a few years ago before I had to juggle multiple family get-togethers and a career in healthcare which operates 365 days a year and 24 hours a day.
Even with the challenges the day brings, I still look forward to Thanksgiving. Thankfully, I love turkey and sweet potatoes although I have learned to always ask before I eat anything I did not personally make. One year, the sweet potatoes had been dredged in flour before they were coated in the gooey topping. Who does that? Oh well, they were good, but I paid for it later.
As I am now. This morning after a delicious cup of coffee, I visited one of my favorite natural, locally owned health food stores. I wanted gluten-free oats. This store sells them in bulk, and they are the cheapest I have found. I meandered around the store and that’s when I saw it….staring back at me…enticing me with all its pumpkin-y Thanksgiving charm. A generous slice of gluten-free pumpkin roll. I stared, considered, and walked away. Then, I came back and my resolve had dissolved…I succombed to temptation and bought the slice of gluten-free pumpkin roll telling myself that I would save it for my Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow.
Thanksgiving came early for me. I no more than walked through my front door before I had a bite in my mouth. I savored that cream cheese filling smothered between the sweet pumpkin. I stopped myself, though, and placed it in the refrigerator. For tomorrow.
I exercised. I ate lunch. I helped my daughter on her paper. And tomorrow came….like 3 hours from the first bite. Only I didn’t stop there. I made hot chocolate with new Silk Cashewmilk and Caffe D’Viata organic hot cocoa mix with a little extra carob powder for good measure. (I love the new cashewmilk from Silk!!) I ate that entire piece of pumpkin roll while I drank my hot chocolate. Yup, I ate my Thanksgiving dessert a day early.
It’s been about 2 hours later, and my stomach is churning. I am completely uncomfortable and in pain. And yes, I regret giving into temptation. So, my feet are up in the recliner, and I am having a lazy afternoon like my favorite chocolate lab as I wait for the tea kettle to whistle. I need ginger tea.
All I want to do is sit in this chair and be lazy like my lab. The chocolate, sugar, and dairy are definitely not settling well. I seldom eat sugar, and I rarely drink hot chocolate. And I consume very little dairy for this reason. It’s frustrating to have to be so careful with what I eat. I am recovering from a nasty reaction to tuna last week. My lips swelled, and my skin around my mouth peeled. I wanted to wear a mask at work! Thankfully, it’s better now.
The thing is, I have a general idea of what I can and cannot eat. Unfortunately, the cannots outweigh the cans. I am human, though. I give into temptation like that pumpkin roll today. I am reminded that life is like that sometimes. I am enticed by the instant gratification of something. I don’t pause and take the time to really reflect on whether it is worth the potential consequences. Whether it is food, purchasing shoes I don’t need, or trying to get ahead of God’s will for my life, I can make the decision to say yes or no to temptation. Sometimes, I am succesful at being stronger than the temptation, and other times like today, I am not. My stomach-ache will pass with time, and hopefully I will remember the lesson from today.Thou shalt not eat things that look delicious when they will cause horrible stomach pains later!