Monday, December 10, 2007

Wow, What A Ride ..

Life is not a journey to the grave
With the intention of arriving safely
In a pretty and well-preserved body —
But rather to skid in broadside,
thoroughly used up, totally worn out,
and loudly proclaiming,
‘Wow, what a ride!’

So, after years of abuse ... my body has finally said, "Whoa, back the fuck up." And, quite frankly, it was to be expected. I turned 38 this year ... and, let me tell you ... if your diet hasn't changed since you were 18 ... well, there are bound to be consequences.

A few weeks ago, I went in for my six week checkup with Dr. Downer and, like everything else in life, there was good news and bad news.

The good news is that my kidney function is stable. Amazingly wonderful news considering it slid south the previous two visits. The bad news ... is that my sugar was high. Not catastrophically high ... but definitely high considering the circumstances surrounding the reading (time of day, what I'd eaten, etc.)

Dr. Downer sat down and talked with me ... and gave me three months to get my sugar level down "naturally" ... if it's still high after that, we'll have to take steps.

And with that, my friends, the years of having a Frozen Coke for breakfast passed ... not with a bang, but with a mournful sigh. Tomorrow will be three weeks since I've had a sugar-laden, carbonated beverage. I would like to tell you that it's never even crossed my mind. That ... would be a lie of unimaginable proportions.

I want an ice-cold glass of Coca-Cola like I want my next breath. However ... and this is a big however ... my aversion to the thought of giving myself an insulin shot is stronger than my overwhelming desire to stick my head under a convenience store soda dispenser and push those buttons until the the liquid runs clear or I explode ... whichever comes first.

So, I've made an appointment with a nutritionist ... and, in the meantime, I've cut out sodas, cut out candy, and cut down on sugary fruit juices. After his heart attack, my Dad took insulin ... and, common, if you can avoid that naturally ... why wouldn't you? Having lived through it with him, I realize changing your lifestyle doesn't mean you can't ever have anything sweet ... and a Dr. Pepper every so often won't kill me. Having one everyday ... all day ... not so much a good thing.

As I told my family at Thanksgiving dinner ...

Years ago my doctors took away booze and I said, "Well ... okay."
Years later they took away caffeine and I said, "Well ... okay."
Now it's Coke and all I can think is, "Just kill me now."

But, as my mother-in-law pointed out ... at least I can still gamble.

And the hang overs hurt more then they used to
And corn bread and ice tea
Took the place of pills and ninety-proof
And it seems like none of us do things
Quite like we used to do
And nobody wants to get high on the town
And all my rowdy friends have settled down

Hank Williams, Jr. - All My Rowdy Friends Have Settled Down


  1. Keep on fighting the good fight, Thirty! It's not easy, but I think you're making the best choice. So many people just give in and stop weighing the consequences. I'm glad to hear you're doing well and that you're taking the steps to preserve that.

    Happy Holidays!

  2. Well, I hate to sound like a whiney baby ... because I REALLY WANT a soda. But ... I mean, common. If you were given the choice of just NOT EATING AND DRINKING CRAP ... or ... you have to be on medication? Well ... that's an easy choice.

    It could be worse. I know you guys have it much harder with the gluten issue ... avoiding gluten must take a lot of work.

    In any case, I'm trying to keep the whining to a minimum. haha :)