“I want you to cut out grain and dairy for four months.”
My husband’s brother, who is both a muscle and digestive specialist, instantly became one of my least favorite people when he uttered that statement point-blank in January. Apparently, through his assessment, he realized that my digestive system is stressed and not doing the work it should be doing. Yes, my digestive system is working, but foods made of grain and dairy are not being digested as they should be. (And I have the physical ramifications to prove it.) Hence, the needed break to allow it to heal.
When he uttered those words, I felt like my life was about to end, and, honestly, in that week leading up to my restrictions, I ate as much bread and chocolate as possible!
I’ll admit. I love food. I mean, I adore it. I’m thankful that I’m a relatively “small” person in stature and weight, but the jeans have gotten a little tight since I got married last April. (Can I get an “amen,” married women?!) This has discouraged me greatly. While my eating isn’t that bad, I still enjoy a slice of bread or something sweet . . . or two, or three, most days of the week. And my tight jeans have shown that.
I’ve been 99 % grain-free and diary-free since January 27—minus a few nibbles and a “cheat meal” at my favorite Indianapolis-area Italian restaurant that had been on the calendar for a few weeks already. Some days my cravings have been so intense, and I’ve almost given in a few times. This feat has NOT been easy every day, and I miss so many of my favorite foods: coffee creamer, bagels, breads, pasta, ice cream, chocolate, cereal, pancakes, and most any dessert. But it’s getting easier, I must say.
You wanna know something? I’ve not felt this good physically in I can’t remember how long. No headaches, no bloating, no indigestion, and no stomachaches. I am in disbelief at how great I’m feeling. And my jeans! My jeans are looser than they’ve been since I became a wife.
And my heart is changing too. I can sense God doing a work in me spiritually. I believe food had become an idol in my life. It was something to look forward to, something to be excited about, something I was seeking satisfaction in. Seriously, my focus on food was WAY too much, too often, and too strong. It’s almost like I was excited to just get my hands on food!
I no longer look forward to snacks or meals in an unhealthy, obsessive way. And truth be told, it goes both ways. I have so often not eaten some foods because of my fear of gaining weight. Almost as if any kind of dessert or junk food is evil. I’m not joking here. That’s idolatry in itself, too.
But on Saturday, I’ll get practice on enjoying a dessert without seeing it as pure caloric evil (although I may pay for it with physical side effects later!). I’m not really supposed to eat cake for months yet. But Saturday is an exception. The cake will either be pink or blue, depending on what is revealed when my sister, Kristen, and her husband, Kirk, cut the cake at the “gender reveal party” for their little one. How could I not enjoy a slice of baby-excitement-heaven with our family and Kirk’s family?
Just don’t tell my brother-in-law. 😉