Monday, December 18, 2006

Chocolate glazed heart disease

Well, you can knock me over with a feather.

The rumor is true and my destiny has come calling.

Dunkin' Donuts, all gussied up kosher, has settled down just one ZIP code away.

Be still, my heart.

Literally, probably. Heart disease runs rampant on my dad's side of the family. My dad has been beating it with a stick lo these 20 years; he eats well, exercises obsessively, takes his beta blockers and cholesterol-lowering drugs. My cholesterol at age 26 was 215, but I was busy trying to get pregnant, so I couldn't take any drugs. I wanted to try to beat it without those anyway, so I got a bit obsessive about exercise myself. One January I joined a brand-new, fancy-pants gym, paying a ton of money upfront for one year. Taxman thought I would crap out, but I didn't--because that would have been an immense waste of money. I lowered my cholesterol to the 140s. It was amazing.

The next January I joined a less expensive gym that was closer to home and kept going. By the end of that year, I was pregnant and paranoid. I nixed all the jogging and weights in favor of prenatal yoga.

After Miss M was born, I kept intending to get back to exercising. But she proved to have a delicate stomach and fussy sleep patterns. By the time I felt like I could carve out some time to myself in the morning, AM was on the way.

And now, well, it's been a long time since I've done anything physical. I am beyond exhausted because nobody is sleeping. My eating patterns are crappy at best. (But eggs for dinner are easy, you know? Grilled cheese sandwiches are easy. And Taxman is in charge of both of those dinners.) Trans fats are everywhere. I am tired. I am weak-willed.

I don't have to explain the appeal of donuts, do I? Sugar and fat and gooey toppings in a cute little round package? (And how it is difficult to eat just one?) Plus they go well with coffee; I will, of course, not be drinking real coffee for a while yet, but I can fake it with decaf.

I am afraid to take a cholesterol test, because I am pretty sure that I'd lose all my desserts, snacks, and half my meals in a single blow. Plus I'd have to find the time and strength of will to exercise. (And get these damn leeches off me for more than 30 minutes.) Did I mention it's dark (really dark!) by 5:00 pm?

Maybe I'll be brave in the spring. Maybe by the spring I will remember what three straight hours of sleep feels like. And what the afternoon sun looks like.

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