By Daphne Biener
SUGAR! Could it be that you don’t hear this rallying cry from your inner demons? Dare you judge me as I stand cooing over an adorable bag of m&ms? Do you saunter by the mountain of miniatures your naive child left unprotected with barely a pause? Maybe the tasty remainders in your brownie pan do not sing out your name as you pass by? If the aforementioned scenarios strike you as even remotely possible, go ahead and log off. I’m sure there’s a Pilates class waiting for you.
My parents did not make a big deal of a clean plate. I may have spent a night or two at the dining room table alone with five icy peas staring defiantly up at me. But those times were rare, and the lesson seemed simple: children are more stubborn. (A fact since coldly confirmed by my own offspring.) Don’t think I was morally neglected. My mother did teach me a valuable lesson about leaving food behind, the sugary kind that is.
As kids, we did not have much in the way of sweet snacks. My mother simply didn’t buy the stuff. Oh, except when she did. Every now and then a bag of Nabisco would appear in our pantry, fitting in with radishes and root vegetables as comfortably as a frog on skis. We knew how to right the imbalance. Finish the bag. Fast. We knew (like we knew which neighbors gave full-size snickers on Halloween) that if we couldn’t do it someone else would. Come morning those cookies would be no more than a hazy dream.
Only after I gained the wisdom (and pounds) that only the years can bring did I come to see the real gift in the lesson from my youth. And this is the part I want to share, just in case you’ve ever beaten yourself up after a naughty splurge. This is my nugget of wisdom. Just do it! Eat the whole pan of cookies! Down all the candy! Why? Well if you do, I promise, like magic IT WILL BE GONE. Conflict resolved, and you can look forward to a morning free of inner conflict and self-delusion. Feel bad for eating that impossibly cute tootsie roll? You should, you’ve blown it. But, since the day is already shot, why not polish off the little fellers? The evidence will be gone and your pantry will emerge temptation-free.
Pardon me if my argument seems unclear. November 1st is always rough, my head aches and my stomach is a little off. Though my Halloween-hangover is not as bad this year thanks to a certain first grade teacher who challenged the kids to count and categorize their candy. Doctoring numbers on a first-graders homework is beneath me (although stealing her candy is not) so I’m left in a bit of a quandary. If you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to go figure out how to explain fuzzy math and what exactly it has to do with fourteen missing snickers.
You can read more of Daphne’s work on The Rocky Mountain Moms Blog, on her eco-fabulous site, A Greener Biener, or here on the mama bird diaries.