Friday, September 28, 2007

What's for Dinner?

Once upon a time, in a land way too near, dinner was a major discussion point in my house. Deb and I would banter about all different kinds of proteins and different ways to prepare them. Fried, baked broiled, grilled, sauced, sauteed, spiced, rubbed. Always a new and different experience. Deb is quite the cook, too, so that didn't hurt. Unfortunately, my relationship with food certainly did keep me at 400+.

In the old days, Deb would call and ask what I wanted for dinner. I might throw something out, maybe not, but we'd pretty quickly come up with a plan. Definitely some potato and a veggie to go along. She'd also cook for 8. Well, 8 normal sized people. Seconds were guaranteed. Leftovers were not.

Today, she still asks what I want for dinner, and I almost never have a preference. Lately, I'm into chicken and fish more than beef and pork, but any derivation of those will do. My indifference has created a bit of stress between us, too, as the task of selecting the meal falls entirely on her shoulders. I am totally grateful for her flexibility in this department as my preferences have changed over the years as I'd go on and off various diets.

We talked about this indifference a couple of weeks ago and realized that my relationship with food has changed so dramatically over the past 14 months that sustenance has become more important than selection. I'm good with just about anything she puts on the table -- it's all good. Seconds are limited to the green of the day, which she still prepares generous volumes of, but if we're having burgers -- It's 4 on the grill, not 6 or 8.

Mike commented a couple of days ago: "It is funny to see how people like us have now replaced food with exercise." It couldn't be more true. When I get out on my bike or go out for a run, I try to think of more exotic places to run or ride. (Well, as exotic as suburbia can get, I guess, like which Starbucks will I stop at along my route for a jolt.) I definitely spend more time thinking about that course that what we should have for dinner. Some nights I feel like I'd rather go out and ride than eat. If it weren't the only family time we spend together most week days, I might actually do it.

I spoke today to a friend that I haven't seen in a couple of years. He asked me if there is anything that I miss from the old diet. Truthfully, no. The killer for me is the smell. Last night Deb cooked some cookies and cake for a meeting that she was going to today and the smell through the house was delicious. That was painful. But. . . I survived and didn't cave. I learned how to deal with goodies at the beach in August as previously detailed.

So the catharsis continues and I'm in a really good place and feel better every day at my chances for long term success.

Deb just called: "What do you want for dinner?" What ever you want, my love.



bigmike600 said...

Great post and how true. I really could care less what I eat as long as it is low in fat, has nutritional value and enough protien to keep me going and give me some strength to do some exercising.

Dodger said...

I do 95% of the grocery shopping. I cruise the aisles until something catches my eye. Five years after dropping forty our shopping and eating habits conform to better health. I read labels (and price tags) and we generally are satisfied with our daily diet. And as long as we maintain an exercise regimen and healthy eating habits, we do allow ourselves indulgences to satisfy certain cravings (pizza, ice cream, Oreos) without waiting to go on a trip somewhere. And then the guilt drives us back to sanity.

Kim Ellis said...

Jeff - great post! I am the one in my household that is reponsible for the cooking except on occasion where the hubby wants to give me a break which is always appreciated.

He doesn't have a preference of what we eat as long as it's not a lot of red meat. I'm with you - I would skip dinner to get in a good workout especially since my bedtime is usually somewhere around 8pm and I don't like to eat too close to bedtime. Alas, I don't skip dinner because that is quality time with the hubby and without that time our togetherness would be limited. Back in my single days (just 2 1/2 years ago) I would definitely skip the dinner thing - life progresses and we learn to adapt.

The cookies and cake would have done me in - I know my weaknesses and don't go there.

Keep up the good work - I appreciate your blogs and comments on my blog.

Renae said...

This post reminds me of my dad...
He was well over 400 pounds for a long time, until he got diagnosed.
He would call on his way home "What's for dinner?" Our answer depended on whether he was going to stop and get something on the way home first. This is going back probably 20 years... since he came home one hot summer day and realize all my mom had planned for dinner was veggies and dip (it was SUPER hot outside) and he wanted meatloaf, mashed taters, and bread. Thanks for jarring a funny memory.