Speaking of weight and what woman isn’t doing just that most of her life, is it permissible for me to add a few sympathy pounds to this mix? When my daughter is pregnant shouldn’t I be able to eat more as well? After all, they cut fathers some slack here with the whole “eating for two sympathy for their wives,” why not the grandma? Can I begin eating for two also, discounting the whole “I finally lost my menopause weight thing” and reverting instead to this great new excuse to feed my face ad nausea?
When I was pregnant I didn’t miss a meal, snack or any chance to shove food into my never-nauseous face. My body didn’t even have the decency to have morning sickness. It’s almost like it defied me with a big “Ha, ha did you think you would just throw up for nine months and get off the hook? No way. You eat; you pay.” And pay I did. I prayed for morning sickness, at least for three months. After all, I had friends who were throwing up every meal. Looking thin and fabulous with a baby bump while I burgeoned up like a walrus in my third month. I was certain I was delivering a litter despite my doctor’s assurance that, “no, there was only one baby in there.”
Once the pregnancy muumuus went on, the keys to the fridge came off, and there wasn’t enough food on planet earth to fill the void that had become my mouth. Black holes in space absorb less matter.
I rationalized every excuse to eat. Why not? I finally had one. After years of playing the Yo Yo weight game, it was okay to stuff my face. When I noticed people’s jaws dropping at the sight of my immense new girth, I would reply, I’m pregnant and they would feel guilty and say, “Congratulations. How nice.”
After Laurie was born I continued to embrace the baby pounds excuse, since it had worked so beautifully in the past. I would run into people and they would say, “Wow did you gain weight,” because everyone is so nice they will always point that out in case you didn’t notice you were up five sizes. But I would patiently repeat, “Well I just had a baby” and they would embarrassingly say, “Oh, that’s nice.”
That worked great until my baby started driving. So I finally lost my “Baby” weight. And 35 years later, I only have 22 pounds to go. Although new grandmother weight may be adding to my problem.
If one is feeling well during pregnancy many, including myself enter what I call, rationalize highway. There are so many great excuses on this road to feed your face shamelessly and constantly.
I’m eating for two, three or four as the case may be. (An oldie but a goodie).
My doctor said I have to gain at least twenty pounds. Could you get me his address and phone number please I’d like to make him my diet guru.
The baby needs all kinds of foods to develop healthy. In other words that grazing smorgasbord you call dining, can be even greater now.
Elastic stomachs and waistbands. Although, now many pregnant moms wear regular clothes in a larger size, totally doable with the new stretchy fabrics.
I have cravings and I really need to have two hot fudge sundaes a day. Can I help it if the baby loves ice cream and chocolate together? Shall I deny my unborn child what it needs to be happy?
I can’t see my feet, so what does it matter?
Are you going to finish that sandwich and fries?
Is it my fault if this restaurant is serving smaller portions lately?
I swear this licorice used to have more pieces in the bag. I’m calling the company.
And of course the ever popular…my boobs are itching and Cheetos stops the hormones from attacking.
Contrary to the opinion after one experiences menopause the bloating and monthly impressions of Satan’s mistress subside, one is faced with a new set of challenges. Weight gain is not relegated to a monthly occasion, but daily.
I have had to prohibit myself from entering a bakery as more than three sniffs of a cupcake will bring on bloating.
Pounds go on so quickly if you blink you feel your pants tighten. Even the most determined elastic waist couldn’t win the battle of the bulge.
There is simply no way to describe the feeling of sloshing as you walk. Men do not understand the unpleasantness of becoming a mobile fishbowl one week out of every month. And after menopause even more. What can you do when the only thing that will fit over your body is the Santa Monica Pier?
Life stops. You can’t date or go to a party with your friends. Lest anyone see your bloated carcass attempting to fit into jeans that once circled your hips like the moons of Jupiter circle the planet, softly, sensually. You‘re squeezed inside like a size ten sausage in a size five casing. You are depressed and sullen, and can’t smile because your cheeks look like a squirrel hiding the winter’s stash of nuts. Your jewelry’s embedded into your skin like the Enquirer in Cher’s plastic surgeon’s files. You even walk slower for fear of dripping on the carpet.
In all my days I have never heard a man say, “I can’t go to the football game, I’m bloated. “Yet women’s lives revolve around water and weight gain. We are possessed by the need to feel our clothes loosely encircling our bodies. We crave cheeks that are gaunt and sunken in like Kate Moss after a fast. We need bones, not puff. Who else but a woman would be complimented and elated by the remark, “You‘re so skinny, are you sick?”
We starve ourselves before every party or vacation to lose a few pounds in advance of the inevitable bloating. Every invitation is laced with fear whatever we buy will not fit on us on that particular day. We strive to look skinny in the pictures from every event just so after we’ve gained the weight back months later we can feel even worse about ourselves every time we see the photos.
Is this any way to live? Crazy? Worried about the wetness of our cells? Sloshing through life like a pair of wet socks dreading more rain. I absorb humidity from the air like thighs absorb cellulite.
Okay. So by now you are thinking, what’s your point, Grammy? You do an awful lot of bitching. Can’t you just adjust to the fact you will never be skinny again and your grandchildren don’t care?
Okay, that’s true, but here’s my point. I don’t want to piss off any feminists here, but God is a man. Reality check please; if God were a woman would celery contain only five calories and Dove Bars 10,000? Would we crave chocolate and not carrots? Would there be Monday Night Football. I THINK NOT!!!!
I do feel the need to be constructive and positive here. Okay, so maybe a bit of my daughter’s organic insanity has sunk in so here’s a few tips passed on to me.
What will help bloat? And no a pin will not as I’ve tried. Exercise does help, but not at first. If you begin an exercise program be prepared to retain some water in your muscles at first. I don’t know why. Maybe it’s just further proof of the old adage no good deed goes unpunished. But after your body gets used to exercising, it releases the water. I guess it’s a damage deposit.
Drinking lots of water also helps. People always told me to do just that, but my first instincts on bloat days were to cut my water intake to nothing. However, if you drink your body is fooled into a false sense of security. It thinks it has plenty of water in storage and releases some of its stash. Ha ha fooled ya.
This usually works unless you overdose on salt. Salt is the enemy here. We crave salt, I know, but it’s bad to eat an excess because it contributes to bloating in a big way. Little salt crystals run madly through your body grabbing water drops and looking for places to hide. Hey, you can’t find me, I’m hiding in your boobs. See how big and tender they are and you can’t have my water. Ooh, I hate salt! It’s so evil. But that doesn’t stop me from pouring it on everything that doesn’t move.
Asparagus is a good diuretic. Most vegetables are good at helping the body release water naturally. And lest we forget, coffee, unless you drink more than you should, coffee will act as a good water release. Some people swear by parsley tea. Try the health food store.
I have also found that carbohydrates have a tendency to cause water retention. I don’t get rid of much of anything when I eat pasta, except my craving for pasta. That’s gone, but unfortunately not for long. I just can’t eat many carbs, as they are too much at home in my body. They sort of drop by and stay, like unwanted relatives. I have the midriff bulge to prove this theory. I absolutely refuse to discuss pizza as the mere mention of it brings on serious cravings.
Of course you can do all of the things you can think of to lose weight and decrease bloating, but I highly recommend the following: drop by and see your grandchildren, wear elastic pants and bake something for them. As long as you’re healthy it really doesn’t matter at all.
Lazy Grammy Bobka Hack
This is great to make with your grandchildren!
Yields two Bobkas
2 loaves of frozen Challah
Two fillings you can use either
First filling instant hazelnut spread or chocolate spread.
Second option homemade chocolate filling
1 bag or 12 ounces of chocolate chips. I use semi sweet, but if you like it sweeter use milk chocolate.
½ cup of unsweetened cocoa
¼ or 1/2 cup of sugar depending on your sweetness taste level
1 stick plus 1 tablespoon of butter or margarine
Place in microwave until melted (about 1 minute or so) and remove and stir together. Let cool so not too warm when spreading on dough.
1 egg and water for wash
Grease bread loaf pan or cookie sheet
Thaw the dough and when thawed and pliable roll our on a floured surface into a rectangle. It should be about twice the length of your loaf pan.
Gently spread on your filling in a thin layer and roll the dough from bottom to top like a cinnamon bun.
After rolled up cut in half and braid the two pieces together.
Spread the top with an egg wash of an egg and a little water and sprinkle with sugar.
OPTIONAL: I made a streusel topping of sugar, butter and flour and then sprinkled it on.
Tip: For those who like sweeter dough just sprinkle sugar over dough before rolling.
Let dough rise for another fifteen minutes before baking in a 340 degree oven or whatever your bread dough calls for.
ENJOY and prepare to be amazed.