Ste Annes Spa

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

A New Year's Elimination Diet

I used to think I was a fairly well-balanced person, a kind person, a responsible person, a social person, ultimately a good person. I used to think my will power had a cape and possibly wristbands. But my view of myself has changed radically since two weeks ago. Because two weeks ago, I started an elimination diet.

I’m doing this to reset my digestive system and to be aware of any food sensitivities as I bring banned foods back in. Sounds like something a well-balanced person would do, right? Well, if you think it’s a sane decision, you haven’t gone out with me in the past fourteen days.

People are starting to think me odd
Without coffee, a cup of which I will hug as a dear friend once it returns to my life, I am part zombie and part scary giant fictional dog in a horror movie. As people speak to me, my gaze slowly moves from their eyes to the floor, where I stare, with nothing in my brain but a dial tone. I don’t try to eat their faces or anything, but if their faces were made of coffee, I might take a lunge. When not staring at the floor, I wait for one sentence, one tiny slip of the tongue, which could be construed as mildly offensive if the listener was severely warped in the head (tis my current state). Then I pounce, days of coffee anger taking over, as I try to verbally stab my poor dining companion. Then I go back to being comatose, like I am doing character research for Awakenings 2 – The Elimination Diet Version.
My jerk friends taunting me
When I am engaged in conversation, I make it all about food. “Ooooh. You grandmother makes homemade gnocchi? Tell me how. No, start with the flour. Mmmm…flour.” After getting everyone who enters my line of vision to describe every meal they ate, I also make them order wine so I can smell it. I miss wine almost as much as I miss coffee. I miss casually holding a beautiful glass of ruby red as I laugh gaily at some witty remark (I am re-writing all of my past social interactions involving wine so all feature gay laughter and witty remarks). 

I love being home, slowly sipping a Malbec while gorging on a really meaty documentary (note all of the food language used here). I miss the fascinating conversations, the bonding, the flirting that people have over bottles of good red wine (no one will hang around with me now that I stare at the floor and make them describe Triscuits in great detail).

My Chinese medicine doctor says that the liver is the filter for the body’s processes, including emotions, and we’re helping to unload its stores with this program. Fair play, I guess. But I never knew my liver’s processes were so intrinsic to my social life. I now go to bed early, spend hours making meals, have herbal tea for late night conversations and am just a titch less wild than my 92-year-old Nana. 

In two weeks, I’ll be re-introducing coffee and wine and life will go back to normal. What I’ve learned in all of this --- my liver wears knitted slippers and watches Jeopardy. My liver is a social lame-o.


Lindsay Kyte is a writer, actor and speaker living in Toronto but still maintaining her Cape Breton sense of humour. www.lindsaykyte.com


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