Posted on January 3, 2016 - by

Resolution: Changes in Attitude

First of all, Happy New Year! I’m grateful for each one of you readers. And now, in the first week of the new year, I thought I’d share my resolution…

John by our post

In Key West we have been assigned a horrible parking space. (I know, first world problem, but hear me out.) The driver must back in, with only about 6 inches of clearance between the car mirrors and two enormous concrete pillars on either side. I confess that I have avoided driving just because of this parking problem. But a couple of
weeks ago, I watched John as he swung gracefully out toward the opposite cars, and then glided backwards into our slot.

“You consider this a challenge, don’t you?” I asked in an accusatory voice.

He grinned and agreed that he did. And right then I decided since I have no other options, I might as well try to take that approach too.

Set that story aside for a minute.

In September, I was diagnosed with a disease called Meniere’s. The experts seem to think it involves too much fluid in the inner ear, resulting in vertigo, nausea, and tinnitus along with some deafness, among other symptoms. Though it could be a virus or any number of other possibilities. It’s not life-threatening, but it is life changing. For example, it’s important to reduce stress. (As one of my “spin” buddies said, I actually didn’t feel like I was that stressed until I got Meniere’s and uncontrollable vertigo!!!!!”)

There’s no cure at this point, since no one has a good grip on what actually causes it. But the main treatment is a low sodium diet, a diuretic, and staying away from caffeine, chocolate, alcohol, and salt. (Maybe you heard the screams as this was explained to me last fall.) And using a list of drugs to help manage the dizzy episodes when they recur. (Which they do.)

Lucy in 2013

This has been a hard adjustment, as I’m used to feeling healthy. And I love food. I write about food, I talk about food, I get enormous pleasure from cooking and eating good food. I identify as a foodie. I boast that my maiden name “Isleib” means “is stomach” in German. So while I’m trying to do what I was told would help, I’ve done it with a lot of grumbling.

I’m no Pollyanna. I do have days when I feel lousy and tell my hub that maybe it’s time to push me out into the harbor in an old leaky boat.

“But wait,” I say, “I’d better take the old cat with me–he’d be too much for you. You guys don’t really connect.”

“And Tonka will want to go with you, no matter what the circumstances,” says John. “And you aren’t leaving me behind!”

And then we laugh like crazy imagining the Coast Guard or the Navy Seal divers coming to scoop the four of us out of the harbor. And I start poring over the No-Salt cookbooks again.

This is where the story of the parking space comes in. Somehow this year I am going to try to adjust my attitude about having this bizarre chronic disease, and about eating. No salt? No problem.
And that is my resolution, a change in how I view this condition, from yawping and yammering to acceptance.

How about you readers? Are you facing any big challenges this year? Or do you have tips to share about surviving one in your past?

Lucy Burdette writes the Key West food critic mysteries. KILLER TAKEOUT, coming in April, is available for pre-order now.

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    January 11, 2016

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    Susan Hubbard said:


    That’s a lovely message for the new year. Best wishes in accepting this challenge and not letting it hold you back. (You know having to back into that parking space would limit me!)

    Reply


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