There were four different sugar and grain based “snacks” in the social studies office today: oatmeal cookies, cinnamon rolls, store-bought brownies, and homemade brownies. I get it. It’s finals time and people are stressed. Lost of people like to help mitigate their stress with sweets, and honestly it doesn’t bother me. It’s their body, their business, their loss. I can understand that.
When it gets to me is when they turn their weakness on me. The teasing: “these brownies are soooo goood!” The faux admiration “look at Gabe with his healthy veggies.” The jealousy. The sideways comment about how my carrots and cucumber represent some sort of “moral high ground”. “There’s nothing moral about it,” I think as I relish the sweetness and crunch of a Nash’s carrot. Simply put: I want to get through the day feeling good. Grains and simple carbs make me feel like garbage. Veggies don’t.
With sugar I get a sugar high. I get a sugar crash. I get gassy. None of that is particularly appealing for a job where I spend most of my day walking around helping students and thinking quickly. Not to mention how a sugar crash and feeling gassy is a perfect demotivator for heading to the gym after work to sweat and lift heavy things.
Why the insecurity? Why do my colleagues have to take their issues and foist them on me? I’m happy to discuss healthy eating, and why I make the food choices I di with them, but I want to do it from a place of reasoned discourse. Starting the conversation with jabs about how green vegetables are in some way morally superior to grains is ludicrous. I try extremely hard to be non-judgmental and not proselytize primal/paelo eating onto unwilling coworkers so it’s particularly frustration when it’s called out like school-yard mockery.
I didn’t have a brownie. I didn’t have a cookie. I didn’t have a cinnamon roll. I didn’t get into a heated discussion about the evils of trans-fats and high fructose corn syrup, or how you don’t have to be allergic to gluten to avoid it. I am not strong. My coworkers are not weak. I ate my veggies because that’s the lunch I’d packed for myself and it was satisfying. I moved on to my paelo-approved, and incredibly delicious shepard’s pie (thanks Well Fed) and went out to teach full of energy and satisfaction. Positive reinforcement for positive choices.
Time for more push-ups.