She had the appetite of a Christmas Elf. Her diet typically consisted of cookies, candy bars, ice cream, jelly and maple syrup. We used to laugh that my Mom would find candy bar rappers underneath my Grandma’s pillow when she would go to wash her sheets. She literally washed her hands in maple syrup once at Crackle Barrel (who’s surprised my family was there for lunch?). My Mom claims this helped her live longer. I think it had a lot to do with the fact that she held onto her youth. Candy for dinner, dancing with her walker up and down the hallways, getting her nails painted in bright pink tones- she never let her age take away her spunk. My Mom asked her once how old she felt and I believe my Grandma responded with an age somewhere in her early 20s.
I always considered watching what I ate an adult thing; like when you grow up and you suddenly have to start saying “no” to the piece of cake at a birthday party. It becomes inappropriate to hit the piñata. I guess this made sense for me, because I always witnessed adults doing this (but I never considered my Grandma to be one of them- she was a ball of energy with wrinkles). Then when my sister started making wedding plans, she told me that she wanted to have a piñata at her reception. (I hope I didn’t give anything away!). When she told me that I thought about my Grandma, and I could almost hear her laughing at everyone hitting it and the candy flying every where. It made me sad, that I was forced out of that youthful freedom because of Diabetes- and then my sister told me that she would have some diabetic candy just for me. It probably sounds like I’m five years old, but it made me smile. I don’t have to give it up; I just have to make it work for me. I guess that’s how my Grandma felt about getting older. She couldn’t stop her aging, but she could control her spirit. Every day, she chose to wake up and smile and say “yes” to everything she could. She was at sports games, dinners, vacations, and holiday parties. She was there for pictures before high school dances, at weddings and graduations. So I guess I have the choice to feel sorry for myself, or I can go grocery shopping to make delicious diabetic tiramisu. See recipe below!
Without ice cream, there would be darkness and chaos. ~Don Kardong