It looks like Sophie really is sensitive to chocolate through my milk. I sort of tested it the other day when I caved in and ate a piece that was laying around hidden in my office. It was just one little piece! But she had another fussy evening and I’m choosing to believe it was the chocolate, even though she’s been having fussy evenings this last week whether I eat chocolate or not.
Sophie’s version of “fussy” is much less horrible than Julie’s was at this or any other age – the new one is at least generally consolable, and is not screaming the “someone is cutting off my arms and legs” scream taht Julie used to make pretty much constantly. Really, until she was almost two, we didn’t realize that Julie *had* any other cry, and I thought parents who could ignore the cries of their newborns for more than five seconds were complete barbarians. Now I know differently. Poor little Sophie has had to fuss in the crib for a few minutes at a time on more than one occasion as Julie got a diaper change or some other little multi-child crisis came up.
Anyway, Sophie’s current case of the fussies probably has more to do with being two weeks old and having a little cold in her nose – the same one that Joe and I had last week and from which we are still recovering. But I’m going to take a leap of faith and believe that abstaining from chocolate keeps her a little bit happier. It’s good motivation to stay away from the freakin’ chocolate, and I’ve realized over the last week that chocolate really is the bane of my existance, or at least of my hope to ever fit back in my size-10 wardrobe.
I didn’t realize, until I tried to stop eating it, how much chocolate I really eat. It’s a daily thing for me. Literally, not a day went by during my pregnancy when I did not consume something choco-licious, be it brownies, cookies, ice cream, candy, a cafe mocha, or even when nothing better was available, a handful of chocolate chips and a handful of nuts mixed together.
Today, after Sophie’s two-week well-baby checkup, she Julie and I drove out to Joe’s office to show off the baby to the coworkers. Then the four of us went out to lunch at Culver’s, which for the non-midwestern readers, is a fast food place that specializes in frozen custard desserts. As I sat there finishing my sandwich and fries, my mind drifted automatically to the hot fudge sundae I would have ordered almost without thought while I was pregnant, and before I reallu thought it through, I said “Oh Darn!” which sparked this little dialog:
Me: Well, I guess Sophie wouldn’t like it if I ate a hot fudge sundae
Joe (with a disapproving look): No.
Me: And I guess I’m better off without it anyway.
Joe (still looking at me like a stern parent): Yes
So then two thoughts went through my head.
1 – I could drop Joe off after lunch and come back through the drive-through, get my custard fix and he would never be the wiser. This kind of food-hiding thought has been in my little psyche since my earliest memories. Thanks, mom and dad, for installing that food=shame button so early! Being told not to eat something or that I am fat or really any related message just makes me want to rebel and do it more.
2 – What’s the point of getting custard if there’s no chocolate involved? Sure, I love the creamy texture. But I’ve never been a vanilla girl. I don’t really care for white cake. Given a choice of something chocolate or non-chocolate, it will pretty much always be the chocolate. And plain vanilla ice cream by itself definitely doesn’t do it for me. Even the idea of a fruit or caramel sundae doesn’t really float my boat. A root beer float would come close to satisfying, maybe, but it wouldn’t be worthy of a stealth drive-through trip.
This second thought is actually quite liberating. It adds hope to my dream of eventually losing this indulgent-pregnancy weight. I mean, yes, I want my old clothes to fit. Yes, I want to feel good in my body again and feel happy about the way I look. I want to have the energy to chase after my girls, and it’s hard to do that with an extra pile of pounds on your back side. But those are all internal motivations. The no-chocolate thing is an external one, and sometimes those can be helpful things, especially if they are driven by love instead of shame. The chocolate prohibition is out of love for my daughter and not wanting to see her in pain and wonder whether that hot fudge sundae I ate this afternoon is the source of her screaming tonight. Totally different than a raised eyebrow from a well-meaning husband.
The follow-up question is how far will the chocolate-free diet get me? Will it be enough along with the nursing and chasing after a toddler and carrying extra loads of laundry up and down the stairs? I have no idea. I do believe in the 9-monts on, 9-months off rule. Even though this is on my mind, I’m not obsessing over it. I am already losing some weight, but it’s always the first big chunk that’s the easiest. I really don’t think I’m going to be a fattie forever.