My wife's diet is killing me.
Not literally. It's a death of a thousand desires.
After fasting for three days with nothing but water, she's now enduring a diet of limited foods. She's always been a vegetarian but now she's a vegan, and beyond. No caffeine, so no coffee, tea.
I seduced her into being a coffee drinker. She's never become devout about it but she does enjoy a sunlit table in a coffee shop with a mug to warm her hands and a book to read. The coffee, even decaf, needed to be consumed before three PM. We figured that's her cutoff point, or the caffeine has her up all night, but now, no coffee, and she misses it.
No chocolate and no alcohol.
She likes a little chocoate now and again but has never been even a modest tippler.
No yeast, dairy, tomatoes, potatoes, peppers, and eggplant.
She was once a vegan, years ago, but the woman loves her eggs, butter and cheese. Now she's off them.
No vinegar, soy products, and yeast.
My wife loves bread. Buttered toast with eggs is a major comfort food for her. Eggs and toast seem to fill a nutritional and emotional need. Not for now.
Cheeses are another favorite of hers. She treats herself to a couple pieces of string cheese each week, and bought other cheeses to eat as a snack. Not for now.
No wheat or gluten, no oats.
I can eat all those things now but the diet curtails our social life. I think I might find myself in trouble for cruelty if I eat her favorites, so I'm abstaining from most of these things, as well. At least at home, or while she's home. I drink my coffee here when she's away, and I still go to the coffee shop each morning. That doesn't bother her. My coffee is instant, though, so the smells descending grinding and brewing doesn't linger.
She's not allowed sugar and honey. We've been having rice farina for breakfast. We dress it up. I add cinnamon, blueberries, blackberries, crushed walnuts, and maple syrup.
Her condition and symptoms drive her need for warmth because her hands and feet become so cold. She likes my office and she cranks up the little heater in there. She feels good when it's around 85 degrees in there, yet her hands and feet can still be cold.
All this affects her energy levels but she presses on, planting the lettuce and onions, and preparing the garden beds, going to her exercise classes and zumba and continuing her community support activities and social justice activism. She's far stronger than I would ever be. That's what I think but I'm not sure. She experiences pain, and has been for 13 years, battling it through different diagnosis and medications. While the pain debilitates her, it replenishes her determination to beat it. She's always been an iron will sort of person.
All this is temporary to learn what foods might cause her problems. She'll slowly re-introduce them, one by one, monitoring herself for impacts. She's not supposed to do that until after two months, but Seder is coming up, and she told some friends we would come to their Seder, and she's bringing a dish for it. She's not sure how she is going to handle eating at Seder. See, she's private and doesn't mention these things to her friends. They don't know that she's not drinking coffee. She still goes to coffee with them but drinks hot water.
I can't quite imagine what all this is like. Her heat makes me literally drip with sweat and chases me from the room. I go off and guzzle water and splash my face. Since she's never been a big beer or wine drinker, she has no problem with me drinking those around her, but I avoid cheese. As I say, that would be cruel.
And I avoid my usual breakfast. That rice farina, though...even with all those things added, it still tastes like paste, paste with cinnamon and berries. I miss my oatmeal.
I can't imagine what she misses. She has only mentioned the coffee.
Causes Michael Seidel Supports
Kiva, Women's International League for Peace and Freedom, Propublica.org, Doctors Without Borders, GreaterGood.com