The highs and lows of parenting and real estate.

Diet Redemption

Jason started a new diet on Sunday. It’s a whole thing involving large slabs of meat paired with beans and fields of veggies at every meal. He also has to swing a kettle bell (not to be confused with ‘kettle ball’, which is apparently not a thing) and take freezing showers in the morning. He’s starting a blog to track his progress, but he says it’s not done yet (which means it’s not perfectly perfect and flawless) so I’m not allowed to link to it yet. He did say I could post his before pictures, though:

Jason says he’s tired of being fat and needs to get in shape. I don’t have a problem with his physique (I like my men burly), but I think the general idea of healthiness is a good one. I mean we all love butter, but we don’t want to end up 300 pounds, hawking diabetes meds and hated by the general public, now do we, Paula?

So, like I said, I think the diet is probably a good idea and I’m trying to be supportive. The problem is; I think the lack of ‘white foods’ (flour, sugar, deliciousness, etc.) is affecting the patience center of Jason’s brain. I think the already quite emaciated portion of Jason’s brain devoted to his ability to tolerate my neediness and the kids’ general kidocity has been quickly starved into submission and is almost unable to function at all. It must have thrived completely on toast, is what I’m thinking.

Now whenever I say, “You seem kind of crabby, what’s wrong?” instead of an explanation about work or some other irritation I get a death glare. It’s sort of like this:

But, you know, with less ears and more eyebrow.

There’s also been an uptick in the amount of snappiness around the house.

Me: So what have you been doing in the office for the last hour?

Jason: My ab workout.

Me: How come you’re doing it in there? That room sort of smells like cat pee and tortoise habitat.


Me (under my breath): I… might not… Screamy McShoutypants.

Because I have the emotional maturity and stability of a teenage girl who just got dumped by her first boyfriend, I started taking some of this diet moodiness personally. Generally speaking, I need constant reassurance that my husband likes me and wants to be around me or I start to get paranoid he has a whole other wife and family in Ohio I know nothing about that he’s decided he likes better than us.

Tuesday morning I woke to my 4:30AM running alarm blaring, feeling residually cranky from Jason’s crankiness the night before (cranky is super contagious). I briefly considered turning it off and going back to sleep, but I had people I was meeting, so I coaxed myself out of bed with promises of the normal things that make leaving the warm comfort of the bed worth it for me in the morning: Diet Coke, Howard Stern, seat warmers.

I got dressed and went downstairs to stretch quickly before getting in the car to drive over to Tempe Town Lake and as I was shuffling down the stairs I remembered something that was going to make the whole thing even less pleasant than getting out of bed before dawn to run 4 miles in the cold(ish) already is: I had parked the GOV on the street the afternoon before so the kids could ride bikes in the garage and the driveway. So the van would be even chillier for the 25 minute drive than it would have been if I’d parked it in the garage like I normally do.

I know it seems like in Arizona it would be a fairly minor temperature change to have a car parked in the garage versus on the street, and it probably is. However, first thing in the morning, when I’m already using all of my willpower just to drag my butt out to do this run, the idea of trooping the extra 15 feet out in the cold to sit in a cold car sounded utterly miserable. I almost started crying. I also almost went back to bed. But because I was dressed and awake, I sucked it up, grabbed a Diet Coke, steeled myself for the bitter, bitter Arizona cold (48 degrees) and opened the door to the garage, practically shivering with self-pity.

Instead of an empty garage I was greeted by the GOV, parked inside and waiting patiently to get all nice and toasty in the driver’s rear end region and make me feel better on my drive.

It was at that point I remembered mentioning to Jason before dinner, “Oh, hey, remind me to put my car in the garage before I go to bed. It will make life so much happier when I have to get up to run tomorrow.” Apparently he hadn’t remembered to mention it to me before I went to bed, but he had taken the time to pull the GOV in himself for me before he came up awhile later. To this moment it still makes me a little teary because it was so nice.

That little stunt bought him forgiveness for at least 5 death glares and 10 snappies. The man may not buy me flowers or plan dates to take me on, but he knows how to say he loves me in ways that really matter. (He also never judges my wine consumption. So he gets points for that as well.)

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