On April 29, 2012, I posted this on Facebook.
So, yesterday I ran to the grocery store and as I was leaving I noticed a woman standing on the side of the road like she was waiting for someone or needed a ride. Being sans children, I drove over to see if she did need a ride. She reminded me a little of my mom for some reason. Her salt-and-pepper hair was very short and looked like she’d lost a bet with a razor. She was older and a bit heavy. Really, she looked nothing like my mom, so I have no idea why the semblance. She did need a ride, only a few miles up the road. I glanced around for following cars and lurking creeps because I’m paranoid like that. Looked for where she might have a weapon stashed, weighed the odds and decided she was as harmless as she seemed. We chatted a little on the way to her tiny, very run down little duplex. Her name was Donna. She said she had a brain tumor. Some of you may now know why I am feeling a little shaken up. If not, you should go visit Mary Tyler Mom and read her blog on Chicago Now about Donna’s Cancer Story. But, there is a little bit more. I had two fridge packs of diet coke sitting on the floor of the van. As she was exiting, she commented about great minds and gestured to them with her own can of diet coke that I had not really noticed. Some of you may know why I am even more discombobulated by this incident. If not, I’ll fill you in: There is a large body of people who believe that aspartame can lead to brain tumors. I’m big on signs and intuition. I try to Listen, so I cannot help but believe that we met for a reason. Very Celestine Prophesy, I know, but still. I think it’s time to get serious about giving up diet drinks.
I didn’t think anyone would really react. I figured I’d lose a few “likes” or get some snide comments. Rather, the opposite occurred. I was really floored and touched, and totally encouraged that I made the right decision. So, I gave up the diet sodas.
It took a couple of days before I really said “adios” to the crap. I really like Pepsi Max (I bow my head in shame). The withdrawl was awful. I didn’t even realize at first that was going on. I was mean and peckish and my head was buzzing like it was full of bees or electricity. Once I realized that what I felt was really similar to the physical sensations I felt quitting smoking, I was okay. I knew what was going on, that it would pass, and that shit is even more evil than I first thought.
I’m thankful for the withdrawl. The physical sensations that accompanied it were clear proof that I had been poisoning myself. If I hadn’t noticed any difference I probably would have gone back to drinking it. I love me some bubbles. I’m also thankful and blessed to recieve such a clear Signal. I won’t lie. Nothing else really accompanied quitting the aspartame. I did not see the weight loss some proffered would happen, there were no angels or trumpets, and I don’t shit rainbows or burp butterflies now, but in all honesty, being free from something I didn’t even realize I was addicted to is enough.
I’m also thankful this week for modern medicine. Last week, my youngest daughter had a UTI that I am pretty sure got into her kidneys. That could have killed her. Even if we did have a hell of a runaround trying to find the right antibiotic for her, we did find it, and she has recovered.