Ancient Pepsi Vending Machine from Tap Dancing Class!
I know I wrote about Diabetes Food Quirks a few weeks back, and Amy T over at Diabetesmine wrote about losing control when it came to diabetes food frustrations, HERE.
But after having a conversation about growing up with a friend recently, while being interviewed for a podcast for her school project (how times have changed), food, diabetes and childhood memories once again had my mind spinning!
I’ve never eaten Fluff or cotton candy and I never tasted a Root beer float until I was well into my 30’s.
Before my diagnoses, I have fleeting memories of Sprite in thick green speckled glass bottles, bought every Saturday afternoon out of an ancient, scary, and complicated light blue Pepsi vending machine that made it's home in the front office of my Tap Dancing School.
It creaked and squeaked and held our bottles hostage until we gave it a good grab, or literally stuck our arms up and through the machine's sharp edged innards (and before the days of lawsuits,) but damn if that retro machine didn't keep the soda ice cold!
I can recall going to the corner store by myself (with my parents or siblings watching from the front porch) and buying Funn Dipp, Pixie Sticks, or Charms Sweet & Sour lollipops, and feeling very much like a grownup. I couldn't have been more than six.
I remember my neighbors Mr. & Mrs. Kerber gave me and the other neighborhood kids a giant size Hershey Bar every Halloween.
After my diagnoses, Charms sweet and sours, Pixie Sticks, and Funn Dipp weren’t options and Bazooka Bubble Gum was replaced with packs of Carefree and Trident.
Tab became my soda dujour~
Ice cream for dessert after dinner was replaced by diet chocolate pudding (which made for a lovely lipstick) diet J-E-L-L-O, and on special occasions, rainbow sherbet, which wasn’t that bad.
Christmas time meant I could bake cookies, but I couldn’t necessarily eat them. Still, I found my way around that obstacle.
But every time my mom baked a cake, she’s let lick the batter bowl, and that REALLY made me happy.
Easter time came to represent new books whose pages were crisp and whose spines had yet to be cracked. A new stuffed animal to love and a crisp $5 bill in my light green Easter basket instead of candy.
Let’s face it folks, “dietetic candy was far from friendly on one’s intestines, regardless of the bright Easter colors and shapes.
Growing up at the beach meant that the Ice Cream Man would ride his 3-wheeled bike with a giant ice-cream freezer in front, and ring his bell at the beach bulkhead.
My friends and I would run up past the hot sand with change in our fists and visions of Pop Rockets, Ice cream sandwiches, fudgesicles, and Chocolate or Strawberry ice cream éclairs dancing in our heads.
But I always got a cherry Popsicle or lemon water ice, because my parents thought it would do the least amount of damage.
In middle school, long bike rides didn’t just help me get from one place to another; they lowered my blood sugars after contraband peanut cups. Plus, I didn’t want to be home in case there were plumbing problems after flushing the Reese's wrappers down the toilet.
High School offered the freedom of choosing what I wanted, regardless of what my mom had packed me for lunch. TastyKakes became my contraband of choice.
In college I experienced White Castle for the first and last time all in the same evening. I still don’t get gravitational pull many feel towards that crap. YUCK.
Now, things are different.
I like the options that carb-counting has given my life. YES, Things are still complicated, and annoying and frustrating and a pain and the ass, but different none-the-less.
I like being able to experience things, food and otherwise.
In the mid 90’s I discovered Nutella while in Italy and have been grateful to the Italians ever since.
I've experienced great numbers and happy taste buds after both Flan & Creme Brulee.
Cupcakes are a part of my life, as is cream and sugar in my coffee.
Pasta, rice, and fresh baked bread only cross plate on occasion - Look, I never said I figured it all out yet!
But still, whenever I see SweeT Tarts, I think glucose tabs!
Here's the thing: Whenever I watched Charlie and The Chocolate Factory as a kid, I never wanted to win the “golden ticket” because Wonka’s temptation was just too great and that made me sad and frustrated.
Now, I seek the golden ticket out in every aspect of my life and embrace what it represents!
GO FOR IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!