Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Nobody Cares About Your Stupid Killing Yourself with Kidney Beans: Randomized and Personal Sharings on Food, Acid Reflux, and How Everything in the World is Dangerous

This is sort of a follow-up, part two of my previous post.  I didn't know there would be a part two, I didn't know I had anything else to say about food until I was trying to fall asleep the other night and started thinking random thoughts about how difficult it has been to eat lately.  Actually, it's also a follow-up to a previous post where I mentioned my struggles with acid reflux. 

I know: Okay, you burp, so get over it.

Firstly, it's not "burp," like something cute that maybe a small lady does after drinking a Shirley Temple too quickly while wearing white gloves.  Ask my co-workers.  I could blow the windows out if I directed myself properly.

Plus, it's a whole lot of constant pain.  If you've ever had a severe episode of reflux, you know what this means.  People have shown up at the E.R. thinking they're having a heart attack.  I don't have the type of reflux that I feel in my chest, though.  For me, the acid is in my throat.  My throat feels like a lava lamp.  There's burning all along my throat, and even up into my ears and sometimes my nose, because those are all connected.  You know that burn you feel in your throat and sinuses directly after you throw up?  That.  Because you're throwing up, along with your tuna fish sandwich or whatever, acid.  And that's what I'm doing, to a less volatile degree, constantly. 

I found out this morning that I've lost around 20 lbs. 

I've been on the Fear Diet.  A couple months ago, the pain got so bad I didn't think I was going to be able to completely swallow the food I already had half way down my throat. 

I got really scared.  As I mentioned in an earlier post, I hadn't been taking the acid reflux medicine I had been prescribed because it is so expensive, and I had continued eating the fatty, greasy, sometimes spicy foods that the fast food industry has to offer. 

I can't cook.  At all.  No idea.  I burn myself, I burn the chicken, I forget about the pot on the stove and the water evaporates.  And the fire alarm goes off.  A lot.  Every time.  I am forgetful and impatient and daydream-y and clumsy and the type of person who likes to just wing it, and none of these things are conducive to cooking, at least not for beginner cooks who need to follow the recipes precisely first before they go off and try to start getting creative.  Not to mention that I am ONE, one single girl, completely barren and un-partnered as of yet, and have you noticed that most recipes are designed for families of Catholic decent?   

Anyway, when the Ball of Fire That Shall Allow No Food to Pass showed up in my throat, and after subsequent searches on sundry medical websites that talked about Cancer, I got scared enough to try some very minimalistic cooking.  This amounted to: oatmeal, boiled or baked chicken, and canned vegetables.  That's what I've been eating for the past couple months. 

I got a little into it, and started trying to branch out.  For example, I got some grocery store brand boil-in-the-bag brown (brown, even!) rice, and a bag of kidney beans.  The rice was pretty simple, even for someone like me who makes everything difficult, but I do have something to say about it, later.

First, let's talk about the kidney beans.

One morning, after soaking, I put my kidney beans in the crock pot for a few hours and thought that was that.  Couldn't be much different from my black-eyed peas, right? And I had mastered those.  When I got home from work, I tested a bean.  It was still al dente, sort of like a jelly bean before it breaks and gives way to that sugary goodness.  Although the kidney bean was a little harder than a jelly bean and....not good.  I threw it in the sink and frowned, grumpily, at my crock pot.  Then I went to Google to try and find out what gives. 

Would you like to know something about kidney beans?

KIDNEY BEANS give off a TOXIC substance fungus-or-something thing if you do not heat them up really hot, like boiling, for at least ten minutes before allowing them to slowly suffer into edible kidney beans.  It may or may not kill you, but it will definitely give you nasty stomach events that will make you feel like death has come out of your asshole.  I'm saying that if you lose enough electrolytes, you could probably die.  This is not a valid medical opinion, it's just what I'm thinking.  Keep in mind that I have a significant level of health anxiety. 

Now, let's move on to the rice.

Did you know that RICE has significant levels of ARSENIC in it?  Especially, BROWN RICE has even more levels of arsenic because it is less processed, so it's supposed to be more healthy, but take that! you healthy assholes, you're eating arsenic!

Shit.

I found this out from The Doctors, who wouldn't lie, especially not on their television show.  That one particular guy is very attractive, which is what I base my level of trust on. 

In addition to very nearly killing myself, or making myself ill and very uncomfortable with my (lack of) cooking (skills and knowledge), I've also tried, again, the very expensive acid reflux drugs, which, to be so expensive, are not working nearly as well as they should, i.e. completely clearing up my acid reflux, also any acne I may have, also changing the litter box and doing the dishes and rubbing my feet. 

This morning, I went to see an otolaryngologist.  This is a doctor who specializes in the ear/nose/throat region, which, with my allergies and acid reflux, is the person I need to see. 

There, the nurse discovered that I have wax in my ears, which my co-workers will feel very vindicated about because I have been caterwauling for weeks about my fears about Cancer in my throat and/or larynx, and have pointed out multiple times about my clogged and painful ears as an indicator of Cancer, I know because of WebMD, and they, my coworkers, said that I have wax in my ears and I said, no, I definitely don't have wax in my ears, no, that's not what's causing this, no, it's not wax in my ears, no, and

I have wax in my ears. 

The intake nurse who found the wax in my ears sent another nurse in to clean my ears out with, I'm telling you, what looked like a Waterpik, like for your gums, and I guess if it's good enough for your gums, it's good for your ears, but I was afraid (of course) that it was going to hurt, but before she started she told me flat out that it wasn't going to hurt, that it might even feel pleasant, and I didn't believe it because she'd just before that asked me if I'd ever had a hole in my ear drum, or burst my ear drum, and, I'm sorry, but that sounds highly suspect as a question you're going to ask just before you do something that you say isn't going to hurt me, but it didn't hurt, it felt sort of like it was scratching, in a friendly, satisfying way, the back of my eyeballs.

I don't know how to explain that. 

Next, the official otolaryngologist came in, and I knew what to expect because I had already seen his picture on line, he looked very friendly, which is another factor I base my level of trust on.  He came in with this black strap on his head that was holding onto his head a small gold miner's type head-flashlight.  I'm sure they have a specific otolaryngologist-word for it, but I clearly do not know that word. 

But what was fascinating about him is that he is a closed-eyeball talker!  I am fascinated by this because I recognize it as a serious anxiety response, and as I know anxiety very, very well, suffering from it myself, I am always flabbergasted to witness it in other people, especially people in positions that you would think would indicate that they don't deal with anxiety, in themselves, on a disordered or pathological level.  I mean, you think doctors don't have time for having anxiety, they've got important shit to do, or that people who grow up to successfully be doctors aren't the type of people to have anxiety. He only opened his eyes a few times during the entire exchange.  It's like that mega-church preacher (a group I also put in the less-likely to have anxiety-induced rapid blinking category) who rapidly blinks so much, but this was at a completely different level, because he, the otolaryngologist, had his EYES CLOSED for nearly the entire time he talked to me.  His version of blinking was opening his eyes, not briefly closing them.  And he was lovely, and kind, and told me that it's okay to go on WebMD, that they are approved, and that his wife is also a worry wart. 

He's putting me on a mega-dose of one of the cheaper, generic medications and sending me to the heart burn center at the hospital. 

In the mean time, I will not be eating kidney beans. 



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