In my continued quest to be not-fat-at-fifty, I started “properly” following the Atkins low-carb plan, not just using their products in my self-made low-calorie program. Unfortunately, I’ve had a b1tch of a time cutting the carbs as low as I’m supposed to.
I know I’ve mentioned what I do for a living, but this week I learned that I work in the 13th most stressful position in the nation. (For those coming late to this party, I am a public safety dispatcher … also known as a 9-1-1 dispatcher… or depending on who’s doing the calling, “just a dispatcher” — but don’t get me started on that!) In fact, our profession has a “stress tolerance” of 98.5 — is it just me or does that seem high?
Somehow we were outranked by # 11 dancers… I’m not really sure how, but I’m sure the article my co-worker found explains it.
There is plenty of down time in a town with a population of 42,000, even though it’s now sandwiched between a state university (not our jurisdiction) and a new Indian casino (also not our jurisdiction). There is still plenty of action created not only by these two influences on our town, but also our own population. So, although in my small center we are not constantly “on” (we are not constantly in action), we are always on “HIGH ALERT” because the next phone call or radio transmission could be the difference between life and death either for our caller or for our officer/firefighter.
This weekend I worked back-to-back 14-hour shifts — pretty normal for me actually, but still it extends the life of the stress level for those two days. All in all it was a pretty “normal” Saturday night — the usual drunk people, fights, traffic stops and so forth — until the Future Nurse (my San Diego daughter) called me at o-dark-thirty.
We have caller ID on the line she called in on, so I didn’t even say hello but just “are you okay?” as my blood pressure shot through the ceiling. She quickly reassured me she was fine — but the damage had been done.
Okay, let’s not blame it all on her; it’s not all that unusual for her to call me at that time of night; she knows I’m awake even if I’m not working. Truthfully, she was probably just the last straw for the night. I was also already pretty worried about Prince Charming’s mom — whose current specific problem neither I nor Prince Charming have any control over and that’s stressful too — but up until her call I had been pretty mellow and in control over what was going into my mouth.
My carb count up to that point: 26
My carb count after that point: 34 — no, not including the original 26.
My allotted carb count per the Atkins induction program: 25 or lower, and 20 is best.
So, I’m taking a page from Geneen Roth, and just sitting with my feelings… noticing them… acknowledging them… and moving on. Worried? Yep. Scared? Yep. Frustrated? Yep. Bring on the feelings; I can handle it!
What stresses you out? How do you avoid carb loading in response? (And, before you say it: No, I can’t take a walk at work!)