One of the things I missed the most on that first Thanksgiving after I was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes was my grandmother’s mashed potatoes. I looked forward to them all year. They were light and fluffy and with a spoonful of butter on top, they melted in my mouth. But they were potatoes and white and filled with carbs and starch, and therefore on the “bad” list when it came to what I could eat on Thanksgiving. So instead of the delicious potatoes, I ate turkey with gravy and a side of peas and (at 14 years old) I’m sure I sneared at my mother in frustration and self-pity the entire meal. For dessert my mom made angel food cake in honor of her 2 diabetic daughters and instead of appreciating her efforts, I was angry. Angry because I didn’t want angel food cake, I wanted the apple pie, or the pecan pie, or the chocolate pie.
It’s been 26 years since that first Thanksgiving and I’ve come a long way in terms of being thankful and appreciative. This year instead of mashed potatoes, I’ll make sweet potato fries and my favorite sauteed brussel sprouts with pancetta and garlic and balsamic vinegar. Yum. I’ll bolus an extra amount so I can have a small piece of pecan pie, and I will smile across the table at my mom because this Thanksgiving, I am thankful to have lived for 26 years with diabetes free from complications.
Here is a link to some holiday eating tips: