Today, F is for Food! And it might as well be since many know me as the food mistress at work. What they don't know is how I got to the point of eating food every morning before work. Here is my story;
During my medical school days, I had to be in class before 8am, and that meant skipping breakfast. I only got the opportunity to eat during the break periods and that was at 11am. I didn’t see the big deal in eating at 11am (especially since I rarely get hungry, and don’t even realize it when I do). I am one of those people who eat food based on the time of the day. Like, oh! It’s 2pm, it’s time for lunch. I’m that bad. I may go for 12 hours before I realize I haven’t yet eaten a meal. Not watching my weight or any of such, it’s just a bad eating habit.
Anyway, so I’m carrying on like I own the food world, eating anytime I like, (even late into the night at 2 am – when I’m reading), until one morning, I develop a severe abdominal pain. I was in my fourth year, I had just had breakfast and was coming back to class for more lectures, when I suddenly doubled over in pains. My friends helped me get to the nearest consulting room where the doctor made a diagnosis of peptic ulcer disease. He advised me to eat better and I agreed, took the prescription of drugs he’d written, thanked him and went away.
I wish I had been a good listener back then, because frankly, I couldn’t adhere to his advice for more than a month. At every stage of clinicals, till my housejob, I always had to meet up with something before 8am. It wasn’t until my youth service year, 5 years ago, that I finally decided to take my health a bit more seriously and listen to the advice of so many people (doctors, mother, father, relatives) at the time.
One thing my father said stuck to my memory. He said: “Nne daddy, (as he fondly calls me) the only reason we leave our homes every morning to go and work, is so that we get money to put food on the table. If you don’t eat, you can’t work and if you can’t work, you are no longer beneficial to your patients. And guess what, if you drop dead one day from hypoglycaemia (low sugar in the blood), those same patients will move on to the next doctor. Only a few would stop for 1-minute silence”. My mum concluded by saying that “even 2 slices of bread in the morning is better than nothing, as breakfast is the most important meal of the day”.
So today, I have a small flask that I take to work with me everyday, and make sure that its contents are deposited in my stomach, latest 9am. And if anyone tries to hassle me, I just smile and repeat the words of advice of my parents in my mind. I would love to know, do you miss your breakfast?