I love to eat out, but the following scenario will give you an idea why we don't often dine out as a family:
We sit down at the table and the negotiations begin.
"Do you think they have diet root beer?"
"All I see is diet pepsi. How about iced tea? Or water?"
"I guess. Do they have splenda here?"
"I have one in my purse if they don't."
"I can't decide if I want chicken fingers or maybe I'll get a bowl of chowder. If I get the soup will you share some of your fries with me?"
"If I get fries, I will. Look...there's a soup and salad thing too."
"But what's in the salad?"
The waitress arrives. "Can I get you something to drink?"
"Iced tea please...unsweetened."
"Unsweetened...are you sure?"
The table answers in unison: "Yes."
We return to the previous conversation, "It says a garden salad. I can't imagine there's anything too weird in it."
"O.k. I guess I'll get that with the clam chowder." She begins to chat with the rest of the table or do a children's menu puzzle. I hand over her meter so she can check her blood sugar. The waitress reappears with drinks.
"Have you decided?"
By this time, I've carefully perused the menu options for my daughter. Depending on the venue, I've managed to choose a wine by the glass or a variety of tea. There's little chance I've even begun to consider my own food choice.
"I'll go last," I usually say.
"Mom, can I have that splenda?"
"Give me just a minute." This can be said with varying degrees of kindness.
It comes around to me. Unless I've been organized enough to preview the menu online before our visit, I order what I usually have there, or the first thing that catches my eye. I get out the splenda and begin considering how many carbs are in the bread which has arrived at the table.
Her salad appears. It has seven croutons on it. I bolus for them and the bread. I take a breath, a sip of my beverage, and a glance around the room, beginning to focus in on any table conversation. I begin to chat and relax.
Our meal arrives. "May I taste your chowder?"
With a sigh, "yeah."
Not too many potatoes, but tastes a little starchy. I estimate the carbs. "How many fries do you want?"
"I don't know."
"I'll give you ten to start...I need to bolus you for something."
The mental math begins. If an 8 ounce cup of new england chowder contains x carbs and this dish looks like twelve ounces and it has fewer potatoes than most but tastes thickened by flour or cornstarch and then I add ten fries and the package of oyster crackers, I'll bolus for y carbs for now and if she eats it all or eats some of someone else's dinner, I'll add z carbs later. I plug the numbers into the meter remote and press 'ok.'
The waitress appears. "How is everything?"
I've eaten nothing yet, but smile and nod anyway since my plate looks like it contains what I remember ordering.
"I think that's what he told us, isn't it?" My husband is pulling me back into a conversation I haven't been following. I grab a now-only-warmish fry, and another sip of my drink and try to catch up. It's time to enjoy my dinner and relax for a bit.