I stood outside my dorm, dressed in a borrowed blue formal and wilting curls. As my boyfriend came into view, wearing his new suit bought for the occasion, he held out a blue gift bag and said with practiced formality, “Allow me to present you with a symbol of our relationship.”
I took the bag and looked inside. It was full of string cheese.
Since the annual Thanksgiving play is a fairly formal occasion, it’s traditional for guys to give their dates flowers. My guy, however, enjoys shaking up tradition, choosing something weird but significant. Once, he got me a computer mouse because I had been complaining about my computer track pad for weeks.
And I’ve always loved string cheese. It’s a delightfully tactile food. Growing up, I used to beg my mother to buy string cheese when she took me grocery shopping. Occasionally, she’d cave, and as we drove home, I’d eat a stick string by string, lingering as long as possible on each bite.
I rediscovered this favorite childhood snack last semester shortly after my diagnosis. Now that I’m on an insulin pump, I snack frequently. But last semester, while still on injections, snacks could be a hassle: there was the fuss (and potential waste) of using needles and I couldn’t take insulin doses smaller than a unit–rather annoying for someone as sensitive to insulin as I am. String cheese was something I could eat without having to think about it first. And it’s really nice to just eat something.
Now if only I could get myself this excited about vegetables…