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May 19, 2021

Mandy Nolan’s Soapbox #196: Control Yourself

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MANDYIt would be true to say that I have issues around self-control. I never have just one of anything. Not wine, not chocolate, not men, and certainly not kids. I have always had this attitude to life that if you are going to do something then have a bloody decent crack at it. Don’t tiptoe around the edges and dip your toe in; bloody jump in!

I was at the doctor the other day, and she asks me the lifestyle questions around my personal health. ‘Are you a heavy drinker?’ I say, No, probably moderate. She asks, ‘How many times a week?’ and I say, oh, three or four days a week I might have three sometimes four glasses of wine. I didn’t tell her that every six months or so I might have six! It’s none of her business.

I’m starting to think Dr Lady could do with tipping herself over the two-drink ledge every now and then. And makes some passing Dr Judgment about my alcohol consumption and says, ‘That’s double the recommended amount’. I don’t know who makes the recommendations: clearly people who don’t like drinking – probably Baptists or Mormons.

I was like, ‘Have you had a look at me, love? I am twice the size of a recommended woman. I am 90 kilos and 6 foot tall. Surely my ‘standard’ drinks are bigger?’ Apparently not. Frankly I wouldn’t see the point in having one glass of wine. Why open a bottle of wine if you are only going to have one glass? Seems like a waste. I’d rather have none.

I love food. My constantly fluctuating weight is a pretty clear indicator that I don’t say No very much. I can’t eat just one piece of chocolate. I don’t trust people who can do that. It’s my belief that people who can drink one glass of wine and eat one piece of chocolate are quite possibly on the spectrum for serial killing. I won’t necessarily eat the entire block, but I’ll keep going until I feel sick. I have never managed to judge the chocolate indulgence tipping point until I’ve tipped into too much.

I was never going to have one kid. That would have been more like a hobby or a project. I never saw the point of just having the one. No, it’s all or nothing. When it came to breeding I decided early on in life I would have none or heaps. I still don’t feel like I had enough kids. I would have had another 10 had I started earlier.

I guess I was lucky I never had fertility issues. I have always been far too fertile for my own good. It was always easy for me to get pregnant because I love sex and loathe contraception. And I’m prone to being a teensy bit reckless. It’s called ‘impulsivity’. I call it charisma. Apparently, another self-control issue.

I never planned pregnancies. That seemed far too clinical. No, all my pregnancies were the result of impulsive passionate couplings, not entirely dissimilar to the resultant progeny. For god’s sake – I wanted to breed artists and thinkers, not auditors.

I have spent my entire life on the quest to be moderate. It has always been my greatest challenge. It’s easy to be moderate when you are by nature a moderate person. I sometimes think they are the people who have the boring jobs in government departments writing pamphlets about moderation. Only moderate people would be happy with a life where you did that sort of shit. When you are an extreme sort, it’s something of a lifelong challenge to achieve moderation. It’s trickier than multiple orgasm.

I used to drink seven coffees a day. And smoke 12 joints. And that was before breakfast. At about 30 the panic attacks set in and I had to cut back. Now I smoke zero joints and drink one coffee. If I have two coffees I feel sick. It’s like my body is betraying my true hedonistic nature. Just looking at stoned people gives me the fear. My stupid body forced me to the land of the boring. Making me one of them: the moderate people.

And so I only have one coffee. I don’t buy chocolate. I only buy one bottle of wine. I have cut back on my orgasms and coerced my husband into getting a vasectomy. More recently I put myself on a wait list for a height reduction. I think finally when I am a conventional five foot six I will finally able to do conventional things like control myself. Until then watch out; this large and totally reckless woman is reverse parking somewhere near you.

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