But I Don't Cook 'Cos I Can't Breathe!

Sometimes it's like banging your head against a brick wall...and the worst of it is that I bring it on myself...argumentative that's my problem...

I wrote on another site about the difficulty of cooking while trailing plastic tubing about and the danger of totally forgetting I'm plugged in as I go to light the gas cooker...so we're now doing something totally alien and buying frozen food to cook in the microwave and packet cakes...not all the time but about three days a week. The rest of the week I shout instructions to Himself.

Oooo...did that cause a bit of an uproar of 'too much salt and hidden sugar' and how some of my contacts would rather starve than eat pre-prepared food and wouldn't eat a slice of bought cake if you paid them to. Then there is the anti-microwave brigade who chime in with their tales of micro waves murdering your brain cells and zapping your nice bit of fish with unmentionables...

So I took a deep breath and plunged headlong into the difficulty of doing anything, never mind stirring béchamel sauce with one hand while making French Apple tart with the other, when there are times you think this laboured breath is going to be your last actually...there was a stunned silence for a day.

Then back comes some wise person who has a neighbour...friend...sister... with COPD and she has never let it stop her from doing her own cooking...and she goes horse riding and ski-jumping and jogs for five miles every day...bully for her, is my sharp retort to that fanciful story.

Hidden salt and sugar is so way down on my list of what to have for supper...shoving a bowl of frozen peas or one of Birds Eyes special fish dishes into the microwave seems eminently sensible to me...having a thick slice of O'Hara's Ginger cake that has chunks of crystallised ginger in it with a cup of tea is infinitely preferable to no cake at all...

Truth is, I don't care if it's thought idle to get a supply of meat pies for Himself...easy to cook and just add potatoes and carrots...I don't dawdle over the vegetarian lasagne...it tastes good and probably works out more cheaply than making my own from scratch...perhaps tomorrow I'll feel able enough to make salmon fish cakes or cook some shortbread...in the meantime the microwave can ping away to it's hearts content...

34 Replies

  • Tell em all to buggar off. There are as many degrees of COPD as there are degrees. Who cares how someone else manages everything. You do what makes your life good for you x

  • yep 'Bugger Off' is a good answer :D

  • Too right Annec and eyes - although I think my first word would begin with f...

  • Ah, yes...that's more like it !!! :D

  • I totally agree with comments. Using a microwave and frozen meals is far more healthy than eating takeaways every day or filling up with biscuits. I have a number of conditions including COPD. Saw a dietitian who was amazing and fully understood things from 'where I am at"! At that time I was living off sandwiches and cereals. We explored initially how to make those more healthy - using lettuce leaves etc. then looked at how to make ready meals a bit more filling / healthy. Plus which type of ready meal to go for.... Yes it's great for those that can make a meal from scratch but for others we do the best we can!

  • I totaly agree with annenic's comments, or to put it anotther way, get a life ! I'm trying !

  • Well said Vashti ! I hope you also told her that some days getting out of bed is a major achievement, let alone think about cooking or even eating.

  • Oh vashti you are so funny I am chortling away here to myself :d Nowt wrong with microwave food but maybe the micro waves are making me forgetful.....

    I hate people like that as well. Especially someone who claims to be severe who are running 3 miles a day and working full time. I could never do that even pre copd and certainly now being mild/mod never in a million years. xx

  • Well done Vashti, being ill for a month and still haven't all my energy back and my Hubby bless him, not being a cook, I have lived off ready meals, when I had an appetite. To be fair he has done me proud in everyway. I'm well on the way up so it certainly has been good for me. I think we would all like to make meals from scratch but it isn't always possible.xxx

  • Hi Vasti. I heartily approve of not giving house room to the sanctimonious brigade or the 'wise person' for that matter! Doesn't sound to me even a little bit argumentative! It's my firm opinion that they are put on this earth solely to be made fun of! And I'm with annenic all the way with few more expletives thrown in.

    Keep pinging gal, breathe easy and ride horses in your dreams!


  • Good on you vashti! Nothing worse than a "do gooder". LeeLee x

  • We've all met someone like that I think vashti. My cousin tells me about someone who comes in her shop that gets up the very steep hill, puffs and pants a bit, has had empha for 15 years AND still smokes!!! Mind you, to be fair, she was only trying to prove to me I won't be dead in 5 years, (Yes, I too Googled Lol.) bless her.

  • I've got an O2 umbilical, and I cook. Well, me and the missus do it between us. I do most of the prep sitting down. Do what I can stood up until I run out of breath. But I don't let it stop me!! Baked before Xmas, and did a 8" Christmas cake, and two 8" game pies. Do what you feel you can do, but do it carefully with a lot of thought and no rushing. Mistakes and accidents happen when you rush.

    breathe easy


  • Forgot to say ---- A slow cooker is a good investment, if you like solid old fashioned food. Safe to use too.

  • You should of invited them to come and cook a meal for you seeing as they are doing so well!!

    ...In fact, we should get them to cook us all a meal seeing as they are doing so well! Haha!! :-)

    I totally believe that a slow cooker is a good investment though, mine has saved me on some of these horrible cold days, when by the evening I have no energy to move!

    We all know that we have to take each day just as it comes.

    And if that means sticking something in the microwave to eat- then so be it, it's better than eating nothing at all!

    Don't let them get you down.


  • Good one Vashti, as for your so called well meaning friend tell her we could all do that back in the day! Love Kin Xx

  • You tell 'em Vashti...I use my microwave, I also use a slow cooker which I like more because casseroles taste lovely cooked slowly and you just have to chuck it all in. :-)

  • oh that has made me chuckle on this very cold morning, think I may be a member of that same site lol and also the reason why I do not post so much these days. One thing we did was to learn how to use a slow cooker properly, you can even shove potatoes into one of those roasting bags and put that on top of the meat. One pot meal apart from the small plastic microwaveable dish for peas etc. Whatever works for you is good.

  • Cannot believe there are people like those - glad I don't know them. I think bugger off is mild to what I would say! It seems far preferable to trailing your hose around naked flames to use a microwave and slow cooker. I remember the same brigade a few years ago thinking frozen food was not as good as fresh.

    Do what you want Vashti and to hell with them.

  • I was once a critic of ready meals but not any more. There are no hidden anythings in reasonable ready meals...I find Icelands amongst the best. I do look out for "Traffic Lights" markings and any other markings that are on the cartons and base my diet on that. if todays says RED for salt, it will also say 17% or something...fine, I can work around that. 17% is ok if I know what other salt I am having today and tomorrow I make sure that salt is low etc. It's one of th best ways of controlling your diet....you know how many calories you are consuming for a start. Microwaves...I don't have one. Harmful...no, as long as they are cleaned and the door seal is ok. I prefer to use a small table top cooker...a halogen one. Brilliant for ready meals, breakfasts and whatever. Even cakes and a full dinner but not at the same time. My neighbour is one of the sceptics. He says how do you do veg in a halogen. I said same as in an ordinary cooker. He replied I don't....I said there's your answer, stupid.

  • Good morning Vashti. there will always be sanctimonious people who think they know your condition better than you do. I have a neighbour who smirks because I'm unable to do my own garden (she's older than me and her garden is a picture) I've tried telling her about my lung condition, but she just says "Oh we all get a bit breathless from time to time!" I've learned to ignore her, but you cannot educate such people.

    There's nothing wrong with frozen meals, veg etc., I live on my own and cannot afford to buy fresh stuff because it goes off before I can use it all. Rather than waste money I don't have, I admit to frozen food. I also sometimes make a full size cottage pie or lasagne etc., Then after I've had my portion, I freeze the rest in separate dishes so I can just chuck one on the oven when I'm having a lazy day.

    Take care. XX

  • Good for you Vashti. Bravo. Send then some wool and get them to knit you a pair of socks while they are at it. There's always one smart ass. My grandson has a very rare medical condition his medication disrupts his sleep patterns so he's up half the night. He also has Asthmas so the cleaning regime stipulated by the Drs takes hrs, not to mention all the special programs he has to strengthen his muscles. His sister is 8 months & has dairy soya and glutin Allergies. The dieticians clinic ran 4 hrs late & then she told my daughter who was asking for help to find suitable foods to make her own bread. Vicky promptly answered is that before PR after I clean the windows & dust the chandeliers. So yes there's always some helpful soul who can tell you how to do it better. Fortunately not many most are very supportive. Have a good day. The Poetry is lovely.

  • Spot on Vashti, all that exhausting, agonising and fussing over food that some indulge in would send me off to the funny farm.

    I love to cook and most of the time I still can but if needs be I also have microwave meals and I use my microwave every day even if only to heat food.

  • Unless fruit and veg are really fresh, I believe frozen is better. I have used a microwave regularly since the sixties, wouldn't be without it. Cook sliced fresh carrots on veg setting in 5 mins in 2 tbsp water, better than boiling. No saucepan, just the Pyrex dish to store leftovers in. some ready meals are excellent, I read the ingredients. M&S or Tesco finest suit us. won't go on, but I could!

  • Good for you !!!

  • I'm so glad I'm not the only one in danger of blowing myself up lol! I love my own cooking and knowing exactly what I'm eating but it's getting harder. and harder, and we have started buying ready meals lately....handy when the big fella is away at sea every other week and when I am busy with my drawing and painting.........I forget to eat! After a truly wonderful weekend in Dublin I would happily live on Guinness and chips forever!!! Huff xxxx

  • nothing wrong vashti in using microwave heated foods as long as it is the good stuff, before coming into nursing home care I lived on my own and there was days long gone now when I never cooked my thoughts were then no good just cooking for one then one of my carers steered me to Wiltshire Farm Foods and I never looked back.

  • It's my day off today and this thread has me grinning like a Cheshire Cat ? I'm a ping ding queen too, many an evening after work I shove a micro meal in. Why waste precious breathing energy on peeling n cooking!! I love the micro sponge and custard easy peasy way of getting those extra calories so win win. Xx

  • Well done Vashti, another post to make me smile. We have a bit of a mix with ready meals when I'm not too good and home cooked when I am not too bad. On home cooked days I do all the prep work, peeling potatoes, carrots and peas etc. Those peas are a sod to peel. Then when my wife gets home (she works full time) she cooks what I have prepared. It works for us but If anyone says anything I just tell them to Foxtrot Oscar.

    Bobby xxx

  • Same here.Bless the inventor of the microwave,slow cooker,steamer and so many other things that help us.I have met the same people to,they must have dopplegangerd who go around in a big crowd.Blooming idiots.I always think to mysrlf and sometimes say it,stop judging me as you dont know what is in store for you ,so bog off love to all mags xx

  • "You go girl....Only one way..and thats Your Way..always got to be ONE...iDIOTS!!!!...xx"

  • I know what you mean re cooking, I have a small tin of salmon as a sandwich once a week, and being a Cornish girl have smoked mackerel when I can and a Real Cornish Pasty every week (not living in Cornwall but found a great Cornish bakery Philps online that delivers them frozen - beautiful). Also try to have some tinned fruit and a yogurt most day, and fresh fruit - did manage to cook a chicken yesterday with some dry roast potatoes so will be living on cold chicken for a few days - not mad on frozen meals but do have them when needs must. My oxygen will not reach the kitchen (and have been told not to use it there anyway) so can take all my energy jut to make a coffee let alone do any fancy stuff (like cooking ha,ha,). Anyway take care - thank you for your post xx

  • Exactly my thoughts to ,enjoy the least domestic we have to be the better,feet up watching TV,easy does it! Pamper oneself "your worth it ".

  • My friends got copd she's not out of breath....bully for her I say,I am though very out of breath!shes lucky then.

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