Friday, March 13, 2015

Food through love and grief

I'm feeling very contemplative this morning. Much has shifted in the past few weeks and my spirits are a bit low, and as a consequence it seems my activity level and quality of food that I put into my body has lowered as well. Its really amazing how everything is connected, and once that is recognized, all that one has to do is improve one thing, whichever is easiest, and the rest seems to follow. I've always had difficulty with mood shifts, its easy for me to feel depressed. After a few years, I've learnt to recognize those signs, and talk about it, and know to act accordingly immediately, instead of waiting to see if it was 'just me feeling lazy'.

So I started today with this gorgeous breakfast, I just sauteed veggies until semi-cooked, then put it into a small glass cooking pan (that I put in the oven while preheating at 425 so the veggies could continue cooking when I transferred them), cracked an egg over it and set it to cook for 15 mns. Near the last few mns I added some sharp cheddar. Greek yogurt with raspberries and a piece of multigrain bread completes. Simple, country, delicious. But it feels luxurious, and that's precious, because I am precious, and worth it, and the sweet life in me is even more so. After this, I am going to do some laps at our public pool, which I stopped doing for a couple weeks. Being in the water is just so wonderful, both for my body and mind. I used to go daily, and will do so again.

A month and a half ago, my sister, having broken up with her ex, was between apartments and asked to stay with us until the new lease, 3 months later. Of course, we immediately accepted. Its a joy to have her here with me and I love seeing and talking to her daily. But food wise, it brought along major shifts, I now had 3 adults to cook for and make sure there was enough leftovers for lunches, as well as fresh produce for snacks. My sister is an extremely active person, and being a dietitian, is very conscious of what she was eating. So I had to make that shift in our groceries and food budget to accommodate her (and follow in her footsteps as well). I quickly learnt what fruits and veggies would get eaten up real fast and which would hang out on the counter until almost too late. I also developed strategies for quick food: in the freezer, I have the breakfast shelf. In there are different quick pull options for them like smoothie packs, frozen sliced oatmeal banana bread, waffles, etc. For snacks and lunches I make snack bags of fruits and veggies already sliced and pre-assembled so all they have to do is grab. I also make one big batch of protein at the start of the week, like a bowl of hard boiled eggs, or a whole chicken de pieced just for that purpose. I can steam a large portion of a couple veggies and make a large portion of carbs like brown rice or mashed potatoes so they can just pre assemble. All these things help out with supper so that I am not desperate to have leftovers. It was a shift, but very interesting and I think helpful towards the future when baby has outgrown mama milk. Its like a trial session for feeding more than just J and me, and although I screwed up at one point (J's work schedule changed so that he worked during the weekend when we would usually stock up. For about three-four days there were no fresh produce and had to rely on frozen/canned), it was a great learning experience. Food through love.

Last week, my dog passed away. She was 15 years old and a source of love and trust that I had relied on without realizing how much she impacted my life. When my father passed away when I was young, my mother bought me Ivy a month later, and she became a greater blessing than anyone could have figured. I couldn't begin to count the days and nights I just held her when I was feeling strong emotions I couldn't, at that point, express otherwise. A few years later (I was 15), when I reached one of the darkest moments of my life, I felt like there was no reason to being. I was alone in my home, everyone had gone out, and I had stolen my mother's meds and had lined up the pills one by one on my bed. I can say without a doubt that I would be dead had I taken all of those. I was 4 down when she ran into my room, jumped on the bed, sat on the pills and put her front paws on my chest and just gave me kisses all over my face. I just picked her up and held her and cried into her fur, and stopped what I was doing. She saved my life. Whether she felt it, or was moved by a greater power, I don't know, but I owe my life to her. I don't feel like I have to explain my love for her, or debate it with anyone who believes an animal is just an animal. She was precious. I had a 'last supper' of sorts with my family who had raised her with me. I didn't take any pictures but everything turned out perfectly and effortlessly. My step-father insisted that he wanted to buy her a Big Mac, and everyone fed her tidbits from their plates. It was a meal of love and support and sadness and grief. Food through grief.

Not wanting to end on a sad note, a week later, Im feeling better and started my day with that awesome breakfast I told you about. Im about to leave to go swim and my heart heals itself, and like all deep sadness, it doesnt forget but finds it easier bit by bit. I am lucky to have people that love me so around me, and especially, I am so very grateful for the miracle that is growing within me. Life is death is life, and grieving is just as beautiful as living, in a different way.

Love and light to you, my LG sisters! I am grateful for you, too!


  1. Oh, CYN! I am so glad you've posted. That breakfast looks incredible. Even the morning lights is soft, forgiving. Every component is spot on.

    Your story about Ivy and the pills had me in tears. I am so sorry about your loss. Pets are gifts from heaven, and I am so grateful for Ivy's love and attachment to you. The thought of you hurting makes me terribly sad, and the thought of potentially not knowing you makes my heart hurt.

    We are here for you far beyond this blog. add me to skype if you ever wanna chat: sam.marie7

  2. <3. I think most people go through their ups and downs, I was really unbalanced back then and I didn't know how to talk about it, get help, and the people around me had no idea what to do about it. I am grateful to have a place to share this!