The grief has been coming in waves and I find myself out of practice when it comes to asking for what I need. It’s a new skill and is easily lost in the midst of
preschooler unpacking the house holiday demands. I had moments of devastation today because few of my in-real-life friends or family acknowledged Ben – or how difficult it is to not have him, alive and in our arms – yesterday. I know that’s part of the process – other people move on with their lives while we mourn. But it hurts to feel him slowly vanish from hearts and minds.
I noticed the ache in my chest, but kept pushing through as there was a to-do list to conquer. Finally, unwilling to tough it out a moment longer, I lay down and as my cat clambered up, eager for a child-free moment of affection, I heard the tape playing in my head. Everyone wants something from me, I don’t have enough energy to go around, there is not enough of me to give…
I heard it and I stopped short.
Suddenly I heard, There is more than enough for everyone if you give to yourself too.
The ache in my chest vanished.
Reverb10. December 26
Soul food. What did you eat this year that you will never forget? What went into your mouth & touched your soul? (from Elise Marie Collins, author of An A-Z Guide to Healing Foods: A Shopper’s Reference.)
My relationship with food has shifted dramatically this year. I’ve said goodbye to gluten and to dairy and sugar (ahem, mostly). I don’t drink much alcohol anymore and I make my own water and coconut kefir. I eat mainly vegetarian or vegan dishes and I own two raw food recipe books. If I do eat meat it’s from a local farm and I know they raise (and kill) their animals ethically. It’s been a shock to my husband, who fell in love with me in part because I enjoyed a good steak, but I feel healthier, thinner inside, more alive. If I could get enough sleep on a regular basis I’d want to leap tall buildings in a single bound.
This change is food for my soul. It syncs beautifully with my deepest, most connected, most truth-telling self. It benefits my body, my spirit, my family, and the world.
The hardest thing about it?
It’s possible – though I will never know – that my gluten intolerance had something to do with Ben’s death, and my two other miscarriages. But thinking about that is crazy-making and there is no turning back the clock.
When I write about food at the end of 2011, I want my words to echo Heather’s at GFMuse:
Looking back, I understand that we invited joy into our kitchen this year. Much to my delight, it came right in, rolled up its sleeves and made itself at home.