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Despite busy plans for the weekend, I ended up falling slightly ill — nothing major, just a very unsettled stomach and a slight headache. Enough to put me off of eating and leave me feeling a little nauseated, but not enough to keep me off my feet.
As I went about my planned schedule, it struck me that I felt a kind of sadness about not planning my next eating activity. No snack or meal to look forward to, not even an apple or a cup of coffee. The mere thought of eating made me queasy, but without the possibility of an eating event on the time horizon, it just felt weird!
We all know this, but food is so much more than just fuel, eating is much more than a restorative activity. There are so many aspects to it that are social, emotional, psychological and perhaps even spiritual.
There have been times when I thought of my interest in sweet foods as a curse. How much better life would be if I didn’t care for chocolate, or treats, or fatty foods. There would be so many other things to do with my life if I could stop obsessing. If only food and eating were as perfunctory as washing my hands or brushing my hair.
The problem with that thinking is that it doesn’t take into account a half-century of life experience. The fabric of our lives and personalities are inextricably linked with all the things that have gone on — including the role that food and eating have played.
Another interesting discovery has been that, as my condition has begun to improve and I’ve tentatively begun to try eating a little, the foods that I’m tolerating the least are the healthiest things (i.e. roughage), which I actually miss a great deal. Over the course of just a weekend, it was hard not having salad and popcorn and apples!
Obviously I like peanut butter and crackers and chocolate ice cream. But as fun as they are to eat, they just don’t leave me feeling like I’ve had enough. Lord knows I’ve tried that route often enough in life.
So I look forward to healing in multiple ways. For one, I’ll enjoy the pleasure it brings me to include eating occasions throughout the day. And for another, it will be a relief to indulge in those foods which bring me the greatest satisfaction.
And yes, I’m talking about a really big salad!