Tuesday, May 25, 2010
I had seven whole hours alone this weekend. I know.
Actually, the circumstances were complicated and awkward and not nearly as awesome as you think, but I was, indeed, alone for seven hours.
My alone-time began shatteringly early for a Saturday morning: 5am. Oddly, I didn't mind it though, because nobody was begging me for coffee or pancakes or a fried egg or Spongebob. All was pretty good, even at that hour.
I opened the paper, sipped my tea and then realized: I get to think about what I want for breakfast. I'll be damned.
Now I don't know about you, but even on weekends, my mornings are a freakshow. The kids need food NOW and they certainly don't want the same thing, and the cat's meowing for his milk, precariously underfoot, and I need to make the coffee and AIEEE! She'stouchingmemommymakeherquittouchingme...
You know. Like that.
Breakfast is usually someone's leftovers, shoved quickly down the gullet, as I'm running to make sure Miss M. really did hit the potty this time. I always eat breakfast of some sort--I'm ravenous in the morning--but it isn't really something I choose for myself, consciously. At this point in my life, breakfast=fuel. The quicker it gets into the belly, the better. No time to think.
But on this sunny Saturday, I got to choose.
Then I went for a long walk around a nearby lake, keeping company with geese and cows and large canines dragging dogged and harried owners. I walked fast. No need to stop to tie small shoelaces or take a dandelion-picking break or clap for spontaneous cartwheels.
Walk finished, I began the drive home and noticed that the Farmer's Market was open again: a sure sign of impending summer. I detoured, wandered around, found some cute little heirloom tomatoes and bunches of sharp-smelling herbs.
Back home, I realized something. When you're up at 5am, a mid-morning nosh is definitely necessary. Again, I was struck by the notion that I could actually put some thought into this. Eat exactly what I wanted to. This rarely happens.
As I've confessed before in this post, what I eat when I eat alone is usually shameful stuff. Leftovers, odds and ends, cereal. This food is not what I want to eat. It's food eaten out of desperation or laziness--food I don't have to think about, much less take the trouble to cook.
Oddly enough, I'd just thoroughly cleaned my refrigerator, so there wasn't the usual drek sitting in there, begging my parsimonious self to put it out of its misery. Yet again, I was able to stop, consider. I chose some of those little heirlooms with some fresh, creamy cheese and sharp basil. A snack was never nicer.
By the time 1pm rolled around, Awesome Stepkid R. was on his way home, there were weeds in the garden calling, and I didn't want to tarry, so I grabbed a heel of baguette, some herbed butter, and called it lunch.
The point of this story? I dunno. ???
I guess I was just struck at the notion that I no longer really feed myself. I cook, but with others in mind. I rush through my day and never stop to ask, "What do I want? What's going to nourish me, at this very moment?"
And I don't do that because...well, I can't. There's a family to consider. Just feeding myself seems rather selfish. But it made me wonder. What, at this moment, would you eat, if you could, just for you?
And p.s.: Lest you think I was virtuous all day, I will confess to my afternoon snack.
But you know what? Triscuits, lettuce, pepper jack cheese and mustard? Exactly what I wanted, trashy or no. Sometimes a girl just wants what she wants.
**Hi friends, a little more awkwardness and not-awesomeness going on here, so please forgive me if I don't check in with you for a bit. Nobody's diseased or dead, so don't worry about that. I just have some figuring out to do. Thank you, dear readers. You mean the world.**