Long time no post, hmm? Let me fill you in. Last Sunday Jay and I drove down to visit my grandparents in Virginia Beach for four days and I’ve been working every day since we returned home. It’s nice to sit down, relax and know that I have nothing planned for tomorrow.
Our mini vacation, while enjoyable, was also stressful for me. It was cloudy most of the time and I consequently spent more than my fair share of time in the kitchen. When we got home, I felt so relieved, which seems sort of backwards and sad but it’s something I can’t help. Home is where I feel comfortable and happy, it’s where everything is familiar. The knives are sharp. That’s important. And I also feel more stable here.
As for our vacation, Sunday was absolutely beautiful. Jay and I arrived around 1:30 pm and let the day melt away with swimming, sun bathing and the like. Unfortunately Sunday was our only cloud-free day. It poured most of Monday and we had a few showers on Tuesday, too. Luckily, Jay and I got outside for a walk on the beach one morning and spent at least an hour each day swimming in the pool.
If only that blue sky on the horizon had been directed towards us! You can see the big, huge gray cloud overhead. I thought the slate-gray color of the water was lovely. Ominous, but lovely.
While I loved being down the beach and hanging out with my grandparents, my grandmom and I seemed to butt heads in the kitchen. A lot. I helped her make dinner almost every night and really couldn’t work in peace without her questioning me or suggesting that I do something differently. I know in most instances she was trying to help, but sometimes I just need space to do my own thing.
I like trying out new recipes, using quality ingredients and eating fresh food. My grandmom relies on tried and true recipes that she’s followed for fifty years. She saves the smallest leftovers, all in saved, opaque I-Can’t-Believe-It’s-Not-Butter containers so that you can’t even tell what’s what. She also tends to value coupons and cheap produce over quality ingredients. It’s frustrating to me to say the least. I cringe every time she whips open the Crisco or sprays a pan with baking spray. It’s called BUTTER people. It won’t kill you and it tastes a hell of a lot better than the rancid, manufactured products that line her pantry.
I know that instead of criticizing her, I should accept my grandmom and her cooking methods as they are. I should recognize that any dessert she makes, whether it’s made with butter or crisco, still has a lot of sugar in it and isn’t good either way for me to over indulge in.
I think that a lot of my frustration with my grandmom was due to my feeling a lack of control over what I ate down the beach. I decided on this vacation that I would allow grains back into my diet; it would be very difficult and borderline insulting to my grandparents if I did not consume the same things that they did. Also, my grandmom makes the best oatmeal coconut cookies known to man. Oh, and another thing — I’m not sure if I’m cut out for this whole paleo-diet thing either. But that’s another post for another day.
I simply wanted to enjoy her handmade pies, cookies and other treats while down the beach. It shouldn’t have been that difficult. Nevertheless, I was stuck in my head a lot, calling myself fat and feeling remorseful about that second cookie. I am convinced that I gained weight while on vacation and it’s been pretty hard to deal with. Instead of seeing a toned stomach, it is simply flab. My legs are bigger. My arms are bigger. No piece of me is how I want it to be and I’m angry. Angry for letting myself go. Angry for caring. Angry that I’ve come so far and still indulge my eating disorder with relentless mind games.
To be honest, I haven’t felt this adamantly opposed to my body in a long time. Perhaps it’s because I spent a week in a bathing suit, staring at and criticizing myself. Perhaps it’s because I weighed myself and didn’t like the number on the scale. Perhaps it’s because I haven’t been eating as “clean” as I would like. Perhaps I really am gaining weight every time I feel sickly full. Perhaps that number was accurate.
I need to breathe, calm down and take this next week to focus on productivity. I need to focus on letting go of the simple things that nag me. I need to not weigh myself. That’s a bad, bad thing for me to do. I need to focus on the things that make me happy. I need to get consistent and decent amounts of sleep. I need to stretch, exercise and recover. I need to take care of myself — that’s all. And it’s all so much.