Monday, June 2, 2008

Driving Without a Map

Well, after much deliberation, I have decided to give myself the summer off from writing and baking. I'm not sure which one I will miss more.
It seems that I have lost something, but I haven't yet been able to identify what that something is. Perhaps it is my mojo after all.

Recently, I took some time to read through my older posts in an attempt to discern in what direction (if any) I am headed.
As it turns out, in writing (as in life), I am better able to find my way by following intuition rather than by following a map.

During a late night out with girlfriends and a lengthy debate over the long-term effectiveness of commercial (read: expensive) diet plans (requiring the purchase and consumption of diet-brand
pre-packaged meals), I reached the unfortunate conclusion that my skinny alter-ego wants her moment in the sun (sans baggy t-shirt). Encouraged by a friends recent weight loss (seventeen pounds in what seems like twenty minutes--Kudos to you, girlfriend--you look marvelous), I am struggling to find my own solution. I am strongly opposed to commercial diet plans for a long list of reasons which I won't bore you with (not the least of which is that I cannot justify spending the same amount weekly for my own meals that I would spend to feed a family of four-and don't get me started on health concerns over foreign ingredients and microwave dependency).

At this juncture, I only know a few things:
I know that I cannot afford to replace my pesticide-laden produce with organics.
I know that I cannot cut it as a farmer or a farmer's wife (and speaking of which, has anyone seen that show Farmer Wants a Wife? Although I hate to admit it, I'm addicted to the show--and not just for the sake of taking a gander at Farmer's six-pack--have you seen those quilts?).
So getting back to organics, growing my own produce is out of the question.
I know that I hate to exercise but love to dance.
I know that I wish laughing was a competitive sport because I'd be quite a contender.
I know that wine doesn't really cut it as a TV snack, even if you pretend to chew it.
I know that tankinis are made for one body type only, and apparently, I don't have that body type.
I know that buying a skirted bathing suit means you should probably just wear shorts.
I know that swim shorts were invented for women who avoid wearing skirted bathing suits and ultimately, everyone knows why you bought the shorts.
I know that I wish those flattering swim cover-ups were water-proof.
I know that having darker, tanner skin doesn't necessarily make you look smaller (I guess that rule only applies to black pants).
I know that a great straw hat can draw attention away from too-wide hips (but one should avoid wearing said straw hat into a rough ocean).
I know that when I stand in front of a mirror, wondering why the bathing suit I loved last year only looks good this year when accompanied by a straw hat, a flattering cover up and high-heeled wedge sandals, it has nothing to do with the bathing suit (seriously, how does one swim in heels anyway?).

And finally, I know that a diet plan which allows for cupcakes
and foot-long hot dogs probably requires purging, and so,
I'm still looking for a diet plan.

That's it.
That's all I've got.

I'd like to add however, that my search isn't only about weight loss.
I suppose I'm as good a candidate as any for a perimenopausal
forty-something crisis (if that's what this is then someone should warn my loved ones).
As the parent of one college student (who enjoys living away from home more than I ever expected she would) and one teenager (in desperate need of drum lessons and concert tickets), I find myself with a bit more time to focus on my own needs. My inability to define those needs outside the realm of edibles, is what terrifies me.
For far too long I have depended on the confines of my kitchen to serve as a safety net and welcome distraction from life's little catastrophes. And although there is no greater confidante than homemade bread dough (active, responsive, resilient and attentive-all the qualities of a good friend with no baggage), I am eager to untie my apron strings and experience a life without oven mitts.

I can't change the fact (nor do I wish to) that I am a hard-wired food lover. I still rise and rest to thoughts of gastronomic pleasure.
But I need more.
I recall a friend's grandmother saying "Sometimes, it's good to be hungry."
I'm not sure I'll ever know exactly what she meant by that. I have a feeling however, that for me, personally, a little hunger might do me a world of good.

And so, my search begins without a plan, a map, or a recipe to follow.
Yesterday, this would have been a daunting prospect.
But today, intuition is on my side.

And come to think of it, I'm a little bit hungry.

Until Next Time,
Make Life Delicious
Share Your Food


Have a delicious summer!
See you in the fall.

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