Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Marisa’s Menu: Time to de-clutter for real, and embrace the kitchen

Me with Layla the Vicktory Dog at Best Friends Animal Sanctuary

I likely sound like a broken record for anyone listening to me for a duration.  In addition to my list of foods I CAN vs CAN’T eat, and my entertaining (I kid) stories of my swelling and other reactions, I also tend to mention a few other relevant things.  Those two things are my need and desire to de-clutter, and my aversion to the kitchen.  

Thanks to the brilliant idea of one of the members of the Gluten Free Challenge, I got some motivation, solidarity, and a sense of support from the “clutter bugs” in our group.  However, thus far, I have not been keeping up, and I most definitely am back to the overwhelmed point.  I am going to continue to follow the wonderful suggestions of others in the group, and focus on certain tasks, areas, and then rooms.  But at some point, I also feel that it would just be easier to have a dumpster placed outside of our house, strategically beneath a window.  And then I could just start literally tossing things out the window.  I am suspecting this process would be easier if I had that margarita or an egg white cocktail before I started tossing.  But regardless, this mental picture seems like the best possible scenario if I could create one.

The great news is that while I have not yet been successful with removing the clutter in my space (which I know is very much necessary), I have been successful at clearing my mind. And that is something I have struggled with my entire life.  I feel as though a regular yoga practice has been key in helping me reach this point of mind de-cluttering.  And I also wonder as I hear the stories of the folks participating in this challenge with me, if some of my mind clutter was perhaps a brain fog type symptom, or anxiety.  And if so, how much of that was being either caused or exacerbated by things like gluten and soy?

Now the other big one is the kitchen.  I cannot stop hurting myself when I am preparing meals.  I actually made it through the entire preparation for a meal tonight, and it included using a knife.  I do now wear safety gloves thanks go my darling partner for buying those for me.  But I was almost ready to retreat to the other room, leaving the ingredients simmering in the slow cooker.  However, I wanted to remove the clutter from the immediate area.  So I went to clear some things from the counter, so that I would not have as much to deal with later.  I picked up a can that one us had left laying near the sink, & proceeded to walk it over to the trash can.  Somehow I cut myself on the sharp edge of the can just as I was dropping it in the trash.  Are you kidding me?  I made it through the prep.  I even used a knife! This is all huge.  I didn’t break any glassware, or even spill and waste precious food (which is common for me, and totally devastating every single time).  Yet I hurt myself at the very end.  I suppose I should see this as a success.   Because while I did have the injury in the kitchen, and it was related to me cooking, I did not actually experience the injury while cooking.  Sigh.  

I have an endless supply of recipes. And I am slowly but surely acquiring the necessary tools and equipment for creating some more variety in my meals.  But even though I make my own food quite a bit, and pride myself in my snacks, dips, smoothies, raw desserts, and dehydrated treats, I still feel awkward and uncomfortable in the kitchen.  

The time has come for this feeling to change.  I have been making an attempt at embracing this since I first went gluten free.  It seemed like the perfect time.  But I will say if it involves knives, things I can break, or hot liquids, I am still leery.  

I wonder how I can genuinely want something, and still be so out of place after repeated attempts.  Could it just be my approach, or is there some lingering association with something negative that is creating a boundary or road block, and I am just not seeing it?

The other lingering item on my list is to get out of town again. The itch to travel is ever-present. And I think it may be time. I have so many destinations and even out of town events on my list. But I am longing to return to some of the previous ones, such as Chicago, and Kanab, Utah. I feel that a return visit to Best Friends Animal Sanctuary is very much in order.

Recent shot of the mirror inspiration at Hagoyah


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