As I've said, I spent the latter half of November fried. One of my stress responses when I'm this overwhelmed is to cocoon, but I had zero time or space to myself for several weeks in a row, so I have been trying to fight all of this off without the resources I needed. Balls have been dropped, in part because I just could not work myself up to being capable of interacting with anyone who wasn't right there in front of me.
There were really good things in all of this. The house concert. Time with good friends. This Thanksgiving was the best yet. But I've learned that what I need is to schedule downtime in the middle of the uptime, or I will completely lose all of my cope, and it's really, really hard to struggle back from a cope/energy deficit like the one I'm dealing with.
elisem refers to the sangha of the workbench. The obvious translation for me would be writing, but no, the writing I am doing is not meditative, is is tearing through me, it is eviscerating me, it is leaving me a husk.
I have found my small, flashing moments of peace in the kitchen with sindrian.
Staring at the screen and berating myself for not having the spoons to respond to this e-mail or do that task or write that post is no good for me. You've seen this post, right? That.
But it is dinnertime and we have to eat.
sindrian and I have been slowly replacing some of the crappier things in the kitchen with things that are better and easier to use. We have colorful ceramic knives now that cut through potatoes like butter, and a cheery red cutting board that's already quite scarred, and this awesome garlic crusher - I know, I know, unitaskers! but we put garlic in everything, and some days my hands are bad. When my hands are bad, I have no grip, not without terrible pain. This garlic crusher, I can just press down with the flats of my hands. It doesn't matter what my body does. I can still dice garlic.
We scavenged the crisper and the bowl of leftover CSA veg. This is all of the normal-size potatoes from the last delivery (we still have fingerlings). Yes, some of them are purple. I washed them, and cut some, and then Sindrian took over as I washed and de-stemmed the kale, tearing it into manageable pieces. The sausage is andouille. The onion was hardcore and made our eyes sting all night. He almost forgot the garlic, but threw it in at the last minute.
We make big pots of food so we can eat for days. We both lose ourselves in work all day. No one wants to figure out what to make for lunch.
I bookmark recipes all the time. I take cookbooks out of the library and have Adam photocopy pages. I want food, I want to try things. When I was growing up we had pasta most days of the week, and while I love pasta, I want to make casseroles, I want to roast root vegetables, I want risotto.
The original recipe calls for millet instead of rice, but we always keep arborio rice in the house, and I've never tried millet. We've made other adjustments, too. And we doubled this - again, for more leftovers. I fetched out the onions and celery and Sindrian sliced them while I sliced a pound of mushrooms. We danced around each other at the sink, and I washed knives as he fried bacon.
Why do more people not know about celery? I feel like that's one of the big secrets of food, what a chopped celery stalk does to a dish. You should use celery.
But yes. The sangha of the kitchen. No flailing, no self-recrimination. Just this - just slice the mushrooms, slice the potatoes, wash the kale. There will be dinner.