My mom is the kind of gal who eats for no other reason than to sustain life. I've heard her say that sometimes it's a nuisance to stop what she's doing to eat. When she does eat, it's usually something simple. She'll grab a piece of fruit or eat a plain baked potato. No butter, no salt, no sour cream. When I was growing up, I did not enjoy spaghetti. I didn't understand why everyone else loved this pasta when all it consisted of at my house was noodles and tomato sauce. When I started dating my man, he would frequently make dinner for me in the evenings. When he announced one night that he was making spaghetti, I was a bit disappointed, but as a poor college student, I was in no position to be choosy. When he brought out a large plate of noodles with meat AND flavor, I gobbled it up. So THAT'S what I had been missing!
Yes, my mom eats out of obligation. I eat for pleasure. This can be a problem.
My days largely revolve around my meals. I wake up thinking about what I should make myself for breakfast. Sometimes it's as simple as a bowl of cereal. Other times, I'll make a buttered, toasted demi-baguette with from-scratch hot chocolate. Or even a couple slices of buttered whole wheat toast with thick, creamy Greek yogurt. Lately I've been enjoying experimenting with fruit and yogurt smoothies (often with the nutty, nutritious addition of flax seed). Whatever it is, I don't eat out of pure habit or obligation. I take my time, I think about what my taste buds are telling me, and I lovingly create my meal.
Sometimes I wish I were more like my mom in her relationship with food. It doesn't consume her thoughts. The dark chocolate doesn't call her name from the cupboard. She can go hours without thinking about food, until she stops to wonder why her tummy is growling.
However, I have had a nasty cold for a few days. Suddenly, food is no fun. I can't taste anything, and even if I could, I have to choose between chewing and breathing. Last night after kissing the punk goodnight, I loaded up a plate with 3 chocolate cookies and brought them downstairs so I could indulge while watching a girly movie (the man was at the Jazz game with his pops). It took me about 20 minutes to eat the first cookie because in between bites, I would have to put the thing down and take a series of deep breaths. After I finally forced the last bite into my belly, I looked down at the two remaining cookies and said, "Forget it." They weren't worth the effort.
So the moral of the story is I am grateful for my love of food. It is a pleasure that I am fortunate to enjoy. Yes, I may have to constantly remind myself that I really don't need three cookies - one is enough. But if I had to choose between ruh-heeeely enjoying my food and just enduring it... I'm going to choose the pleasure I experience when I bite into a yummy morsel.