My life has been going through a vast amount of transitions over the last year and a half. I have lost my spouse, moved, and now I am deconstructing my life to get into my car and leave. Changes are both within and flowing through my life significantly.
The last couple of weeks everything has felt as though it is upside down, but in a good way. I made a trip to Florida (a gift given to me from my son and his friends) to meet my grandchildren. It was absolutely fabulous. As any grandmother will tell you their grandchildren are the best in the world. Mine are no exception! They are kind, caring, funny, adorable and everything I could have ever dreamed for. It was a new beginning and a beautiful way to start this journey that I am preparing to embark on. My heart is full.
While going through all of these changes I noticed that I have been craving the same food, every day, for over a month. I couldn’t figure out why. It isn’t really like it is my favorite food. I mean I love spaghetti just about anyway it can be made but the combination of chili and spaghetti hasn’t been something I have eaten a lot of over the last 40 years. Until now. I just can’t get enough of it. It hasn’t gotten old in anyway. It is really the only thing that I want (except chocolate of course). It has literally driven my son, Jeremy, up a wall. He has given me all kinds of headaches over it. He isn’t into eating it every single day and doesn’t understand why that is all I really want. Honestly, I didn’t quite understand it either. Until today. I was having a conversation with my son’s best friend, Kity, while I was making this morning’s helping of chili spaghetti when he pointed out that when your life is going through so many changes you seek comfort (wisdom out of the mouth’s of babes). In this case comfort foods or food at this point.
I knew as soon as the word’s came out of his mouth that truth had been spoken. I have been so wrapped up in the thoughts and feelings about where my life is going and trying to live in the here and now, enjoying every moment. I have been working diligently to let go of so many things, both materially and emotionally, that I didn’t think about the comfort level of life. It has been a long while since I have been “alone” and not had someone to share my deepest thoughts and feelings with that everything just stays inside of me now, unless I am writing. Normally, my comfort would have been voicing my thoughts, fears and dreams with Mike. That doesn’t happen anymore and now there is nobody. It is an adjustment and apparently one that I am working through, with chili spaghetti. There is humor there, somewhere.
What this all means is that when we find ourselves going through life and so many things start to happen all at once we seek comfort. Some seek it in alcohol. Some seek it in drugs. Some seek it in food or sex. Apparently I seek it in chili spaghetti. Why is that? Why do we turn to outer comforts to work through the things life throws at us? Why don’t we see it when we do? I didn’t see it. Really I just thought it was an insatiable craving. Instead it is a way to seek comfort. Why are we blind to our own needs but can fulfill the needs of others and see them quite easily?
I have walked a path of self discovery and healing, one that has enabled me to get through a lot of things in my life for over 20 years now. Even now I still find that many times I am blind to my own needs. I continue to discover new and exciting things about myself daily. I have found that I like different types of music, some of my son’s music is pretty cool (which is amazing to me). I like conversations with 20 something kids because their perspective is so enlightening. Somehow I think we as parents of these kids have created amazing creatures that see the world in a way that we never could because of our conditioning, they teach us so much if we are willing to listen. I find myself attracted to several types of men (this one is really surprising to me). I find that one of the things I find most attractive is intelligence and open mindedness, more so than how someone looks. I find myself surprised at some of the discoveries about myself but I also find that I am still blind to many things.
One of the things that I did after my first marriage, a time when I needed to find out who I was and what I wanted, was to try something new each day and write down what I liked and didn’t like. Broccoli? Do I like it or hate it? Styx? Do I like their music or do I hate it? I honestly didn’t know who I was nor what I liked. I had been told for so long what I liked and didn’t like, what I could do and couldn’t do that I didn’t know who I was.
Looking back I see that this was the beginning of my journey of self discovery but at the time I was just trying to figure out what I liked. I find myself going through this again only in a different way. I am not walking away from an abusive marriage but rather learning to live after losing the one person I thought would always be by my side. I am learning to live again and in the process I am re-discovering who I am. I am picking the pieces of my life up and putting myself back together, only in a new way. It is scary as hell and exciting all at the same time. I am finding that I have a very low tolerance for stupidity and loud noises. Just things that before I would have just dealt with. Now I remove myself from it. Time is to damned short to tolerate things that annoy, bother or hurt you.
I suppose my point in writing all of this is that no matter what you are going through, no matter how bleak or bright things look at the moment, you will seek comfort. Will you be aware that you are doing so? Will you be blind to it? Will it really matter? I think knowing that a particular food, act or need is providing you comfort shifts your perspective and when you shift your perspective even just a tiny bit the world changes. Your world changes because you are now aware of the why’s and how’s. In closing, I ask, where do you find your comfort? How does it fill your heart? How does knowing that tiny bit of information make your view of the world different? Try figuring it out, you might be surprised at your own answers, I know I am.