Jealous of the living

I’m tired. I want a break.

I want a break from work, from expectations of me, from winter, from to do lists, from responsibility, from meals…. but we all know that none of these things are really the problem. The problem is in my brain. The problem is always in my brain.

I need a break from people talking to me and also from being alone.

I need a break from missing my routine and a break from having a routine to miss.

I need a break from feeling alive and also a break from feeling dead.

I wish I weren’t so dead. I shut down in the middle of yoga class today. I just had to escape and the only piece of my day that I could let drop was to mentally check out of the one hour I set aside to actually be in the moment.

I had to stop moving my body. It was too heavy. I heard the instructor guide everyone through a beautiful flow while I laid there in shavasana (corpse pose). Jealous of them. Jealous that they were alive and able to move and I was just a dead corpse and couldn’t participate.

Then some tears fell onto my mat. They were probably mine. It just made me so sad that I was dead and I couldn’t do yoga.

I have a vague memory of finding an ability to feel joy like a fluttering bird warming my heart, but I must have relaxed and left the cage door open, because it flew away.

I have a necklace with a picture of a bird on one side and the word “happiness” on the other. It reminds me that eventhough happiness flies away from me like a flighty bird, I am supposed to keep chasing it.

But I’m tired of chasing. I don’t feel like I am able to catch that bird. Today I’m the half eaten worm already hanging out of his mouth.

Dear month of March, I kinda hate you. I know that sometimes I say that to all the months. But you hold a special place of disdain in my heart. Whenever you are around, I always end up dripping tears all over the city.

Galatea of the Spheres by Salvador Dali
Galatea of the Spheres by Salvador Dali – I love this painting.

Of soup and juice

I cooked some food last night for the first time in a long time.  Cutting up the vegetables to make the soup made me think about the similarities between juicing and making soup. They are really just different ways of making the nutrients more palatable so that we can ingest more of them and get more variety and quantity of the plant’s vitamins.

I think the goal of eating is to get the maximum amount of nutrients from plants to increase our physical stamina and brain power. That seems to make sense.

Humans are the only animals that consistently cook food. I remember reading something somewhere about how a big turning point in human evolution from the neanderthal was the knowledge and ability to cook food. I thought that the significance was just about cooking meat so that we could digest the meat. But now I see it’s more than just that.

But it’s really hard work to eat three big crunchy carrots each day. It’s much easier and more enjoyable to have carrot soup one day and roasted carrots the next and carrot juice another and then some carrots in a salad. If you find your food enjoyable and easy to eat, you will probably eat more of it. That means you will get more nutrients.

Also, because we can cook food, we can get more variety in our diets by different food combinations and by accessing the nutrients in those foods that can’t be eaten raw- like dried kidney beans, potatoes, cassava root.

So, in summary, juicing is a way of extracting more nutrients from vegetables that I would not normally eat. And cooking is sort of the same thing. I wonder if eating cooked plant foods will feel nourishing for my body, just like juicing does?

Should I get started on my research study grant application? Or do you think someone has already looked into this?

Maybe this guy already beet me to it:

I am I – Captain Vegetable! With my carrots and my celery.

A big black box

There’s a blockage. I’m hiding something and I know it.

I don’t want to write. How can I write if I don’t want to hear what I have to say?  I don’t want to pick up the pen or open my heart because I know what is sitting there waiting to come out. I’ve done so much hard work to heal myself but there is one more dusty corner in my heart that’s starting to clog my arteries. I’ve ignored it for long enough. It’s shouting to be heard.

It’s a sad story. I haven’t told this story yet.  I haven’t even told it to myself. It’s a story about a little girl who was always left all alone without any food. She would shut off her body and her mind until someone would come to tell her it was time to raise the curtain and act alive for a bit. Then repeat. It’s my story. (this is hard to admit). I guess it’s my truth.

Those who were there know the basics. I was alone often and didn’t eat much. It’s true. But the shame, the blockage, the days, the part that I’m hiding because it hurts too much. The truth is that the duration and extent of the deprivation was more profound than anyone realized. And if I allowed myself to feel at those times, I would have been consumed by loneliness and hunger. I shut off to survive. And I am ashamed of all of this.

Growing up, I learned a valuable survival lesson that would have been helpful in a concentration camp: Convince yourself that you don’t really need food or love and you will be able to survive the deprivation. The problem was, I didn’t grow up in the war (and neither did my parents or grandparents). I grew up in a nice suburban neighborhood where our bank account was as full as everyone else’s fridge.

There is a lot more to say here but I’m not ready to peel it back right now. These wounds and secrets are buried deep and they are going to bleed when I take them out. So I’ll put the bandaid back on for today and take another quick look tomorrow.

Much love,

xoxo Lyla.

If you fall, I will be there. - floor.