“We are each other’s memories,” said my beautiful, silver-haired friend yesterday morning at book club, and with that remark, she grounded me in my world in a way I’ve never before felt.
Until I went to college at 17, my mother, sister and I were kept isolated in a very rural setting by my control-freak father who wanted to eat three meals a day there but have his life elsewhere.
Wierd fellow — after he told my mother he was leaving, he’d look from his workplace, about 2-1/2 miles away, to see whether or not my mother’s car was there. If it weren’t, he’d dash to the house and grab some of his stuff. But my sister and I weren’t allowed to drive, of course, or ride bikes so there we stayed. Alone and adrift.
And this rural location where I’ve lived for 26-1/2 years is also somewhere in the Cloud, a minimum of 30 minutes drive from anything and everything. We choose the familiar, after all.
I can drive now, but I’m sick of it. However, yesterday’s book club meeting (the best ever!) reminded me that, at least until we move, I must. I need a social fabric, and the idea that I’m woven into the memories of others makes me feel all warm and swaddled.
We know feeling alone leads to self-destructive self-medicating like eating a mocha pecan pie. By yourself. Lucky for me, I haven’t really been alone since September when a contractor and his employees started working on our house. I’ve fed the guys a couple of pies so far!
Another very real social network for me has been my online fitness support group. I love them and the structure of the contributions. Just now we’re sharing current “home court habits,” in other words, what we eat when no one is looking.
So here are the home court habits I hope to maintain through the oncoming holiday anschluss.
10 to 12 glasses of water a day.
7 hours of sleep every night.
Exercise 6 days a week until my mid-December surgery and then do it sitting down for a while. Make it a habit without debate until it becomes the automatic part of my daily life that it should be.
3 fruits, as many vegetables as I can cram into every day.
Keep my food log.
At least think about the refined sugar/processed food I’m about to eat. (That’s called mindful eating or conscious choices. )
No more than 3 weekly ounces of red meat.
Fish 3 times a week (maybe learn to eat sardines with Saltines).
Try not to eat anything while cooking or while standing at the sink
A couple nights a week with no wine!
And, again, get up and go to bed!
My friend Catherine uses a dessert plate instead of the usual hubcap-sized dinner plate. I’m going to start that tonight when we have meatloaf stuffed with garden-fresh greens, sun-dried tomatoes and the last of the summer’s sweet peppers. We’re also having oven-roasted tee-insy potatoes with garlic and fresh rosemary and Stoic’s very own cauliflower roasted with fresh thyme.
To do the cauliflower, I will simply break the head into small florets, toss them with olive oil, salt and pepper, fresh thyme leaves. I’ll roast this in a 425-degree oven, stirring occasionally, until florets soften, probably about 15 minutes. The potatoes are the same, except I’ll use chopped garlic and rosemary instead of the thyme.