Post 42 – There’s More to Life Than Food

Happy Friday. I hope you get to relax this Labor Day weekend. I’m hoping to bake up some nice peach cobbler, maybe see friends, and go blueberry picking with Sam. The cats are hoping to take it easy.

Lewis the cat

Lewis the cat

Magellan wants to relax in the sink.

Magellan in the sink.

Have I told you that I have GERD, also known as acid reflux?

It’s kind of embarrassing and I just developed it in the past year so I don’t talk about it much, but I mention it now because it has literally caused me a lot of pain this past week. Everything, everything has been setting off my symptoms and my “Erin Eating Everything” philosophy has turned into Erin eating a very limited diet in small portions and not too late at night.

Sigh.

As much as I love to eat, I am starting to develop a new motto –

There’s more to life than food.

When you work with food, it’s hard not to spend all your time thinking about it and planning for it, but I need to keep reminding myself there are other ways to entertain oneself other than eating or spending time in the kitchen. The problem is the kitchen is the place where I am at home, where I am my best self. My mind is focused, my hands are working, and the rhythm is right.

More than that, being in the kitchen stimulates all the senses. My eyes absorb the natural beauty of colorful foods and dishes.

Purple potatoes

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Orange carrots

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Red onions (in this case pickled)

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A colorful medley of vegetables

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My nose knows by the aromas that waft from the pans when to turn the heat down and when to turn it up. My ears listen for the bubble of the boiling pot, the sizzle of melting cheese or onions hitting the hot oil. My hands are touching all the time, squeezing for freshness or firmness or doneness. My taste buds, of course, get the final say.

Yet I keep trying to tell myself –

There’s more to life than food.

One of my favorite quotes on this topic comes from food writer M.F.K. Fisher:

“People ask me: Why do you write about food, and eating and drinking? Why don’t you write about the struggle for power and security, and about love, the way others do? […] The easiest answer is to say that, like most other humans, I am hungry. But there is more than that. It seems to me that our three basic needs, for food and security and love, are so mixed and mingled and entwined that we cannot straightly think of one without the others. So it happens that when I write of hunger, I am really writing about love and the hunger for it, and warmth and the love of it and the hunger for it… and then the warmth and richness and fine reality of hunger satisfied…and it is all one.”

When I write about food, I write about more than just food. I write about gratitude, triumph, sadness, and the amazing people that make up this world, but somehow it always comes back to food.
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4 thoughts on “Post 42 – There’s More to Life Than Food

  1. I can tell you from experience that you’ll get used to having GERD. I’ve had it for many years and because I take Prilosec (40mg) daily, it very rarely bothers me, no matter what I eat. If I don’t take the Prilosec, EVERYTHING causes bad heartburn. There are other similar drugs that will do the same thing as Prilosed. Nexium is one. You can get both of these OTC, but if your dr. prescribes them, they are a lot cheaper. The dose directed on the OTC versions is half of what I take by prescription. If you’re not taking one of those meds. ask you dr if you can. They wipe out all symptoms of GERD.

  2. That’s terrible to hear you have GERD and suffer from the thing you love: FOOD!

    But, lots and lots of people suffer from this disease, tens of millions in the US. You are not alone. Have you thought about making recipes specifically for people with acid reflux. I tried to do that on my blog, but I’m not as talented on the food front as you seem to be.

    It’s definitely a challenge since the list of “acid reflux approved” ingredients is very short and a little deceptive (potatoes and onions can both be triggers for acid reflux.)

    Best of luck to you and your future food adventures. I look forward to reading about them. Let me know if there is anything I can do to help you.

    -Greg

    “The greater the obstacle, the more glory in overcoming it.”
    ― Molière

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