Sunday, August 8, 2010

Why I'm not a chef.

As I'm sitting watching Food Network I often think why didn't I go to cooking school?? Food is kinda my life because of all my restrictions! But then I think, um duh because, although its my life, I hate food! I know that's weird, but I just get tired of it, and I get tired of thinking of what to make for dinner, and oh don't even get me started on lunch! I HATE lunch! I'm not a sandwich person and who wants to cook in the middle of the day? so I never know what to eat.

I do however rather enjoy breakfast...I've always been a pancake freak. My parents like to retell of the days of old when I would sneak into their room on Saturday mornings at 6 am(...SIX AM!...I can't even wake by at 8 anymore....) and head to my dads side of the bed and whisper "dad, dad, dad (until he was awake), dad, I want pancakes." Then he'd tell me to go watch cartoons until he was up, so I'd trot out to the living room and turn on Captain Planet (hmm maybe that's what inspired my love of sustainability) and eventually he'd make his way out of the bedroom to make me pancakes! Anyway I digress.

I am incredibly interested in nutrition though. Since being diagnosed with celiac sprue almost 9 years ago I have had to pay attention to nutrition to make sure I was eating the right thing and not making myself sick. I'm a label reader by habit now, I pick up a package of food and the first thing I do is turn it round to check the ingredients. In the past year since food became my enemy and was making me super sick I've become even more interested in nutrition and have read like 50 books just since June about food. Its taken me a long time to become friends with food again, just this summer in fact I've been able to eat and not feel sick. Going vegetarian has been like THE BEST decision I've ever made! I've never felt so good stomach wise, and I can think again and I feel lighter and happier! Its amazing!

The past few weeks I've been reading a lot about Macrobiotic diets. And while I totally get it and understand them its just too intense for me right now. Although one thing I did take away from learning about that diet is the importance of eating more whole grains! So I've really been trying to eat more grains everyday, and not just in bread form, but like real whole grains. I also try to balance it out with lots of fruits and veggies, I have a fruit smoothie every morning and I love it! I need to be better about getting more veggies in my diet though.

Well anyway, I don't even know where I was going with this. I guess I was just thinking about how I've often thought it'd be fun to be a chef, but I think no, I'd hate it. Food and I have had a roller coaster relationship I never know when I'll love it or hate it or when IT will love me or hate me. We've travelled a long road together. And just the past two months I've finally felt like food is loving me back for the first time since I figured out my gluten intolerance. The thought of eating doesn't make my stomach turn anymore like it did just this winter. I don't feel sick after every meal anymore, and I can't even tell you how amazing that is! I'm finally eating to make me feel healthy and whole, not just eating to survive.

So I suppose in conclusion as to why I didn't become chef, food is more about nutrition to me than it is about fun and love. I don't remember life by food like many people do, I don't travel for the food like many do, and while I have dishes I like to eat I don't live my life around food in that way. So while my life revolves around food, its not because I like to have fun with it and taste new things, its because I have to eat to make myself healthy and feel like a real person. Perhaps one day soon, now that I've found a diet that works for me, I'll be able to really enjoy food again. But for now its all about the nutrition and health.