bowl of vegetables

Red onion, brown bella mushrooms, ground beef, carrot, parsnip, sweet potato, cabbage, apple, dried cranberry, turmeric and mint, on a bed of power greens (aka kale, chard and spinach.)

Since Suzanne broke her ankle, I’ve been sharing my AIP breakfasts with her. It’s essentially the same thing every morning: a bowl of vegetables with a protein. I mix it up — some days it’s white sweet potato instead of orange; the herbs and spices change; and I will throw in random other ingredients and veggies — but mostly, it’s onions, sweet potatoes, and power greens, plus extras.

Every day.

Despite having reminded myself approximately 1000 times that I am incredibly lucky to be eating this food, I was whining/apologizing/both about the repetition to Suzanne recently. (Lucky to have access to so many different ingredients; lucky to be able to afford good proteins; lucky to have the energy, health, and physical ability to cook; lucky to have the facilities to cook… really, so fortunate. And yet — I would like a pancake. With maple syrup and butter, please.)

Suzanne said, “No! That’s the wrong way to think about it. This is a big bowl of possibilities.”

Ever since, I’ve been greeting her in the morning with, “Good morning. Here’s your big bowl of possibilities.” It’s a surprisingly helpful attitude readjustment. Yes, I still want pancakes and toast and yogurt and granola, but I like the scope of a big bowl of possibility. I like the idea that my healthy breakfast opens up new worlds for me.

Yesterday, I was walking home with the dogs from Creamery Field, which is the closest place where they can run off leash, and thinking that I was just wiped out, really ready for bed. It was probably 7PM, and I still had at least a few chores on my list: washing the dishes from dinner, closing the chickens up to keep them safe from night-time predators; but I felt like I could easily crawl under the covers and fall asleep.

When I got home, I looked at the step count on my phone: it was the highest it had been in all of August. I had one bigger day in July, but that was when we took the dogs up to Six Rivers National Forest and picnicked by the Smith River. Another bigger day in May, but that was when I went to Epcot. Yesterday was the first day since winter where just living my regular life involved three and a half miles of walking. (I say “since winter” — “since I got COVID” is equally true, although probably not related.) Yay! Shine on, self.

That said, there was dust on my computer when I picked it up this morning. Not like a day’s worth either. I am fairly sure this is the first time I’ve opened my computer in a week. I know I’ve said this before, but if I could fire myself as a self-employed person, I so would. I am a lousy employee. I used to be a great employee, very reliable and very hard-working, but apparently my current employer doesn’t know how to motivate me.

Of course, I’ve read enough self-help books to know that I shouldn’t be thinking about motivation, I should be thinking about routines: how do I change my routine to prioritize writing and publishing? But my current routine prioritizes well-being — mine, the animals, and Suzanne’s — and under the circumstances, that’s not a bad choice. It will be nice when I can prioritize well-being and also have some time and energy to make up stories, but I’m pretty sure that day is approaching fast.

It might even be today. I did a fantastic job of exercising dogs this morning — we drove to the dog park in McKinleyville — so they’re asleep, which means I could be visiting Tassamara right now. I think maybe I’ll go do that!

small dogs in a big dog park

Lots of room to run in the morning makes for peaceful afternoons.