"We are all wanderers on this earth...our hearts are full of wonder, and our souls are deep with dreams." ~ Gypsy proverb

Friday, January 4, 2013

The extra in the ordinary

The decorations will be coming down today, and what I once considered adorned before the holidays will now appear desolate and naked. I do have an addictive personality, an inherited trait that leaves me charmed by escapism, celebration, and any detour from day to day reality (especially on an extended vacation such as the last 2 weeks). But having recovered from addiction, I also know that adjusting the hardwired tendencies of my brain means making a conscious effort to practice (and practice and practice) looking beneath the surface of things, and seek the extraordinary in the ordinary. And soon emptiness is replaced by the effervescent details around me.

Reflecting back, I realize I wrote that post over a year ago about my 12 year addiction to food, and my recovery from an eating disorder. I also wrote in that post about making a promise and concerted effort to change my attitudes about cooking. I wanted to see food as my friend and infuse the practice with love, not with an avoidance constructed by fear and denial. And this was not just for my benefit, but more importantly, for my family's.

What I have not done since that post is share my progress in this space, and yes, there has been amazing progress. I have made peace with cooking, seeing it as an opportunity to reflect joy without needing to avoid pain. How much easier it has become for me to not only plan a meal, but to prepare the cupboards with staples for those days without planning. It's a f---ing miracle actually ;). Though you probably won't ever see me talk incessantly about cooking, or posting recipes of my own invention, I have found the connection between food, fun, and love, without the prickly strings of addiction, fear or perfection. Cooking is still a work in progress, just as I am, but once again, with practice, the extra in the ordinary replaces what was once empty...

Happy weekend to all and may you find the ordinary simply amazing...


Joining Bella in 52 Photos Project {Softly Fade Away}


  1. congrats on your accomplishments with the meal planning!! My house has been "naked" of Christmas since Jan. 1st-I love that look and that feeling as much as I love the coziness of decorating for the holidays.

  2. I know what you mean about everything looking bare (even though it looked perfectly nice before) after Christmas and I too get used to having the special decorations around very quickly. However, a few days after packing everything away I quite like it all slightly more "minimalist" :-)

    Well done on your progress regarding the food. It's such a complex and emotionally charged issue that it can't be easy.

    Have a lovely weekend xo

  3. loven' that f---ing miracle of life sister
    I hear ya!
    thank for letting us know about it!

    my decorations come down on MOnday...when the youngest is back in school
    I just want to look at those lights and my Magical Christmas Village for one more weekend

    Love and Light

  4. you are amazing - never forget it!

  5. Softly fade away...I love how you've woven words and images into something so powerful. You are a very inspiring person!

  6. I always leave you space with such a calm feeling MJ, thank you for that.
    You, me, all of us, are are amazing souls and I am glad to call you my friend.
    Have a wonderful time this weekend, I will be curled up with my manual trying to understand a camera before Monday!

  7. You, my dear, are an amazing woman.
    Thank you for sharing your story so honestly. I'm truly inspired by what you have overcome, and by your courage.

  8. I went back & read your post from last year and deeply felt your conflicts. Cooking & enjoying food without fear is a wonderful goal and while it may be hard for some to understand why that could be hard, I hope you know that you are surrounded by many who strive for this daily. So happy to know that you are finding your happy place in that part of your life!

  9. Wow. Wish I could give you a hug. Strong, brave friend. I went back and read your original post, moved by your past and your words and your journey.
    I'm so happy to know you've found a new connection and path with food, where joy begins and roots heal.
    So glad to be sharing the pages of Kindred with you.

  10. I just adore your wandering, wondering and discovering. Your persistence, your choice of words along the path.
    You are a gem.
    We all got shit to work out, and you do it beautifully.

  11. oh, mj...such a brave and huge journey you've been traveling. hugs and yays for you.
    *so* pleased for you that you're finding the connection between food, fun, and love. wishing you so much of that...


“Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.”
~ George Bernard Shaw