Monday, February 25, 2008

Nurture vs. Nourish

We will be out of town for a few days so I will be absent from the blog world. At least I hope we will be out of town. Currently it is snowing like mad. If it is this bad in the a.m. we will be stuck, again.

I am a fan of "You Are What You Eat." Except for that poo business. I have seen enough poo in my life to not be interested in seeing any more. Gillian is great. Rude as all get out, but great. I love how she makes healthy food look so inviting. So nourishing. So nurturing.

Had a conversation over the weekend with friend Kim about nourishing vs. nurturing food. I have been known, from time to time, to eat less than nourishing food believing it was nurturing the heck out of me. That's why I ate it. But is cheesecake induced avenging guilt really all that nurturing? As Gillian would say, "I think not."

So, can my food be both nourishing and nurturing? I think so. But first I have to understand how the junk food I love nurtures me.

1. Gives me comfort. How? The process of eating takes my mind off my troubles. I can focus on the taste and texture of chocolate hazelnut ice cream and feel pleasure and not pain. Is sublimating my pain nurturing? No. I will just have to deal with it later. And later is usually worse.

2. Gives me a reward. A sweet treat for a job well done. Words of praise are what I really want but they are not usually available. Are peanut M&M's the same as compliments? Not so much.

3. Gives me something to do. I am easily bored. Pretzels can take up a bunch of time. Is wasting time nurturing? Does it make me feel good about myself? No. Does it accomplish anything I can be proud of? No.

4. Calms me down. Dove chocolates make me feel at peace. In fact they eventually make me pass out altogether. Is a drunken sugar stupor nurturing? Nope.

5. Gives me physical comfort. Is a distended belly and digestive upset comfortable? No.

6. Makes me feel safe. Am I going to be able to fend off an attacker with a Snickers bar? I think not.

7. Food loves me. Yes and every time something or other happens (I forget what) a fairy falls down dead. Inanimate objects can love me. Like maybe the washer or the printer or maybe the leaf blower. Food cannot love me. The love I feel when I am eating comes from...me. What a surprise. I am generating that love. Okay some of it may be chemical, go serotonin, but most of it comes from me. I feel love for myself most intensely when I am eating. And then hate myself when I am done. I feel I am loving/nurturing myself with the food. Damn. Feelings can lie. I am not nurturing myself. Nurture does not have hate as a component.

The statement "I am attempting to nurture myself with food" is not as self evident as I thought. I am going to need to ponder all of this for a while. Good thing I have a few days off.

See you in a week. Take care. Love Bea

6 comments:

ar said...

Another good one that has set my brain cells on the go. Sort of brain twister. I was thinking about something along these lines last night when I was walking. I wonder whether in certain circumstances we are protected from disease by going around the self-indulging route in order to block out things be it boredome, hurt, all the thingies you mentioned in your blog. OK OK this sounds VERY far-fetched, but in our acute anxieties, such as this awful thing I had to go through at end of 2005, is it perhaps possible that if I had not had food to block out the nasty stuff, that this would have put even more stress on all my organs than the fat I had been consuming? One hears very often that people with enormous awful stuff that had happened to them often get one of the many horrible chronic diseases that are around and die within months. So who knows, maybe what we are doing to a certain extent is instinctive self-preservation the best way we can with what we have available to us? ar :>)

Helen said...

Great list, Bea...LOVED it...made me LOL and think too. :-) Hope you're having a good trip...

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