Morning people are a conundrum. You know, those chattery, chipper folks who wake up wanting to have a conversation while you stare at their moving mouth, hearing nothing but “wah, wah, wah, waaah, wah,” wondering what day it is and whether or not you could tell them to shut the hell up in an unoffensive way.
Lately, however, I’m finding a new pleasure in mornings. I’m willing to risk sounding a little cliche by admitting that mornings feel increasingly like fresh, clean beginnings and less like a period of hours to be endured. One thing I’ve especially started to enjoy each morning is a healthy, delicious breakfast. In years past, as I struggled with an eating disorder, I would avoid breakfast, electing to “save” all my calories for the end of the day. What an awful and ridiculous way to live! I would never expect my car to run without fuel and yet I would get sincerely pissed at my body for not continuing to function properly on “x” calories. Perhaps this change of mindset explains some of my new-found love for those A.M. hours.
My boyfriend, J, can attest to the fact that I eat a ridiculous amount of oatmeal. I can’t help it! Especially on bitterly cold mornings, such as this, I find so much comfort in this humble grain. (That sentence sounds particularly pretentious, but I’m keeping it anyway. :)) Yesterday I cooked a double batch of steel cut oats in the rice cooker. If you’ve never done this, I highly suggest it. I’ve always had trouble cooking steel cut oats on the stove-top without causing some type of burning or eruption of oatmeal overflow. The rice cooker is a much less hands on approach. Since I already had a batch prepared, I simply put the leftovers in a saucepan with a little almond milk and warmed them on the stove. Add a little cinnamon, mashed banana, a sprinkling of ground flax and a few blueberries and you’re set with a filling and nutrient-packed bowl of deliciousness.
As I move forward with my recovery, I’m making a conscious effort to focus on and appreciate the little moments: Snuggling with J before getting out of bed, that first sip of coffee, the bright sun reflecting off snow-covered ground. And, most certainly, starting the day by nourishing my body. I’m beginning to see food as fuel for a body that has carried me through so much, regardless of my lack of appreciation for what it has endured. This body is mine, and rather than dwell on each flaw, today I am choosing unconditional acceptance.
Your body is just a shell for all that is “you.”