Prompt from the One-Minute Writer blog: “Do you know true hunger?”
My mom didn’t cook. When we were young, she tried; when we were older, she left us to ourselves. She never taught us to cook. I went away to college. Had a sufficient meal plan until my last year, when guilt over the cost outweighed the rational idea of feeding myself. I never went a full day without food, but I went to bed with an aching stomach almost every night. I usually ate breakfast and lunch and skipped dinner. My roommates cooked food in the apartment, the smells wafting around and making the hunger pangs worse, but the food was not for me, and my desire not to offend or impose once again outweighed the rational idea of feeding myself.
Today I have good days and bad days. Today, for instance, it is nearing dinner time, and I have eaten a bowl of cereal, two hard-boiled eggs, and a piece of toast with jam.
I never miss dinner, because my husband comes home, and it is motivating to have somebody to cook for. So we eat, even though we usually only have a main course. Sometimes I’m ambitious and bring home a side dish or some rolls. Sometimes I worry whether my mom gets enough to eat, now that we’re grown and out of the house.
I don’t know if this counts as true hunger. What really hungers is my soul for personal connection, and my eating habits reflect that. When I’m with people, I eat; when I’m not, the effort doesn’t seem worth it. I have big problems reaching out to people. That doesn’t seem worth it either. If I didn’t have my husband, I don’t know where I would be. Hopefully in a doctor’s office getting a prescription. But for now, when he’s home, it feels safe to eat, worth the effort.
Dear God, bring back my sunshine. I obviously need it today.