I have learned many things during this divorce process.
- How to mow my own lawn;
- How to juggle two jobs, four animals and a social life;
- How to love myself without the approval of others (okay this is a work in progress);
- How to wire a TV so the cables are hidden in the wall (this involved some choice words in front of my parents, sorry Mom & Dad, but we got it to work);
- How to set-up my own Wi-Fi and change the password so it isn’t x7tskjfns781je4nos (seriously I will never know why C left ours like this for years and years);
- How to tell if a dude is a creeper in only a few messages.
The list goes on and on…
However, the one thing that I have struggled with is how the hell do I cook dinner for just me when I am tired as hell and just don’t care!
First issue with the dinner struggle is that I hate going to the grocery store alone. This was something C and I did together. We had a routine – cutting coupons (we were avid coupon cutters and got so excited when we saved over $100 at the store), getting Starbucks when we arrived at the store and then going down every aisle with me getting mad at C as he read the nutritional facts for EVERY PRODUCT he picked up. Despite his reading of everything, we would get the exact same things. This always included monster bones for our dogs. The purchase of such bones would result in a conversation with the checker about how big our dogs are. This conversation would cause C to walk away and look at Redbox as he hated that people always engaged me in conversation and I would talk back to them because I didn’t want to be rude.
So, now going to the store alone is this weird experience of me wandering around like I am lost and have no clue what to do. This wandering results with me looking like a lunatic as I begin to tear up at the site of refried beans (we got in consistent fights about how many cans we had at home and I always insisted I needed more, I guess I love them), the site of kale (kale chips were our late night snack) or the site of the large dog bones. People walk past me with this look of sadness that I am a single woman crying at the grocery story – okay I may be projecting that, yet it is how I feel. So, with this I try to avoid the store at all costs. And such, have become an avid Hello Fresh subscriber (insert plug here www.hellofresh.com for anyone interested I will send you a free box since I get a discount too!).
Second issue, I know I should care more about getting into shape so I can look fit and hot now that I am single, yet it is the last thing on my mind. Revenge body is not in my top 10 priorities at this point, hopefully it becomes one soon. Until then, I will look at my increasing waist size as a plus as it means my boobs are getting bigger (all about the bright side of things people)! Let’s be honest, at this point if the man of my dreams could just show up at my house with my delivery food (or Hello Fresh) and love me in my sweatpants covered in dog hair I would take it! I hate the entire dating process, especially at 33… people have a shit ton of baggage (myself included) and it is just exhausting. Yet again, I digress, back to the whole meal/cooking/diet thing.
So, while I am huge Hello Fresh supporter I often find myself freezing the meat and throwing away rotten vegetables. I mean I love to cook and LOVE to eat good food. One of my most guilty pleasures is going to a $400 dinner and loving every single course and glass of wine. Good food is one thing I will spend ridiculous amounts of money on no matter how low the bank account may be. Yet, cooking from pre-measured ingredients and a recipe card seems like a daunting task at 7 or 8 p.m. when I finally get home from work. It is a task that not only requires energy, it is one that reminds me that it is just me… well me and 4 animals.
So instead of cooking, I open up the pantry, take out my bag of Cheetos (natural ones cause I am super healthy) and pour myself a bowl. I mean I am not a glutton, I practice portion control. Then after eating this entree (some nights I do indulge in a second helping), I go in for my dessert… Oreos. Again, I portion control these, allowing myself only three maybe four if it was a particularly long day. This completes my well balanced dinner.
And, to answer the question that everyone is asking right now – “Breezy, what wine pairs well with this decadent meal of yours”. Any fucking wine you want cause you are eating freaking Cheetos and Oreos for dinner (for the fifth night in a row), you are at your bottom so drink the $4 bottle from World Market (my mother’s favorite) or drink the bottle of Cristal you have been saving for a special occasion. Because, if you made it through the day without a breakdown, cursing at someone, threatening to quiet your job or yelling at your family or friends than it may be a special occasion and you deserve a glass (or bottle) of Cristal.
While the above may seem like the next big diet sensation, I must admit that my doctor may disagree. When I went in for my annual the other week, my doctor informed me that I could stand to lose 5 lbs. She asked if I had diet changes or questions about losing weight to which I responded “well, I just got divorced, so that may be it”. Her response was one I will never forget “honey, eat whatever you want, we can worry about your weight later”. She then followed that statement up with the best question ever, “do you want the full STD panel done this time?”. At that point I smiled and said “well I joined Tinder and my ex was cheating so I guess that is a yes”. Moments like these are a dime a dozen during a divorce and I have found that it is important to just smile and come up with the wittiest response that you can. It not only hides the pain, but it makes the other person feel so much more comfortable. Most people don’t know what to say or how to act when you release the news, so if you can appear like you are coping well it is better for all involved. And, you have to release this info to all sorts of strangers for a variety of reasons (i.e. changing of insurances, canceling credit cards, closing bank accounts, etc.) and trust me it is not met with the same excitement as when you tell people that you were recently married.
So, my take away from the doctor and this experience, is that it is okay to eat Cheetos and Oreos for dinner paired with a lovely wine. It only becomes a problem when it is no longer in moderation and stretches into a year (I am extending this time period to give myself some wiggle room).
With this, I raise a Cheeto finger printed wine glass with Oreo crumbs floating in it to all of you that understand the struggle of loss, pain, exhaustion or just a hard day where nothing is going your way and cheers you with the below:
One day at a time; this is enough. Do not look back and grieve over the past for it is gone; and do not be troubled about the future, for it has not yet come. Live in the present, and make it so beautiful it will be worth remembering.
Adam Lindsay Gordon, Australian poet, jockey and politician (1833 -1870)
And before you know it, you will be cooking yourself full meals or at least ordering good ones from delivery guys that will fall in love with you upon first site….Cheers and Clink!