Food and Our Emotions

by Lora on September 2, 2010 at 2:47 pm

Fall will soon be here and the sights and smells that go along with it will be floating in the air.  When I begin to feel fall in the air, certain memories come flooding back to me. I remember a Saturday, when I was in my late teens, when I was raking the yard. The smell of the leaf litter brought to mind that fall was truly here and that would mean that the Louisiana State Fair was just around the corner.  The simple thought of the fair brings to minds all kinds of yummy treats!  Especially cinnamon rolls!  Every year there would be a trailer outside the door of one of the exhibition halls that would sell cinnamon rolls. They didn’t just sell them, they had a window going down the length of the trailer that would draw you in as you watched. The baker would roll out the dough, put on seemingly hundreds of pats of butter, sprinkle the cinnamon/ sugar mixture and roll them up.  They would then use a string to cut the cinnamon rolls, place them in a pan and put them in the oven.  After watching them make the rolls, there was nothing better than biting into a warm, oozy, sticky one for yourself.

The other fall memory that comes flooding back is of our first fall we lived in Baton Rouge.  It was the first LSU home game day since we had moved to Baton Rouge, and when I went to the store I could feel a sense that the atmosphere was different.  In Baton Rouge the air has an electricity in it on game days.  It happened on this day that I was making gumbo, and from that time on the beginning of LSU football season was tied to a pot of gumbo. Isn’t it amazing how vivid our memories are and how they are tied to our senses?  Smell, taste and even a briskness in the air can bring them flooding back.

In our home the holidays are indelibly tied to food. Certain holidays just wouldn’t seem right without their special dishes.  I have wondered why we tie food to special occasions. At times I wonder if this is a good thing, or are we focusing on “things” as opposed to the importance of the event. Then the rolodex in my mind quickly flips cards and lands upon the Jewish feasts.   The first one that comes to mind for me is Passover; it was a great foreshadowing of what the Lord would do for His chosen people through the life of Christ.

Our holiday celebrations are often centered around the kitchen.  The girls and I are always crowded in the kitchen, baking our favorite dishes and having a wonderful time together.  That is, until the last few years.  These last few years have been hard on us due to the girls illnesses which have caused the holidays to not be what they were in the past.

Because of the health issues in our family we have recently embarked on a new lifestyle.  The word diet doesn’t do justice to the changes this is making in our lives. Three and a half weeks ago we went Gluten Free, which entails not eating any wheat, barley, rye or spelt. After a week our bodies began going through withdrawals, and then our reactions leveled out. We then began noticing we were having stomach/intestinal issues when we ate other grains and certain foods. On Sept 13th we will begin the SCD diet . After doing some research we decided that this is the course we need to take. We have decided to wait until the 13th (some are wanting to start now) because of Sarah’s birthday celebration.

One of the things that has surprised me as we travel down this new path is how emotional our attachment to food is. Can you imagine never eating sugar again, not a cake or a traditional pie with crusts? Tears have been shed, and we have felt a sense of despair over what we will eat. At times we have felt a sense of loss over what the holidays will be like without our favorite foods. It has been a few days since we came to this decision, and we are all coming to peace with it. Last night the girl who had been the most visibly upset by the thought of this diet said to me, “I was missing all of the food I wasn’t going to be able to have during the holidays, then I remembered, last year I was so sick, I didn’t feel like eating any of those foods.”

The next year is going to be one of change for us on many levels. I will become a grandmother in January, and our prayer is that this diet will help the girls (and me) to heal physically. The holidays will be different on a couple of levels. It will be our first year without Lindsay, and our first year without all of our traditional foods. Our goal is to find ways to make our new diet interesting and exciting, even within our limitations. We will share our adventure here in the hopes of helping others who are having some of the same issues. We hope that you will share your journey with us as well by leaving comments.

2 Comments »

  1. amanda — September 26, 2010 @ 2:33 am

    My son has been on the SCD diet for about 6 years. My new favorite recipes are at http://www.elanaspantry.com My son was able to have a cupcake with chocolate icing for the first time! He was delighted!!!
    I know you have my email, but that it isn’t published. You are free to email me if you need recipe ideas!
    Blessings,
    Amanda

  2. Lora — September 26, 2010 @ 7:08 pm

    Amanda,
    Thank you for visiting and leaving the link to Elana’s Pantry!! What great ideas she has. We are actually going to be moving our blog to a new site, so that all of the recipes on it will be G-free and SCD friendly. When it’s up, I’ll post here about it. I hope you will drop by from time to time to offer encouragement.

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