I don’t know if this is actually The Middle, but in a way, that’s how it feels. Anyway, this is what follows The Beginning, as posted on this EAW website. Along the Way or In Process, any of these would be apt titles. It began, four or five years ago with a drawing pad on which I did randomly inspired drawings of food, encircled by writing, having a conversation with food; which itself grew out of a (still un-evolved, that is, un-promoted) consulting business and the ‘discovery’ that everyone has a Food Life Story. This project has led me deeper and deeper into my self, my own story, my writing and healing. Other circumstances have aided and abetted this process. All of these gifts, these open doors, some arriving unbidden, but welcome and some actively sought, have grown and expanded my inner and outer lives, producing changes.
And the largest changes have manifested in the writing, here. A few years ago, I began blogging. On the AaCL (Assembling a Cooking Life) site I was sharing ideas about creating a more pleasurable cooking life, given that “Everyone eats, so someone has to cook…” It was intended as promotion for the consulting business and in it’s way, it was satisfying. But I guess my heart wasn’t really in it; I’ve never been much for self-promotion. I was also blogging here on the EAW (Eating Art Work) site, journaling my way through the pages of drawings I had already done.
Now that I think about it that was the beginning of the middle. The writing was personal, albeit carefully edited. Taking baby steps into the world: putting my words, thoughts and feelings out there. My story. That too was sometimes satisfying. Satisfying, however, is not, was not, fulfilling. I was not fed by the effort. Simultaneously, the needs of my elderly father and the miserable chain of our mutual his-tory were draining me. And the slightly appealing and slight success of an EAW business, producing and selling products using the drawings I had done, was distracting, as well as time-consuming.
Were these distractions false turns, tangents, and ‘wastes’ of time? I have thought that; I have railed against the draining, the siphoning off of my sap; to what end? Hindsight has made it clear that I had to complete that journey with my father, to the bitter end. After decades of submission to misery, I had to spend some time with him while I was aware of my anger. That was the only path to eventual self-healing. Was it fun? No. Was it necessary for growth? It most certainly was.