Another one bites the dust

Tonight I went to a potluck dinner, bringing a nice cheesy bread that I found in the new Bon Appétit, and leaving with someone else's brownies. 

"Please somebody take these home with you. I cannot have them lying around my house," another woman said. And so, as nonchalantly as I could muster, I scooped them up. Why not? I knew that they would freeze well, and make an easy dessert with a side of vanilla ice cream. (Besides, I had a husband waiting at home who, poor dear, had been studying all night and had only had a wee sliver of my cheesy bread before I left. I think he ate pre-frozen dumplings for dinner.) These weren't particularly special brownies -- I think I heard someone mention that they might have come out of a mix -- but something in me was just tired of letting other people worry about food around me, of letting other women air so many of their food problems in public. And so I wrapped them up in left-over tin foil, and brought them home. 

I know very well why I "shouldn't" have taken those brownies. First, I used to have an eating disorder which, in its most severe form, was the kind that made me want to lock up everything in sight so that I wouldn't eat it first. In those days, potluck dinners would have been a real no-no, an easy excuse to eat all I wanted to with no one knowing any better. And, if I had taken the proffered brownies, I would probably have made short work of them on the way home, arriving at my own doorstep in utter panic and guilt. Those were the days, eh?

Second, if I should ever want brownies, there is nothing keeping me from making them myself. I don't even need Duncan Hines to do that. 

But tonight, I took the brownies without concern, for probably the first time in years. And, true to my promise to myself, they went right into the freezer when I got home, with nary another bite. I'll mention them to Chuan tomorrow, see if he wants them; if not, I'm content to just let them sit there, until we find a good pint of vanilla bean ice cream, or freezer burn destroys them.  

So, I say: another myth bites the dust, and another, and a third. I can have my cake without eating it, once in a while. I can free someone else of her brownies and be no worse for the wear. I can wait until another day to have a second helping.

Those brownies are safe in my freezer, and they'll come out only when and if I really want one.

And who said that brownies for breakfast were a bad idea?


Cammy said...

It's terrific that you have made so much progress with your relationship with food (and yourself), and that you are consciously aware of how your feelings, not just actions, are different now. Thanks so much for sharing this!

kb said...

I've been following some of your posts, and I really love the threads that you tie together, making the public or the social element of food very personal.
- Kristina

Gaining Back My Life said...

What a great place to be in - there is nothing like the freedom you have when your ed is in the dust. Hats off to you!

ania said...

Dear Ai Lu,

These moments/realizations are just lovely.

Also, I am absolutely making (or, plan to make, but I'm trying to be positive) that bread this weekend. Sans bacon, I think. I'll have to check with the folks for whom I intend to make the loaf.

Thank you for this post.

With care....

Ai Lu said...

Oh, readers -- thank you!

Ania: There was one person at the potluck who kept kosher, so this bread was definitely not for her (meat + milk = no go)! And I think that the bacon can be easily left out for vegetarians and you'll still get a good loaf. Gotta love epicurious.

~Ai Lu