Sunday, April 23, 2006


"Strength is the capacity to break a chocolate bar into four pieces with your bare hands--and then eat just one of the pieces." --Judith Viorst, writer--

I used chocolate as a tool...carefully, specifically, for the pursuit of absolute indulgent pleasure. One of those things in this life--a hot bath, a great glass of red wine, a fine chocolate...these become sacramental and holy to me. A while back, I wrote up some organic chocolate companies for product reviews for the magazine and was lucky enough to experience chocolates laced with lavender and fresh mint...the taste so gentle, my jaw ached. Drinking hot chocolate right alongside the kids when it snowed outside and we passed the day tunneling through drifts and making snow angels...I am eclectic here, as in everything in my life. I can take cheap chocolate, fine chocolate...powdered chocolate drinks or the finest Mexican chocolate stirred up in a Santa Fe kitchen while I'm waiting to catch my plane and desperately in need of touching ground.

But, things have changed. Now I have a medical condition that only allows me to have a bland diet--an almost reverse-Atkins where rice and bagels are my friends and my long-beloved chocolate and I have parted in a brutal, unexpected breakup...the way true lovers so often do. Wistfully, I have watched the children biting into milk chocolate bunnies and eggs this past week. I am a stalker--just happening by the basket where the candy sits, so fragrant and inviting, so obvious in wanting me. Finally, on Thursday, I caved in and tumbled back into the affair. Furtive nibbling at the peanut butter chocolate egg sent me straight off on a Hershey bender. I devoured one piece, two, then three...rationalizing each bite. Not five minutes later, a stabbing pain through my stomach doubled me over. Hurt again, just like I knew I would be--just a bad co-dependent relationship everyone can see the obvious with...everyone, that is, except for you.

So I ended it again. I have sworn chocolate off--in spite of my deep love. Maturity is so important with ending these passionate situations, is it not? "Just walk away...don't linger in the kitchen...think of the blazing fire through your belly when you ate them...follow doctor's orders..." This is what I tell myself. But, like any dysfunctional woman--I try to figure things out. "This time it will be different!" "I have changed, I'm healed." I apologize to my body in advance, then decide, "Well...maybe if I only have just one..." Gathering all of my resources, I find my way free of chocolate. I am living without it--I am doing just fine, thank you. Then, Sunday Scribblings rolls around and the theme is chocolate. My mouth waters and I think that Judith Viorst was right in the above quote about the struggle to only eat one. But, for me, strength is having a kitchen full of my favorite indulgence and sipping chamomile tea instead...then reading about all of these wonderful writers' associations with my ex--and still having the willpower to break it off for good...and kiss chocolate goodbye once and for all.


Blogger harmonyinline said...

No chocolate that hurts, you have my sympathy, I was quite young when my doctor but me on a very restricted diet, it took me over half my life and repeated illness begin to come to terms with the fact that I can’t eat what everyone else eats. I still have days when I try. Reading your post reminded me that I need to be more careful about my diet and that I am not the only one.

1:53 AM  
Blogger paris parfait said...

Poor you! So sorry about your body's negative reaction to one of your great loves. But you wrote a beautiful piece about it all.

6:15 AM  
Blogger Laini Taylor said...

Oh, I'm so sorry. That's painful and cruel. And sorry to rub salt in the wound with the theme!

6:07 PM  
Blogger Susannah said...

I love the Viorst quote - and the post was, as always, wonderful. Chocolate as the lover... the seducer.. and the cause of pain - brilliant (and what torture for you!)

6:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You have my sympathy for the chocolate issue, and my admiration for your post. Is it wrong that I laughed a little--the breakup was clever and well realized. :)

1:13 AM  
Blogger Bohemian Girl said...

i completely relate to having to be brave and not eat certain delicious foods as a result of a stomache disorder.

it was difficult when i was younger and couldn't eat the cake at birthday parties, but is so worth staying pain free that i hardly crave those foods i cannot indulge in.

big hug of understanding and applause to you.

4:42 PM  

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