The leftovers of an abbreviated Thanksgiving meal eaten in the middle of March sat in front of me. This was the fourth day in a row I had eaten some version of this meal. It may have been the fourth day, but it was actually the eighth meal. It may seem ridiculous to think one of the biggest changes about myself during this chaotic time in the CoronaVirus world would come from food, but it had.
I have always had a love affair with food, but to me I only enjoyed a specific meal once a week. It was a single date. I would decline a second date until it was made again at some point months down the line. However, since COVID-19 reared its unappetizing head, I have had to not only eat leftovers, but also learn to eat the same thing for lunch and dinner on the same day. This was unheard of for me, and an appalling idea, before this virus invited itself to the table. Believe me, in the beginning I ate those leftovers without giving thanks.
Something happened to me during week two. I noticed a change in the way I looked at food, especially leftovers. Instead of just eating what I craved or what looked good at the time, I saw food as it really was created to be – a necessity. It gradually became less about the pleasure I received from an exceptional meal or the cravings I indulged in, but became more about, well, in its pure form . . . sustenance.
The grocery stores were not stocked with the usual variety of options, the bank account was not stocked anymore since COVID-19 also took my husband’s job, so we were required to buy what was available and to make it last as long as possible. Out of necessity, a new way of eating for me was born. It wasn’t an easy transition, but it was one which had to happen. The current climate called for it.
When I finally finished that eighth meal of turkey, I truly was thankful. I was also proud. I had done it. I had conquered this mind block of the fear and loathing of leftovers. I can honestly say I am a better person for it, probably even a healthier person for it.
It may have been just a simple dinner in March, but it truly was Thanksgiving.