Sunday, May 20, 2012


Thanks to Tammi's valiant efforts to keep the fridge and pantry organized, I now have a chart I can refer to when asking someone to locate an item. But that has not taken care of the problem. This morning, when asking the fill-in attendant to create breakfast and lunch, I kept track and she spent 22 minutes claiming certain items (tomatoes, already cooked pancakes, bread, roast beef) were not there.

In particular, she kept digging into the freezer, which is something Debra also does, not being to differentiate between fridge and freezer. I've learned to hear the difference in which door is being opened and kept shouting "NOT the freezer, the baby carrots are in the FRIDGE produce bin!" In each case, I would not relent and began insisting she bring me, for instance, every item from the produce drawer or every ziplock with a leftover in it. Then, suddenly, she'd be able to "find" what I was asking for.

I don't know what else to do. I had canned chili for dinner last night and saw Debra's face light up when I asked for that as dinner. It wasn't thoroughly heated through, but whatever. I feel like giving up on eating fresh dinners. Tammi is already worked to the max. She left me with prepared food which others have either trashed or spent an unconscionable amount of time denying it was there. I try to just be grateful I am eating at all -- three years ago I could only afford to eat every other day, and when I lost mobility, for six months I ate only from packages. Things have definitely improved since then.

Honestly, it does stir up being a hungry, helpless kid. I reacted then with anorexia, funneling my food to my little brother so he got enough, refusing to take a full share so maybe Mama would eat the leftovers on my plate instead of smoking cigarettes to kill her own hunger. It's insanely hard emotionally for me to ask for real food.

One time Daddy's check didn't come (we later found out because he had cashed it himself and decided we could wait until he came home with it) and we ran out of anything, even beans or greens from the garden. Craig went to stay at a friend's house, Mama holed herself up in her bedroom with books, and I was left to deal with Bill, who was five at the time. I was nine.

We slipped around the back of a few house to the orange trees of an old man who let them rot on the limb, and I picked a box full of them. Back home, whenever Bill began complaining about hunger, I'd peel or slice an orange and make up stories about what we were eating (venison brought down by Daniel Boone's gun, hard tack on a ship sailing around the Horn, space grub on our flight to Mars). As the days wore on, it got harder and harder to distract him, and then he got diarrhea from nothing but oranges. At the end of the third day, Daddy came home and Mama emerged to have a huge fight with him. As they raged, I took Bill out to Daddy's car where there were always cheese crackers and Tom's peanuts in the glove compartment.

But I can no longer afford to skip meals. Indeed, it is now past time for my own lunch. Have to take a sugar and eat a couple of bites. Once I do that, the hunger kicks in and I can eat normally. Pushing through usually does the trick.

Except when Margot is here, I don't have to use any tricks at all, or worry about food in any regard. Not yet resigned to her absence. Gimme a couple of weeks.

1 comment:

Margot said...

Oh godddess. Oh honey, I wish I were there. I wish I could be in two places at once.