Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Mechanical Soft

So my downstairs neighbor texts me:


"Hey Molly you hungry? Just made dinner and we've got some leftovers."


To which I respond:


"Haha" (<--where did the nervous text-laughter come from? Somebody punch me.) "No I'm good thanks, I just had some frozen pizza."


This is one of the many reasons why I love my neighbors. Along with their adorable daughters that give me Girl Scout cookies, their shoveling of my sidewalk, providing free internet access and not making snide remarks about "making music" like SOME of my previous shelter-acquaintances, I'd say we're perfect for one another. And after subsequent bashings of my frozen dietary lifestyle, I had no choice but to acquiesce to the free home-made goodness courtesy of my favorite dwelling-companions. TO MY CREDIT, HOWEVER, it was not frozen pizza. It was refrigerated Dominos.


Why the uncharacteristic ordering of overly-priced pizza at 10:30 on a previous weeknight -- sober, no less -- you ask? It was the first thing I could summon the energy to virtually order and shove down my gullet after coming out of a two-day food poisoning or stomach flu-like episode. One of which had kept me up for an entire Saturday evening and in bed the following two days. I still feel puke-drunk.


But bedtime marathons and Fifty Shades Freed (speaking of, we need to have a conversation about that) aside, I'm reminded of the few years my brother spent working at a retirement home in High School. Not because of my lack of control over my bodily functions or irrational tirades on the weather, but because of the running joke my family adopted over his role in the kitchen. It was my brother's job as a dutiful Servant of Elders to provide a few resident's meals Mechanical Soft.


For those of you not in the know, mechanical soft is a handy term used to describe one's entire meal being tenderly placed inside a blender and then mashed into a pulp-like substance, easily consumed by those without convenience of teeth. It's days like I've had this week I really wish I had someone around to liquify my food for me.


But then again, isn't that the very place at which I'm feeling stuck? Wanting someone to take care of me, but forget taking care of myself in the run-up? Trying to find this juncture of complete freedom and total dependence? Wanting all of what I want without compromise, but none of the consequences? Because as much as I hate to admit it, there's a whiny teenager lodged somewhere in my abdomen, screaming for the car keys but holding her hand out for gas money. I want to stay up all night working on my plans to rule the world, but I just don't want to clean up the puke when lack of sleep explodes in my face. And just like those retirees who must love being taken care of after so long doing nothing but the opposite, we all know it's no picnic being wheeled to the bathroom everyday.


My spiritual teacher once told me that power and responsibility should not be two words -- in essence, they work so closely together that they are the same. Peter Parker's uncle was right. With great power comes great responsibility, and every time I make the choice to treat my body as if it's the energizer bunny capable of great feats in sleeplessness, it will be my responsibility to deal with the aftermath. And in this particular case, the puke.


My mechanical soft diet has near about run its course. And I'm going to bed, because I have shit to do and not near enough rechargeable batteries in this lifetime to do it without a nap. And since I've missed you so much in the last few weeks...goodnight, my friends.