Just Eat the Donut (part 1)
Spring and summer 2018 were not easy. In the start of the spring I was working at a terrible job. It was such a terrible mismatch for me I became physically and chronically ill. If you know me I am so so hard on myself when it comes to illness. I play tapes over and over again about how feeble and weak I have to be to get sick, and how strong it makes me feel to push through even when I’m at my worst (and with some 2020 perspective, totally compromising everyone around me). Because of this, and how insanely I was working, I came down with bronchitis and couldn’t shake it for months.
After being in and out sick for weeks, and getting more and more overwhelmed, behind, and shaken by my work and for whom I was working, I was politely told “this isn’t a good fit,” and asked to leave forever. Cya.
This was not good. This was very bad times. Dark. No parents. I am Batman.
After a few months of sulking and sadness, I slowly got my act together. I finally figured out budgeting. I started focusing on positive, good eating practices. I bought an Instantpot. I figured out that working out can be fun, threw some money at ClassPass, and started to get fit. I worked daily mass in more than I ever had before. I became genuinely happy and healthy for the first time in my adult life. In the midst of me coming into my own, I decided now was the time for the real deal, millennial solo trip. I needed to make the most of my time not working and do something interesting. When else would I have the time, money, and freedom to do something totally on my own terms? Literally never. Bang bang. I booked a flight on Iceland Air for Paris with a weeklong stopover in Reykjavik, and set off!
Paris was KICK ASS. DROP EVERYTHING PUT ON A MASK AND GET TO PARIS RIGHT NOW!!! Paris was the greatest place I’ve ever been in my life. Everything is dreamy. Everything is historic. Everything that gets my hyped on the American Revolution is there, too, but even bigger. Jefferson loved Paris, Paris loved him, and I love them both. Washington loved Paris, Paris loved him, and I love them both, too! Not to mention the ties to Edison, fashion, WWI, WWII, Napoleon, the bourgeoise, blah blah blah, everything everything everything that gets me going after about 1/2 beers and literally no solicitation from the audience. Not to mention, I had a sweet blog going. I was that girl. I was living. I was performing. My digital and physical presence were en fuego 🔥 like they had never been before.
This included SnapChats (lolz RIP)
and blog posts of copious baguettes, pastries, croissants loaded with good stuff, meats, whole wheels of brie, crepes, macarons, gelato, cafe s’il vous plaît, international candy, Rosé all day, the whole shebang. Well plated international cuisine is instagrammable AF and people love it. The only drawback: I love how much people love it. Feeling relevant is the most seductive drug. The thing about a well curated Parisian picnicstagram post, is that it is a nearly worthless slice of me as a person. It’s one captured second of a person's life with no context for any of the moments around it. I left France for Iceland showing on the outside effervescence and eagerness, but on the inside devastated and anxious over what I had done to my body. Specifically, how I had immediately undone everything I had worked so so so healthy and hard to achieve.
When I got to Iceland I refused to see myself as overly controlling my eating. I should have known when I spent the whole day at the Blue Lagoon with only a complimentary glass of champagne and a Blue Gatorade to keep me going. But I didn't know, or at the very least I couldn't face it. I wrote in my blog that night that I went to bed without dinner, wrapped beautifully in a “I’m so busy globetrotting” bow. I was living in a dream world of perfect excuses: groceries were too expensive, it was too late for dinner, I didn’t know where to go for quick snacks, I didn’t have enough time with my itinerary. But it was really full fear and panic I would return to my fired, fat, fraudulent way of life from all the way back in the spring, when I came home from the suspended reality of #girltraveler.
God had beautiful plans in store for me though. Within 24 hours of arrival I was whisked away to one of the greatest nuptial celebrations of all time. One of my best friends married another one of my best friends and all my other best friends were there and we all felt like we were marrying each other. Not like a cult. Just something momentous and all consumingly joyful. It was uninterrupted, grace, love and good tidings from every angle. Returning to my holy community set me fully aflame in a way the Louvre never could. I came back to the sacraments -- particularly communion and matrimony -- like I have again and again (communion, not matrimony, alas), for healing and happiness. Rejoicing in the truth of Jesus, and breaking free from the weight of followers is the only way I know to bring myself back.
I can promise you I left no signature cocktail or wedding-color-scheme donut left behind. JK I can’t actually promise you. Maybe I did. Maybe I didn’t. I don’t know. But, what I do know is I wasn’t thinking about it. I was thinking about being back with my home team, us witnessing the covenant of marriage, and truly and authentically enjoying another lifelong commitment to love each other like Jesus loves us.
Jesus loves us so much, he wants us to feel free to eat the donut. Just eat the donut 🍩