I’ve taken two weeks off from writing All Good Things and I’ll be honest, many days I think I’m done completely with these weekly offerings. Just as I typed that sentence I changed my mind again. I think I’m just going to give myself permission to be flexible...
Two weeks ago I shared that I had health stuff going on. I honestly don’t have much more to tell. I’ve been playing the waiting game. And winning! It turns out, I’m a champion at waiting. Are you?
I am the product of an impatient parent and a worrier parent. (Their strong suits are love and generosity, but they are also known for those first descriptives.) Luckily, I don’t seem to carry those genes. I’m pretty patient and I don’t worry about much. I think waiting can be an adventure and I notoriously point out the potential good instead of the possible bad in any situation.
Basically, I was given a health summation of: you either have THIS or THAT. Many signs, and my own personal feelings, lead me to believe that I’ll escape the dreaded THAT, but it doesn’t seem like THIS will exactly be a picnic either. I’m learning to enjoy the paper gown game too!
One more test and one more big appointment will shed some light on my move into a healthier future. So I wait. (July 18th is my magic day if you all feel like sending me virtual rainbows and visions of health that day.)
I’ve been lucky to have spent this time waiting with some of my dearests and bests. They’ve loved, supported, and held me in their hearts and prayers. Daily checkins and sweet love notes. Granted, most of that time has been spent on the phone texting and calling because so many of them are not in NYC...
A few weeks ago I had one of my far away A-team friends in town, Susan, a yoga teacher living in Dallas. Susan teaches her classes with a dharma talk or a lesson/observation/theme to accompany the sequence of poses. She shared with me a theme she’s been working on; The work is in the waiting. Aha! I’m officially inviting her to guest blog on AGT in the near future to share that with all of us. In the meantime, I’ve attached some of my own meaning to “The work is in the waiting”.
I’ve actually filled my time with a great deal of work while waiting for my test results and follow up appointments. Not the obvious work like menu planning and cooking for my clients. (Hello Summer, you’re slow, I know.)
I’ve been doing physical work to keep my body strong. (Shoutout to Gina DiNapoli and JABs for keeping me motivated and in my body these last few months.) I’ve been doing dietary work to anti-inflame my joints, my organs, and whatever is growing inside of me. (Shoutout to my girl Paige Davis for encouraging me by her example of how to thrive in NYC with a sugar and gluten free diet.)
I’ve been doing mental/spiritual work too. I chant a mantra many times throughout the day: My Body Now Restores Itself To A State Of Perfect Health. Patricia Moreno, one of my first teachers in New York City, shared these words many years ago. Mantras are just helpful thoughts and words to protect the mind from the unhelpful ones.
I’ve called on gratitude. I’ve called on forgiveness, of myself and of others. Gratitude and Forgiveness are like weapons, man. They battle fear and despair like real champs.
I’ve also worked on managing my expectations — by almost eliminating them altogether!
How have I done that? By reminding myself that everyone’s doing the best they can within their own circumstances, even if it feels like it’s not enough to me. Me wishing someone else's best were more isn’t fair to myself or to them. But, I’ll gently remind you (and myself) that just because we think our strong friends are fine, everyone needs support. Reach out!
I also remind myself that I don’t have control of what happens next — in anything! Not my body, or my career, or my love life, nor my family, etc. I only have control of how I speak and think in this moment, and what I do about whatever happens next.
One of the super fun things I did during this waiting game actually was kind of a game. I grew scallions from discarded scallions! Did you know you could do that?!?! I knew you could grow celery from discarded celery ends, pineapple, potato... a lot of things. But scallions were new to me. A botanistic miracle! And if it saves me a trip to the grocery store - it’s a culinary miracle too!
Save the root ends, bury the roots in a pot of soil, water, and continue to water every few days when the soil looks dry. Magically, in 20 days I snipped these scallions and made this chicken salad. I saved myself $1.99! And I can keep planting them. So essentially I’ve saved myself $1.99 until the end of time. (#winning) If you find yourself having to endure a waiting game, I highly recommend the Grow your Own Scallions Game.
Asian Chicken Salad
4 poached chicken breasts
1 bunch cilantro
3/4 cup peanuts
2 cans mandarin oranges, drained
2 T black sesame seeds
1 1/2 cup mayonnaise
salt and pepper
You can chop everything finely by hand or you can be lazy and throw it into a food processor (in batches) and pulse a few times. Add the mayo to your liking. If you want it creamier, add all of it. Add a little at a time if you like things a little more dry. Season generously with salt and pepper. Fry up some wonton chips and this will be your new favorite chicken salad.