I have not written a post for over a week. I have to admit, I haven’t written because I’ve been kind of angry.
I don’t feel well….again. It is rare that I have a pity party that lasts more than a day but this one I’ve had trouble shaking. Just as my energy started to become a little stronger, something due to my Crohn’s Disease has hit me and knocked me on my butt. (And if you have seen my butt you will know there isn’t much padding for me to land on.)
This little setback has made me furious. I have cancelled dates with friends that I don’t get to see often. I don’t have the sturdiness to push a grocery cart. I can’t play in a playground with my nieces and nephews. I couldn’t go to the Green City Market BBQ. I can’t be there for my husband on the days he wants to do go to a movie, out to dinner or watch his band perform. And yes, there are days I don’t even have the strength to stand up in the shower. (These are the days where my husband is happy he doesn’t have to sit next to me during a movie!)
Only a handful of people know how poorly I have been feeling. Those are the people who truly understand and don’t need explanation. They are the people who get that I don’t want much but to be left alone. The people who truly have my heart know me well enough to listen when I need to talk and avoid asking questions when I’m just trying to forget how bad the last couple of weeks have been for me. These are the people in my life who give me a reason to wake up and keep fighting. (These are the people I’ll never be able to repay with words but only with my love and friendship.)
This is the part of living with a chronic illness that makes me furious. I feel like good health is like a piñata. I keep giving it a good whack and nothing happens. It just swings in front of me and taunts me with those googly eyes. (Any decent piñata has to have googly eyes.)
As my piñata swirls and twirls, I get to the point where I just want to tear it to pieces and scream. I want to yell at it and say “Hey Good Health piñata, why do you hate me?” (If you go to a party and yell at a piñata, odds are people aren’t going to invite you back….. especially if you are an adult….at a kid’s party.)
I feel like I have gotten to the point where I want to tear the piñata down and just pound his googly little face in. I want to pound it to smithereens and ask it to stop goading me into thinking I can one day be normal. It is a piñata fury that ends with pieces of tissue paper flying, cardboard shredded and a googly eye conspicuously stuck to the front of my shirt.
When I actually bust into the piñata, it isn’t filled with Good Health like I had thought. It is filled with patience, strength and courage, which is what living with a chronic illness really requires. It helps me realize that I need to continue doing what I’ve done for years and I will beat another Crohn’s disease mishap.
This pounding has made me feel better. (It is hard to stay in a bad mood when you have googly eye stuck to your shirt.) I know this stumbling block is just another one to get over. I will struggle but I will climb it and get better. I will knock the tissue paper out of my hair and recycle the cardboard. (I’ll keep the googly eye because each time I say that word it makes me smile.)
Meanwhile, I will get my rest, regroup and eat cake….pound cake! (Because that is one of the advantages of Crohn’s…I CAN have my cake AND eat it too.)
(This was scribbled on a card in my recipe box. I probably copied it from somewhere when I was 20. So if it looks familiar, let me know so I can start giving proper credit.)
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup (not leveled) granulated sugar (I know I cut this down from 1 cup because my mom makes me cut down my sugar or I’ll destroy a piñata.)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 5 large eggs, room temperature, lightly beaten
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Lightly butter and flour a 4 1/2-by-8 1/2-inch loaf pan.
Using your electric mixer, beat butter and sugar together.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar on medium-high until very light and fluffy. (Scrape down the sides at least once.)
Add vanilla, and then gradually add eggs, beating well and scraping down bowl as needed.
Add the salt and slowly add the flour. (Lower the speed of your mixer so it doesn’t create a dust cloud.)
Transfer batter to pan and bake in the center of the oven for about 60 minutes. When you test it, there should be crumbs attached to the cake tester not goopy batter.
Let cool in pan on a wire rack, 1 hour.
Remove cake from pan and let cool completely on rack before slicing.
I chopped up my cake (I was still feeling a little destructive) and served it with blueberries, some mint and the custardy cream from my frutta de sol recipe found here.)