A while back, I read that it takes five years to reinvent yourself and your life after a major life-changing event (loss of a loved one, divorce, health crisis, job loss, etc). The author also said that if it takes less than five years, you did something wrong, and if it takes you longer than five years, you did something wrong. I think that view is too simplistic. Some losses seem naturally easier to rebound from others. For instance, finding a new job can be much easier than recovering from cancer. Plus, everyone’s life and circumstances are different. The length of time it takes, and the particular route you follow, to recover depends greatly on what the life-changing event was, what supports you have available to you (people, money, resources), and - most importantly - how willing you are to move past whatever the event was as you continue on your life journey. If you spend all your time and energy trying to turn back the clock, or recapture what is gone, it will take obviously take longer. And you may find that your problems compound, such as a serious health crisis following a job loss or death in the family when the grieving process is suppressed or allow to fester. On the other hand, if you start take baby steps - any type of baby steps - in the new direction your life is headed, you will find that you will get to a place of balance a lot quicker. The truth is that as long as we are alive, we are constantly “reinventing” our lives. Even if you have been in the same job or area for years, you are not the same person you were 10 years ago, five years ago, last year, last week, or even yesterday for that matter. Each person we interact with, each new piece of information we see/hear/read, and each task we do, change us in some way - hopefully for the better - as everything is a learning experience of some nature. The length of time is immaterial, what is important, is always our attitude as we deal with whatever new challenges life presents to us.
Beth's Ponderings I was never a fan of chemistry in school (sorry Mr. Prockiw!). No matter how hard I tried, or how careful and precise I was, I just could not get the chemistry experiments to work. On the other hand, I was a whiz at chemistry equations on paper - which was rather ironic, since I couldn’t master algebra in math class and chemistry on paper is basically just algebra. No matter how many times I was told chemistry was just like baking a cake, I found I could bake a cake, yet not do a chemistry experiment in the classroom. I didn’t have to worry about the cake exploding all over. Since the start of this health journey, I’ve had to dramatically change what I eat. That has meant experimenting with different foods, in different combinations, to create something edible. Thankfully I can eat eggs! It’s amazing what you can create by adding an egg to a recipe. I’ve searched for various recipes and then substituted ingredients I could eat for the ones I couldn’t, and for the most part, the various attempts have worked. Yes, there have been total flops, but the result was still edible. Some worked, but I decided weren’t worth making again. All in all, my “chemistry” experiments have been successful. Nothing has exploded - well, I did have a Pyrex casserole dish explode all over myself and the kitchen, but it wasn’t part of a food experiment. And through all this, I have discovered something else. I do best with recipes made with 5 or fewer ingredients, and usually 5 or fewer steps. We humans can certainly complicate life, including our food preparation. Why use multiple ingredients when you can achieve pretty much the same thing with less? Too many ingredients mask the real flavour of the food. Have we forgotten what food is supposed to taste like? Some recipes I’ve found are: pancakes made with just banana and eggs (2 eggs for every banana). Cupcakes made with chocolate chips, shredded coconut and eggs. It is possible to make a fudgy brownie with just pecans, raisins and cocoa. Chocolate chip cookies made with nut butter, an egg, and chocolate chips. My great triumph was finally finding a crepe-like recipe with eggs, almond flour, and coconut flour. I still have a stack of recipes to try - and the simple ones are best.