I talk honestly and openly about my experiences with mental illness, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue syndrome through the lens of feminism, fat acceptance and process theology. I also do recipe and book reviews. My mission is to spread the message that hope is always real for a better life, despite living in a world that is often very harsh.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

A Quote, A Recipe, and Lots of Fatshion Fun

Without God, we are completely determined by our past. ~ Monica A. Coleman, "Making a Way Out of No Way"
Without God, we would be doomed to always repeat our mistakes, to never learn, to never grow, because I believe Godde is the force that continually urges us to a newer, better, more lovely way. Godde is Love and Godde is Hope. It is not that our past is so bad, but that our past should only be a part of who we are-not our totality. There should always be hope that life can be better than it currently is.

 Just a few years ago, I did not enjoy cooking, because all I could think of was the fat grams and calories that I was about to consume. Now I love to cook! A few nights ago, I made Mandarin chicken for dinner.

Mandarin Chicken Skillet Dinner

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh broccoli florets
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken breast meat - cubed
  • 1 1/2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms
  • 3 teaspoons all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup undiluted, thawed orange juice concentrate
  • 2 cubes chicken bouillon
  • 1 (11 ounce) can mandarin orange segments, drained
  • 1/4 cup sliced green onion

Directions

  1. Place broccoli in a steamer over 1 inch of boiling water, and cover. Cook until tender but still firm, about 2 to 6 minutes. Use a Zip'N Steam bag.  Drain, cool and set aside.
  2. Heat butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Saute chicken in butter until browned. Remove from skillet and set aside.
  3. Saute mushrooms in skillet for 1 minute; remove from skillet and set aside. Stir in flour, water, orange juice concentrate and seasoning.
  4. Heat to boiling, stirring. Simmer, stirring, for 4 minutes. Return chicken and mushrooms to skillet; stir in orange segments, green onion and broccoli. Heat through and serve.


I didn't use mushrooms, because I didn't have any.  But don't let that stop you-mushrooms are great!

Serve this dish atop rice, like I did.  Everyone liked this light, citrus-y, sweet dish.  It's very easy, especially since my visiting aunt chopped up the chicken.  I love mandarin oranges and I think their color makes any meal look festive.

Something I also never used to do before I started blogging was to take pictures of myself.  Why would I?  In my body-hating opinion, looking at a picture of myself was simply an excuse to gaze at my flaws.  I would scan the picture looking for instances of body fat and other perceived flaws.  I just could not be satisfied with myself.  And if I did want my picture taken, I would passively wait for someone else to offer to take my picture.  If no one did, then I would silently wallow in self-pity for the fact that no one could read my mind.  It was proof, I thought, that no one liked me or thought I was important.  It was not true, of course, but what was true was the fact that I was passively letting other people control my life.  I still do this sometimes, but now it is something I am working on letting go.  And if I want my picture taken?  If I think I look good?  Then I'll take the damn picture myself, just to be sure I've got one!

Here are some pictures I have taken of moi in the past couple of days.  It's Fa(t)shion February and I just had to join in on the fun!



I really like this picture of me!  I am wearing my "holiday party" sweater-you may not be able to tell, but the smaller lines are sparkly.  The sweater and the pants are from Torrid.  The cami is from Target and the shoes are from DSW.













This is what I was wearing when I was cooking the mandarin skillet dinner.  I just bought the shirt last week on clearance at Torrid!  The shrug is from Marshall's, I think.  I have no idea where the leggings are from, but the shoes are from Rack Room.
This is my most recent outfit and I really like it.  Jeans are from Torrid, the shirt is from Target, the sweater is from JCPenney, the shoes from Rack Room, and my parents bought me the necklace for my birthday at an arts festival last year.
"Hope is the thing with feathers that perches in the soul"  This is one of my favorite necklaces, as it contains a line from one of my favorite poems, by one of my favorite poets-Emily Dickinson.

It's sort of funny, but the time I hated myself the most was the time when society thinks that I would love myself the most.  I was already suicidal when I was skinny and I was sure that I would kill myself if I ever got fat.  I'm not proud of this, but in my mind, fatness equaled being out of control, wild, and unloveable.  I would look at a fat person and think to myself, "I would kill myself if I looked like them."  I thought a lot about killing myself in those days...  I am ashamed that I was so judgmental and that I believed society's lie.  I actually thought that it would be impossible for a person to be fat AND happy and that if I ever had to gain weight, that I might as well give up on living.  It sounds shallow, but it was really more about my need for feeling in control.  Now, because of my medication, I am fat.  And I love myself.  And I am happy, at least most days, lately.  And I have self confidence and I even have sex on occasions.  My fatness has not slowed me down and now I know that if I start thinking about killing myself, then I need to see my doctor and my therapist right away.  Losing weight will not fix my problems, but losing the expectations that society tries to shove down my throat will be many steps in the right direction of my recovery.

BTW, this post by The Fat Nutritionist about feeling fat is fabulous.  She should be required reading for anybody in recovery from an eating disorder.

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