For most people, the act of baking for the Holidays is a seriously stressful and wearying experience. For me, however, I consider it quiet time for myself; a period of peace and introspection, a time when my hands can be busy while my mind rests for a bit.
It is, to be honest, an interesting time for me. For starters: I finally quit my job. I made the conscious decision to start afresh and to renew a tired body and an even wearier mind before setting out to do better things with my life. The past twelve months were weird, to say the very least; I could not seem to psych myself into becoming enthusiastic about the things I did for work. I kept getting sick: bouts of what seemed like the flu, then the flu itself, and stomach troubles. I was a tenser-than-a-coiled-spring mess who found herself trying to fathom what to do next.
Despite a short, depressing spell when I considered giving up writing for good, I have continued to write. I was able to post a few short stories online this year and the tragedy of Typhoon Yolanda/Haiyan got captured in verse. My current novel-in-progress, The Rebirth of Meras, continues to spin out, albeit slowly of late. But the story goes on and I keep writing and building it up. Perhaps, next year, I’ll be plucky enough to see it published. It may not earn me a pretty penny, but it’ll help build the foundations for a proper writing career.
And, of course, I have my cooking and baking to keep me relatively sane. Though I was sort of out of it during my last few weeks at work, cooking and baking have anchored me and enabled me to regain a certain degree of focus. I’m now considering trying new recipes and writing a proper cookbook – an endeavor that some may consider silly or even stupid, but I consider it a worthwhile challenge. Everyone else can go bury their heads in the sand!
As Christmas looms on nigh, I have again settled myself in the kitchen. Creaming butter, whisking batters, kneading dough into submission for scrumptious cookies and brownies to be given to friends and family – it’s all very therapeutic for me.
I can only hope that this Season brings a clearer sense of reason into my life and that the coming year holds a promise of better things to come.
Merry Christmas, everyone. 🙂