A Newborn in the House and Baking against Corona Anxiety

These past three weeks have been eventful and strange. Their newness and uncertainty propelled me into one hell of an anxiety carousel. Here I was, heavily pregnant, nesting with a fervor I’d never known before, worried about petty things as the right measure on her bed linen- little did I know she won’t want to sleep in her bed at all- and all of a sudden the world seems to be ending amidst my long awaited happiness.

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Just three weeks ago I was busy complaining about pelvic pains and feeling fedd up with being huge and now I had to find new ways of reassuring myself we won’t all die of starvation if the virus doesn’t get to us first.

She came into our world on the 7th of March, she rushed in 8 days before the due date, almost as if she’d known that if she’d linger any longer, her dad wouldn’t be allowed to see the birth and stay with us in the hospital any longer. The first days were hard, I had the chills 4-5 times a day and she wouldn’t nurse, so we eventually had to feed her formula from a small cup (and it’d take hours!) hoping things would improve when the milk came. It didn’t. (But that’s an entirely other story.)

After an extended stay,  we could finally leave the hospital (after 7 days!), just in time for the Corona quarantine. That evening F shopped for groceries and there was no more toilet paper, nor tomato sauce, nor pasta or rice. Panic! After that, things went back to a sort of normality, at least when it comes to finding food on the shelves. But the longer it dragged on, the more somber the statistics all over the world, the less we saw of friends and family, one day I wasn’t able to control my anxiety at all. Some days it took the best of me and I could only sit there with a huge black hole inside of me. Other days, when the weather was sunny, we ventured outside and realized the world was still there, humanity had not evaporated and I came back lightheaded as though I’d had a pint or three. Today I decided to get back on medication, after spending all yesterday’s hours when Madeleiene didn’t need me either baking bread, baking a cake, washing clothes, all in order to avoid agonizing.

I’m heading to the pharmacy in an hour’s time, but I already feel better. I don’t read the news any more, I try not to think of how “non-essential” people will pay their rent, I ordered some stuff online and I’m doing my best to use all the ingredients we have in the house in a smart way. Meanwhile, I’m kissing my daughter’s chubby legs and sniffing her scalp. And thinking how I’ll start saving money and making room for a pantry when the times are better.

And here’s the recipe for the cake I baked the other day. I used the stuff we had, like 4 overripe plums and apple juice instead of orange juice.

Ingredients

100g walnuts

250 dates ( I had some dates, some dried figs and some dried apricots)

the zest from an orange/lemon

300g flour

1 tea spoon baking powder

1/2 tea spoon cardamom

1/2 tea spoon cinnamon

200 ml orange juice

100g butter

150 g brown sugar (I only had white)

1 egg

(I used 4 plums as well)

Bake the walnuts in the oven on a parchment paper around 15 minutes at 150 degrees C.

Cut the dates (and the other dried fruit plus the plums). Add the walnuts, the orange/lemon zest and one spoon of the flour. Sift the rest of the flour with the baking powder and the spices. Put it aside.

Use a kitchen aid/mixer to “fluff the butter up”. Add the egg and mix them well together. Add the flour, then the orange/apple juice. Then add the walnuts and dates (dried fruit and fruit) into the dough. Pour the dough (it’ll be a bit runny, it’s fine) into a cake form lined with parchment paper and bake at 180 degrees C for 1 h. Sometimes it needs a bit longer, check it with a chopstick. 😉

Bon appetit!

PS. Go for a walk if allowed in your part of the world, here it’s still ok (but we have to keep the distance). With a newborn I don’t get to do it every day, but when I do, I feel sanity rushing back into my veins. Today I even crossed the street to avoid other humans. But since I had to go to the pharmacy, I ran into people after all.

Stay safe and I hope we’ll all make it to the other side. I know, it sounds like something you hear in Sci-fi movies. 😉

xxx, Alina

 

 

 

Anxious nights

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I’m so not gonna be the kind of mother that worries all the time, I told myself. I’m going to be cool, like I was with the cats and I am with Sam. I’m gonna think that nothing bad could ever happen to my baby, not after all I’ve gone through to get her/him. That’s what I thought. The truth is I’m an anxious person and I’m on max dosage of medicine to be able to deal with that on an everyday basis. I almost have a panic attack if a looney gets on the bus, I hyperventilate if a drunk seats himself next to me, you get the idea. I finally found out why mingling with the wrong crowd drains me of energy- it’s because if there’s no chemistry, anxiety kicks in.  Continue reading

Lately

How y’all doing ? These days I´m still a bit up and down and I tend to find people tiresome. And since I meet lots of them in my line of work, some days I´m simply beat without doing much at all. 😉 I don´t even know if it´s anxiety or good old contempt. My therapist planted this idea- what if your contempt for people is rooted in contempt for yourself? Too deep on a Friday evening, though. 😉 haha!

As long as I have my bear and my special someone though, all´s good in the world. We´ve had a bit of sun lately (although it´s still awfully cold!) and so I´ve been exploring the neighbouring woods with Sammy boy. 😉13078258_10153549181381711_225484625_o Continue reading

Spring days

Although I must have forgotten to take my pills today, with a fabulous disposition (not) and throbbing anxiety as an outcome, there’s no doubt I’ve been feeling much better lately. Yesterday I even made some chocolate mousse, caught a movie-“Hail, Caesar!” by the Cohen Brothers (God, they´re a bunch of loonies!) and had a couple of drinks, on an almost regular Wednesday. 😉  By the time I went to bed it was past “Christian hours” (I love this expression in Norwegian!), so there´s a slight chance that today’s shape might be directly linked to that.. 😉 haha!

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“Martisor”

 

Today I´ve had a bad day

And I don´t only mean

A bad hair day,

But the kind of day

When your fears

Are palpable,

When all your sadness

Resurfaces from some

God forgotten place

And biblical guilt

Haunts you

Until you want to scream

And say “I give in”!

 

All this turmoil

Makes me tired,

Makes me want to crawl

Back into my shell

Where it doesn´t matter

If you´re good or bad

`Cause you´re miserable anyways.

 

But I fight it.

 

I´ve been so happy

These past few days,

I threw myself at happiness

Like it wasn´t deceitful

Like I believed I could do it.

 

Nothing´s changed, though

It might be the “MARTISOR”-

The Romanian way

Of celebrating spring,

There´s no sign of spring here, you see-

And my anxiety gets the best of me.

 

March, 2016

 

 

 

Lazy bones

Today I woke up early to finish a couple of written translations that are due today, but I seem to do anything to postpone it. In fact, procrastinating is my middle name. These days have been wonderfully lazy, so sliding back into routine is no easy task. We´ve had movie marathons and binge eating (not food, but chips and sweets), napping from 8pm to 9pm and things unheard of outside Christmas break. Yesterday however I managed to read a couple of pages, after working for a bit and then giving the house a quick shine. A friend visited with her sweet baby and we had the greatest time bonding. Unfortunately I´m quite ambivalent about children since I´ve been longing for one for so long, so I never know how I will react, I either like them too much or I just couldn´t be bothered. But Isabella was the cutest little thing and so easy to get along with, I was sold!

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