A Different Kind of Hunger


By Bob Fornal


This post is part of Eat, Drink and Merry Friday Carnival. See original post for more details of what this entails. We are talking about Food and Spirituality and next week, we’ll start discussion based on the book Women Food and God: An Unexpected Path to Almost Everything I hope you can join us! And for those of you who shared your story last week, thank you so very much! You’re all beautiful!

I don’t feel like writing tonight. I don’t feel like writing about how crappy I felt the last few hours of the day when my husband had to work late once more and all I wanted to do was escape. After having to care for another all day long, I just wanted…I just wanted…Something. Exactly what? I’m not sure. So I reach for a cookie.  A carrot cookie. Healthy and homemade, but still. A cookie.

Yes, it’s true that I sometimes eat to soothe and that I sometimes eat to mask a different kind of hunger I try hard to ignore. I’m really tired of not knowing what it is that I am hungry for. And becoming a mother, and a stay-at-home at that, has magnified it so much more than before.

Hunger For Something Else

Below is an excerpt from an article by Geneen Roth on the Huffington Post:

We don’t want to eat hot fudge sundaes as much as we want our lives to be hot fudge sundaes. We want to come home to ourselves. We want to know wonder and mystery and possibility; and if instead, we’ve given up on ourselves, if we’ve vacated our longings, if we’ve left possibility behind, we will feel an emptiness we can’t name. We will feel as if something is missing because something is missing–the connection to the source of all sweetness, all love, all power, all peace, all joy, all stillness. Since we had it once–we were born with and as it–it can’t help but haunt us. It’s as if our cells remember that home is a resplendent and jeweled palace but we’ve been living as beggars for so long that we are no longer certain if the palace was a dream. And if it was a dream, then at least we can eat the memory of it.

Yes. Totally. To eat the memory of Something We Once Had. She identifies it as “the connection to the Source,” of basically everything that is Good. Something we were Made For. She goes on to say:

During the first few bites, and before we get dazed by overeating, everything we want is possible. Everything we’ve lost is here now. And so we settle for the concrete version of our lost selves in the form of food. And once food has become synonymous with goodness or love or fulfillment, you cannot help but choose it, no matter how high the stakes are. No matter if your doctor tells you that you won’t live another month at this weight. Because when you are lost, when you are homeless, when you’ve spent years separated from who you are, threats of failed hearts or joint pressure don’t move you. Dying does not frighten those who are already half-dead.

A Different Kind of Hunger = A Spiritual Kind of Hunger

Are you buying this? Does anything resonate with you? Are you willing to submit to the possibility that this mindless eating is at its root a spiritual problem? That this emptiness that you cannot name is at its core a spiritual issue? That it’s was never about Willpower or Discipline but about trying to find our way back Home somehow, to the Source of all our True Longing?

Then Eat, Drink and Be Merry Fridays is for you. Will you consider joining us here on Fridays to explore this Hunger of Different Kind, together? We’ll be sharing our stories and reading Women Food and God: An Unexpected Path to Almost Everything together starting next week, October 8. All you need to do is to buy the book or get it from your local library. Read one chapter a week or so and join us here.

Share Your Story

This is the first time ever that I’m going to host a Carnival here. And I really don’t care about quantity of link-ups here. I am not doing this for the number of links I’m going to get back on my blog. I just really want a place where Others in the Same Journey can connect and share. So this is your Space below. If you want to write something on your blog about your personal journey in regards to Food and Spirituality, I’d be honored if you linked here. Let’s make a Sacred Circle of some sort. And it starts with you.

P.S. Introduce yourself in the comment section as well, if you haven’t yet! Don’t be shy! Oh, and don’t hesitate to spread the word! (See the Share/Save button below? You can use it to share this article on FB and Twitter among many others. Thank you!)

P.P.S. Some of you did some shopping through the Amazon link here (see button on lower right side bar!) Thank you! We’re splitting proceeds between Kiva and Charity:Water. Keep it up!

::This Post is part of Real Food Wednesdays at Kelly the Kitchen Kop::

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  1. Meagan says

    This is far too close to home. I had always thought I just lacked self control. But I do find that I only eat things or amounts I shouldn’t when I’m feeling low, lacking something. Whether it’s my husband working late, a rough day, a lack of positive interaction with people outside my family for too long, or just a feeling of being trapped in the house and mommyhood (which I love, but I do feel a loss of independence and self in general) I almost always go to the kitchen. And it’s rarely healthy food. “Hmmmm…. I’m feeling lousy. I could really go for a salad right now.” Not so much. but I could certainly go for a sundae, a cookie, or last night I wanted a latte and some delicious bakery item. The feeling of fellowship that came from my single days spent in coffee shops with friends or good books. Maybe I was really missing my Christian Sisters that loved coffee with me. This was incredibly insightful. I can’t wait for the rest of this journey.

  2. says

    vina…i came across your blog a month or so ago, and your honest words keep me coming back. i have struggled with food and my weight for years, and the quotes you posted on choosing food to satisfy a deeper hunger- a spiritual hunger- hit home. yes, i am looking for food to do what it was never meant to…to enrich my life and maybe even to remind me of home as roth suggests. i have the book on hold at my library and look forward to journeying with you on this topic. thanks for starting the conversation.
    beth´s last blog post ..for you

  3. Vina Barham says

    @Meagan, Thank you for sharing Meagan. Yah, I totally agree. Who craves for salad when you’re having a rough day? I can relate about missing friends, coffeeshops and good books….and that feeling trapped sometimes. It’s comforting to know I’m not alone, and I hope you can join us here as we explore more and dig deeper…

    Love and Light,

  4. Vina Barham says

    @beth, Thank you for joining me in reading the book! I LOVE this small and cozy book club that is starting to form! I look forward to hearing your story and journeying with you here…

  5. says

    Vina, this totally resonated with me at this season of my life. I am not sure if I will be able to find the book here in Prague, but I will still be sure to join you here to share this journey with you. Yours is one of the only blogs I’ve been reading lately and I’m glad that it is! Your honesty and openness constantly encourages me and draws me “inward and upward”.
    And how long are you going to keep the linky/carnival up for? I have been wanting to write something on this ever since I read your first post about it and would love to link here when I do – but lately I’ve been really slow in the writing department…so I’m not sure when I’ll actually write something…
    Bethany´s last blog post ..Best of September

  6. Vina Barham says

    Bethany! Thank you so much for reading along here and always being to transparent. I love that you can share this journey with me! And that is perhaps one of the best compliments ever (that I draw you inward and upward!). Thank you. Really.

    As far as the linky/carnival – it will be open until Thursday and then I’ll do another carnival on Friday which I hope to keep open until the following Thursday again. Looking forward to your post!


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