Today I fell into a trap I like to call self-pity.
I can't speak for every chronic illness sufferer, but I know that for me the trap of becoming overly self-involved is as dangerous as quicksand. When my body is suffering all of my thoughts and attention focuses in on me, what I'm feeling and how utterly miserable I am.
I sound like a joy, don't I?
MS has set this trap for me and I've walked right into it, as if unaware. I use the excuse of my pain as justification. I rationalize being consumed with myself because I've been dealt a difficult hand.The truth is, no matter how severely my nerves may be on the fritz or how lousy I may be feeling I never have a "Be Self-involved For Free" card.
Thankfully, baking provides the perfect outlet to get outside of myself and start thinking about someone else - their needs, wants and desires. Baking takes my eyes off me and puts them on the people around me. How can I bless them? What is their favorite treat? Can I perk up someone's day with a sweet goodie baked up especially for them?
Today that is my mission: bake up a blessing.
My baking experiment today is an ode to my sister-in-law, Kim. She is the full time mother of eight. That fact alone makes her deserving of a bakery full of all things chocolate. But Kim isn't just a mother, she's a great mother and a great friend and a great sister.
When I was considering what to bake today I didn't even know where to begin. Cookies were definitely out (just read yesterday's post). There were no peaches calling my name from the kitchen counter and cake just didn't sound quite right. It wasn't until I heard about Kim's stressful day ahead that the perfect baked good dawned on me. Peanut Butter Pie, Kim's favorite.
Today I was tempted to think of only myself and the physical suffering MS has been throwing my way. The trap of self-involvement was large and I was well on my way to being locked in its grasp…until I got back to baking.
When my hands are in a bowl of heavy cream, peanut butter and sugar I'm not thinking about me. I'm thinking about the goodness of a dessert delight that can brighten the life of someone I love. Baking is the perfect way to banish self-involvement and get back to blessing others.
Today's recipe comes from AllRecipes. I tweaked it just slightly. I upped the amount of Oreo cookies in the crust by about a 1/3 cup. I also decreased the amount of sugar in the filling by about a 1/4 cup. For garnish I used whipped cream along the edges with sprinkled chopped Reese's cups on top. Finally, a drizzle of chocolate syrup was the finishing touch!
All in all I would call this pie a success - and not just because of the taste or texture. It was a success because it was about more than ingredients or a perfect indulgence after dinner. This pie was about showing love and baking a blessing.
If you'd like the recipe so you, too, can bake up a Peanut Butter Pie blessing you can find the recipe I used at http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Peanut-Butter-Pie-I/Detail.aspx.