Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 17 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The Cookie-Dough Factor

If you've been paying attention, you may recall me mentioning, a few dozen times, that I've gained some weight over the past year-and-a-half. This has been particularly distressing because (a) I've always been one of those annoying people who could eat whatever I wanted without worrying about weight-gain, (b) I'm a runner, and extra pounds equal extra pounding on my joints and extra minutes on my finishing times, and (c) I cannot NOT eat chocolate, ice cream, or cookie dough! Yup, cookie dough. Although I've blamed this weight-gain on everything I can think of related to my depression, medication, age, etc., there is one probable contributing culprit I have repeatedly and subconsciously (of course!) denied--The Cookie-Dough Factor!

Let me explain.
I love chocolate chip cookies. Toll House happen to be the best, just like grandma used to make. But baking is such a bother. First, I've got to open the oven. Then I must empty the oven, because of course all of my large pots, pans, cookie sheets, and baking dishes are stored in there, oh, and sometimes bread, too. Since all the junk is in the oven, I'll need to rearrange the oven racks before preheating. Finally, after spooning the dough onto the cookie sheets, I'll be forced to watch in agony as my mercurial oven blackens the cookie bottoms before so much as browning the tops. I'll be stressed and exhausted after only 12 burned cookies! Like I said, baking is such a bother!
But, no worries, right? Because I like chocolate chip cookie dough just as much as chocolate chip cookies, and Toll House is still the best! So, I won't bother with the bothersome baking! Unfortunately, mixing is twice the bother of baking! There are all of those ingredients I only use twice a year hiding in the dark, inner recesses of my kitchen cabinets. What is the shelf-life of baking powder anyway? I purchased mine in 1986--still good, you think? Fortunately, I no longer need to answer that question. My baking powder may continue aging, for Toll House rescued me from the mixing woes. Now I can just buy my cookie dough.
And therein lies the problem.
Toll House sells its perfect cookie dough in perfectly chilled, plastic-encased cylinders at my local grocery stores. When I have a craving, I no longer have to play Marco Polo with decrepit, musty raw materials throughout my kitchen. I no longer have to go spelunking for the "big bowl" and the mixer. I no longer need to relocate my pots, pans, cookie sheets, and baking dishes to my bathtub! NO! Today, when I get a hankering for some perfect chocolate chip cookie dough (because I told you baking was a bother), I can have it in my hands within 10 minutes! Doesn't matter if I turn east or west. In 10 minutes, I'll be peeling back that plastic like a banana peel. Like a banana peel...
Ahhhh...cookie dough.

And that, my friends, is The Cookie-Dough Factor.

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