[This post is part of the pre-passover “blogExodus” at http://imabima.blogspot.com/ ]
For those regular readers who may have wondered where I disappeared to over the last nine days, I have been at home. Doing my Passover cleaning. For those readers uninitiated to Pesach (Passover) cleaning, the words “spring cleaning” is a mere whiff of what I do before Passover. We are enjoined not to eat, own, or use “chometz” (leavened products) during Passover. And while there are easier ways to clean for the holiday, basically one needs to rid the house of every crumb of bread/cake/etc. And after that, the kitchen counters, stove, etc need to be covered before being used for the preparation of scrumptuous holiday repasts….
So Passover cleaning tends to be a LOT of work. But personally I rather enjoy this, because it does give me an incentive to do some organizing, fixing, and deep cleaning of the house. Yet as much as I try and plan ahead, and to work by a schedule, I invariably fall behind, have less time for walking, and get too little sleep. The usual outcome for me is overeating and weight gain.
The Post: Redemption (A) :
Wednesday (ALL day) and Thursday morning I cleaned my kitchen for Passover. For the last few years I have “done” the kitchen before the living room, where we continue to eat non-Passover foods. I prefer to do the heavier work at least a week before the holiday, so as not to arrive to the holiday “seder table” exhausted. In former years I have used “cleaning the kitchen” as an excuse to consume “instant energy”, in the form of fine Swiss chocolate. Even last year, well down the “diet road”, I succumbed to temptation (albeit much less than in previous years), and this year I hoped to do much better. The chocolate I had purchased for holiday baking use I placed along with other groceries for the holiday in sealed boxes. And for several days, even though I was VERY hungry (blame habit and lack of sleep), I was doing GREAT. Then, when emptying out some of the closets in the kitchen on Monday afternoon, I found a stashed-away half bar of chocolate. And as the evening progressed, I slowly and surely polished off the entire 90 grams of creamy smoothness….
Having given in to temptation once, on the marrow I was craving chocolate with my whole soul. But, determined not to gain too much over the holiday season, I decided to allow myself on Tuesday a few high calorie items, but not chocolate. Then on Wednesday, I allowed myself extra calories, but not sweet items. The idea was to allow myself a bit of leeway, but to progress back gradually to a normal eating plan.
Now why did I do this? BECAUSE WHEN I FOUND MYSELF NOT FOLLOWING MY EATING PLAN, I TOOK NOTE, AND ANALYZED THE SITUATION, AND DEVELOPED A PLAN FOR ACTION. If we want to redeem ourselves from our bad habits, we need to Think and PLAN. The redemption for Egypt was quick, and given as a gift. Redemption from our evil inclination is not going to be that easy.
One of my married sons phoned me the other day, offering to come and help me with the pre-Passover work one day next week. I declined, and told him that I didn't really need him to come, that his wife surely needed the help more.
He then asked “Is it easier cleaning this year, now that you’ve lost weight?”
YES YES YES
I can easily bend to clean the floors.
I can reach under the closet-table in the kitchen, to clean the floor beneath the closet. I n former years, my arm was too wide to get into the narrow space.
It is easier to climb to the top rung of the ladder to reach the upper closets.
Yes, losing significant amounts of weight is a redemption…..I truly feel like one who has entered freedom.