Thursday, May 15, 2014

My Three Peanut Life

I have a very personal relationship with peanuts.  

Don’t believe me?  I’ve eaten peanut butter almost every day of my life.  I start every day with it and sometimes end my day with it.  Many times I have peanuts as a snack during the day.  

For a long time roasted, salted, shelled peanuts were my favorite.  These fat beauties were my snack of of choice during the period of my divorce. 

One day in the midst of that madness, weakened and sad, I sat on my patio with my good ol' bowl of peanuts, hoping beyond hope that my familiar ritual would help me feel better.

Sniffling, I hugged my bowl and suddenly realized that fewer than fifty percent of the peanuts were whole.  The rest had been separated from their other half—the half they had grown with, the only other half they had ever known—and that other half was lost to them forever. Lost. All because of some outside force had tumbled them around like life does at times, but even if one side of the peanut had wanted to stay with the other side of the peanut, one side of the peanut wanted to get away to the other side of the can and be close to another half of a peanut who apparently gave him something the other half couldn’t even though that other half had been willing to try and that half really missed the other half and now that half would never be with that other half ever again….  

Well, I think you get the picture. 

Then and there, I went into a weeping and wailing fit that caused dogs to howl and the neighbors to shut the windows and lock the doors.  

Oh, I was a mess, I tell you.

I switched to almonds for a little while after that.

Of course, I eventually went back to peanuts, got through the hideous divorce process and am now a very happy Hoody’s roasted-and-salted-in-the-shell girl. I sit on my back patio smiling and cracking those shells open like a hamster on amphetamines.

The other day I picked up a long peanut and cracked it open to find three nuts inside.




I have a three peanut life!   The first peanut was my childhood—smaller than the rest, kind of misshapen, but still very good.

Then came the middle peanut—a fat, rich and full nut.  Thirty years of a happy marriage (well, until the end) and those years of mothering!  I loved every single one of them.  Being a mom of my two young boys was the greatest experience of my life and my heart is so full of memories I will keep alive forever.

Ah yes, despite the end of the marriage I thought would last forever, my second peanut was very good.

And now!  Now! Now I get a third peanut of life.  


A nugget of goodness!  How lucky am I?  I get to start again with a man who adores me, who thinks I am just about the most fun person ever, and who honors my creativity.  I am healthy and happy and ready to grow in whatever direction I choose to.   I have my past memories and my wonderful children, but the years ahead belong to me and I plan to make the most of them.

I am grateful for my three peanut life!

(And for all the nuts who read my blog and put up with my nutty ideas!)


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Nuts to you!
That's a healthy way to look at it. All of those stages were good and necessary when they happened. Hope the third nut it the largest and healthiest.

Olga said...

What a wonderful metaphor! I love to hear stories of real people embracing the life they were given.

Unknown said...

I am happy to be one of your "nutty" followers BB. You are such a creative writer. I enjoy reading your journey - always! Keep writing. Mardy

YrHmblHst said...

Damn. How do you do it?!? Fantastic.

Jane Westwell said...

Oh Betty... the only blogger I can think of who could actually make peanuts profound :o)

Cranberry Morning said...

Love the entire metaphor! I eat about 2 cups of mixed nuts a day. I wonder what that means.

Ann said...

I wanted to make some wise reference to the saying about all that in a nut shell but apparently my peanut brain won't allow it. Nuts. Oh well, I enjoyed your post though

Shelly said...

And may that third peanut be the best for you!

HappinessSavouredHot (Julie Saint-Mleux) said...

Love this! I have lived in one of the world's biggest peanut producers - Senegal. They also are (with almonds) the only nut I am NOT allergic to. So, lots of love for peanuts! :-)

Connie said...

I enjoyed this, Betty! Cashews are my nut of choice. :) That third nut is indeed a blessing.

Slamdunk said...

Unknown's comment is a great addition to your 3 peanut life--as I qualify as a "nutty follower" as well.

Que Merrill said...

I dare you to walk down the aisle to the strains of "Found a Peanut."

My Mind's Eye said...

BB we are peanut folks too.
Lo and behold my son in law wrote his Food Science, MS thesis on the peanut.
Manuscript 1 title was:"Effect of roasting oil composition on the stability of roasted high oleic peanuts".
No I didn't remember that I have a hardbound copy of his thesis.
Hugs Cecilia

My Mind's Eye said...

I got a little 'nutty' over the peanut thing...forgot to say

Hilary said...

There's a whole lot of goodness behind that Betty shell. You are a little bit nuts and a whole lot of wonderful. May you always be this happy.

Gigi said...

As always, you have the ability to take something as humble as a peanut and turn it into a beautiful, thoughtful post. May your third nut bring you so much happiness.

Alison said...

And of course he's the kind of man who won't be offended by your comparing his part in your life to a nut.

Larri said...

LOVE this post! And truly love the way you look at life, BB. Thanks for sharing your heart. :)

PS...Ever tried the Spanish Peanuts from Nifty's Nut House in Wichita? THE BEST ever! Roasted on site & a wonderful indulgence. My mouth is watering. Gotta go order a pound or three.

jenny_o said...

I can just picture the English teacher in you pouncing on that metaphor :)

I'll bet you know by heart quite a few poems, being a poetry lover and all. In honour of the peanut, here is one of the half dozen verses I've managed to remember out of all I've read. I learned it at around age 8, and it still cracks me up.

"A peanut sat on a railroad track
His heart was all a-flutter.
A train came speeding down the track -
Toot! Toot! Peanut butter!"

Have a great week, Betty :)

Pat Tillett said...

That is a good metaphor! A nutty one, but still good. he he....
I'm very happy that you are in your third peanut stage now.

I also love peanuts. I eat them as is, I put them on peanut butter and I spread peanut butter on pancakes, waffles, french toast, regular toast, etc...

Baby Sister said...

I love peanuts and peanut butter!! And I love your analogy. Way to find the positive. :)