When in Doubt, It’s Chocolate Time — Dark Chocolate Time!

Hello!! No one took me up on addressing the question I threw out last time: Why do our minds, emotions, and wills want to fight each other?  Maybe it’s too obvious to you. Maybe you are uncomfortable with responding to a blog. A number of people tell me they read the posts but don’t want to comment; they just like reading them. Pleased you read and enjoy. Well, where shall I go from here?  When in doubt, it’s time for chocolate.

Paul and I are in the Chicago area now for a week, visiting our older daughter. Paul is doing “Honey Do Handy Man” jobs in and around Amanda’s townhouse. I tell him he should start his own little business and call himself the “Honey Do Handy Man.” I like that title.  And he is a sweetheart of a handy man! Well, we were at Trader Joe’s yesterday, our favorite grocery story.  We bought a Simply Lite Dark Chocolate with Almonds bar and snacked on it that afternoon in the car between stops at various other shops. Oh, my! This dark chocolate, low carb, no sugar bar was rich and satisfying. I groaned with satisfaction.

I have discovered a new, little gift item to give to a friend with a happy note!  This will be a fantastic encouragement gesture. Just $2.00 at Trader Joe’s. Add a little note with a smiley face and your name, and you will make a friend smile. Dark chocolate speaks to the heart as well as the taste buds.

Chocolate is a wordless language — a love language, of course, but also a reflective language.  What do I do next? What do I think about an issue?  How should I respond to my spouse, child, or friend? A morsel of chocolate, melting slowly, savored appreciatively reduces my heart rate and thought rate. I’m now ready to meditate on what is important, on “things above,” on responding in love. Ah. chocolate — the purer, the darker, the richer — the more meditative and grateful my heart responds.

So, chocolate can be a segue, a transitional experience, moving me in another direction. This does relate to the issues of the mind, will, and emotion cooperating as integral players composing my heart’s “trinity” — one heart, three players.  My body engages my inner self — my triangular heart. My heart at this point is not at odds with itself (although at times it sure is), but is collaborating cooperatively.

As a teacher, I’ve recognized the roll of movement in learning — the kinesthetic learning style. Teachers speak of learning styles or orientations such as auditory, visual, and kinesthetic learning preferences. One may tend toward linear (left hemisphere of the brain oridentation) or spacial (right hemisphere) processing tendencies. One may prefer either social or singular learning settings. Everyone employs all orientations, but certain ones become the preferred, most comfortable means of processing thought, data, and life. . . .

Chocolate is a kinesthetic experience, in that it requires physical movement, though small.  It involves the senses in other ways than what we usually think of when it comes to processing thought.  It involves smell, taste, and texture as the main senses. It also involves sight, but sound is least involved. Eating chocolate is therefore a very holistic experience — a perfect experience for contemplation. It is a whole heart experience because it involves the mind, the will, and the emotions. The emotions are stimulated by the sensory experience, which engages the mind in thought, and the will in choosing attitudes, stirring gratefulness, joy, and pleasure.

Choosing to savor some dark chocolate during times of doubt — what do I think or do next — may be a lovely, ritualistic activity that I as well as others  turn to — so sadly that it must be sparingly.  Sigh.  However, there are other options that are not related to calories yet still stir the endorphins. Often during the day when I am home and have ended one activity and am not ready to start another, I need a segue activity besides food or chocolate.  One of my favorite choices is playing the piano.

As I walk through my house (which I can’t do now, since I’m at my daughter’s), I see my lovely piano, inherited from my mother — the very instrument of loving, childhood torture, during those year of required piano lessons).  I see, I choose, I sit. I sort through a stack of music. I think, I choose. I smile. Lifting my hands, I hover my curved fingers over the white keys. Sit up straight. Chin just so, looking at the music. My muscles relax. A gentle expression crosses my face. Gently, I play. Intensely, I play. Expressively, I play. My mind, will, and emotions dance within my spirit.  I express the God-made me at my truest.  And then I know what to do next, and I am ready.

Here in Chicago, I have no piano, but I am happy, sharing my Simply Lite Dark Chocolate with Almonds with my “Honey Do” man while we joyfully serve our daughter by attacking projects around her house while she is at work. When she returns, we three engage in memory making, shared experiences — cooking, gardening, talking, shopping, site seeing. . . . I have no doubt that our present choices are the best life has to offer. My heart smiles in gratitude.

Categories: Parenting, Spiritual Growth | Tags: , , | 3 Comments

Post navigation

3 thoughts on “When in Doubt, It’s Chocolate Time — Dark Chocolate Time!

  1. Melinda

    Don’t count me out on Dissonant Hearts; Merry Hearts……….I am reflecting and studying the mind, memory, will, emotion, heart and conscience and I will get back to writing my thoughts. I told you things must simmer with me and I have not had time to do a great deal simmering. I so enjoyed seeing you! Love you!

    • kltolsen

      Alright, girl! I look forward to the results of your simmering! Write whenever you are ready!
      It was great to see you in Troy, Ohio this month of May and at the Ladies’ Retreat! What a treat!

  2. kltolsen

    Jan: Since you had trouble leaving a comment and thus sent a response via email, I have cut and pasted your email response into this comment box below, so you can be part of the conversation!
    From Jan:
    Karen!! I enjoy yo ur posts! I tried to respond when I received the Journey North , but it didn’t accept my password. Our sale was final yesterday. We are on our trip in Oregon. Such a wonderful place to get refreshed. The rain washes away our cares and fills our hearts with memories as we stand patiently with camera to catch the biggest crashing wave. Then it will be off to dinner with an ocean view for a seafood dinner !! You’ll have lots of memories to tuck into your heart. Now I must keep my eyes open for a chocolate bar for my Honey!! Love Jan

    Sent from my iPad
    Thanks for this response, Jan! Congratulations on the final sale of your house in Arizona! Exciting to hear about your trip to Oregon! I know you’ll have a delightful time! Seafood fresh from the ocean! Yum! Happy for you! KO

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: