April kind of disappeared on me. I spent the first week battling crying spells and suicidal thoughts as part of my everyday. Then the following weeks I spent curled up in a hospital bed, accepting whatever medicinal changes (and side effects) that came my way. Next week, the last week of April, I will be tested. I go back to work physically, and I have made plans to see different pockets of friends.
It has been weird messaging and making plans with people I have not interacted with for awhile. I have not been social for so long, but I understand to fix relationships I have to be the one reaching out. I feel nervous leaving the safety of reclusiveness. My anxiety has been on high already just thinking about all the people interaction. I feel so nervous, my stomach hurts, my hands are shaky, and I worry I cannot put together two sentences eloquently. I am afraid of crying. Luckily for me, I take anxiety pills twice a day.
Onto the long term – the hugest problem for me is that the one drug I needed to come off of is still part of my pill diet. In fact, my dosage for that drug increased by quite a bit. So I am nervous for relapses when I try to come off of it or anything in general changes again. I say relapses because I am afraid that this is not the last time I will end up at St. Mikes. I am afraid that whatever I have – depression, bipolar, bipolar depression, borderline personality disorder, etc, etc., I will one day have to fight it off again at work, fight to keep my friends from giving up on me, and if I am ever so lucky to have children, to fight from becoming that depressed mom. The mom who can’t be there for her kids because all she wants to do is crumple up and cry. Even worse, the mom who is suicidal. And that’s the last thing I ever want. But nonetheless, those fears hit close to home. I think I will always, always be afraid of the suicide demons.
I am not sure how to regain my confidence or to even find strength, but for the moment, I am taking each day – day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute, second by second. I am too afraid to think about next week or next month or next year. And well, for me, if I don’t cry for one day, that’s genuinely a good day, and I hope that more of those days will come as time goes on.
When I got home from the hospital for real, all I wanted to do is bake, and so I made these donuts. The pastry creme looks like mustard (as affirmed by JH), but it is actually an apricot pastry creme.
- Mood– Anxious.
- Focus– Getting through each day.
- Craving – Apricot pastry creme donuts.
- Feedback from the husband– He thought they were really soft. This time I actually piped the creme all the way through, so that was a win.
The Not-So-Secret Secrets:
Apricot Pastry Creme Yeast Doughnuts (Doughnuts adapted from here)
*Chart format was being annoying – need to figure that out later*
- 100 ml water
- 150 min whipping cream (at room temperature)
- 1 egg, beaten (at room temperature)
- 57 grams butter, melted
- 454 grams all-purpose flour
- 57 grams sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 7 grams yeast
- Grapeseed oil for frying
- Sugar for coating the doughnuts
- Mix together the water, whipping cream, egg and butter in a stand mixer.
- In a different mixing bowl, mix together flour and sugar. (I also added 1/8 teaspoons of nutmeg, cardamom and cinnamon)
- Create a small ‘well’ in the centre of the dry mixture, and add the yeast.
- Add to the wet ingredients.
- Using the bread hook, mix at low-medium (level 2 on Kitchenmaid Stand Mixer) for about 10-15 minutes until the dough looks smooth and elastic.
- Place in an oiled bowl in a warm place for about one hour or until the mixture has doubled in size.
- When doubled in size, punch the dough down and roll out into a long rectangle about 1/2 inch thickness. I just use judgement really.
- Cut out circles using 3″ cutter and place them on a cookie tray oiled and lined with parchment paper. Allow to proof for an hour in a warm place (the best place is a bathroom with a hot water shower running).
- Heat about 3 inches of oil to 350 degrees F in a dutch oven.
- Fry each donut. I usually do 2 minutes on one side, and about 1-2 minutes on the other side. This is another judgment call situation. Also, keep your eye on the thermometer to ensure the oil is not heating beyond 350 degrees F.
- Allow the donuts to cool fully on paper towel (to soak up the extra oil). Roll them in sugar.
- Using a chopstick, I poke a hole through almost to the other side. Pipe in the pastry cream (adapted with a couple tablespoons of apricot jam).