Last week I went to my first Kundalini Yoga class. The instructor kept saying that Kundalini Yoga is about balance. I love this idea of balance and used to have some unrealistic ideas about what it means/what it should look like in my life. But this time, when I heard the instructor talk about balance, I immediately thought of what it would take to make a balanced sandwich. Maybe it was because the class was right before lunch time or because I’ve been making a lot of sandwiches for N’s lunches, either way sandwiches were on my mind!
Nutritionally, a well-balanced sandwich would be one that has fiber, protein, carbohydrates, and a small amount of healthy fats. Texturally, it should have equal portions of soft and crunchy. Flavor-wise, it should have sweet, tangy, salty, and spicy in each bite. After having a not so good ham, brie, and asparagus sandwich from Whole Foods (I gotta say that I love Whole Foods and was severely disappointed), I decided to start putting together my favorite sandwich recipes. The thing about a perfectly balanced sandwich is that there is no one recipe. Also, there are no rules which makes it about just creating and not perfection. There aren’t many things in life that about simply creating.
As I began to brainstorm my sandwich recipes, I started to remember sandwich memories: I think my first sandwich ever was a butter and jam sandwich on white bread. In middle school, my best friend used to bring the yummiest omelet-with chilli powder-sandwiches that her mom made. I used to envy these sandwiches! In the 9th grade, I made myself simple lettuce, tomato, and mayo veggie burger sandwiches for an entire summer during the time my mom was getting the kitchen re-done. I, also remember in the 8th grade, the day of my 8th grade banquet, I spent the day with my friend K who is a vegetarian and her grandma made us lettuce, tomato, and mayo sandwiches. All of which I thoroughly enjoyed because each sandwich was new to me. That’s the thing about balance, I enjoy it most when it’s new in all it’s glory, but have trouble recognizing it when things aren’t perfectly packaged for me by someone else.
Nowadays a few of my favorite sandwich ingredients include: avocado, jalapenos, a fried egg, hummus, sprouts, oregano, red wine vinegar, pepper, olives, fresh parsley, and fresh cilantro. (If you haven’t tried flat-leaf parsley or cilantro on a sandwich, do it now! It adds a new and inspiring flavor!). In fact a really simple and delicious sandwich that I love has the following ingredients: your favorite bread (mine currently is granola from a local bakery), hummus, a few red onions, red bell peppers julienned, green olives sliced, and flat leaf parsley-chopped. It vegan, vegetarian, and delicious!
After my Kudalini Yoga class, I went home to make N’s lunch for the next day. I took out all the ingredients to N’s turkey sandwich: Mayo, Mustard, Pepperjack Cheese, local lettuce, sprouts, granola bread, pepper, and oregano. I toasted the bread and began. As I lay each layer down on the slice of bread, I slowly slid into a peaceful place. First the turkey overlapping in a perfect messy arrangement. Then the lettuce and sprouts patted down. Next, I placed the pepper jack and finally, I spread mayo and mustard on the topper slice and sprinkled a light layer of fresh ground pepper and oregano. When I finished, I looked down and I couldn’t remember how I got here. Yet, I was so satisfied. I have made turkey sandwiches since I was an 8th grader. It’s nice to see how my sandwiches have evolved. What’s even nicer is looking at how much serenity I can get by repeating the same steps over each night. This is my meditation.
It used to be that when I first thought about meditation. I pictured a buddhist monk sitting cross-legged chanting. While, this type of meditation serves it’s purpose in my life, the kind that happens organically is just as welcomed and creates the same type of balance that the former does.
What is true harmony, then, in my life?
It is the time spent creating balanced with the time spent being a responsible woman. This is the ingredient to my perfect sandwich.