The Cure for Depression

What a day! I started by doing a good deed and found the cure for depression!

Our electric guitar player was a college student. He’s abandoning us to take a job in Des Moines. (Okay, actually he got the job last summer and we knew he would only be here until this month.)

When he started playing with us, it was unclear if he could keep us in his schedule. So, I asked him what his favorite pie was. Coconut Cream. (I’ve never made one.)

His second choice was a pumpkin pie. The next time I made pumpkin pie, I made a small one for Ethan. I used pumpkin I had baked and frozen earlier. I made the shell using my Grandma W.’s recipe. It is always flaky.

He came back the next weekend and said, “Pam, that pie was amazing!” (Thank you, Grandma W.!)

This is his last weekend with us. I woke up to a dark, cold day. If I thought about losing Bill and Ethan, I would stay in bed all day. Instead, I made my first coconut cream pie.

Of course, I wanted to make everything from scratch. I’ve made chocolate and lemon pies with homemade pudding. I decided to do the same for the Coconut Cream pie.

I forgot how long you have to stir the sugar, salt, cornstarch, and milk for the pudding. (Don’t ask.) My old standby, the Betty Crocker Cookbook, said to cook it over medium heat. I thought I always made pudding over low heat.

I was right.

The pudding started to stick to the pan and I saw lumps. I got out another pan and a strainer. I strained the lumps out and switched pans before it could scorch.

Everything seemed to go well after that until I tried putting foil over the pie. I was tucking it under and the flimsy, disposable pan folded almost in half! I laid it flat and scrunched the excess foil around the edge. I put water in the pans to soak and left with David.

One of the distributors for the lumberyard had an open house. They asked David to stop by. A Mennonite man owns the business – in the middle of Amish country an hour away.

I think we were the only “Englishers” there! Every family had at least 3 children. Every other family had a baby. It was delightful watching all the small children playing with scooters and balloons.

And they had homemade pie!

My piece was black raspberry and you know that filling didn’t come from a can! While eating my pie, I explained my almost baking disaster this morning.

“I thought you baked a coconut cream pie like a pumpkin pie.”

The Amish lady walking by burst out laughing.

Anyway, Ethan is moving away. He’ll meet a girl, get married, have a couple of children, and then he’ll move back. He will want them to attend a small school with all its opportunities. (You get to try everything because there is little competition.)

And when he does, he’ll remember the coconut cream pie and come back to play with us. I’ll still be here. I’m like Bill, who was scheduled to play the day after he died!

The cure for depression? Do something nice for someone who can’t repay you.

Isaiah 19:10, “…dispirited, depressed in their forced idleness…” The Message

No one can force you to remain idle. Do something nice for someone. Write a letter to someone in a nursing home. Send cookies to a deployed soldier or take his family out to eat. Visit that neighbor whose children live far away.

It doesn’t have to be a big, grand gesture. It could be simple. Like going to watch a Mennonite man make metal siding. You might be rewarded with pie!

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