I stared at the onion for a good minute before I sunk the knife deep into the white flesh. The smell drifted past my nose and settled into my tear ducts. As I sniffed, I sliced another set of rings, then another, and another, until the onion was in bite-sized pieces. I slipped the vegetable into my iron skillet to cook while Andrea inquired as to what I was fixing her for lunch. "Do you want some onions?" I asked. She looked at me blankly and then begged for a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
After situating her with her a "sammy," I returned to my sweet, sweet onion. The once burning smell transformed into a nutty, caramely fragrance that sent my senses into overdrive. I singed the tips of my fingers sneaking bites from the pan. When the onion was finally done cooking I ate the rest right out of the pan too. With peanut butter covering the right side of her face, Andrea returned to the kitchen to see what mommy was eating and why I hadn't begged her to try any. She told me she was very hungry still so I told her to finish her sandwich. "No!" She yelled. "Annie eat onions!"
I slipped an onion into what appeared to be her hand (it was hard to tell beneath all of the pb&j), and she shoved it into her mouth. Her eyes scrunched uncomfortably as her tongue tried to make sense of the slimy wedge. She yummed, turned her back to me, and promptly spit the half-masticated onion into her palm. "All done," she told me as she handed me the contents of that peanut-buttery hand. I chuckled the first time. The third time I wondered why I kept casing my onion pearls before, well, Andrea.
After consuming most of the onion (my sister showed up and finished it off for me, onion sisters unite!) I was too full to eat anything else, so I had a tall drink of water and went in search of Miss Peanut Butter Hands to see what extra thing I'd been cleaning before noon.
Once she (and her play beads) were whipped down, and Andrea was put down for a nap, I sat in my bedroom wondering how I would explain to Paul that I ate an onion for lunch, especially since there was leek soup in the fridge from the night before. When he sauntered through the front door around seven o'clock, I presented him with a cheese quesadilla and a bowl of black bean and onion soup. I hoped the soup would mask the smell of my lunchtime indulgence. I had eaten with Andrea thirty minutes before but the aroma of onion wafting from Paul's bowl was beginning to overwhelm me. I reached over and stuck a finger in his soup. I could tell by the baffled look on his face that I had to come clean.
After my confession Paul gave me half-smile. "You didn't eat it raw, did you?"
"No, it was cooked." I replied.
"Well, then it sounds like a good lunch." And with that he scooted his bowl away from me.
Strangest pregnancy craving ever.