Saturday, January 05, 2013

cooking isn't about me

one morning last week i didn’t feel like having sugar cereal again so i decided to cook eggies for felicity and i
she wanted to ‘cuhluh’, pink is her favorite, while we waited but those darn eggs weren’t cooking fast enough 
{mike’s voice chimes in... you cook eggs low and slow}
so i asked her if she wanted to come watch the eggs cook
as i held her while i stirred the setting eggs, 
my heartstrings tugged and my selfishness melted some
ooohhh briana marie
cooking isn’t about you
it isn’t about what you can or can’t do
its about so much more than that

imagine the thing that makes you feel at your most insecure
the thing that you feel most inadequate about 
that seems to bring out the worst in you as you watch yourself fail, attempt after attempt
that is me and cooking
oh i can’t be that bad, you say
oh trust me {and my poor family} its like that

unfortunately i have become a stereotype
oh there’s backing for it
hair caught in egg happened
fire ignited fried tortillas
blackened bottom pans from boiled out water
crunchy burnt macaroni and cheese
sugar cookies resembling trodden dirt after the run of the bulls in spain
{right now my family is saying...oh and don’t forget about the time...}
oh there’s been some successes or at least some ‘get by’s along the way
but truly i’m tired of being the stereotype

how tired am i really?
i really have to care to change
and it can’t be because i want to be better at it
it has to be because i realize why i must be better at it

holding felicity in my arms stirring those eggs really brought one of those reasons straight to my heart
my daughter
do i want her to struggle as i do in feeling useless in this domestic duty
it is my responsibility to help her become a homemaker
and my hatred and paralysis in regards to cooking will only be a barrier

my mother and my sisters all got the cooking gene
it just skipped me
my 'amazingly gifted in the kitchen' mother tried and tried to help me growing up and still now, but to no avail
cooking is not common sense to me
show me something and ask me to sew it and i can visualize the steps beginning to end in my mind
but cooking...

this is yet another example of the mercy and love of a Heavenly Father, who knows his daughter
i met and married Mike
lover of cooking
a gourmet
for years he delighted in creating the perfect dishes and presenting them in a beautiful fashion
his domain was the kitchen and i stayed clear out
he has practically every gadget you could want
it was his joy to plan out meals for the week and come home, relax, and cook for us
we were even the perfect pair of party hosts

as i have watched this disease consume and deprive him of things that he loves
this has been one of the most difficult aspects to see the loss of
as i mentioned in my thanksgiving post, to witness the lengths he delivers to try and hold on to things in his past life that he loves, nearly kills me
so what can i do for him
what can i truly do for him
cook for him, cook things that taste good, that maybe he would have made

oh so easily said
i have tried over these past nearly four years since his diagnosis to step up in the kitchen
those of you who entered my ‘girl’s got no skills’ contest were invested in helping me and i have been so grateful for your recipes and encouragement, it was just what i needed at the time
but notwithstanding my ineptitude in the kitchen, things have become increasingly difficult with his dietary needs
a paleo/primal diet seems to suit him best
so off i try again, here in 2013

as i try again this year to magnify my love for my family by relying on the strength of my Savior to raise me to the task of family chef,
i am seeing little things that are helping

having pretty things in my kitchen
i just realized this week that i have been slowing taking over the kitchen, putting things in it that i love to look at, 
i didn't know i was doing it, it just happened
its not mike’s kitchen anymore
it must be mine
and i love being surrounded by pretty things

wearing a feminine apron
oh this may sound so silly but an apron sort of serves as a barrier or a mediator between the food and me...
right now we haven’t quite become friends
a pretty apron between the two of us seems to make the food more friendly

freezer meals
i have a saint of a friend, a wonder woman in fact, who introduced me this past year to this time saving version of cooking
oh how in debt i am to her for sharing her talents
alas she moved this week and i am trying to figure out what i will do without her
i am scared to attempt them alone, but they made such a huge difference during difficult days

receiving genuine praise
in my first attempt in this new year to make a meal for my family, i have to say it was a success in my eyes
dinner was nearly complete and on the table when Mike got home from work
he had laid out a meal plan for me this week, doing all he can to help me in this endeavor
and somehow the food tasted yum and he made sure to praise me repeatedly at the table
it became contagious and the boys followed
how my heart was warmed and a sense of confidence washed over me
oh how i love my husband

its going to be a battle i know
fighting my greatest insecurity
there will be tears and days i want to give up
but i hope my heart will tell my hands and feet on those days why i am doing this

your encouragement has raised my spirits over these past years
i would love to hear about the little things that help you create success in your home at mealtime
and even what you deem as a success
pretty please


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