You’d think that as someone that’s pretty much been banished to the bland and boring end of the kitchen unless I want major repercussions, I’d really be avoiding the subject all together, wouldn’t you. Hell, it’s even what was going through my head as I had discussed with the gastroenterologist about the fact that eating pretty much anything is a major nono for my gut. It just doesn’t actually seem to be the case, if anything I’m more motivated than ever to keep on cooking.
Before I settled into being a domestic engineer (yea yea, a fancy way of stating that I’m a stay at home mom and homemaker full time) you could have asked the people around me where I was headed in life and you probably would have had two answers. Straight to hell for my life of sin or to culinary school to study the science of gastronomy. I have always loved to cook and bake and well, my wildfire attitude and behavior that some have frowned upon has only helped me be bold in that area. Who knows, but it wasn’t meant to be.
Here I am a chronically ill mama, struggling day by day to just get the necessities done around here and a lot of the time feeling like I’m failing. So why is it on a Sunday night I spent 3 hours completely scrapping the easy plan of scrambled eggs with ketchup and a side of toast for a completely new (and difficult) recipe? Because food is love.
It would sound great and selfless if I said it was all because Mr. Mango was having a craving for samosas and I wanted to be the best faux-house-wife possible and tend to his every need, but that’s definitely not it. I mean don’t get me wrong, I aim to please my man and our menu does revolve around everyone’s tastes, cravings and curiosities but that still wouldn’t be enough to make it happen. Its the love I have for the family and their needs and wants combined with my self love that makes it all come together. I still have that passion and drive for taste and flavor, it hasn’t gone away because I feel like shit or even because food hates me.
Right now more than ever, it’s important I can find anything to be distracted with. Day 6 of the prednisone migraine, codine constipation, complete lack of NSAIDS (it’s not that they were doing a lot, but that little they did, made a dent, however small), apparently some new ulcers in the top of my throat (because my top has to match my bottom) and when my joints aren’t burning from the nerve pain they’re stiff, swollen and stabbing from the lupus related arthritis. If I don’t do something to distract, I’ll fall apart mentally and emotionally and I’m scared of what would happen then.
The funny thing is while in the middle of it, it almost becomes a meditation. The feeling of rolling out the dough (which actually really helps the stiffness in my hands, even if it makes the pins and needles go haywire), the smell of browned onions mixing with turmeric, the bubbling of canola oil when its hot. For brief periods during the process I’m all in the moment and in that little break I’m not in pain and I’m not worried about the consequences (other than being burnt by hot oil…too many oopsies there). I don’t get that feeling from popping down some toast and mixing some eggs.
Does it take a lot out of me to make something so labor intensive from scratch? Yes… Would I recommend it to anyone in my position? Hells to the no…. I think I’m rather insane, I don’t really think pushing for distraction is the healthy way to handle distraction and pain management. I wish I had a passion for cross-stitch or romance novels instead, but I don’t. I love to cook, for myself and for my family and if that can make me happy or at least a little distracted amidst all the doom and gloom, somehow it seems to make it worth it.
Add the distraction and enjoyment to the fact that after it’s all done I get to watch my loved ones appreciate something tasty, it’s perfect. There’s some things I already can’t do for my family, but cooking for them is still one I can and I’m going to take advantage of that as much as I can, even if it’s crazy and honestly, even if it’s hard. I guess love isn’t always easy.