Some of my fondest memories involve being gathered around the dining room table with family and meals prepared for special occasions from my childhood up until now. Food is as much a staple in our lives as air. Without it, we can’t survive. However, we all use food for comfort whether it be in healthy or unhealthy doses.
I’ve always been one to shy away from food when stressed or depressed especially during major life crises. Since the new year approached, it’s been very stressful for me. Finding out my father was dying of Stage IV Adenocarcinoma has been devastating to say the least. I flew back home once I found out the news to be with my father and family. Even though this is a sad time for our whole family, we still gathered together around meals and enjoyed the moment and supported one another. That’s what family does.
One day we all gathered at my sister’s home for a family dinner, went ice skating, then came back for dessert. It provided an escape for us all.
I have to tell you that when my boyfriend saw this photo he said I looked like Adrian Balboa from Rocky. LMAO. He’s right, I do! The one thing I depend on in my life is humor. I’m thankful I have a good sense of it.
Getting back on track. I’ve found through the years that I’ve always enjoyed hosting and preparing family meals. When I moved here to Florida over almost four and a half years ago, I came in search of a new life and broke a cycle of a dysfunctional unhealthy relationship. That healing didn’t happen over night. It took years. I was forced to take a good hard look at myself and what I wanted to achieve and where I wanted to be. I didn’t know who I was any more.
Having no one here was hard, but over time I made friends. Good friends. The one thing I promised myself is that I will always surround myself with loving positive people. I’m midway through my life, I don’t have time for drama any more. I choose to spend the next half of my life (god willing) to be happy and not be a victim. Take responsibility for my mistakes and actions and move forward in life. I choose to be surrounded by my family loved ones, and friends and share food, drink and special times.
One of the things that started the healing process for me was starting a blog and getting my feelings out on paper…so to speak. My first blog originated on my MySpace page. I have since abandoned that blog and moved to a different forum. Worpress. I’ve blogged here for over a year and a half now. As my blogs accumulated and my life changed, (for the better) I’ve come to discover hidden passions I never knew I had.
One of them being my renewed love of cooking and baking. My father was a self trained Chef. He supported our family of eight through his self trained skill. He started out as a dishwasher in a hotel and worked his way up. During my childhood, my Dad worked at several restaurants and country clubs as head chef. He even operated two of his own restaurants at different times. Sadly, those never made it, (where was Gordon Ramsay back then?) but he always did what he had to do to support our large family. All with no high school education. I have so much respect for my father.
Lately, I’ve found that being in the kitchen has provided me therapy and an escape from some of the stressors in my life. I love it so much I’ve renamed my blog and moved it to a self hosting provider. It was hard work getting it up and running, but hard work and failure is what creates success in life. What started out as therapy and musings has turned into a passion that I want to share and experience with others.
While writing this blog this morning, I was alternating between cooking breakfast and blogging. Later on today, I’ll be baking my boyfriend one of his favorites, peanut butter cookies. Now if that’s not therapeutic, I don’t know what is.