"Mummy, you should be in the kitchen," said Channing. "You're supposed to bake and cook things."
"Who told you that?" asked Mummy.
"My sense. My sense told me that!" said Channing in a matter of fact tone. If I could read her thoughts, she was thinking, shouldn't you know this already?
|courtesy of www.rootsweb.ancestry.com|
This was my daughter's conversation today at dinnertime. Do I agree with her? Sure. Is it a reality in our home? Not so much!
Let me explain.
Upon getting married the first time I was told that a way to a man's heart is through his stomach. Me being the eager wife, I embarked upon the challenge of cooking. I refer to it as a challenge because cooking is not my first love, my second, third, fourth, fifth nor sixth love; you get the picture. Nor did I grow up around women who cooked. I have no memories of my grandmother cooking. And as a result, my memories of my mother cooking are few and far between. I will say this though, she made the best grits ever! With that said, I am no chef but as a wife, I learned. That is what every good wife is supposed to do.
During my first marriage I lived in The United States. That means that I can cook. I can follow any recipe. What I do not know is how to cook certain Bahamian staples like Peas n' Rice and Okra Soup, however I can make any souse, potato salad and macaroni, probably because they are my favorites.
And so many moons ago, I cooked because it was the right thing to do. I hated every moment but I did it. Unfortunately, my first husband asked for a divorce....jokes! Clearly my cooking did not find its way to his heart as the marital advice suggested.
Let's fast forward to 2003. I met Eric, my current husband. Immediately, within the first two weeks, I informed Eric that I do not cook. My reason, I sacrificed and did something I hated in the first marriage and it did not keep that marriage together so why try it again. I was very honest. I was very authentic.
Eric was not impressed. He was raised by a stay at home mother who cooked and baked. He believed a woman should cook.
It wasn't me.
Eric has confessed that it took him two weeks to weigh the pros and cons of being with a woman like me. After careful consideration, he devised a compromise.
Eric loves to cook. Here is his compromise. He cooks and I clean up! Boom!
That is our agreement. That is what we do.
Until this little homegirl waltzed into the kitchen and told me exactly what she thought of our compromise.
I want Channing to have some memory of she and I in the kitchen doing something besides me washing dishes. I will not reinvent myself, but I have to make this sacrifice for this little girl who by the way is now asking to help out in the kitchen.
And so ladies and gentlemen, I agree with Shauna Niequist, author of Bittersweet: Thoughts on Change, Grace, and Learning the Hard Way. “It's not hard to decide what you want your life to be about. What's hard," she said, "is figuring out what you're willing to give up in order to do the things you really care about.”
Don't get it twisted though, I am only cooking one day out of the week...Saturday!
Oh what shall I cook next week?
Until I cook again, correction, until I cook,