There are some major forces at play here.
Each week feels like a micro-course in learning one’s self. I suppose we all are, but since I am concentrated to my own head, and not a person who I live with or am married to, I get all of me.
Some days I can be too much. That’s no surprise. I wander around in different stories and I wake myself up to dreams where I am unfamiliar with my own room.
I get up.
“I’m in the wrong place!”
I sit back down. I rub my face with my hands and somehow, fall back into an unconscious sleep.
Weekend nights are the hardest. I feel like it’s a sin to be alone on a weekend night. I feel like there are people riding with their windows down discovering their whole beings, screaming, “I am alive!” while I’m at home, straining chicken stock and watching The Desolation of Smaug for the 12th time.
To be honest, I’m wondering if I should cook anymore for a living. And I can’t explain it to you, this shift that is taking place in my heart. I can’t say it’s flight or fight. I’ve never enjoyed anything else more than I have cooking and feeding people. I know I should listen to that. People always respond with, “Well, what else would you do?”
Sometimes, I take that as an insult. It feels like I wouldn’t do well at anything else. But I know what they mean. They know I belong in a kitchen.
I know I belong in a kitchen.
That is hard to swallow.
I’m sort of young still, and already, I heavily desire a place to call my own. I am certainly in a season of having to catch myself on fire, because I am not following another person into the flames. I am having to be my own sense of hard work and passion.
Sometimes, that’s hard to live in.
I tell people all the time about my Saturn Return. They look at me like I’m a goofball. It’s true, I am. But I tell them that I can’t explain the pull in my head and heart. This constant feeling that my life could take many directions and that I’d enjoy them all. Fast and hard. Slow and soft. Most of my days are a combination of both.
Perks of working in a kitchen, I suppose. That, and bacon.
The love of self is the best way I am able to love others. If I am worried with myself, I can’t give much space to you. I think often of the kind of person I was when I lived in this city before I was married. How I always carried around a cause. How I was the social justice guy. How selfless I seemed.
And then I got married and devoted myself to just one person. I also learned that I was a pretty decent cook. This became my life. These things became meaningful. I got to serve people, not just one day every week, but five and sometimes even seven days a week. So I’ve mourned a lot of the person I used to be, and how I sense that sometimes, other people do the same.
And I recognize myself as I walk and drive down the same streets. A different person. A person who is always seeking to understand.
The end of most of my days involves a mop and hot water. Swinging back and forth over dirty and greasy floors, only to be dirty again and again and again. And cleaned again and again and again.
While that’s daunting to some, I love the sense of completion.
I guess it always comes back to that, for me. The kitchen and its ebb and flow. Its own world full of frustrations and grace and spirit. Every day I live in it.
And every day,
I’m thankful for it.
Oh, and new mop head day?
Well, I love new mop head day.