soup and dreams and other hard things

by willeya

it’s sunny but i had a bad dream last night.  in it i was so so angry and i woke up scared that that lives inside of me anywhere.  on the bright side the reason i remember the dream and it woke me up gently but o so sad is because for the first time in a long time i went through a whole night’s sleep cycle, not interrupted by his calling my name.  so there is that.

i made egg drop soup for the first time today.  there is a certain routine of cooking with a young one.  i go to the computer to find the website that holds the directions.  he somehow can sense where i am headed before i stand up to leave him alone with his toys.  he starts crying.

somewhere deep inside – the same place my dream came from – i think he feels rivaled by the computer, he can sense my draw to it and wants me to want him more than i want it.  and i do – most of the time.

i explain to him that i just need a recipe, that i am not going to even sit down it will be so fast.  he’s on his way to losing it so i hurry up and print it off.  trying to learn this recipe for the very first time [tablespoons or teaspoons make a big difference], he is wiggling on the floor next to me like a turtle on his back.  i lean down, look deep into his eyes to where his dreams live, and see he’s really alright.

so i put him in his crib to clear my head to learn the recipe i don’t know by heart.

dropping the eggs in one by one, double and triple checking that i don’t too put many, i think of my friends who don’t use recipes.  they just cook with their heart, somehow knowing what goes well together.  or they’ve memorized their recipes by now.  i don’t know any by mind or heart and i am bothered that cooking is not easier for me.  that i don’t have it “down” by now.  i mean really, i make a chicken roast one to two times a week and i still don’t remember how many minutes per pound it should cook.

i realize that cooking, dreams, expectations – they are all hitting on the same thing.  i want to be further than i am, in cooking yes, but in life and maturity and other hard things.  i can’t believe that i still have to stop at the same places that i have had to stop 1000 times before.  shouldn’t i know the road by now or at least not have to concentrate so hard on the bumps?

why are there even still bumps?  they should be worn down with how many times i have passed over.

i follow the recipe down to the T and it comes out beautifully.  it’s full of good things – homemade chicken broth, farm fresh eggs, and lots of veggies.  whenever i enjoy a good meal with my son it’s like i am eating it twice. once through me and once through him.  i am not sure which is more satisfying.

at the end of this meal, i am left with two things: first that egg drop soup is yummy; the work of following bad dreams this recipe is well worth it.  i will continue to read it as long as i need it.  and second, hope that one day i will have it memorized and that doing the steps will become so ingrained in me that it doesn’t feel like i’m working at all.

until then,

bon appetit.

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