Fear to hope and beyond

Sounds of merriment trickled down the stairs as the twins used our bed as a trampoline jumping and landing on their bottoms only to pick themselves up and start all over again. Down a floor below, I stand in front of the burner pan roasting vegetables for our dinner. I scan the stove in front of me keeping tabs on all burners and shaking, stirring and covering as need be. How far I have come I muse as tiny feet now sound closer to me.

In the first year after getting married, I viewed the kitchen and the stove as my nemesis. It stood for everything between me and my liberated self. It represented bondage and domestic subservience. I muddled through the first few years, cooking as little as I could get away with. Sparring and trading three days worth of meals for one evening out. If sambar was on the menu, rasam was out. If there was kootu, poriyal was out and so forth.

As the years flew past and I grew financially independent, my relationship with the stove changed. Somewhere in between the kitchen transformed from a shackle to a refuge. An oasis to come home to. A place to wash off my worries with the soapy suds in the sink. Cooking became a favorite way to express all kinds of emotions.

With the girls in my life now, it has taken an altogether new meaning. Now it is about sustenance and nourishment. The need to feed is primal and each meal becomes something I pour my heart into. Each day as I set the table and watch Saathi relish his food, I feel something akin to love and happiness simmer in me. As I feed Ammani and Pattani and out of the blue I hear “yummy mum-mum” from one of them, I smile till I can burst.

From fear to hope to happiness, it has come full circle.

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12 thoughts on “Fear to hope and beyond

    1. Absolutely! It amazes me how I have progressed from tasting everything midway to just throwing things in and knowing it will come out OK without having to taste test.

  1. I envy you. For me the order is reverse. When I was newly wed, it was the magic room from whence I could surprise my husband with goodies. When the kid came along, it was life-sustaining. Now it is my nemesis – a place I would spend minimum time in, when given a chance.
    Oh well.

    1. haha! I hope it stays a refuge for me. I think part of the reason is also that I have a hubby and kids who largely love food. Touchwood!

  2. routine cooking is something I have not made peace with it, it. Routine cooking is purely survival stuff. If the family gets healthy meals( from someone, somewhere) I am so ready to give up this cooking..

    glad you ‘pour ypur heart’ into it

    1. Shy, who knows how I will feel a few years from now? Right now, thanks to Akay and the Eat Real Food movement, I tend to view food as sustenance and something core to our existence. Sometimes I even wonder if there is any point to life beyond eating. 🙂 I mean that in a very literal sense.

  3. Good for you and the family Enkay. Make use of this love while it lasts, who knows it will be more than a phase – it might turn out to be a habit.

    I will use this as a wake up call to put more thought into what I offer to my family!

  4. i think a post might come from me too on this…but as you very well know…what my thoughts about cooking are….hasn’t changed much….wish it had.

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