I am a mother of three young kids. I am easily moving, working, cooking in the kitchen half of the time I'm in my house. As soon as I'm done with a draft of this essay, I will make breakfast for three kids and lunch for two of them. After I pick up my youngest from preschool, he and I will come home and I'll make lunch for the two of us, and prep a part of dinner. After picking up the older two, I'll come home and make dinner for the kids and sometimes me, then hours later for the hard-working man who comes home too late. If there are cookies or a cake to bake for a class party or school fundraiser, you can count on me to reappear in the kitchen after bedtime to make that happen. "From scratch" and "homemade" are part of my kids' vernacular.
At Write Doe Bay, one of the organizers told us, "I am going to cook for you. It is my gift to you." Jesse is a beautiful woman inside and out, and I readily accepted her gift. I was, and still am, so thankful.
And cook she did. And bake she did. And feed, nourish, sustain me she did and still is doing. Here are some of the wonderful things she cooked for me, for us:
|Bacon, eggs, applesauce, granola|
|French onion soup with homemade croutons, hearty bread|
Jesse disappeared into the kitchen and quietly, slowly, built up the simple, straightforward menu with hearty, life-giving food and reminded me of the joy to show up and be fed.
Spending five days away from your husband and kids is a luxury. An outright shock of a luxury, really. And while my writing career is important enough to me to spend time on, and my life is busy enough for me to say, out loud, "I need to go away for this," I would not, I did not have the insight to also say, "I need to be taken care of. I need to be fed." But as I turn to the weekend and look at it with the perspective that distance has always provided for me, I see that this sustenance fed my soul and nourished me in a deep, profound way.
A woman I never met before said, "Come. I will take care of you. I will feed you. I will nourish you."
Thank you, Jesse!