Does anyone else find themselves cooking lately?
When I ask this question, I am not referring to the usual task of making family meals, but cooking more food that you‘ve ever made? For some people, this might be because of physical distancing and having extra time at home, but I am a doctor and I am walking to the hospital where I work most days of the week. Physical distancing is not my reason is not my reason for cooking.
My reason for cooking is that I am making special things for my husband and me to eat during the week to come and for my sons to pick up on the doorstep when they drop off groceries. I make my oldest son’s favourite: macaroni and cheese. Last week I made an Indian dish for my youngest son and his partner for a special meal. I also sent them bread and scones. I made chocolate chip cookies, because everybody likes those – I wonder about sending some to my stepsons and their families in Edmonton, but I cannot figure out how well Canada Post is working.
This weekend, though, I noticed that all my plans were for vegetarian dishes, with grains and pulses – the kind of thing that all my family eat, but only one of my children would really, really enjoy and that is the vegetarian. And the vegetarian is not nearby. Caitlin is all the way over in British Columbia. Sometime yesterday afternoon, I had to admit that I am cooking for Caitlin because I miss her so much.
Caitlin is still working from a distance in a congregation in Vancouver in Youth Ministry. This is important but stressful work. I want her to be careful. I want to nag her like I nag everyone close by to wash their hands and keep physical distance – and wash your hands, with warm water and soap, every side of your hands. Remember, I can tell if you don’t.
Missing Caitlin so much, imagine how excited I was to join a Facebook live event with all her household, a morning service (Vancouver time), on behalf of St. Barnabas Anglican Church in New Westminster. The internet – or my skill with managing it – failed me. I could only listen to part of the service in real time, which is almost like being with Caitlin.
I can still hear everyone singing:
“How shall we come together?
We shall come together singing!”
I am listening to them again as I write this, the feeling of missing my child gone from my heart.
(Note: This picture shows the reverent/irreverent dichotomy of Caitlin in the best possible way – getting her Master’s Degree from Yale…in her bare feet!)