First, a little back story… Once upon a time, I was a food blogger. I compiled my recipes one December and made them into an eBook. Each following year, in December, I would collect the recipes from the past year and add them to the cookbook, redesigning the cover, and changing the dedication. I did this for three of four years and then life took a turn and I just wasn’t cooking like I used to. Eventually I gave up the blog and compiled the recipes in the “final edition”. The book can still be purchased on Amazon, if you’re interested. It’s The Recipes of ColorMePink! Final Edition.
Life has a funny way of twisting and turning… and John Lennon absolutely said it best, “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans”. I ended a 25 year marriage, my children grew up and started their own lives, I began exploring new avenues and reclaiming music in my life – I barely cooked for almost five years. I was no longer the work at home mom, wife, homeschool group facilitator. Sure, there were pasta salads and a couple of dishes, but I was no longer the woman who was interested in creating recipes for every occasion. There just wasn’t a big family to cook for, or 20 people for dinner – I was out exploring all kinds of new ideas and I was in love with my new life.
Things started to calm down as things do and recently, I’ve been looking to cook a more versatile menu. I bought some tilapia the other night and I enjoyed putting together the menu and the results were delicious. There were a couple of techniques that I used that I hadn’t thought of in a long time and the results were so good that I decided to revisit my own cookbook and see if there was anything there that I wanted to add to this week’s lineup. I found the file on my hard drive and opened it. A flood of memories came to me as I remembered sweating over the design, the photographs, the wording, the steps. Finding the recipe that I had been thinking about (red snapper with a mustard, caper sauce), and I started to read the directions, something very strange happened. It felt like I was reading the words of someone else. I didn’t recognize this woman as myself and I realized I am not her, any longer. What a strange feeling. Even my hands in the pictures look different. The wording, the stories, I know that they are my stories, but they felt somehow, foreign. I was entranced by the pictures, by how long some of them must have taken to stage.
As I looked through the different sections, I remembered these long forgotten meals. The woman I am today would never take the time to create these flavor combinations. I didn’t follow other people’s recipes, I tried to create flavor profiles that my friends and family would enjoy, that I would enjoy. Even the phrase “flavor profile” feels alien to me, today. I imagine this is what it must feel like to uncover a past life memory, because indeed, that’s what it is.
I often say that if someone had told me, five years ago, that this is what my life would be like, I wouldn’t have believed them. Now I feel as if I have proof. I’m proud of that woman, everything she accomplished in the face of adversity – how she made the most delicious lemonade out of the lemons that life handed her and I’m grateful to recognize this. I also recognize that without her, I couldn’t exist. The woman I am today is an evolution of her and I’m grateful to her. She truly feels like a different person, though.
I guess my point is that now more than ever, I truly believe that everything happens for a reason, and that I truly could not be where I am without where I’ve been.
I’m looking forward to seeing who we become…