Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Insecure Cooking

"Do you cook?" he asked.

This question use to raise the hairs on my neck and make me nervous.  My answer doesn't necessarily paint the picture of the Betty Crocker wife that many men desire.  Since living on my own, working a full time job, church, working out, etc, I don't have time to cook, and to be very honest, i don't like to cook! I don't find pleasure in being in the kitchen, and a sandwich with a side of applesauce does me just right!

So now when guys ask me this question, I give them a straight answer, "No." I proceed to down play my abilities in order to possibly kill expectations that will likely not be met in a marriage.

Then he challenged me, " Why?"

(Side eye) "Its not that i don't cook, i just don't like to!" I said.

"Tell me more," he said.

My mother had me stay in the kitchen with her while she cooked, passing her particular ingredients, stirring the pot, and watching to make sure nothing over boiled. I learned plenty of dishes to cook, and I prepare them every now and again, particularly on special occasions. But i don't find joy and happiness in the tasks. I cook to survive and live!

In my previous post, they are saturated with my desire to be married! So this post seems like an oxymoron. If I desire to be married, wouldn't I embrace cooking?  But I have come to realize that my slight disdain for cooking is only a mask covering my fear of failing as a wife and someday a mother. You see, as I watched my mother make gravy and macaroni and cheese from scratch, my attempts at home were nothing short of epic failures, inedible for anyone to eat. I felt like I was not living up to the expectations of a woman being from the south or truly worthy of being someone's wife. Can I really live up to the expectation of providing for my family. I mean, the Proverbs 31 woman was a beast!
14 She is like the merchant ships,
    bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up while it is still night;
    she provides food for her family
    and portions for her female servants.

I am good with the whole chapter right up until these two verses. Its almost as if I read the chapter and subconsciously skip over these verses.  I understand that cooking is not the end-all, be-all for a woman. I would actually be alright without this trait. Without these two verses, the woman is still a beast! (Repenting now for calling the Proverbs 31 woman a beast, but it's true! LOL)

It truly comes down to knowing yourself and the flaws you bring to the table. Are you willing to work on that which will require time and sacrifice to reach your highest potential and be the best at what you desire to be? I am not seeking to be the "perfect wife", but one who can provide meals for her family and maintain a household.

It takes preparation.  As women, and people in general, we tend to mask our insecurities yet desire and romanticize marriage as the healing band aid to all our problems. Well, I am learning that with every desire and goal comes preparation and sacrifice. I desire to be married, and although my cooking skills lack, and I fear my family will come to embrace ham sandwiches as a gourmet meal, I will embrace cooking as a task that I can achieve and an insecurity whose chains will be broken. 

As I wrote down my goals for 2015, I added a personal goal of discovering and making one new recipe a month from various sources. For the month of January I made spinach lasagna from scratch and shocked myself with how good it was! I ate on it for at least 5 days straight! It was great. I was proud of myself, and for once I truly enjoyed preparing and making a meal. I am preparing to be a wife, but most of all I am dealing with the insecurities within myself and growing as a person everyday.

Every wife is a woman, but every woman is not a wife. If it is your desire to become a wife, begin to self examine yourself and acknowledge your flaws and insecurities.  The truth will set you free! Marriage will not make you a better person, you become that before you say "I do."

Scripture excerpt: Proverbs 31:14-15 NIV