I've been in mourning recently. My heart so broken for our family that I've been cooking & baking my ass off. If you've read one of my earlier blogs, you'll know that I'm the daughter of a woman who used to bring her best dishes to the funeral home so it's only natural that this is one of the ways I deal with trauma & grief. The more challenging the recipe, the better to deal with my sadness as the preparation alone offers great solace for me. This week alone, I have made focaccia, baguettes, an apple-almond custard tart, a damn baked chicken that tasted so good I felt guilty for enjoying it. And croissants, for Pete's sake! A laborious, hours long process & my twelfth attempt at those elusive 82 flaky, buttery layers of deliciousness, talk about a french kiss. Have I mentioned that most of the recipes were from my collection of Julia Child cookbooks? What's brought about this deep need for such soul soothing? ONE OF OUR DAUGHTERS BROKE UP WITH HER BOYFRIEND. How dare she?
Didn't she understand what an integral part of our family this wonderful man had become? He was the son we didn't have & we just knew he'd be in our family for life. And let me tell you, being considered "family" isn't always easy to achieve here. Our family is very close knit, almost fiercely tribal, complete with shields, spears & war paint. Interlopers are dealt with in a way that only a mostly female tribe will. My husband is the cool-headed, diplomatic one in the family, he buries the bodies for us and wipes away our tears.
But this boyfriend was special to all of us. He just seemed to make our family better, he fit in, damnit! He was part of our tribe & I want him back, preferably before I need a larger pant size. But it's not my decision, is it? It feels like a death occurred but there's no body to bury. I get that my soon to be 25 year old daughter is grown up enough to know her own mind, make her own decisions. After all, she's a college graduate with a successful career, she's beautiful & smart but, I can't help being angry with her decision to alter our family dynamics & sad because I wanted this boyfriend to be hers for life, thus making him ours for life, too. We'll stand by her though, she's part of the tribe, plus she's got a boatload of really good war paint. But if I could beat some sense into her, I'd use my rolling pin & the croissant cutter.
And just a side note, if you're ever sad, depressed or just simply outdone, let Julia Child into your kitchen. That crazy bitch will have you whipping eggs, beating dough, stuffing chicken & before you know it, your heart, your mind is in a better place.