Monday, April 25, 2016

Gone but Never Forgotten; Rage Cooking

A week and two days ago, my amazing wife, whom I loved love more completely than I had thought possible, left the mortal world and crossed to the other side.  We had six years here together, which wouldn't have felt long enough if it had been sixty.
We never did have our first fight, the one everyone warned us about.  I guess we'll never know how we'll handle it now.

You have my heart with you, Jo.  And I wouldn't want it to be anywhere else.

I spent the first week or so being pretty numb; I can't say I even remember the first few days except for bits of the meeting with the funeral director.  Work the later half of the week was a blur too.
On Saturday, I heard back from the funeral director since I had inquired about the death certificate; she let me know that the hold-up was that her physician hasn't addressed it yet--even though I had personally called his office on Tuesday to let him know it was coming.

I got furious.  Like, smash-a-cleaver-into-the-back-of-his-head furious.  I resolved I would go there in person on Monday (today) and get it taken care of 'or else'.  And for the rest of the day, and the night, I really couldn't stop being enraged about it.  My soul felt blackened.

Then yesterday morning, something changed, and I couldn't bottle the rage anymore, so I started the oven, and I cooked all day.  I don't even think it was a conscious decision.  I baked Morning Glory Muffins.  I baked a loaf of rye bread.  I roasted a chicken and some asparagus.  I poured all of that angry, Fiery energy into the hearth, and at the end, I felt peaceful again, if still grieving.  (Also pleasantly full.)  It was cathartic.  Maybe this is at the heart of what it really means to be a Kitchen Witch.

"But wait," you must be thinking.  "You cooked with angry energy? What happened to 'cooking with intent?' You said you were feeling murderous! Didn't you just make a bunch of cursed food then??"

Maybe you weren't thinking that.  But I struggled with it.  I'd been struggling with it, all week--how am I ever going to cook again, if I'm not cooking for her?
And I think, this is what I finally realized, while I was figuring out what to do with a white-hot bottle of rage.  The anger doesn't have to be anger, it's an aspect of something else--all the anger was really just protectiveness of Jo, no different than if someone had blown her off for a week while she were living, except magnified by the grief.  And the protectiveness is also an aspect of something else; it is an aspect of my love for her.
So, once simmered down into its pure form, it is really my love for Jo that is cooked into the food.

I like this, because I am realizing that this is how I can go on.  I can still cook for her, even if I share the food with someone else, or no-one else.  My undying love for her will be Crafted into every dish I make.

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