Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie…

image.jpg

I spent a lot of the day in the kitchen today. Aside from when I was taking The Professor to his piano lesson — such a beautiful drive with the trees dressed in their autumn leaves and all the sunshine! We had a quiet day at home other than that, and I was able to try two new recipes that both turned out well, which was a bit messy, but fun. The hubby and I worked on the evening meal recipe together — Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie — and it turned out lovely… both to the eye and to the tongue! :) This was really the first time we’ve had the chance to make an entire meal together, (plenty of room in the kitchen now!) and it was a lot of fun. We’re working on creating healthier ways to eat, and hoping that we’ll all benefit.

This particular meal reminded me of my grandma. Not necessarily because she would have ever made it — I can’t remember my grandma ever cooking a sweet potato — but because it was a form of shepherd’s pie… and I loved my grandma’s shepherd’s pie when I was growing up. Grandma could cook anything and make it delicious though. I know a lot of people had a grandma like that — I know my boys love it when their grandma cooks for them… and my mama has had to learn to cook all sorts of things in odd new ways since my boys can’t eat gluten. She makes some amazing German Pancakes that they absolutely love. There’s just something very special about having Grandma cook for you — I don’t know if it’s subconscious or what, but there’s something unique about being fed by the same person who fed your parent. I doubt we all actually think that through, but I still think it plays into our love of Grandma’s cooking in some way…

I miss my grandma.

I have so many memories with her… I remember sitting next to her in the choir loft of her church, or sitting with her in the pew – before my brother was old enough to stay the night at her house. I remember riding with her as she drove around with Loaves and Fishes dropping off food to the elderly. I remember her patiently teaching me to crochet and making Christmas Ornaments together. I remember sleeping on the couch in her living room, with my brother on the other end, watching the lights from the traffic go by on the wall. I remember watching her nurse animals back to health and rock babies to sleep… She was only human, but she knew how to love… and she left us a legacy of family — no matter what happens, the people who love you matter, and family is more than just the people who share your bloodline… People who cross your path need your love.

In some ways it feels like she’s been gone a lot longer than she has, and in other ways it’s like she just left us… She was ready when the time came, and the boys and I were able to go see her to say, “Good-bye” — but even at the time it didn’t seem real. While I knew it would be the last time she reached over and hugged me, the last time I would kiss the top of her head, the last time I would smell her… it just didn’t seem real. It still doesn’t seem real. I actually lost both my maternal grandma’s in just a couple months… I didn’t get to say goodbye to my other grandma – that happens sometimes when a loved one dies — and it’s made it hard for me to really accept that she’s gone. I had just seen her a couple weeks before (so glad the boys and I were able to tag along on the visit), and we had plans to see her again soon, but then we received the phone call…

There are no words to describe the pain that Death brings… Not necessarily to the person dying, we have medications that can handle any physical pain, emotional and spiritual pain takes a bit more work to get on top of… but for the most part someone who’s death has the necessary support has little to fear from dying — even if they don’t know it. But those of us left behind, there’s no way to numb our pain… We move forward and the hole left by our loved one just remains. Telling people that time will “heal” the wound isn’t fair — that’s not how grief works. Life doesn’t return to “normal” — gradually a new “normal” of some kind unfolds — but you can’t remove an actor from the stage of your life and have the story remain the same…

I love working with the dying — my hospice volunteer work gives me so much — but that doesn’t mean I don’t understand all the pain involved. Every loss hurts… It’s hard to explain why I am so drawn to this… Maybe there just aren’t words, but I’m thankful for the opportunity. I miss the many people that have left holes in my life over the last couple of years — every once in awhile grief rolls over me in a heavy tide, but I know that this is also part of being human. Death, and all its pain, is part of the journey we’re all on as we ride this globe around our sun — it touches us all… a common thread in every life. Grief is one of the greatest common denominators of humanity…

This life is moving towards its end from the minute it begins — I’m so grateful for the moments I’ve been given on the way…

  1. cozy Pat-me snuggles…
  2. my baby nephew taking his first steps!
  3. singing in the kitchen…
  4. Christmas music on the computer and fresh food on the stove…
  5. new cookbooks…
  6. The Philosopher lost in a good book…
  7. The Professor doing so much better at piano — REAL improvement in his brain function!!!
  8. HOPE!! (see above)…
  9. mia Esperanto Biblio…
  10. seeing Mt. Hood gleaming white in the autumn sunlight…

It’s all Grace…

2 thoughts on “Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s