Friday, July 6, 2012

When The Heart Hurts and The Hands Need Something To Do

When angels take flight, unexpectedly, the rest of us are left wondering how to handle the flood of emotions, what to do to make it better, knowing we can not turn back the hands of time, can not bring them back, can not make it right.

What do we do?

We hug, we hold, we sit quietly, we console, we affirm our presence...and we cook.

Tragedy hit twice for me yesterday.

I received notice that a friend's daughter committed suicide.  Once I confirmed it from reliable sources, I flew into action.  My coffers were empty so I raced out to the coffee shop to pick up raspberry mini scones and iced coffee.  I am not sure why food was the first thing I thought of.

After I returned home after absorbing the news of what would make a beautiful girl, about to enter her senior year, so suddenly and tragically take her own life, I received notice that another beautiful young woman, a college student, so loved, so full of life, was senselessly killed at an Independence Party the night before.  The news was just starting to trickle to the vast outreaches of our family.  I could not breathe.

It took me back to when my own son was fighting for his life.  He is 25 now, older, wiser, and following his dreams, but dial back to when he was 19 and was the victim of a gunshot, I wondered if we would ever be at this day.  That age, something about it makes them so vulnerable.

So sitting in my kitchen after talking to my cousin about the tragedy, thinking about my friend, remembering my son, I grabbed the chopping block and got to work.  I just wanted to keep my kids close to me, I hugged my youngest son to me tightly and reminded him that there was nothing he couldn't talk to me about, that life is precious, and since he is going to college in Alabama, to stay out of the clubs.  I was scared.

So I made this.

I served it with some organic brown rice and after sauteeing the vegetables in extra virgin olive oil, added some fresh mango, needed the sweet with the tangy and the bitter to remind me that life will go on, we will heal, and we will smile again, but last night, all I wanted was to cocoon, and nothing seemed better than some good food, hugs, and reminders of love.

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