Cookin' Up Hope

breejoy2 Health Guide
  • My week of miracles continues. Last week, I was fortunate enough to land the first client ever for my home cookin' business. I thought our arrangement would last longer, but she was so happy with her results that she decided to release me early. Great for her and for my ego, but bad for my wallet. However, on the same day that she decided she was ready to face the world of cooking on her own, another chance phone call sent me once again skyrocketing into happy town. The caller was a woman, Laurie, in a desperate search for some help finding home cooked meals for her sister, Tricia. Tricia was soon to be released from the hospital where she was undergoing treatment for a very serious case of ovarian cancer. She would need healthy, easily digestible meals for at least one month. I was hired!

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    That night, I started researching anti-cancer foods and laying the framework for my first few days with her. Today, I gathered the groceries and headed to the house, where I was greeted by a very grateful woman and her very sick but smiling sister. We quickly got comfortable with each other and chatted away as I began preparing a vitamin packed smoothie. Next came a savory soup filled with greens and herbs, and finally, a big batch of fresh juice. To my surprise and delight, Tricia drank and ate everything down to the last drop, marveling at how delicious it was. I had to laugh when she spoke of the hospital food and how perhaps it was that (not the cancer) that had diminished her appetite. At least she hadn't lost her sense of humor.


    After we cleaned up and I prepared to leave, Tricia came to me for a hug. Her frail arms wrapped around me as she said a sincere thank you. I honestly thought I might cry. Laurie walked me out and paid me. She proceeded to tell me that Tricia's prognosis was not good, and that they didn't know how long she might survive. Laurie wanted her to have the very best care and food, so I told her how honored I was to be able to help. She gave me a huge hug, thanked me again, and invited me back next week. I drove away feeling a mixture of sadness, appreciation, and a heady dose of the warm fuzzies. 


    I really think I have found my niche in this world. I know it's going to be really hard to watch if Tricia's health continues to decline, but I will still hold on to the hope that food and love can heal. And if I continue down this path, I will always have the knowledge that perhaps I helped someone, even if just for a little while. I've always known that food is not just about calories. It's about socialization. It's about celebration. It's about strength. And it's about survival; both of the body and of the spirit. When I started blogging in 2010, I was very conflicted about what those things meant for me. I thought it was ok for other people, but for me food should only be about fuel. I'm only scratching the surface with this new adventure, but so far what I have gained is a much deeper appreciation of food, and I don't just mean the taste. I'm starting to see some positive changes in the way I think about and look at food, since now I'm doing it through the eyes of some very brave and incredible people. I'm starting to think more about my choices, and care more about the consequences, however I'm also letting myself enjoy food more even when I know I haven't made the best choice. I'm staying committed to being more active; attending my new yoga class regularly and even going running again. And my first hike with the meetup group is coming up this weekend at "Little Devil's Stairs". I'm pumped, and feeling happier than I've been in a while. Finally!

Published On: September 16, 2011

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