Thursday, October 4, 2012

Chili and other musings

It's funny how the most mundane things can trigger so many memories.

A few weeks ago I made a big batch of veggie chili -- thanks in large part to far too many peppers and zucchini than I knew what to do with. The chili reminded me of the veggie chili that (and my Milwaukee friends will know this bit) you could get every Saturday and Sunday at both Fuel and Comet Cafes. I used to make it a point to have a cup of that veggie deliciousness every weekend :)

So of course this makes my mind wander back to a far different time in my life. And as I continued to stir and simmer the pot of chili, I thought of Mike's chili. He loved to make chilli. And I thought of how he would often take all the ingredients over to his parent's house and promise them supper. But he would start cooking far too late, and take far too long, so no one actually got a bowl of chili until around midnight. But it was so good that everyone would stay up waiting for it to be done. "Ready yet?" and he would reply "You can't hurry chili, the flavors need time to marinate!" As I thought about those many evenings, as we sat around his parent's kitchen table, I could smell the aroma in my mind.

And it's during these moments of memories, that you feel transported back in time. And it feels so real. And then I remember, all those moments of things and events that got me from that point to here -- alone in my kitchen stirring a pot of veggie chili.

I can hear my new baby stirring in the next room & need to go to him. And I think about how much we wanted to have a family, but how that all got derailed due to all sorts of things that got in the way.... and how when he died I thought that was it, I would never be a mommy. And how amazing it is that I was given this second chance, and a second life and there.... in the next room is proof that life not only goes on, but can continue to be absolutely amazing. And then the thought finally hit me, why it is so difficult to ever fully "get over" a loss this big.....

See, I can go on and have a new life. My life has changed, and continues to change -- in so many ways. I get to keep making new memories.....and he never will. He will always be the same, static and stuck, back in those moments that seem like they are getting longer and longer ago.

But that big bowl of chili that we all sat around and ate at midnight..... that will always be a memory so fresh I can almost taste it.

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