[koo k-ing]

Self-love 12.19.2011

cook·ing [koo k-ing] noun
1. the act of a person or thing that cooks.
2. the art or practice of preparing food; cookery.

Cooking was the one thing my mother would never let me do, alone, with her, it just wasn’t done. My parents divorced when I was about 5 years old. My mother started her second job and I started going to my baby sitter. Next on the list was being home alone until I was old enough to drive. My mom would stock up the fridge of everything in the world that I could microwave and eat for dinner. It wasn’t until I was at least 12 that I learned how to scramble eggs. Sad right? I know.

I was never allowed to cook unless my mother was home, which didn’t happen very often. And when she was home, she was too tired to stay up and teach me, so we ordered Chinese. It wasn’t until my first year home from college when I moved in with my dad that he suggested that I learned how to cook for myself because eating out is so expensive. His motivator was, “In order to keep a man, you have to know how to feed him.” Of course I didn’t take him seriously because I will be making enough billions to hire my own chef. I have big dreams.

But of course I never internalized how cooking for myself would really impact me as an individual. So I tried it. To start off small, I cooked breakfast: sausage, bacon, eggs, cinnamon rolls, all under the guidance of my dear father and it was a piece of cake. My best friend taught me how to make her famous spaghetti. Then my stepmother wanted me to make brownies. I was swamped! Is this what a housewife feels like?! The difference of course is that she wants to do this and I’m forced.

The definition of cooking is “the art or practice of preparing food”, which is what I lacked. I was denied the practice and I had no prior knowledge to this “art or preparing”. So to solve this problem, I decided to tune out the ideas of others and discover what I really wanted to know. I wanted to know how to do something for myself that would benefit my well-being. With this decision I decided to explore the things I knew how to make and how they made me feel afterwards. Brownies, banana nut cake, spaghetti, baked chicken, breakfast, lunch, dinner, desserts and snack. I came to a point where I made too much food for my household to eat.

Photo credit: cookingismypassion.blogspot.com/

I found the picture above on “The Journal of a Girl who Loves to Cook” and it put into a perfect perspective of the way I feel about cooking. I wasn’t trying to become the next best baker or chef; I just wanted to do something that I could feel good about. Once I made my experience about me and stopped thinking of the success/failure rate and just did it, I was able to live in the moment. So try something today for you, whether it is cooking, baking, yoga, rock climbing or salsa dancing. But remember to “love what you do, put your heart into and you will be rewarded.”
-Ja’el

About jaelisawesome

I am currently a senior at Randolph College, founded as Randolph-Macon Woman's College in 1891, majoring in Political Science: International Relations with minors in Spanish and Studio Art. Born and raised in Richmond, Virginia I believe that I have significant contributions to make to the world of diplomacy and US foreign policy. As Student Government President I am the liaison between the students and the faculty and administration, as well as the student representative to the Board of Trustees. I also serve as the Co-President of an all female a cappella group Songshine. I am known for being involved in any and every aspect at school. Some of my passions include playing on the volleyball and tennis teams, singing in almost every group at my school, performing in my very first musical Spring Awakening in the theatre department to taking orders as a barista at the schools’ coffee shop Main Grounds. After I graduate in May 2012, I aspire to attend the Master of Arts in Political Science with a concentration in European Union Policy Studies one-year, 33-credit graduate program. The intensive, residential program is based wholly in Florence, Italy and results in an MA degree in Political Science from James Madison University. My goal is to spread the Love Warrior Community, meaning more people actively bringing self-love into their lives and into the lives of others, more people accepting and loving themselves as they are and more people empowered to follow their passions and share them with the world. The Love Warrior Community is as strong as those involved. By joining the Love Warrior Community, I have the opportunity to create my own self-love practice, bringing more love into my life and the lives of those around me. I will be able to influence a greater number of people and help them to see their value and worth beyond their bodies.
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3 Responses to [koo k-ing]

  1. sweetopiagirl says:

    Reblogged this on Inspiredweightloss.

  2. It does make me sad to think that you missed out on “The art, or practice of preparing food”. Food to me is such a metaphor for love. It’s our primary connection with our mothers. Food is more than sustenance, it’s the intimacy that comes from the closeness to our mothers’ breast, whether we are nursed or givien a bottle, we attune to our mother’s heart beat when we eat. I was pleased to hear that your father took on the job of passing along the art, or practice of preparing food, even if his motivation is different from yours! What I loved even more, was learning how you took cooking and made it your own experience by being in the moment and focusing on what is important to you, not what others wanted you to cook.
    You are clearly already making an impact in your circle of influence at Randolph College. As you continue to “practice the art of self-love” your ability to love and accept yourself more each day will influence everyone you come into contact with, in person, and online.
    I am so excited to have you join the Love Warrior Community!! You Rock!
    Continued Blessings to you and your dreams.
    Michelle

    • Thanks Michelle this means so much to me! My mother was never one to want to cook! She liked to play outside instead so that’s probably where I get my love for the outdoors…I guess I took something from both parents but now is my time to explore 🙂 You have no idea how excited I am to be apart of this team!

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