Updated: Feb 8, 2021
I love to cook. I got this honestly from my mother and my paternal grandmother, Ruby Crichlow. Growing up, I saw how each of these women loved to cook for their families. Sunday dinner was a staple in our home. Each Sunday, one of my siblings or I would carry food that my mother cooked to the neighbors next door or across the street to my sister’s godmother.
My father’s mother was from Barbados and baked Bajan treats during the holidays like fruit cake, pone and her infamous pound cake for friends and family. My West Indian grandmother couldn’t fry chicken to save her life and my southern mother does not bake, so it was a perfect balance.
In college, I cooked lasagna, roast beef and other home-cooked meals for my friends on the Friday after receiving my monthly allotment of food stamps. For those of us who remember, getting food stamps was like gold in college.
We inherit many things from our families – good and bad. We are quick to highlight the positive traits (like cooking, cleaning, artistic ability) but less reluctant to identify the negative ones (like lying, cheating, stealing, abuse) that we carry with us from one generation to the next. I encourage you to look at how you are showing up in your relationships with your spouse, your parents, your children, your siblings, your circle and identify what you have the ability to shift. Dig deep and look at where those things we inherited may come from…not to point fingers or place blame, but to heal ourselves and our children. We owe this to ourselves and our offspring. Let us lay our burdens down. We are killing ourselves carrying them.
God has placed me in situations where I have had conversations with people that have helped me to understand how I show up and how I don't want to end up. The conversations have centered around their challenges in their families – with their parents, their siblings and their children. I have helped them unpack that space and pull out the pieces. In this exercise, I have also realized that choosing not to communicate with family member(s) because they have inflicted some pain or other perceivingly unforgiveable action is not healthy…it is avoiding the issue. We don’t have to feel the pain as intensely if we don’t address it. Even better, our ego allows us to justify our behavior and continue to blame the other person. In the words of my dear friend, Karen Marie Mason, “Who be hatin like dat?!!!?!” The answer is you and I. What is required to move past these uncomfortable spaces are difficult dialogues. The ones we don’t even want to start…we can start with prayer and meditation. Start gently, start now…just start…your life depends on it.
I have also lived experiences that have shown me that because I am ready to have the conversation, does not mean the other party is ready. Be kind in this space and please don’t let your ego take over...again.
I am inspired to share my thoughts with you on life as I see it on this sojourn. I am also encouraged by your comments when I see you in person and read them on this platform. Sometimes I see things a little differently or not…all the time I want us to keep our eyes open and keep seeking truth, whatever that looks like for you…always and all ways.
I am grateful for you and grateful that you took the time to read this. I would greatly appreciate it if you would take time to comment.