I used to be an all right chef. Really, I was. The kids used to love my cooking, and often at the table I’d hear sentiments like: “Mom is the best cook!” Really, I’m not lying. My husband used to say that the main ingredient in my food was love.
But then I lost my cooking mojo. Part of the reason was the fact that I was stressed out with finding enough time to write, so I started to look for easy solutions. My heart left the kitchen. The mojo flowed out of my fingers, slid onto the keyboard and crept out while I was turning the ready-made meatballs. Later I noticed it sitting on the couch with a jumbo-sized packet of potato chips and a store-bought chili dip with flavor enhancers, popping antidepressants like they were candy, but I didn’t care. I turned my eyes back onto the keyboard and burned the meatballs.
The kids started complaining. The hubby had already learned to praise all my cooking, no matter what it tasted like, but kids can’t lie. Or they can if it is about who broke the Lego ship, but never about food. Kids are absolutely brutally honest about food. When my five-year-old stated that food in day care was much better, I knew I’d hit rock bottom. I realized that I’d started to hate cooking. Every conceivable food felt boring and like I’d cooked it a million times already.
Now I can proudly say that I am on the road to recovery. Yesterday I borrowed five interesting cookbooks from the library, studied them carefully, and have already cooked three recipes out of them, all with great success. Today I cooked turmeric chicken with a side of sweet potatoes tossed with red onions and feta cheese. Even my five-year-old who usually hates sweet potato, actually asked for seconds after I’d bribed him to taste some.
It took some time, but I felt so much better having actually cooked with love again. As for writing time, I’ll find it somehow. Maybe make bigger batches so I don’t have to cook every day. Maybe just stop stressing out about it and enjoy my food instead.
Moral of the story? If you’ve lost your mojo, don’t give up. Get better. Find something that inspires you and makes the whole thing interesting and fun again. The lost mojo hasn’t gone far, it’s sitting on the sofa, biding its time.