Love: Standing In the Kitchen To Remind Me

Post-divorce life has been rough lately.  Alimony gone, huge debt, unemployment, post-menopausal hot flashes.  Pleas with my well-monied ex to increase child support are usually met with something akin to “GFY,” or exactly that.   I just paid my attorney a huge sum to settle my divorce debt; other bills get paid out of home equity and renting out my home.

I entreat, beg and occasionally engage with my ex even when I know I shouldn’t.  Still, something stops me short of matching vigor for vigor. “Let no man pull you low enough to hate him,” Martin Luther King, Jr. said.  And at times it takes every fiber of my being to do just that, to push away the anger bubbling up in my throat that my friends say I’m justifiably entitled to.

“Returning violence for violence multiples violence, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars…Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that,” Martin Luther King, Jr. said, too.

“Love” is now standing in the kitchen to remind me of just that.  A young teenage woman who bears half his genes. If I ever got close to hating him, I would have to hate part of her.

Ella’s putting the finishing touches on tonight’s dinner.  It’s the second night in a row she announced she was cooking dinner; she has tomorrow night’s meal all planned out, too.  I’ve cooked nearly every week-day night since my children were born.  I believe in having family meals together, no matter what else is on our plates.

I temped all this past weekend, and sitting nearly 12 hours a day behind a computer screen left me spent.  “I love you. You’ll have a delicious hot meal when you get home,” my daughter texted me while I was still at the office.

She can’t afford expensive gifts nor can she fix the problems and heartache that ensued in the wake of her father’s exit from our family.  But she can remind me of what’s most important that I sometimes forget.   And she can feed my tired, hungry body.  And in so doing, feed my soul.

Voila!  Behold Ella’s marvelous creation:



8 responses so far:

  • The Desert Rocks – Aug 23, 2012 at 2:25 PM

    What a lovely post and what a “love”–ly thoughtful daughter. Don’t worry this too shall pass–just like those hot flashes!
  • Admin – Aug 24, 2012 at 1:09 PM

    Well the hot flashes aren’t as bad as they used to be! As far as “this too shall pass,” you’re so right. And I’ve got two wonderful daughters to keep that in perspective!
  • Debra Lynn Lazar – Aug 24, 2012 at 2:00 PM

    Sadly, I can totally relate to what you’re going through. (Except the cooking part. Much to my mother’s dismay, I never got those genes!) This line, especially, hit home: “If I ever got close to hating him, I would have to hate part of her.” I have two boys, and I love them with all my heart and soul. Hating their father isn’t healthy for any of us, though it’s often an easy pit to fall into. And, I’m a vegetarian so that meal looks DIVINE!
  • Admin – Aug 24, 2012 at 2:09 PM

    So true, Debra, an easy pit to fall into. Sounds like those two boys of yours are there to remind you as well. What blessings our children turn out to be in so many unexpected ways. Unfortunately on the bottom of that taco is shredded chicken, but I bet you can easily find something else vegetarian to replace it. Here’s the rest of the recipe (my daughter’s own creation!): whole wheat tortilla (slightly warmed) uncooked spinach chopped tomato shredded chicken (or a substitute) sweet corn marinated first in garlic, parsley, S&P, chili pepper, olive oil top with sliced avocado! Hope you enjoy! Wishing you well!
  • Cheri – Aug 25, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    Loved this piece and it resonates with me, for sure. Happy Jeff is one of my Facebook friends and I was able to link to the piece he posted.
  • Admin – Aug 26, 2012 at 4:09 PM

    Thank you, Cheri and thanks to your friend Jeff, too! Sorry the “bad”stuff resonates with you, but happy the good stuff resonates with you, too!
  • Mark Hashizume – Oct 15, 2012 at 2:27 PM

    I see my children after 11 years of being divorced (I initiated it) and wonder if they are truly worse off than if I stayed. I know that I made the mistake of not requiring shared custody but no use dwelling on one of my many regrets in life. I do see that they still have their hearts that are not shut down, who are caring and kind and loving. I do not take credit for who they are. I am just grateful. I do know that I am a lot better off, a lot happier and finally have the freedom to uncover the person I am meant to be in this world. I believe that I will be truly spiritually enlightened once I am able to be fully and honestly compassionate towards my spouse. I am working on that though I am still needing to do that with myself. Thank you for your honest and vulnerable sharing. I am touched by your writing.
  • Jeff – Oct 30, 2018 at 8:53 AM

    And a little child shall lead them... Thanks for the new link to this. www.thepulpitandthepen.com


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" Ostensibly about the break-up of her marriage and loss of her dream house, a four-story Victorian brownstone in Brooklyn's Carroll Gardens neighborhood, Beverly Willett's absorbing memoir is really about finding a home in one's own skin. A delight."

Courtney Hargrave, Author of Burden: A Preacher, A Klansman and a True Story of Redemption in the Modern South, a major motion picture starring Forest Whitaker

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