Life After Loss Cooking For Myself
I hated cooking for myself when I was young and alone in Shanghai. I didn’t know how to cook either. Seriously, I lived on carryouts and leftovers. Most of the days, I would only eat two meals and some days it would be only one. When my late husband and I were dating, he came to Shanghai to visit me. I was trying to show him that I could be a good wife. So I bought a bag of frozen meals at the supermarket and cooked for him. Don’t ask details, just let me tell you that was the end of my cooking career. 😉 My man was a great cook and he promised that he would cook for us. 😉
I tried cooking again after I moved to America to marry my man. It started about a week after I arrived, I was seriously thinking that I would end up starving to death. At that time, I REALLY didn’t like any American food. This forced me to cook Chinese food. I guess many years of eating at restaurants had helped me develop some cooking sense. Surprisingly, my cooking turned out to be quite good. I never even knew I had it in me. I guess when I cooked with love, everything turned out to be great.
Cooking for us, for our family and friends, is some of the warmest memories the last 10 years. My late husband loved my Chinese cooking and he was very proud of me for becoming a great cook. When I first heard the saying “Cook up a storm” I was laughing so hard because that was totally my type of cooking. Usually after I cooked, our kitchen was a disaster… dirty pots and pans everywhere, the stove top covered with oil, spices and pieces of food. 😉 Hey, I said I cooked well, I said nothing about cleaning.
My man was the biggest fan of my cooking. I never follow any recipes and just cook whatever I can find in our house. He was often amazed by that. I loved watching him eating the food I cooked. His satified face and joyful eyes made me super happy. We often spent hours during dinner talking about our days, our thoughts or just some silly stories.
But now, I lost my best audience. The first 4 months after he passed away, I was living on carryouts and leftovers again. If you have never lived alone, you probably will not understand that feeding yourself may be a challenge. When it’s just you eating, there’s a greater tendency of not bothering to cook because it feels like it just isn’t worth it. Cooking for 30 to 45 minutes, eating for 30 minutes and then cleaning up for 15 minutes. That totals about one and a half hours! For that much time, I could write a blog post or reply to some emails.
That was the old me of thinking. If you have read my last post Life After Loss What Death Has Taught Me you will know that I am all into living in the present and making every day a joyful experience. So eating 3 meals and eating healthy has become my top priority. Below are some of my recent cooked meals. I have tried many western recipes recently.
Cooking for others, for your loved ones, is pure joy. Cooking for yourself, is where the true self-love begins.
Photos credited: Grace Liang/ @yasballo
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