I’m a firm believer in cooking from the heart. I cook to show my love and dedication to the people who mean the most to me.
But there’s something I want to share with you. My love of food, my passion for cooking – it’s been missing lately.
In January, my heart broke a little, and I haven’t been the same since. You see, my dad was diagnosed with a rare form of blood cancer called Multiple Myeloma. My strong, athletic, incredibly active dad. The one who started running half marathons in his 60’s. The one who watched what he ate, worked out daily and had a discipline that made my siblings and me marvel at him. The one who always is working on something, who fixes squeaky hinges and creaky floors at every family birthday party and baptism.
He wasn’t supposed to get cancer. He did everything the right way.
And yet, there we sat, stunned in his hospital room, listening to an oncologist discuss a treatment plan. I saw the shock and pain and worry in both my parents’ eyes but it was tempered with determination, faith, and prayer.
He’s going to beat this. There’s no doubt in my mind.
But something changed inside me that day. A little part of me broke and I’ve been working for months to fix it.
As for my dad, I’m realizing that he’s just as strong as he was before the diagnosis. Maybe even stronger. It’s coming from a place deep within. My mom is right beside him, just as strong and determined to beat this. They’re fighting a good fight, and they’re going to win.
I’m trying to get back on my feet. To feel passionate about food. To have excitement and joy knowing I’m providing my family with nourishment and love through the meals I cook. I’ll get there; it’s just taking a little time. Cooking from the heart is what I was born to do. I think I’m ready to get back in the kitchen and share some food love with you.
If you, or someone you love, has been touched by cancer, know that I am praying for you, for your loved ones, your doctors, your caregivers. Cancer fighters and their families are a tribe. Let’s keep each other strong.
What the beginning of this journey has taught me is this – hug your loved ones extra close. Tell people you love them – often. And never take this precious gift called life for granted. And that cooking – well, it has to come from the heart.
To learn more about Multiple Myeloma, visit the American Cancer Society. Let’s find a cure!