Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Road Frequently Traveled... is Still Made of Dirt

I think I'm a little late to the party on this Chef's Table show on Netflix. It was suggested to me by Netflix itself once I finished my most recent binge-worthy show. I thought, "Well, I like food. Sure I'll watch." 

Damn. This shit is no joke. 

Basically, if you haven't seen the show, each episode is a beautifully filmed and exquisitely produced documentary of a chef, currently operating in one of the top restaurants in the world. Every episode is literally better than the previous one. And the first one is amazing. 

I think what draws me to the show so much is not what most people would think. It's not because I love to play around in the kitchen. See, because that's exactly what I enjoy doing. Playing. That is not at all what is going on with these chefs in their kitchens. Food is their life. It's everything that defines them. They wake up thinking about it. They breathe it every moment of the day. Their relationships suffer. Their health suffers. They struggle with how to live up to the standards their family has set for them. But at the end of the day, they follow their heart and not one of them lives with any regrets for choosing the path they have. 

In one particular episode, the chef being displayed was out on a dinner date with his wife. After the movie, she asked him what he thought about it. He distractedly asked, "What?" "What did you think of the film?" she repeated. He sat quiet for a moment and said, "I don't know... I didn't really watch it. I was trying to figure out how you could drink mozzarella." 

Nothing in the world makes me more jealous than seeing people who are so passionate about something. 


I'm drinking too much again. And I'm smoking cigarettes. I'm overeating and gaining weight. I'm not sleeping enough. And I'm gambling way, way too much. I'm withdrawing into my head. I'm cracking jokes about how miserable I am with my friends. But I'm not laughing. 

My son's dad's schedule has changed fairly drastically, leaving me with a lot of time on my hands where I'm not required to be directly available or responsible for my son. Boredom has always, always been my biggest enemy. I could, of course, use it to my advantage. I could work on projects at home. I could go to the gym. I could socialize with friends that make me feel good. I could go watch a movie. I could watch more episodes of Chef's Table. But I don't do any of those things. I escape. Into dark corners of dark bars, doing anything I can to quiet the racing thoughts that consume my mind. 

I know it's not healthy. I know because I've been down this road before. Many, many times. And like every other time before, I know there is a fork up ahead and I will take the road that leads into better decisions, healthier choices, genuine smiles and smaller jean sizes. I always do. Because at the end of the day, I do know what the right thing to do is. I think that's what sets me apart from others who go down this same dark road but never turn back. I can't afford to leave everything else behind. I've come too far and created too much to give up forever. 

But I do give up. For a while, that is. Like now. I've given up right now. 

If I had one wish that was guaranteed to be granted, it would be to be given a passion for something in life. Like, I feel like even if that passion caused struggles in my world, if I knew in my heart at the end of the day that what I was doing was the right thing for me... the right thing for my soul... I feel like all the dark times would seem... a lot more tolerable. 

I'm well aware that I'm not going to find this passion at a Keno machine. But it's not at the gym either. Or in the kitchen. And as much as I want it to be in motherhood... it's not there either. 

The closest I've ever come to doing what feels right for my soul is this silly little blog. Pouring my heart out for anyone that wants to read. Opening myself up to support, to criticism and to heartache. Every time I press that little button that says "Publish" at the end of writing a blog, I feel like I've at least accomplished one thing: being myself. 

I'll work on bigger victories. In the meantime, I'll relish in the jealousy of others' passions.