Not always a perfect bed of roses
“The kitchen smells amaaaazing Mum. What’s cooking?” To me it was just another morning. In fact, it was a morning that felt I had a lot to do in little time as I had slept in an hour more than usual.
My son’s statement spiraled me into deep thought. I found myself reflecting on the overwhelming sense of ‘burden’ that we feel from time to time as we purposefully choose to live a lifestyle that holds real food as a real priority. Coming from a teenager who at times along our food journey has been quite disgruntled with the changes we have made to our way of eating, this statement resonated deeply.
These words were a blessing of inspiration & encouragement. Whilst the real food journey can appear as a bed of perfect roses with pictures of lavish meals & stories of families eating sauerkraut, pate’ & kefir the journey of Pinkfarm is just that. A journey. It is a journey with bumps, curves, deviations and challenges. It is a journey of dedication & commitment. It is a journey of hard work and consistency that comes with laughter & tears, joy & conflict. Behind the scenes of the glossy social media images, real life perils exist for Pinkfarm. From divorce to family conflicts, troubled friendships and the challenges of raising children, our commitment to real food remains strong, yet at times is strained.
When providing real food for your family becomes a real priority, the reality is that it also takes real time & effort. Overtime, the day in, day out preparation and serving of real food can wear you down. We do have days where the faded memories of a ‘simple’ bowl of cereal for breakfast & the ‘ease’ of a sandwich’ for lunch seems a whole lot easier. But there is no turning back. So where do we get the strength & drive to keep doing what we do?
“The kitchen smells amaaaazing Mum!” It is moments like these that we embrace. Reflecting on these simple words has reinforced to us, the importance of creating real food in the home…..creating aromas of real food that imprint on our children’s psyche. Should our children’s food choices deviate at times in their life, it is these sensual imprints that will return them to real food. These moments remind us of the importance of why we are doing what we do.
This morning was really no different to any other morning. Breakfast to cook, lunches to prepare, kefir to strain, ghee to make, kids to get to school, washing to do, dishes to unpack, dinner to plan. After days, and seemingly weeks of feeling like our passionate food journey had become just a list of more everyday tasks, this moment lead us to the light and inspiration we needed. It lead us to a conversation of sharing our emotion around these momentary feelings of burden & monotony.
This reminded us of the appreciation our role & “jobs” are deserving of. Again we saw the very magnitude of what we do everyday. Rather than feeling like we were just another fish in the sea taking pictures of our food and raving on social media about the importance of healthy eating…….we took a step back and allowed ourselves to feel a renewed sense of self worth and encouragement. Feeding our families real food, really isn’t just another everyday job.
We know without question, that the choice to eat real food is for the short & long term benefit of ours & our children’s health. It is more than just putting food on the table. It is so much more. Creating a real food sensual imprint for our children is going to build a future of adults who know how to prepare, appreciate, enjoy & value the benefits of real food and what it means to be healthy. It is about seeing. Knowing how to make pancakes because you watched your Mum do it, or feeling excited by the array of colour in your weekly fruit and veggie bags. It is about touching. Remembering the sensation of poking those egg whites beaten to stiff peaks or how your arm hurt when you insisted on mixing the cake batter. It is about tasting. Is it salty, sweet, sour, crunchy, spicy or fresh. It is about listening. Learning to understand how your body works and how it feels good or bad depending on what we feed it. It is about smell. The aromas that take you back to the familiar cosy feelings of home and feeling nurtured.
There are many variables in life that make us question the value and worth of what we choose to do. It might be the isolation we feel from family & friends because we eat differently. It might be the overwhelming burden of cooking food all day long. Or it may be the “yuk, yuk yuk” word that gets thrown at us just once too often. It is inevitable that no matter where we are on our food journey, there will always be challenges.
Two of the biggest challenges we have experienced on our food journey towards building better health for ourselves & our family are:
1/ Making the changes &
2/ Maintaining them.
So whilst the amazing smell might be “the spice rubbed lamb shoulder in the slow cooker, the 24 choc banana cupcakes cooling on the rack, or perhaps the sausages and eggs cooking for breakfast, the joy of preparing real food can at times be over-powered by feelings of burden & monotony. Although it turned out to be an unpredictably productive morning it was the statement , “the kitchen smells amaaaazing Mum”, that had the most impact.
Whilst the real food journey is not always easy, it is a journey better shared. When we recognize and acknowledge this reality and verbalise it to others we feel not so alone. In those moments or days where what we are striving for seems all too hard, out of our reach, or even impossible, we can envision our tribe standing by saying, “You can do it.” In the end it is only us that can do it and it is only us that can make it happen. Sometimes for us it is as simple as just getting on with it and making it fucking happen!