I know women who don’t cook. That statement used to give me heart palpitations. No one…I repeat…NO ONE…told me that not cooking was an option. When I was opening wedding presents and Aunt Eleanor gave us a set of mixing bowls, I didn’t sit there and say “Who is going to use these?”
I didn’t go to cooking school. My mother didn’t teach me how to cook. I cooked because my husband and I were hungry and we wanted to eat. Lord knows, he couldn’t cook. But little did I know, from that moment of cooking our very first meal, I WOULD BE COOKING FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE!
To be honest, there was a time when I thought there was something really wrong with these women. But NOW, I think they’re geniuses. What foresight! I was up at five in the morning making snickerdoodles for my daughter’s class, and these women were sleeping in and stopping at the grocery store for a package of Chips Ahoy! And, guess what? The kids didn’t care. And, the mommy who didn’t cook was showered and smartly dressed, and I had on a hat and a raincoat to cover up the evidence of a cinnamon explosion in my kitchen.
Many years later, as a divorced woman getting back into the dating scene, there was only one thing I wanted in a man. Can he cook? I didn’t care if he was unemployed, on parole, or grew up with the circus. I just wanted someone who could cook. I wasn’t expecting him to cook every meal, but I just wanted to know that if I broke both arms or suddenly went blind, we would not starve to death. I wanted the thirty year tradition of baking my own birthday cake to end…just once.
The sad thing is I didn’t warn my daughter. She would call up for a recipe, and my first thought was how proud my mom would have been that she is learning to cook. But, if I was truly a good mother, I would have told her to take every cookbook, toss them out the window, and replace them with take-out menus. Then SHE could be the smartly dressed mom with a paper plate of Oreos. Oh well, I did do her a favor, though…I never taught her how to sew.