As I approach my 29th birthday and come into myself as a creative I’m starting to understand how life is like a well-made dish. It is truly all about balance and it is imperative to edit your own recipe of life as you go. We often push ourselves to be these pillars of strength ignoring the beauty of the vulnerability underneath; the story of who and why we are gets lost as we turn to be who we think people want us to be. To be a creative means you are delicate. To be logical means you are strong. Why can’t we be both? Why is it so hard to find strength in our fragility? The most beautiful mosaics are made from thousands of broken pieces.
It really, really sucks when you spend time and effort following all the steps to a recipe just to sit down, take the first bite and be completely unsatisfied. Life likes to do that a lot. You think you are doing all the right things and then bam first bite completely disgusted, angered, or hurt. But you need to eat so you have to try again, but maybe this time follow the recipe a littler looser, with less expectations, let your passion guide your palate. Hell, sometimes you may need to scratch the entire recipe and choose a new one.Enjoying a meal should be a communal experience but you cannot allow others to decide what tastes good to you, if they don’t like it they can find another table. Sharing your meal is a sensual energy exchanging experience and some people just deserve bodega Chinese takeout.
I would say I am more honest with myself than most people but it’s been a really hard lesson to learn of when to close my kitchen. I’m a Chef; after all, I want to feed everyone. I want to take in everyone the sad, the tired, even the deplorable. Time after time I expend my energy on people who don’t appreciate my food or are too numb to be drawn out of the darkness. We must remember we are the sole creator of our unique recipe. You don’t have to serve or eat tuna tartar if you don’t like it. If all you want is Jell-O, spam, and hot fries fill your life with it but make sure it’s keeping you happy (and healthy). But, trust me that diet will not have you healthy.
The experiences I have had living in New York City have been pretty polarizing. I have really learned about myself here by the building, rebuilding, and sometimes breaking of relationships, listening to my emotions and not my bank account, and to be honest turning off my brain and putting myself in some compromising positions. I’m still alive and have all my fingers and toes! At the same time the city has really hardened my soft California spirit. I walk faster, notice positions of power a lot quicker, and am confused when a sales associate asks me how my day is.
Four years ago when I made the decision to move across the country I had no recipe for life. I had a bunch of ingredients and just threw them in the pot and hoped for the best. As the years go by I continue to refine my recipe, removing what no longer tasted good (4 days of back to back partying) and adding in new things (wearing pants). I would say luckily for me it’s working out, but it wasn’t all luck. Although my recipe for life is ever changing I must remember I am the master chef. Instinctually, I know what tastes good and so do you. Trust yourself to create. Even when you don’t think you know what you are doing something deep down is guiding your soul.