It’s 6pm. I suppose I ought to at least think about dinner.
My husband, he’s not worried about dinner. He’s still at work and won’t be home for at least another hour. My kids, they aren’t worried about it either. They don’t exactly know how dinner’s going to happen, they just know it will.
If my family’s smart, they won’t ask me what’s for dinner. Their typical reactions are almost sure to cook their goose.
But green beans squeak when you chew them!
To which I say: You get what you get and you don’t throw a fit. The fact that there’s a meal on the table at all is kind of amazing. It means I was able to wrap up work, hustle through homework, and whip up something edible — sometimes from little more than quick oats, chicken bouillon, and canned pineapple chunks. It may not have been gourmet. You may have had to pick out the onions you didn’t like, but it was prepared, hot and ready just for you.
But picky palates are only the beginning of my beef; the perceived dinner democracy has been known to egg me on.
How many bites of this do I have to eat?
Can’t we just order a pizza?
Why don’t you ever make _________?
Talk about literally biting the hand that feeds you. When it comes to cheffing, what bothers me most is the expectation of it all.
I’m aware dinner is my responsibility, but had I known the novelty of playing house would one day result in a supper life sentence, I’d have stuck a fork in the idea a long time ago.
I’ve made something like 1,500 dinners since becoming a wife and about 5,000 more since becoming a mom. In that time, some dinners have required careful planning. Others have required less-than-careful microwaving, but every meal has been mine to make whether I was sick or well, motivated or downright exhausted. And it gets old, you know? I mean, I just fed these people 24 hours ago, and the 24 hours before that. And hey, look! I get to feed ’em again 24 hours from now, and surprise! Another 24 hours after that until I reach that big kitchen in the sky.
For a long time I thought it was just me. Why don’t I enjoy preparing wholesome meals for the people I love the most? Other people seemed to really dig it. I followed those “Nummy” Pinterest boards. I tried to channel my inner Giada. Heck, I even got me one of those cute ruffled aprons. None of it mattered a single morsel; dinner was still a total drag.
So hey, it’s now 7:20 PM and I’m no closer to planning or plating dinner now than I was when I started. I think I’ll just order a pizza.
Whataya know, for once dinner democracy hits the spot.More On