Since 8:00 this morning my husband, and our son have been running around the kitchen experimenting with making an old Southern favorite “Shrimp & Grits.” For all of you non-southerners this is a pretty popular dish in the deep South. Why you ask would someone roll out of bed on their day off to experiment with such a dish? Well that’s part of a bigger story.
You see every year, twice a year, (New Years & Memorial Day) my husband, and our son go camping on a piece of land several of our family members bought together years ago. Our daughter used to always go, but because of her work she does not go as much as my guys. They NEVER skip out on this ritual. When I say camping, I mean no electricity, running water, or bathroom facilities! I went for 15 years with my bunch, but as soon as, our kids were independent enough to handle it without me it was a ritual I was only to glad to relinquish.
They love it! They along with other family members, and friends ride around on their dirt bikes, swim in the lake, and spend hours talking around the campfire. This is the time I stay home in my cozy house, work on projects, read my books and refuse to cook in complete solitude. Other than wandering off to the beach or a museum I am completely happy to be alone. It’s my chance to regroup.
My husband was diagnosed this year with a very serious precancerous condition which has required us as a family to change our eating habits in a very big way. We have chosen to follow the same diet that my husband must now live by as a way of supporting him. After all it is only food but it’s a huge change, and we wanted to make sure he doesn’t feel like he’s in this alone. So this is the first camping trip with the new diet which pretty much excludes all the usual campfire goodies.
Our Son has grown up to be an incredible man. The kind of man who would run around at 8:00 in the morning after being out all night with his friends to joke around ,and try out new recipes to make sure his Dad sees that it’s just a bump in life not a mountain. He jokes with my husband pointing out how when the others see their food they will be so jealous that next year they will be copying their dishes.
He loves his father. He knows how difficult it’s been for him watching his loved one slip away day by day. Our son knows we will face extremely difficult decisions in the very near future. Decisions that will cause my husband a great deal of pain. He is a good Son. He has grown to be the kind of man who truly gets the deeper meaning behind “Shrimp & Grits.” 😉