When venturing into the homemade section of food, pasta is usually not a first attempt. Those little gluten-packed suckers have a fine-art reputation that weaves into each strand. But, my friends, this Half Baked Harvest recipe was the perfect starting place.
Deciding to carve out time for myself to cook--outside school, outside work, outside time with my fiance--was not the easiest of decisions. To be fully honest, I probably told Brian at least once a day that I was feeling selfish for prioritizing myself. But as I put off my Syd-loving time, I felt myself growing more and more confused. I was working on my research, writing my papers for school, finding my practicum internship to graduate, but a growing hollow feeling only grew. I listened to podcasts during my drive--maybe I was just bored. I tried to hang out with Brian more--maybe we needed more quality time. I tried to run more--that did help a little.
One late afternoon on a run, as I was winding down one of my favorite hilly roads in Chapel Hill, I decided to pay attention to the gnawing feeling in my stomach that had been working its way up and out for the past few weeks. I wrestled and chewed at it for a few miles, allowing myself to finally let it crawl out of my stomach and into my mind. Truthfully, as I thought and wrestled internally, my legs pressed harder and harder off the ground. My pace dropping a few seconds, then a full minute, then even more, my body fought through the upset I was feeling.
What surfaced was nothing new. A fear that I find myself facing in different ways over and over again: when Brian and I get married will I be giving up some of myself?
First let me say this comes from no one but myself. It certainly has no relation to anything Brian says or does in our partnership. If you want to meet a selfless, encouraging, loving man, look no farther than Brian. It's simply my own darn stereotypes about what a woman looks like when she marries. What her life become. Two become one, right?
I've become fearful that by marrying I will lose some of myself. It stems from years of trying to carve a life out of someone elses. That was a six year long lesson that hurt real bad to learn. Of course we can make our marriage anything we want it to be; our home will be full of love and honesty and forgiveness.
But recently I felt myself slipping a bit. I felt I was being selfish for spending time on myself or by myself, when in reality I need to spend a darn lot of time on myself because ya homegirl is for sure not perfect. So I was ignoring all the other pieces of me that used to get a lot of pursuit. I became "Syd: grad student, fiance, runner, daughter." But we are so much more than just five words!!! I was self inflictingly putting myself in a box, telling myself there was no time for other things. dang darn did that backfire.
Panic ensued and here we are. Running and panicking. Trying to sort through everything. As I ran the final few miles back down monster-hill to our house I resolved to ACT. I wasn't going to just be bummed and feel like I was losing myself and think it was maybe because I was getting married (because that makes no sense) and I was going to ignore fear.
What did this look like that Thursday evening? Homemade pasta! Pine candles lit and Amos Lee radio playing while Brian was at a football game. DANG mama's taking care of herself tonight.
Armed with an ingredient list boasting but 2 things, I headed to the store. I bought what I needed, headed home, poured a glass of wine and got kneading! This ended up being really fun and delicious and will definitely be made again!
I never really planned on (or really wanted to be) a young bride. It's just not how I pictured my life unfolding. Yet here we are, young and engaged and planning a wedding. Sometimes I feel amazing and sometimes I feel like marriage is a figurative period rather than a dash or comma or probably anything else. We'll keep talking about this because change is good and learning is even better:)