|When it comes to life's journey, I guess you could say I'm a destination kind of girl.
A hurry up and get there so you can wiggle your toes in the sand while you partake of a frosty beverage kind of girl.
A "whattya mean it doesn't all happen overnight and I can't have everything exactly the way that I want it, right when I want it?" kind of girl.
I rush it. I push it. I wish it away.
What can I say, in my heart of hearts... I just do not love the journey. I do, however and for what it's worth, love the band Journey...
but that is probably a different post entirely.
Which brings me, as it so often does...to a story.
As you might have seen yesterday, it's a tradition in our household that every year I cook waffles for Justin on his birthday. But...and here's the thing:
What I DIDN'T tell you is how it came to be that I settled on waffles as the breakfast of choice in the first place. You see, the VERY first breakfast I ever made for Justin was not in fact waffles at all...but pancakes. And pancakes, dear blog world, as it turns out are decidedly MUCH harder to make than waffles.
The first set I burned.
And not just that "oh look it's a little black on the outside but you can scrape it off with a butter knife kind of burnt." No...it was more like the sound stage of Backdraft where I alone am the heroic firefighter and Kurt Russell is nowhere to be found kind of burnt.
The second set... I burned.
Yea, we'll just call this one Backdraft the sequel. Y'know but this time with the not so cute Baldwin brother.
The third set actually fell on the floor while I was trying ever so diligently to flip them. Where, they were promptly swallowed up by a hungry golden retriever who apparently did not mind that he had to scrape one side with a butter knife before eating it.
But the fourth set. Oh yes, the fourth set.
They... were... perfection.
Golden brown and light as air. I proudly carried them to the table, and with a flourish of real Vermont maple syrup we were ready to dig in. Yes, practice really does make perfect. There really is joy to be found in the journey.
Yea...UNTIL... we cut into them with said butter knife and soon began to see pancake batter start bubblin' from the center like Jed Clampett a shootin' at some food. Oil that is. Black gold. Texas tea.
Now maybe it was the three failed batches of pancakes that came before them, or MAYBE it was the look on Justin's face as he tried with everything he had to keep from laughing, or maybe, just maybe, it was a lifetime of "I want it all and I want it now" all coming to a boiling point.
But whatever it was...before I knew what I was doing I had grabbed that soggy pancake up by the bootstraps and chucked it, grenade style, out of my left hand, over my head, and onto a nearby wall waiting across the room. Where, as most soggy pancakes tend to do, it landed with a splat and began the long and painful descent to the floor below. Where a hungry golden retriever sat waiting patiently. Butter knife in paw.
Now, truth be told, I can't remember if we were actually able to laugh about this scene on that particular day. Or any day after that for a long time to come for that matter. But, and here's the thing...
As Justin & I lingered over his birthday dinner last night and recounted that story for what was probably the one thousandth time...we both sat laughing so hard that the tears were sent streaming down our faces and into the vegetarian curry below.
So whenever I feel that impatience...that just get me to where I want to be and I know I'll be happy feeling...I think of those pancakes. Not the hundred or so cookie-cutter, golden-perfect, perfect-edged waffles that I've made for him ever since . But those pancakes. Those very first pancakes. And that's all it takes to remind me...
that the joy really is in the journey.