Food is a Language of Love. It just really, truly is. For past and present generations, food is synonymous with comfort, reflecting love beyond the preparation. Do you ever think about how comforting food can be? And that it equates to love?
Read on . . .
Food is not a “traditional” comfort provider. It’s not a blanket that keeps you cozy and warm on a chilly night, it can’t kiss away a child’s boo-boo or shoo away bedtime monsters, it’s not medicine that eases aches and pains, it won’t make teenage woes disappear and it can’t eliminate the grieving process . . . so why is this basic sustenance to daily life a Love Language?
It’s simple – food can indeed encompass all of the above. It CAN make you feel cozy and warm, it CAN make a boo-boo feel better and make the monsters seem far away, it CAN help ease an upset tummy, and it CAN detract from daily life challenges. It CAN solely because of the love it brings to the table – it has magical power.
While there is scientific evidence in professional literature about the connection of food and emotion, this anonymous quote sums it up well: “Cooking is love made visible.” And I’m not a gushy-kind-of-gal, but this food-love quote from a wedding planning website resonates truth: “To cook is to nourish. It is to give pleasure and renewal. Kind of like love.”
So yes, comfort foods are more than yummy-happy-tummy-makers! They are an outpouring of love from the preparer to family, friends, neighbors, coworkers. For instance, preparing and delivering “condolence meals” is a common practice that provides comfort to those grieving. Making a favorite meal for a college kid coming home for the weekend provides comfort and normalcy. When a spouse has a rough work week, a favorite meal provides comfort and security. When a family welcomes a new baby, a home-cooked meal provides comfort during a stressful time . . . all because food is a Language of Love.
Every family has its favorite comfort foods and a plethora of reasons for needing them on the regular. In our family, the favorite comforts range from chicken & dumplings, meatloaf, sausage balls and spinach manicotti to deviled eggs, oatmeal raisin cookies, strawberry cake and blueberry congealed salad. Love comes in a variety of comforting flavors! A favorite food can simply make your world a happier place, and that is a direct reflection from the heart of the person who prepares the favorite food!
Why the “heart” of the food preparer? Because it is the heart’s desire to bring comfort. Whether the comfort food is simply a PBJ sandwich or vanilla ice cream with chocolate syrup . . . the recipient’s focus shifts from the current circumstance to the comfort provided by the favorite food. Simply put, that comfort represents love.
So, when we use the term “comfort food”, just remember that it’s from the heart. It begins with care and ends with comfort – THAT is the LOVE LANGUAGE of food!