Broccoli Five Ways

Family Vacay Day Two

It’s family beach vacation day two and all’s well. My two-year-old nephew Parker got upset when I tried to forcefully hug him this morning, but I apologized and he forgave me and then he gave me a hug in his own sweet time later in the morning.

My sister Delish arrived late last night and her bed is a little harder than she’d prefer but it seems like she slept anyway. There is some construction a couple of doors down and they are not only drilling but also playing some pretty loud samba music that carries along the beach.

We discussed asking them to turn it down, or even calling someone to bust them for doing construction during the summer no-building season, but then we worked it through and decided the music was pretty good and Ax and Parker might enjoy seeing some beachside construction as an attraction.

My sister Rosie questioned whether or not construction music on the beach really was a serenity prayer section one item or not and I can see her quandary. I mean, we could do those things to get that particular external imperfection to potentially cease. And yet, there would be consequences to pursuing that course. A portion of our day would be spent going over there, trying to change things, or making a call, trying to change things, then, for my part, having an emotional hangover from pushing against what is, as it is.

And then, inevitably, even if we got that particular external imperfection resolved, there would be, most likely, another imperfection rising up to take its place. We are not in Valhalla. We are in the Hamptons.

Here, if we decide to make the side for dinner steamed broccoli, one of us would prefer it roasted, or perhaps sauteed. But then another of us would like it creamed, and yet another of us thinks grilling would be the best course of action. Here, I refrain from admitting that lately I’ve taken to boiling it in the same pot as the pasta though I know that leeches some of the nutritional value, because it also reduces the number of pots to clean. Blanching works. But I’m keeping that to myself.

I watch my family valiantly co-existing with their different concepts of how to cook broccoli, and then their other seemingly-conflicting dietary proclivities, the vegetarians, the gluten-free folk, the meat-lovers, the only-pastas or peanut butters (that’s Ax), and the not-quite-sure-but-hungry-for-something-more-ers (yours truly), and there is love and acceptance.

We are being fed from being with each other. We are hungry for love and acceptance more than the right kind of broccoli, and we’re getting that. I am so grateful that finally I see that we are all perfect as we are and everything is perfect as it is. That said, I’ll probably pass on the creamed broccoli if that’s how it goes.