One of my goals for Sunday was to make some bean soup. After a couple of recipe searches on the Internet, I figured I had a pretty good idea of what needed to happen, so after walking Hannah (when it was forty degrees outside), I got to it.
I chopped up a big onion and a couple of carrots. I tossed in the ham hock, added some beef broth (I had some stock in the freezer) and water, a couple of bay leaves, salt and pepper, a huge amount of minced garlic, and a jar of dried northern beans. I’m not sure how many were in the jar, but it filled up the crock pot nicely. Since I made pizza the day before, I had a little sauce leftover and decided to toss that in as well. After I dumped the jar, I realized that I had not added pizza sauce, rather I’d added in a half jar of mild salsa. I tried scooping it out, but it was futile. I shrugged and dumped in the pizza sauce as well – I figured it couldn’t hurt at this point.
It simmered for several hours, then I took the hock out and cut the meat away from the bone. Hannah was very helpful during this part, as you can imagine. The smell was amazing, even though the ingredients were a little sketchy. Turns out salsa makes a pretty good addition to bean soup as it was really, really good.
There’s a quote that I love by Mary Pickford:
“If you have made mistakes, even serious mistakes, you may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing we call “failure” is not the falling down, but the staying down.”
It was certainly an option to toss all the ingredients I’d added to the crock pot in the fear that I had created a disaster, but I opted to ride it out and see what happened. It could have just as easily tasted awful and it would have been a waste of all those delicious ingredients, but I only knew for sure by patiently waiting.
This cooking mishap isn’t the only mistake I’ve made in my life, in fact, it’s one of the tinier ones. There have been soooooo many times that I wished for an undo button. Waiting on the consequences of my actions is just not that comfortable. It’s easy to get stuck there, fixated on the error, wanting to toss in the towel and hide in my shame and misery.
Why is it that confession starts the healing process? It seems that for every mistake I’ve made and been brave enough to share, someone always steps forward and says, “yeah, me, too.” Knowing someone else has walked in my shoes and came out on the other side encourages me and makes me a little less guarded, a little more willing to take risks and make mistakes. Because sometimes, what seems to have gone horribly wrong in the beginning will be redeemed at the end.