Come on in. Have a seat. There’s always room at the table for you. Even if you see yourself as unfixable, irreparable, or just plain incorrigible, park a cheek or two and know that everyone and everything needs a home.
I’ve set up food on the table. Maybe it’s your favorite fried chicken. Maybe it’s bologna sandwiches with the edges cut off from the bread. Maybe it’s that hot, steamy platter of paella that your grandma from Spain fixed especially for you. Maybe it’s Kansas City barbecue that your Uncle Eddie fixes oh-so-right. Or maybe it’s your daughter-in-law’s vegetarian lasagna. The point is, food is one of the strongest things tied to memory, whether Stepdad’s slicing a turkey that’s falling apart at the seams but tastes like butter or whether it’s your six-year-old child’s first attempt to fix Mother’s Day breakfast for you (complete with burnt pancakes, burnt-and raw bacon, and runny eggs).
Now, for the side dishes: macaroni and cheese, salad, glazed carrots, antipasto, creamed spinach, fruit salad, barbecue potato chips, — whatever you care to eat, whatever you are able to eat, it’s on the table. The side dishes really add variety and nutrients to the meal, not to mention they can be a meal if you choose. Besides, a slab of meat alone on a plate is so 2,000,000 years ago.
Now, beverages. As the human body is 70% water, we all need living water to flush out the poisons and toxins in our minds, our bodies, and our spirits. Slake your thirst with your favorite beverage, but for strong drink like coffee and more potent potables moderation is the key. And, for Heaven’s sake, don’t drink and drive: it alters too many lives and there’s not a thing you can do to uncry the tears of a person whose loved ones are gone due to drunk driving.
Save room for dessert. Blueberry/peach pie, apples and cheese drizzled with honey, Red Velvet cake, Crème Brulée, gelatin with fresh berries, cookies and ice cream, — always leave room for something sweet in your life, even if it’s nibbling on your beloved. 😉 Sweets let us have something to look forward to, when done correctly.
Most importantly, there’s companionship and love at the table. People gather to eat not always because they’re hungry; one may as well eat alone to alleviate hunger. People gather to eat because at least one person at the table is looking forward to someone he or she shares his or her heart with to be at the table. Never think that you eat alone at the table of life, for at least one person loves you enough to hope and pray that you are alive and well. There’s always room at the table… for you.
Now, who wants to help me with the dishes? Don’t everyone stand up at once. Hello? Hello?