Getting Over Myself

Rejection is a real downer.

You try not to get your hopes up, but there you are, breath held, anticipation building, excitement held in check by nothing more than a tiny, niggling bit of self-doubt.

You think, because you’ve made it to the next step in the process, you must be in the running.  You brush other important things aside because you want to place all of your focus on this particular possibility.

And then the email, or the phone call, or the letter comes.  “Thank you for your interest in X position.  We had many qualified candidates.  Unfortunately, you were not chosen.  Best of luck in your future endeavors.  Please check back for other opportunities that may fit your interests.  Sincerely, Nameless Faceless Person.”

You try not to let it, but it gets you down.  You feel, for lack of a better term, deflated.  Unwanted.  Unqualified.  And that’s especially hard when you’re trying something new.  When you’re trying to make a name for yourself in a new industry.

So that’s why I’ve been a bit of an absentee blogger the last few weeks.  I’ve been wallowing, questioning my ability as a writer, as a storyteller, as a photographer, as a home cook.  Wondering if this rejection spoke to a larger issue.  If a professional doesn’t like what I produce, then is it worth anybody’s time and effort to read what I put out there?  I’ve been hiding.

I’ve been looking for inspiration – something to get me back in the saddle.  Our garden is growing, my deck herb garden is thriving, our chickens are producing.  Life is generally good.
Before the temperatures soared into the nineties, we were eating almost every meal under the gazebo on the deck – the trickle of the fountain providing a lovely backdrop, the gentle clucking of the chickens drifting up from the coop, the breeze whispering in the tulip poplars at the back of the property.  If there’s not inspiration to be found here, then I’m not sure where I’ll find it.
This last weekend – Memorial Day weekend, to be exact – we had family in town.  My mother’s sister was here, and on Monday, my husband’s family came for dinner.  We had four generations of family in one house – our boys and their two cousins; my husband’s brother and his wife (and of course my husband and I); my mother and her sister, and my husband’s parents; and then we were lucky enough to have my mother-in-law’s parents there with us.  This is the only living set of great-grandparents the boys have, and we don’t have many opportunities to spend time with them, so the fact that we were all able to celebrate Memorial Day together was a real blessing. I’m so appreciative that I have such a wonderful family with which to spend my time.
And it was just the thing I needed to get over myself.  Being surrounded by people I love, taking time to listen to the stories being told by my husband’s grandparents, watching the children play happily with each other, enjoying good food – that’s what brings me joy.
The other thing that brings me joy, and the thing that I’ve been missing, is creating good food.  Today I got back to it.  I had some pears left from my produce box last week, and some spicy red mustard greens from the garden.  Paired with some creamy goat cheese and salty, silky Prosciutto di Parma, it made a wonderful grilled pizza.
I used my favorite Pizza Dough recipe, rolled it out super thin, and topped it with the pears, cheese and greens.
I slid the whole thing as carefully as I could onto the grill and let it get nice and toasty (you can probably tell I didn’t do such an graceful job of getting the pizza on the grill – it still tasted good, though).
Then I topped the whole thing with some thinly shaved pieces of prosciutto and drizzled it all with a tiny bit of raw honey.  It was a little bitter and peppery from the greens, sweet from the pears and honey, and salty from the cheese and prosciutto.  It had a variety of textures – crispy, chewy, creamy – that all added up to a nicely balanced combination.

So, rejection brings you down, but family and good food can pick you right back up.  I love the connection between food and people and the stories that come with that.  So, I’ll continue cooking and taking pictures and writing.  And if you want to read, you will, and if you don’t you won’t.  It’s that simple.  And I’m okay with that.

11 thoughts on “Getting Over Myself

  1. >I hung on every word in this post….I am so sorry for the nameless faceless person's bad decision. "They" don't know what they're missing. I am excited that you're creating good food again, though. The pizza looks divine.

  2. >I think that you are a wonderful storyteller and I always feel that twinge when I read your posts. I think that definitely you are connecting with your readers. Maybe this job was not the right fit, and when you look back you will find some comfort in not getting the acceptance because something even more wonderful comes along. I also love the story that your photographs tell.

  3. >I love your writing. It is eloquent and peaceful, purposeful and clear. Although I do not know you personally, I always feel inspired by your posts. Please keep them coming. 🙂

  4. >Thank you all for your kind comments – I really do appreciate them.@Leanna – great tip. I go back and forth between par-baking the crust and not. Also have issues with the fire being too hot and the bottom getting totally charred. Oh, well – it always tastes good even if it's not too pretty to look at. Thanks again for the comment.

  5. >Rejection in any form is hard to take and I'm glad you had food and family together to help you get past it. Not getting the opportunity you *were in the running for* and hoped to get only means that it wasn't THE one for you, as much as you thought it was. It's hard not to question our abilities when other's don't readily jump at the opportunity to use them but you should not lose hope and you should keep trying. You have lots of gifts to offer and the one that can use them in the best way possible will come along.

  6. >The rejection only means that there is a much better place for you. God does have a plan. Patience and perseverance. Press on dear one. You have many, many gifts and your place will be revealed to you! Thanks be to God!

  7. I feel your pain. I too have been dealing with the rejection letters. Keep your head up and also keep finding inspiration wherever you can. Something good will happen soon. Also don’t let them make you doubt yourself. You have talent and a gift. I look forward to reading your posts.

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