There is something sweet about inviting people into your kitchen. There is power in the shared togetherness when people gather to make food. On my last morning in Guatemala, I loaded onto a bus with 10 other American women for a trip to the farm where the food kitchen is located.
The idea of this morning was to teach the Guatemalan women about nutrition. It is completely true that they know how to cook, no doubt about it. But what we wanted was to educate these women with the knowledge and tools they would need to bring nutrition into their family's bellies.
Veggies were being chopped, and meat was placed in foil packets across a long table in the middle of the room; Guatemalan and American women filled on both sides. The walls were this vibrant teal color that will forever lay as a symbol of togetherness in my mind. It was definitely warm in this place, but I believe that it was because of all of the laughter.
Just like an American kitchen, there were little children running in and out, tugging at mommy’s arm, their giggles and smiles being the soundtrack of the morning. This scene and this space was familiar.
Oh the great honor and joy these women partake in as they provide for their families the best way they know how. The dignity and honor that fill their faces as they place the vegetables among the foil packets. Careful detail was accounted for with these women.
But one of the greatest memories of this morning, that will forever be kept in my heart, was allowing these women to teach us how to make tortillas. Let me tell you, they are GREAT at it, and so QUICK! Oh the sound of the patterning of hands that was smoothing the tortilla dough. These women worked deliberately and mindlessly. Upon our discussion, I came to learn that on average, they make 50 tortillas a DAY! Fresh tortillas are made for every meal.
Oh I wish you could have seen the humble pride these women had as they taught these naive Americans how to make corn tortillas. They were proud to have ownership of something that holds meaning. They laughed at our silly attempt to pat our dough out, but graciously waited as we took our time making a tortilla, one by one.
Usually, I get caught up being behind the camera and taking in each moment, that I tend to forget to participate. I am thankful for the patient Guatemalan women that pleaded with me to just make one. To see the joy on their faces again, I would do anything.
Am I thankful for the footage that I gathered from that morning? YES. Yet, I am that much more thankful for the sacred privilege of being invited into their normal moments, and seeing the joy their hearts experienced through teaching me.
On this Monday, I ask you, what is your tortilla making moment? What are you keeping yourself from participating with? Take a break from looking through a lense and see the reality that is in front of you IN THAT MOMENT.