I reinvented myself 1 ½ years after my husband died. He’d had a long illness, with the last year of his life terribly difficult for him, and consequently, for all of us. A year after he died at age 56, I realized I still hadn’t re-engaged with life. Having learned that life is shorter than we think it’s going to be, I decided I couldn’t let myself spend even 10 more minutes under that black cloud. Living through a terminal illness with a loved one changes us profoundly on many levels, and I simply couldn’t get back in the groove. I quit my job and enrolled in culinary school at age 57, and immediately found myself immersed in a whole new world that captured my attention and imagination. It felt like going from black and white back into Technicolor. I loved every minute of it!
Upon graduation from Culinary School of the Rockies in Boulder, I began working throughout Northern Colorado as a private chef, cooking for families and small private parties. I found myself spending my day at my client’s home, just me and their dog, and came home to me and my dog, and I hadn’t talked to anyone all day. I hadn’t lived in Fort Collins long enough to have established a good support network and needed more people in my life. I fell into teaching when friends and family asked me to teach them how to cook fish or how to “fill in the blank,” and discovered with some surprise that I loved teaching. I moved into the house on Mulberry, put up a sign, and started my new life. I have met wonderful people, have made fast friends in all walks of life, and have found my niche and a calling that deeply satisfies me, and am grateful for this new life.