Whenever I make scrambled eggs, I think of people I’ve lost.

I grew up poor. So poor, in fact that at one point during my childhood we ended up having to move in with my mom’s mom: Mary Noel LaGrange. That ended up workng out great for me, because I got to spend a lot of time with my grandmother.

She loved to feed me and watch me eat. Looking back through old photos, I was such a fat baby! A lot of it was her doing.

What I remember most, though, are the quiet mornings that we spent in the kitchen, when she’d make me eggs and cheese.

4 eggs. Cast iron pot. Butter. 2 slices of American cheese.

The pot she used was well seasoned, and I remember that she’d somehow get the eggs and cheese to brown in such a way that they became one delicious entity.

I was by her bedside when she passed away. I was still too young to learn how to cook, so she didn’t get to teach me how to make them.

A few years later Cheryl, the older neighbor girl who lived next door came over and taught me how to make scrambled eggs. She also passed away way too soon, in a horrific car accident.

I have made at least 8,000 scrambled eggs in my life, but I have never been able to replicate my grandmother’s eggs. There’s just something about them that I have yet to figure out.

Every time I make scrambled eggs, I think of my grandmother and Cheryl, and every now and then I throw in some American cheese and try to make those eggs.

One day I’ll get them right.