Monday, September 6, 2010

Walking Through Jello

This Grief thing is hard.

It is work.

It is like walking through Jello.

Or thigh high mud.

It is arduous.

It is exhausting and confusing and stupid and shameful and full of guilt and anger and sadness and aloneness.

I started reading Elisabeth Kubler-Ross's book, Grief and Grieving, The Five Stages of Grief.

She died before she saw her last book in print.

She is amazing.

She knows me. She has seen my pain and is explaining it to me, step by agonizing step.

It helps to know I am normal.

It helps to know that others have (and every minute, join me) gone before me in this journey.

I hope TBHITW meets her on the other side.

As I talk with my family and friends I have found out that TBHITW has been busy. He has been visiting people. Even some of you. I take these accounts into my heart and it makes me smile.

He lives.

As I told the 20 year old tonight, away at college, over the phone, he lives in us. The 20 year old dreams of him. It is comforting. I assured him that is his dad. Visiting him, caring for him.

TBHITW's brother called me today to tell me of his dream. TBHITW was on a houseboat. His brother asked him what he was doing on a houseboat, he reminded him that he was dead. TBHITW replied, "this is the waiting place". "What are you waiting for?" TBHITW replied, "heaven". On a houseboat? And TBHITW replied, "We get to choose our waiting place, I chose, this. Beautiful, right?"

Yes. A houseboat would be beautiful.

I made salmon yesterday. TBHITW did not like salmon so I never made it for him. But the 16 year old and I love salmon.

I found cedar papers that I had bought a while back. I marinated the salmon in brown sugar and ponsu sauce, wrapped it in the cedar papers and grilled it. I made tri-colored couscous and fresh steamed green beans. It was sweet and smoky and sad and happy and everything that life is. You get to unwrap it when you are ready. Just like a present.


  1. I think sometimes communication is easier in dreamland. I am glad that you have found comfort in something; you are not alone. The salmon looks wonderful. Does cooking help?

  2. You are completely normal and completely amazing. I mean that from the bottom of my heart.

    Continuing to pray and hope for you.

  3. I am glad he is conforting you..that is a great book..eveyone goes those those steps of grieving its universal..its all part of life..I send you love. Marlene

  4. I had read all of Kubler-Ross's books at one point. She was the one that started me on a life-long study of NDEs. She was an amazing pioneer. The salmon looks just wonderful. I can't wait to try it with the cedar papers and ponzi sauce.

    Very interesting about the waiting place.

    Grief is exactly as you described. Hard work, arduous, tiring.

  5. Yes my friend grief can be hard work but I believe you are doing a fine job of working through it. I love salmon too and will have to try your way soon. Have a great week.

  6. I stopped in denial for a whole year. It's such hard work, my friend. Sometimes you think your body physically cannot handle it. But it can. And you can. I'm glad he's visiting you and others on his journey home.

  7. Wow. A houseboat! That sounds lovely. I don't doubt he is waiting there for you. The salmon is beautiful. Glad you are cooking!

  8. I feel like such a bad bloggy friend - I've been preoccupied with completely meaningless details, and somehow I missed this news. I'm so sorry. I don't know what I can possibly say, except that I'm here (for all that 'here' is far away) and if there is anything I can do, you only have to ask.

  9. I know you hear so many people tell you their experience. I don't know why we do that. The way you have been describing your grieving is reminding me of some of the things my daughter said and how she acted when her husband died. It broke my heart to see her pain. Now I have such strong feelings for you and your pain and I have not been following your blog very long. Maybe reaching out to each other is so much more than reading someones blog.

  10. just know that I am thinking of you and sending comfort your way....

  11. It made me smile to read that he has been showing himself. A houseboat does sound fabulous. This salmon sounds amazing. XX

  12. walking through jello sounds like the most amazing description. Leave it to you to find an absolutely perfect food metaphor.

    I love that he is visiting you all. Hopefully another kiss will be something in your future. He did not want to leave so I think he will do all he can to stay.

    I saw this quote recently and of course you came flooding into my mind.

    “What we have once enjoyed we can never lose. All that we love deeply becomes a part of us.”
    ~Helen Keller

    I hope that he becomes a strong part of all of you and lives on and on and on!

  13. So glad that you found that book. And you are right about it being hard work, but at least we are not alone. Blessings to you, my friend. Love and hugs, Marguerite

  14. That author may have been amazing but you are inspiring to me. And my husband and I were just talking last night about how we can be visiting by those who have already gone.

  15. Grief is like swimming upstream. It's exhausting. Sending postive thoughts your way....


Wow. Thank you so much for taking the time to comment. I love feedback... what with being a cook and all. I will respond to your comments via email (if you do not have a "noreply" address or here, below your comment) As always, Bon Appetite!

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