Who knew that turkey gravy could be an emotional trigger?

My mom elevated turkey gravy to unprecedented levels. Flour, drippings, a little bit of this, a little bit of that. Pure magic.

I could drink her gravy by the bowl.

These days, making the gravy is my responsibility. Even with the same ingredients, try as I might I’ve yet to replicate her level of mastery. Maybe it’s a Mom thing?

This past Thanksgiving was the second one without Mom. She had long retired from cooking on Thanksgiving, but now she is no longer at the table with us.

I always think of her when I make the gravy. I can still see her at the stove with the metal whisk in her hand effortlessly beating the ingredients into a cohesive submission as the flames danced up the sides of the sauce pan. Not a measuring spoon in sight. She just knew.

It’s always an emotional time for me.

It’s a process, grieving is. A personal process. A non-linear often unpredictable process, often without an end date.

Often processed alone.

There is no one “right” way to grieve. No one “right” way to get to the other side of the pain. I’m not even sure if there is another side to get to.

Often we don’t understand why the hurt still hurts, why the emptiness still feels so empty. Especially when we try to convince ourselves that enough time has gone by and we should somehow be stronger than to let the pain resurface yet again. “Should” creates its own kind of pain, the pain of not allow ourselves the space for our process to evolve on it’s own schedule and not our own.

Your loss is your loss.

The pain and emptiness you feel are real.

They need never be validated, explained, or justified.

Grieving is an important component of healing.

So give yourself the permission and the space to do so.

No matter how long your process may take.

Photo by Kat J on Unsplash

2 thoughts on “Owning The Emptiness and The Permission To Grieve

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