Grieving and Re-grieving

I’m trying to deal with a lot of unprocessed grief at the moment and wanted to share a couple of things that I’ve found helpful.

This little video, Why grief is not something you have to get over offers a perspective that really makes sense to me. The counsellor in the video talks about how the therapeutic model for working with grief is shifting, from seeing grief as something that gets less over time, to something that’s always there, but that other aspects of your life can grow around. So, while the grief doesn’t go away, it isn’t so all-consuming. But you can dip back into it at certain times, which brings me to the next point.

@hallygrace posted a long thread on twitter about the concept of re-grieving. Hallygrace makes the point that grief can be a life-long emotional process and you are likely to experience it again and again, especially at significant moments (anniversaries, life milestones etc). Here’s the tough bit, you have to re-process it every time. It’ not a good idea to repress the feelings or shame yourself for having them.

Weekend Cooking, Melanzane Parmigiana

Image shows a square black baking tray containing cooked melanzane parmagiana, sliced aubergines in a red tomato sauce toped with melted cheese

“Why haven’t I made this in ages?” I asked myself as I started cutting up 2 lbs of aubergines. I mean, I love aubergines and I love vegetables baked in cheese. But my question was soon answered – because it’s a right bloody faff that involves three stages of cooking. First, you have to make a tomato sauce. Then you slice up the aubergines real thin and fry them in batches. Once you’ve done all of that, you layer the aubergines with the tomato sauce and cubed mozzarella, top it with grated parmesan (or in our case, its closest affordable relative) and bake it in the oven. Was it worth the effort? Yes, absolutely. It was delicious and I served the leftovers on pasta for lunch today. Will I make it again soon? Probably not.

Recipe from my beloved and very battered copy of the Good Housekeeping, Complete Book of Vegetarian Cookery (1992)

Lesbian Protest at the BBC (1988)

Nice piece from BBC Witness about the moment a group of lesbian activists stormed the Six O’Clock news to protest about Section 28.

protest

I was eleven years’ old when this happened and I remember it vividly. I wasn’t the kind of kid who always knew they were gay, but the protest really affected me and stuck in my mind. On some level, I seemed to know that it mattered and it had something to do with me.

I’m constantly amazed by just how different the world has been for LGBTQ people who grew up in the UK after the repeal of Section 28.

February culture round-up

Books

I finished exactly one book this month, The Thirteen Problems, which is a collection of early Miss Marple stories. It was quite fun. Good for dropping off to sleep with. I’ve got several other books on the go. I’m chipping away at Eat Up! by Ruby Tandoh. I’m enjoying it, but it’s presenting a challenge to my eating disordered brain. I’ve started Sovereign, the third in C.J. Sansom’s Tudor mystery series. I’m halfway through Finders Keepers by Stephen King and not liking it as much as Mr Mercedes, mainly because I find the bad guy deeply uninteresting and a lot it is told from his perspective.

Films 

We went to the cinema twice to see The Shape of Water and Black Panther. I really enjoyed both films and the interesting discussions they’ve sparked online. We also watched Crimson Peak on Netflix, which was enjoyably ridiculous, and a lot less ironic than I expected.

Television

Star Trek Discovery generated the most excitement about television. I have quite few problems with this show (which I won’t get into here because it would need a longer post), but I still enjoyed watching and found it really compelling. We finished up the second season of The Good Place. I was very lukewarm until about halfway through season one. I’ve got into it, but I wonder if it can live up to its ambition and it does poke me in my ex-catholic sore spots a bit! We started watching Welsh mystery series, Hinterland (Y Gwyll). I like the dark, atmospheric, Gothic bleakness of it, plus it’s set in the area around where I was born. Finally, we are loving Wynonna Earp  – so much fun and we both fancy most of the main cast.

Music 

It was all about First Aid Kit this month.