Grieving is a healthy response to life’s brokenness. When we grieve we allow our emotions to catch up with our minds. It allows us to think more clearly, make better choices, and we might be able to avoid the “comfort” foods that can mask our pain or negatively affect our own health.
I noticed that when I go to funerals, there is often a lot of pound cake, chocolate sweets, and more. The food is certainly southern comfort food, perhaps pork BBQ, fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, and the like. But I have started to wonder if we are replacing our grief with these foods. Why is it when my dad passed, according to his death certificate of congestive heart failure, the hospital, out of an act of graciousness, brought our family donuts and sugary drinks? I was baffled because processed high-sugar and high-fat foods are known to harm the heart, and here we were being offered these in the hospital room where my dad’s heart stopped. And my family ate the foods.
It occurred to me that there is a disconnect between our reality, our actions, our knowledge, and how to combine them in highly emotional situations. Perhaps grieving well is what is missing. We often don’t allow ourselves room and space to grieve, and it clouds our thinking. Here are a few tips that have helped me to grieve, and I have noticed that I am much healthier after I have intentionally started this grief process:
- Cry. I remind myself that it is OK to show my emotions in this way.
- Walk. I go for long walks, and it is helping me out of depression.
- Write. I express what I am thinking on paper, napkins, Facebook, Twitter, etc.
- Commune. I feel less along when I am with people, showing love to them.
- Pray. I ask for comfort and healing.
I hope these ideas will work for you. I pray comfort and healing in the areas of your life that need it most. And we can celebrate that a new day will come.