An illustration that features various elements that are found in kitchens. Vegetables, herbs, a frying pan, a cutting board and knives can be seen and in the center left there is a colorful red flame.

Food, Grief and Healing

Food is a powerful coping mechanism for grief. We gather around tables for comforting meals, or deliver casseroles to grieving loved ones. In grief, it’s tempting to indulge in sugary, fatty foods for comfort. Instead, I’ve learned to channel my grief into cooking. Through cooking, I turn my grief into something tangible. I start with raw materials which need to be chopped, cut open, smashed, diced, in order to release their potency and cook properly. When raw material meets heat, true transformation begins.

Choose a recipe – one you know by heart, or one you’ve never tried. Gather the ingredients. As you manipulate each raw object, project your grief onto it. Watch it transform as you chop, slice, saute, bake. Feel your anger burn like the heat of the stove, yet watch how vegetables soften in the heat. See how sizzling meat resists the hot pan, then relaxes to accept the transformation. Your finished meal will be a product of healing – comforting and creative, cathartic and nourishing.

Prompt by: Kate Campbell

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