It’s been nine years since my mothers’ passing. Each year offers something new and different. This year is filled with planning a wedding, which brings on new experiences. Kinda like, oh hello tears, so nice of you to visit at the most inappropriate times. Wedding planning has been a bit awkward and empty when dealing with tedious details that mothers take over but mainly so exciting, full and wonderful to marry my best friend, partner in goofiness and hunk of a guy!
This year, we grieved together. For his grandmother and my mother- both named Eleni. We decided to make our own koliva together. In the Eastern Orthodox Church, we make this wheat dish called koliva with nuts, raisins, parsley, pomegranate, cinnamon and Jordan almonds sprinkled with sugar that we bring to church on the day of the memorial where we do a service for the reposed souls. Some pay others or have a family friend make it, so I was always intimated to try it. The result was imperfect but a beautiful process that gave me time to reflect and be in silence and prayer. I highly recommend making it yourself (for those Orthodox friends). We listened to this podcast while preparing it. There is something about boiling wheat to perfection (or imperfection in our case), peeling pomegranates and preparing with my own hands that makes it more special. It’s time consuming, but it lends the perfect space to let yourself just completely grieve.