Grief doesn’t come in five linear phases like they say. It’s unpredictable and unreasonable. At least that’s been my experience. It’s been over two years since my sister committed suicide and even though I don’t feel that deep, aching sadness on a daily basis anymore, I have no doubt that the grief has lodged itself deep in my bones. When I least expect it, it rears its ugly, beautiful head and breaks free in showers of tears, shudders and moans, thrashing and roaring, leaving an exhausted, shattered, shell in its wake. But, as painful and depleting as it can be, I believe that sometimes we need to experience that emptiness in order to find fullness again.
I’ve been thinking a lot recently about how we’re taught from an early age not to express certain emotions. How sadness, grief, anger, frustration and even elation are all taboo. We’re taught to take a deep breath and remain calm. Otherwise, we’re “crazy.” What if instead, we were taught to let it all go; to express our feelings freely, however they choose to manifest themselves? I think we’d all be happier, healthier human beings if we felt free to laugh uncontrollably, dance in the streets, yell, sob, moan, and shake.
Last month, during my seasonal Ayurvedic cleanse, while lying in shavasana one day, I lost control of my body and started crying, shaking, flailing and screaming. The episode lasted only a few minutes, but to be honest, it scared me a little. I felt totally out of control (something that’s always been hard for me) and immediately started wondering if I was losing it and having a mental breakdown (an ongoing fear of mine that I’ve been working on). In reality, it was just my body letting go of some of that grief and anger I’d been holding onto for years. Afterwards, I felt lighter and freer; a weight lifted. There was more room in my heart for all the good stuff. I’ve heard from multiple people who have had similar experiences and feel more strongly than ever that expressing our emotions is essential for long term mental, emotional and physical health and well-being. Wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, don’t be afraid to feel. To quote one of my favorite childhood songs, “It’s alright to feel things, though the feelings may be strange.”
And after you’ve listened to the song and had a good, long, ugly, beautiful cry, go make yourself a cozy Pistachio Rose Matcha Latte. Continue reading for the recipe…
*This post was sponsored by Diamond Nuts. Thank you for supporting my work by supporting my sponsors. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Pistachio Rose Matcha Latte
1 cup raw shelled pistachios, soaked overnight
2 teaspoons matcha powder
1 teaspoon rose water
1 teaspoon raw cashew butter
1 teaspoon raw honey
Drain and rinse the soaked pistachios then add them to the container of a high speed blender with 2 cups cold water. Blend on high for 15-30 seconds. Pour the pistachio milk through a fine mesh sieve or a nut milk bag into a medium pot and discard the pulp (or save it for another use). Warm the pistachio milk over medium heat until barely simmering (do not boil). Rinse out the blender. Combine the matcha, rose water, cashew butter and honey in the blender, add the warm milk, and blend on high for 10-15 seconds, until frothy. Serve immediately.