A while back I posted about moving Lit Goals away from just reviews and more towards actual literacy; keeping with that I'd like to let you in on my newest project. Emotional Literacy During Grief.
Emotional Literacy is a term that is used to describe one's ability to understand and express feelings. It involves a self-awareness and recognition of how you feel, and how you're able to manage those feelings.
On March 6, 2017 my father died. I've written about that and about the books I read during that time to try and understand what I was feeling, how I should have been feeling, but mainly about how I wanted to escape those feelings. 345 days later, February 14, 2018 my mother died. While her death was less unexpected than my father's, it fucking hurt. Her last 12 days were hard and I'm not over it. Time moves on, and a month and 5 days later I'm in a better place to talk about it. Her memorial was last week, my father has been dead for a year. These are facts and dates on a calendar, but they're also carved into me. My calendars still say it's February, because somehow not changing them is giving me a foothold to cling to.
Which brings us to the newest goal, Emotional Literacy During Grief. ELDG. When my father died I read a handful of books, and then mainly started reading fairy tale re-tellings because escapism was a real thing and I had a dying mother to care for. This time around I can't escape from anything because escape for me implies a certain level of "hey, this thing happened and continues to happen." This time around I went a little crazy buying books, and they're geared towards helping me process what I'm feeling.
The list from before includes:
- Thanks, Dad
- The Once and Future King
- H is for Hawk
- Smoke Gets in Your Eyes
- Every Last Word
- The Last Lecture
And my list now includes:
- It's Okay That You're Not Okay
- Grief Works
- Modern Loss
- Dead People Suck
- My Father's Wake
- From Here to Eternity
- The Dead Moms Club
- It's Okay to Laugh (Crying is Okay Too)
- How to Survive the Loss of a Parent
- The Orphaned Adult
I'm currently reading The Dead Moms Club by Kate Spencer. She was 27 when she lost her mother to cancer, I'll be 27 this August, I lost my mother to cancer, and on page 11 she brought up this stupid blue book "Gone From My Sight" that you get when hospice care starts, and I kid you not I finally felt like someone got it. I got that stupid blue book three times and set one of them on fire.
I'll be spending the next while reading and sorting through emotions. And then reading to find some happiness.
Until next time,
Side note, I wrote something amazing to make it through my mother's memorial. I'll post that next.