Using a grocery delivery service to be there when you cannot be there
January 9, 2016
Everyone grieves in personal ways. When my grandfather died, my grandmother didn’t want to be alone. She wanted us all there so that she could cook for us, and tell us to go brush our hair, and send us to the garden for the herbs she needed. That was her way. For my dad it was different when my mom died. He wanted to be alone. He needed solitude to grieve. We wanted to surround him with love but he needed to be in the garden, with his hands in the dirt, in the land that he shared with my mother.
I felt lost myself when she died, and I wanted to honor what he needed but still take care of him somehow. I started to imagine what that might look like. Food, of course. Not take out, but something healthy. I began to look into grocery delivery service in his area. I could call him and nag him to see if he was eating or I could just have groceries delivered to his doorstep! Then he would be inclined to cook and nourish himself.
I sent him a card. It wasn’t long and sappy or sympathetic. It was a blank card with a generic picture and I wrote on it, “You are the stronger than you think.” That was just as much for me as it was for him. I needed him to remember that he was strong because I needed him to be strong. I needed to speak to him even if he did not want to be spoken to.
After the grocery delivery service dropped off a gallon of milk, dozen eggs, loaf of bread, block of sharp cheddar cheese, bag of apples and six pack of beer, my dad texted me and said, “The groceries have been delivered and now I suppose I must prepare myself a meal. I think I am strong enough for this. Thank you.”
I’d have rather been there but I come from a long line of “food is love” people and as long as he was fed than I could feel sure he knew he was loved.
Losing a loved one is hard. Grieving is personal. With a little thought and effort, you can still be there for your loved ones, without “being there”.