The Five Stages of Pie--Grief & Loss Series
Oh, the Delightful Table of Denial
Not a Bite
I wouldn't take a bite out of it. Not even a ceremonious bite.
Its fleshy constitution is reminiscent of bad holidays. The kind some of us experienced as kids. The kind where everything is all dressed up like Aunt Betty, but falling even flatter in expectations. Think: wax fruit and vegetables; enough candles for a pyre; exotic jello landscapes not designed to be eaten--just admired (in someone's imagination!), and crystal that dares to break in the slippery hands of children. (Next, add the long-haired cat's tail, which has caught fire while stalking the table's stage.)
As as kid, I conjured up the makings of many of my relatives' festive offerings. But the mincemeat pie (stage-one of grief) reignites my imagination: I still see the tape-chinned (pre-botox era) neighbor who spat and shoo'd us all: siblings and cousins (those of us who managed to break free from the holiday dysfunction for a bit), from her front yard, shouting "devil's dumpings," as we scattered like mice into the nearest shrubs for cover.
Remembering there are five stages of grief (or loss), it begs to indulge fantasies of corresponding pies for each of life's crusty stages. It seems reasonable enough in theory. Doesn't it?
We've established mincemeat's denial....It pretends to be something it's not--for a while. Come on, let's face it. It's not a pie! But it's comfortable to bask in it's pie-ness (not taking a bite), just imagining it could be good. In reality, good is a hammock slung between two large trees on a breezy summer afternoon.
Denial is a favorite stage for most of us, I believe. It's the great con. Don't buy it. Don't even rent it. It's a word. And it's free. Own it victoriously--when you need it. Just carry it around with you in that fifth pocket, where it's always within reach, but not seen.
Well, I know it works well for me until... What's around the corner in those prickly bushes? Anger? Could this be our next uninvited guest? The one that stinks worse than most fish? And stays with you far longer.