Welcome to my blog! I am a 24 year old woman who has recently been bereaved of one of the most important people in my life. Relatively recently, I should say. Not so recently that I am completely submerged in agony but recently enough that moving forward from the horror seems pretty impossible. I’m grieving, and very likely I’m depressed as well.

So this is where the blog comes in, one of many ideas floated and quickly abandoned. I could have a baby! I should move to a new city! I need to associate with completely different people. I’ll write children’s books, I’ll go travelling. It’s difficult to find your way back to normal because nothing is normal anymore; creating more, other huge changes in my life seemed a reasonable answer. Not so practical though, and probably not too sensible. A blog is less dramatic. If you’re reading this (which you must be!) that’s fine, and if you’re reading this because you’ve stumbled upon it and think it might be helpful to you somehow that’s great, but the reason I’m writing this blog is because it is one way I am attempting to survive. I’m hoping it will give me some focus and structure and give me some feeling of worth but without making too many demands of me. Focused but not stressed is the aim.

I am going to attempt to write honestly about grief, partly to use this blog as a replacement therapist but also partly to help anyone reading understand grief or to recognise something of their own grief in someone else and so feel less alone. But I am also going to cook! I love, have always loved, eating food. Not all food, I don’t have a particularly sophisticated palate and I cannot stand real grown up food like olives or strong cheese. But I think about food a lot. I panic if I am invited to an event where food plans are ambiguous. I need regular, consistent feeding and I look forward to my meals very much. But I am only a very mediocre cook, and a pretty awful baker. I can cook you a decent enough spag bol, but if I do a curry I generally use sauce from the jar. My baked goods are far and few between but usually dry or burnt (often burnt). I want to learn how to cook. I want to be able to whip up something impressive in my kitchen, totally from memory. I want to be able to look at a table of raw ingredients, Masterchef style, and go ‘Not a problem here Greg and/or John, I know exactly what I’m doing and in an hour I’ll be making your eyes bulge with characteristic delight at my delicious culinary creations’. So, the (initial) challenge of this blog is to cook (and document the cooking of) one dish every week, alternating between sweet and savoury (I reserve the right to make the challenge easier at whim). The featured dish will be something I haven’t cooked before, or something I’ve attempted but not yet got the hang of.

My vision is that the posts will include insights on grief (if I have any, that is), what I’m cooking and why, how easy it was to cook, what the verdict was, and photos of each disaster and success alike.

My hope is that I will be coping with the grief, and coping with the cooking. I hear it’s an unpredictable process, so we’ll just have to see how it goes. You’re welcome to join me on this journey.