I read this in a book the other day. “Grief flows like blood beneath my skin”. Well said.
People who are grieving aren’t trying to not feel good or not be positive. They are, quite simply, grieving.
The more I read about death and grief, the more I realize how ill-prepared we, as a society, are to support it. We want death, and grief, to be wrapped up in a neat little package to make it make sense. Death doesn’t make sense. It is simply a part of life that happens. Whether its’ from cancer, heart attack, other illness, blunt force trauma, IED’s, injuries-whatever. People live, people die. God isn’t sitting somewhere in a cloud dealing it out or judging who lives, who dies. Its’ life.
Grief has no map. It’s all over the place. Up and down, back and forth. One year of grieving doesn’t make it go away. For many people it intensifies because the anesthesia wears off and the reality of your loved one’s absence smacks you in the face and the gut daily and…minute…ly. The reality of it can leave you breathless.
You know what I’m thankful for (people tell me to find something to be thankful for). I’m thankful for Ignatia Amara and Star of Bethlehem, two homeopathic remedies that for maybe up to an hour at a time, slow my heart rate a bit from the adrenalin rush of grief that causes it to pound relentlessly in my chest and helps me feel a little bit less like I’m suffocating.
I’m not thankful for my life (I’ve been told that I should at least feel grateful to be alive). Though I guess that isn’t completely true; I suppose I am grateful for still being alive, at least for my kids’ sake. I don’t want them to have to mourn 2 parents so closely together. Left on my own, I think I’d head to the desert in my PinkMagic rig and shut myself away. All that life is for me right now is life without Handsome Husband. No, he wouldn’t want me to feel that way. Yes, he’d understand that I feel that way.
I wonder sometimes if all of this is because I’m feeling sorry for myself. Why do we judge ourselves so harshly? Why do we put judgment on emotions? My rational self knows I’m not feeling sorry for myself; I’m just grieving the death of a man who was my life-blood in so many ways and I feel his absence keenly. I need to stop judging my grief.
I need to email and call Handsome Husband’s friends to ask them to talk to me about my husband, about who he was in their lives, about memories they carry. The other day I realized that nobody talks to me about him. Nobody says his name to me. That is a killer, over and over again. It makes him seem more gone than ever. Part of that comes from me being so far away from his community, I know. But I need to hear people talk about him.
I look so fucking normal on the outside. My insides, right behind the face everyone sees on a daily basis as I’m out and about creating a life for myself, are a war-torn, shredded mess of blood, sweat and tears. Believe me, hysteria lurks directly below the surface.