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grief

Grief As I Know It

I remember when my best friend died at the age of 29, three weeks before his 30th birthday. My step-father told me to get over it, and everyone dies, and it’s a part of life. Well, duh, I thought. I was so mad at him for being so insensitive and as far as I was concerned not very helpful. He wasn’t a nice man to me throughout my childhood; so why would I think he would have compassion for me now. Anyways I digress that is another story in itself. He was about 70, and I guess at that age a person has seen a lot of death.

My grandparents died but they lived a good life. They were old, it’s the natural progression of life. Losing Brian, my best friend that I met when I was 7 was devastating. My chest felt like my heart had been ripped out.

I can not say that any death after his death has gotten easier. I have experienced many deaths, in my 53 years on this earth. What I can say is that they are all different but none the less heartbreaking.

The heart-wrenching punch to the stomach; can’t breathe, still feels the same as it did all those years ago. The questions of why did this happen still are on my mind, but the length of time is much shorter.

Do we become cold and indifferent to pain and suffering through the passage of death, the older we become?

This year alone, I have lost three friends and a fiance. The biggest hit was my soon to be husband. Devastated is what we all were.

I still wake up some mornings with a lump in my throat and bile rising from my stomach, feeling as if it happened yesterday. It has been a year now. As I stand and look in the mirror barely even awake, brushing my teeth, I start to cry. I think to myself, “a great way to start the day.”

Does time, one knows someone, determine the extent of the grief? I would have to say no. We can not measure anyone else’s pain to our own. Is it a process, yes. With all the deaths, I have experienced in my life I know is that it doesn’t get easier but changes. Maybe wisdom and experience have something to do with it. Was my step-father, right?

I have days that I get by and even moments when I don’t think of him, but then a song or a smell or a sight will bring him to the forefront of my memory.

Some of the ways I have been dealing with it differently than in the past is that I express my feelings, and I don’t try to numb out with alcohol or drugs. However, lately, I have found a new way to numb out with an endless series of tv. Sharing my grief, with someone I love and trust with my feelings, and I try to get out and enjoy the things I once enjoyed.

I know one thing for sure that we can’t avoid death but hopefully, time is gentle for you and you don’t have to see it too often.

Resource: Elizabeth Kubler Ross – 5 Stages of Grief Model – https://grief.com/the-five-stages-of-grief/

Sounds of Silence

It has been a long time since I have put pen to paper or should I say fingers to keys. Writing has always been a way for me to get it all out. The last couple of years, I have stopped using my voice.

Things changed for me a so much. I met the man that I thought I was going to marry. He took up so much of my time that I think I lost myself. I lost myself in his life and forgot about things that made me truly happy. How did I let that happen again? I ask myself this over the last few months. Our love that was anything but calm. I was scrambling, in all directions – it was an all-consuming fire our love.

We both agreed that this relationship was different. From the moment we laid eyes on each other. We had never felt anything like this before, and it was different. We couldn’t get enough of each other. It soon became all consuming. We talked on the phone ALL the time, skype sessions for hours and trips to see each other. He became my world. Nothing else mattered except him and his life. I stopped doing things that made me happy because he was my world.

This is not a fairy tale love story. It soon became very apparent that this relationship had some problems. Not with our love but with life.

The Problem

He lived 2000 miles away, divorced but still not over the loss of the family unit. His children were everything to him, and that was part of the strong attraction I think I had for him. I am sure I will never know the real story of his life before me because as we know, there is his truth, her truth, and then The Truth. Perception is a tricky thing in life.

Having stepped out of the fire, but not on my own accord, because on Feb 14th of this year his heart finally broke and he died suddenly. All my hopes and dreams that I had for a future life with him in an instant vanished.

It left a massive void in my life. My world became silent.
I had let so many things go during our manic whirlwind of a relationship. My life was no longer my own, and I lived for his phone calls and his visits or my visits. I let go of my friends, my church, activities like my love of scuba diving.

As a result, I see how unhealthy I became now that I have silence.
Since that day, when my world stopped as I knew it and life became silent, and grief took over, I have had much time to reflect. Today I finally feel like I am starting to live again. I started doing the things that I love and makes me feel alive diving.

Diving has the kind of silence, a healing silence where it’s just me and my bubbles — the sounds of the ocean with its special lullaby sung just for me.

picture by girlsthatscuba.