I have been sharing my recent loss. Some may wonder why or may find it too difficult to touch. Yet, touch it you must. One day, you will have no choice but to do so. One day, it will be your turn to be the one who’s fine one day only to find your world shattered the next. One day, it will be you who others keep at a distance as though your grief is radioactive and will contaminate them if they come within proximity of it.
We’ve made death as sterile as a hospital room. We’re not prepared for the messiness of grief. We feel stained with it and by it. We suddenly find ourselves on the outside looking in almost like we’ve been pulled out of the space-time continuum right along with our lost loved ones. The relationship with the one we lost has unilaterally and irrevocably been altered without our consent, and we find ourselves in the disorientation of liminality.
We find that we are no longer where we’ve been, who we’ve been, or what we’ve been. The steady ground we took for granted suddenly melts away. We find ourselves knee deep in a pool of our own tears. Not sure where we go from here, not quite whole as we fish for the shards of our broken hearts and begin building something new. In this moment, we pause to ask ourselves – What will tomorrow look like? – and choose – Who will we be?
Slowly, for moments at a time, the fog lifts, and we begin to see beyond the immediate. We do not reconstruct a life; we can never do so with precious pieces missing. We must begin anew to construct and create a new vision of possibilities. One where we will find joy again, be at peace, feel the love, and be forever grateful for the soul that, oh, so briefly touched ours.
Profound and absolutely true.
I think it’s one reason why children should have pets. They learn about death and dying in along with responsibility and love. No, it’s not the same as losing one’s partner, child, parent, grandparent or sibling, but it is a lesson in loss of someone deeply loved.
I know when my first husband died, we had been divorced for nine years and I had had no contact with him, it was still shattering.
In time your tears will be seen as watering the ground for the renewed life that will grow from the love and lessons you shared with he whom you have lost in physical presence.