Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Thing About Grief

September 19, 2012                                 10:27 p.m

Here’s the thing about grief.  Specifically the grief of losing your child.

It can suck the life right out of you.

It can, and does, leave you gasping for air, for mercy, for reprieve.

Grief can take everything you thought you knew about yourself and the world you live in, and shatter it all in an instant.

Grief can make you doubt yourself, causing you to question your strength, your sanity, your sense of hope in a better tomorrow.

Grief can and does, all this and you can’t argue with it.  You can’t tell it to stop.  You can’t bargain that if you “pay your dues” now, you will be guaranteed good later. 

Hell, sometimes you don’t even know the next instant grief will take its’ icy grip on your heart, bringing you to your knees in sorrow.

At least not in the beginning. 

In the beginning grief is unpredictable and unrelenting.  There is no reasoning with it. 

You have to, instead, just hang on and hope like hell that you don’t fall off into the bottomless ocean of despair and hopelessness.

In grief, you can be going about your day, doing your best to survive, perhaps even feeling like you are doing better and “getting back to the you that you used to know.” 

You can decide to take a chance on yourself and be happy and then, like a colt learning to stand for the first time, you are knocked down, again and again and again. 

Your legs are wobbly.  Your resolve is tenuous at best. 

And yet you keep on.  You continue to try to stand.

Because really, what option is there?  Lay down? Stay down?

There are days, often many times each day, when you want to lay down and stay there, but then Life steps in and argues with your grief burdened heart.

Life says, “You don’t get to stay down forever.  You have others to live for that are doing their best to stand each day and live for you.” 

Life says, “I am going to hold you accountable.  I am going to call you to stand.  It will be exhausting, and you will often need to rest for a moment, but you will stand.  You will rise each day, and for many days it will be horrible.  But at some point you will realize you didn’t have to concentrate on rising that day.  Someday you will begin to remember the goodness in me.  The goodness in Life.  One day, Life will fill more space in your heart than grief.” 

That day is not today.  But someday it will be.

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