Sunday, November 27, 2011

Grief: Where Has All the Comfort Gone?

I tell you this time of year doesn't seem to get easier - for me, anyway.  I'm not screaming or crying but I am feeling sluggish and unmotivated.  I want to bury my face in pie!   I bought really big earrings on sale.  I had lunch with two wonderful friends.  A couple.  I can be with couples who are in love now without wanting to smack them or start weeping.  So there.  I guess it does get easier.  It just is so big in my head.  I was talking to Artie today, lying in bed and telling him how lonely I am, how much I miss him. 

For me it's Thanksgiving - being thankful for my daughter and the lovely strangeness of knowing that for all the holidays that follow there will be 3 of us - not two - her daughter Gwendolyn, my granddaughter. (I was a single parent and Erin is as well.)  Then Dec. 11 is Artie's third dead birthday.  I'm having dinner with one of his friends.  I think I've said all this already.  I keep saying it and saying it as if I could sweep my head and heart clean - but I can't.  Then Chanukah, Christmas, New Year's, and Feb. 3rd.  My birthday present on Feb. 3rd, 1996 was to get married to this wonderful man I'd loved and waited for for 10 years.  He always knew we'd end up together, I always thought he'd never be ready.  It was fun celebrating those two dates on the same day when he was alive.  Now, not so much.  

Being present.  Breathing.  I only have to live one second, one minute at a time.  I don't do that.  I tend to pile it all together.  Today was mostly a good day.  So was yesterday.  So are most days.  Except for the silence, the emptiness, the talking to someone I hope is listening.  Come back.  I still say it.  Come back, I know you can't but I wish you would, please, come back. 

Busy couple of weeks then to a conference in Phoenix in hypnosis - then to my tiny Seattle apartment to wait for Gwendolyn to be born.  How lucky I am to have a daughter who is sober for over 5 years, who I have a wonderful relationship with. How sad it is that every time I try to breathe around that and be excited in comes my sadness.  My sadness is like fog creeping in the window cracks - taking over even when I'm busy doing other things.  Whoever has died: a spouse, a child, a parent, a grandparent, a pet, a sibling, a grandchild, a friend, young or old - what loving memories we have - what heartbreak that we can't create new earthly memories.  It's amazing to me how much I still talk about Artie.  It doesn't seem to matter that we don't have new memories - he still seems to be part of everything I do.

Keeping moving.  Trying to care.  Trying to hear all the people who tell me they love me louder than the ones that don't get it.  Trying to be grateful.

Life is like driving on a road full of pot holes - all of them the same hole - dead husband - the car bounces and shakes and some days the shock absorbers work better than others.

This blog is like what my mind is now - a rambling thing. 

All I can do is keep showing up and see what happens next.  Exercise in the morning.  Speaking again at a showing of Poetry of Resilience ( tomorrow night.  Love NYC except for the part where everyone seems to be tangled up with someone else except me even though it isn't true. 

That's it.  Hope your journey through holiday land has moments of comfort and joy - lots of them - ones that come from the heart not from blingy earrings and chocolate pie!!   xo

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing such heartfelt post about your personal journey. Grief is such an important topic and people often don't talk about it. I'm a Melbourne counsellor and I have written an article you and your readers might find interesting. There are many grief related posts on the site. This one is about when grief turns to depression (it happens to a lot of people!) Sometimes it can be hard to tell when someone is going through a long-term grieving process or when it's shifted to something else. It sounds like you've maintained a lot of hope and ability to see the beautiful things in the midst of your grief!