Mourning

June 4, 2008 at 6:44 am 4 comments

Mourning is a learning process and it takes practice. It feels strange to say, but it gets better with each new experience. By that, I mean, I am better able to handle it in a satisfactory way. Several years ago, I didn’t go to my grandmother’s funeral. I thought it would be more disrespectful to go than to stay home, knowing I would probably binge and puke while I was there. Plus I didn’t really want to see my father either, as I had cut off ties with him at that time. I wrote in my journal, talking with my grandmother, begging her understanding and forgiveness.

Meanwhile several years have passed, and so have some relatives and friends. Thus I have had a few confrontations with death. Death has something frightening about it, and years ago, I was too afraid to talk about it. Generally I would simply ignore people and pretend it didn’t happen. Gradually, I dared to speak, although I didn’t know what to say. When a school friend died, I called her mother. I barely knew her and didn’t know what to say, but we had a long talk on the phone. She was very happy that I called her.

When my friend’s life companion died, I was really able to be there for her. We spent countless evenings talking and crying together. It has been ten years, but I am still happy to listen to her and comfort her when she slips into the “missing” mode every now and then. Loss is something that affects us for several years, if not for the rest of our lives, depending on who we lost. She discovered that many people are not willing to accept the process of mourning. After six months she was still sad, and people told her it was time to get on with her life and find someone new. She never stopped living. She was simply sad and missed the greatest love of her life. That’s understandable, isn’t it?

Some people think about the meaning of life a lot, others not so much. The loss of someone we love often brings us to question death and the meaning of life. I have tended to devote my life to such speculation and reflection (sometimes to the extreme of forgetting to live, but I’m improving in my old age!). Life is a mystery we will never quite understand. But perhaps exactly that makes it magical as well. We just don’t know and never will.

Sometimes it is wonderful, sometimes it is agonizing. Despite my lack of knowledge regarding the big picture, I maintain my courage, faith and trust, and keep going. I believe that in the end it will all make sense somehow. I believe that we can find something good in every experience, and that we can learn from every experience. It is all part of this precious thing we call life: so terribly wonderful and wonderfully terrible it can be.

What I’m trying to say with all these words is really quite simple: Death is part of life, and it’s good to talk about it. In my experience, most people want to talk about it when they have lost a loved one. I talk with them, listen, ask questions, and sometimes I cry with them. That is a special part of friendship, which has also taught me a lot. That is my experience.

My further experience is that some people leave quite suddenly without warning. One of the hardest things in such a situation is that so much is left unsaid. Thus I have learned to keep in touch with those I care about and express my appreciation of them. I don’t do it perfectly, but I try.

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Entry filed under: Grief and Loss. Tags: , , , , , , , , .

Losing a Child Life these days

4 Comments Add your own

  • 1. SanityFound  |  June 4, 2008 at 6:57 am

    I’ve always loved the quote “We are born, we die, it’s what happens in between that counts” – I have experience a lot of death in my life, the first was hard to understand, the second a little bit easier, now I am able to accept it and experience the love I had for the person gone fully. Great post my friend, close to my heart.

    Reply
  • 2. diaryofarecoveredbulimic  |  June 4, 2008 at 7:39 am

    It is also of some comfort to believe that each of us goes at exactly the right time, that we have a mission to accomplish on this journey and we won’t go until we’re finished. The catch is: we don’t always know what that mission is, nor can we judge if we are finished yet. Nor can we determine that for someone else.
    It really is like you say — the more often we are confronted with loss through death, the better we become at dealing with it, and at treasuring those we still have among us! 🙂

    Reply
  • 3. estateguy  |  August 5, 2008 at 1:47 am

    Here is an article I wrote about my experiece with grief hope it helps someone:
    http://www.estatesettlement.com//ourthoughts.php

    Reply
  • 4. diaryofarecoveredbulimic  |  August 5, 2008 at 8:31 am

    Very nicely written! Thank you for sharing this!

    Reply

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