Grief & Loss

TW - Grief & Loss :rainbow:🪽

First of all, please bare with me. It’s not often I share my feelings on here, but I hope with those that I’ve tagged it resonates in some way :mending_heart:

Imagine your sailing a stormy sea. It’s night, you can’t see much, your barely holding on. The first year of loosing someone is exactly like that. You loose all hope for the future, and the only thing keeping you from jumping ship and accepting fate is those around you. That’s how I’ve felt since February. The pain grief brings hangs about. It doesn’t disappear. Imagine your on that boat, just hoping for one minute to catch your breath. That’s how grief feels :disappointed:

Sadly though, grief isn’t talked about enough. Society unfairly sees any sort of pain as a weakness, but I know grief isn’t weak. It’s years of love, memories and happiness gone, in an instant. It’s the price we pay for love. So why hide away like it’s some dirty little secret? :heart:

My first year grieving my great grandma has been tough. The grief has been paralysing mentally and physically at times. You clutch on to memories like they are something from a china shop. This year has been a year grappling with anger, guilt, blame and denial. When people say pain changes you, boy they are right :pleading_face:

Grief is messy. Some days you barely come up for air. After so long everybody expects you to move on, but this ride has no destination, and you are not the driver. The healing process is almost as unique as the relationship you had with the person you lost and are grieving :purple_heart:

The problem is, society cannot bare facing death head on. Pain makes people feel uncomfortable. It’s society who makes us put on a brave face. Grieving people aren’t brave or strong, we are not anything other than ordinary human beings who have lost a massive part of our lives - where some days it feels like our heart has been torn out our chest :weary:

Grief doesn’t have a use by, sell by or best before date. It never goes. It’s there always, and little things like hearing songs, seeing pictures or being in places that remind you of the person can send your world crumbling. We need to name this. I am grieving the death of a loved one. I am not just sad, I am not lazy, I am not weak. I am brave and string and so is anybody else who’s been through what I have :mending_heart:

Leave a heart here if you lost somebody in 2023 or before that you couldn’t bring into 2024, and leave one message for somebody else who’s grieving :relieved::green_heart:

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As you had mentioned, “pain changes you.” Therefore, you become more than an ordinary human. Or perhaps you become an ordinary human with extraordinary insight.

Regarding bravery or strength, perhaps the greatest strength is resiliency of compassion. You have that in abundance. You are reaching beyond your own pain to share love. That reflects heroic strength.

For a time, I desperately clung to grief, as I felt as though it was still connecting me to the one I had lost. In a sense, the pain was a form of validation, reinforcing the value of the person I had lost, so pain and gratitude coexisted. Actually, it still does.

Grief offers the expansion of empathy and understanding.

I’m so very glad that you’re here! :mending_heart:

Love you @EvilGenius!

I always carry this in my notes app on my phone, just incase I need a reminder since I constantly deal with grief:

(Staff Edit) Source: Reddit - https://www.reddit.com/r/Stoicism/comments/5k6pq9/a_redditor_had_lost_their_son_and_someone_posted/

Alright, here goes. I’m old. What that means is that I’ve survived (so far) and a lot of people I’ve known and loved did not. I’ve lost friends, best friends, acquaintances, co-workers, grandparents, mom, relatives, teachers, mentors, students, neighbors, and a host of other folks. I have no children, and I can’t imagine the pain it must be to lose a child. But here’s my two cents.

I wish I could say you get used to losing someone. I never did. I don’t want to. It tears a hole through me whenever somebody I love leaves, no matter the circumstances. But I don’t want it to “not matter”. I don’t want it to be something that just passes. My scars are a testament to the love and the relationship that I had for and with that person. And if the scar is deep, so was the love. So be it. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are a testament that I can love deeply and live deeply and be cut, or even gouged, and that I can heal and continue to live and continue to love. And the scar tissue is stronger than the original flesh ever was. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are only ugly to people who can’t see.

As for grief, you’ll find it comes in waves. When the ship is first wrecked, you’re drowning, with wreckage all around you. Everything floating around you reminds you of the beauty and the magnificence of the ship that was, and is no more. And all you can do is float. You find some piece of the wreckage and you hang on for a while. Maybe it’s some physical thing. Maybe it’s a happy memory or a photograph. Maybe it’s a person who is also floating. For a while, all you can do is float. Stay alive.

In the beginning, the waves are 100 feet tall and crash over you without mercy. They come 10 seconds apart and don’t even give you time to catch your breath. All you can do is hang on and float. After a while, maybe weeks, maybe months, you’ll find the waves are still 100 feet tall, but they come further apart. When they come, they still crash all over you and wipe you out. But in between, you can breathe, you can function. You never know what’s going to trigger the grief. It might be a song, a picture, a street intersection, the smell of a cup of coffee. It can be just about anything…and the wave comes crashing. But in between waves, there is life.

Somewhere down the line, and it’s different for everybody, you find that the waves are only 80 feet tall. Or 50 feet tall. And while they still come, they come further apart. You can see them coming. An anniversary, a birthday, or Christmas, or landing at O’Hare. You can see it coming, for the most part, and prepare yourself. And when it washes over you, you know that somehow you will, again, come out the other side. Soaking wet, sputtering, still hanging on to some tiny piece of the wreckage, but you’ll come out.

The waves never stop coming, and somehow you don’t really want them to. But you learn that you’ll survive them. And other waves will come. And you’ll survive them too. If you’re lucky, you’ll have lots of scars from lots of loves. And lots of shipwrecks.

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