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Writing to a friend tonight, about the grief that he is experiencing over the recent loss of his loving mother, I pondered the experience of grief, and what it means. This is what I wrote:

“Grief is both universal and solitary. No one has the exact same loss, or the exact same way of dealing with grief, and yet there are parts that can be shared and understood.

When you are grieving, every emotion is normal and understandable. Perhaps it is the closest feeling to insanity there is. (And complicated by a sometimes too calm demeanor in public.)

But it is true…until you have been there, don’t try to tell me you understand, because there is no real understanding, apart from losing one that you love so dearly, or even one who was an important part of your life. There is no finality like the finality of death, and there is no solution to it–no fixing it. It is done, and until we meet in heaven, there is no bandage for the hole in our heart, and the ache in our soul. (Only the hope of being reunited.)

But when there are others who know…who have experienced that pain…there is a fellowship of understanding, that becomes a bond. Hearts ache in familiar ways, and tears fall from unbearable sorrow. And there is the aloneness that only the bereaved can grasp. The feeling that the world is not the same, and will never be again.

There is no way to ever prepare for it, because even when we have done our best, we cannot comprehend the loudness of their absence. It is there at the table, and there in the chair, and on their side of the bed. It is everywhere, and in the most unexpected places as well.

(An envelope with their name on it, a Christmas decoration that was their favorite, a pair of shoes hidden under the bed, a medicine bottle,  a robe left hanging on the door,  a pair of glasses on the desk,  or the scent of  their cologne.) And then there are the places, where their presence cannot be denied, and the remembrances that go with those places. And what about the songs, that are as alive with their memory, as their spoken words were?

Grief is a journey, a process both cruel, and cathartic. And in the end, it is the only road to healing, though never to complete recovery. Loss is not something you “get over”.  It can only be journeyed through, and you will be forever changed by that journey…”

Please see other articles that I have written here:

http://www.associatedcontent.com/user/109497/lonnette_harrell.html

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3 Comments

  1. Lonnie. I still so read your blog everyday feel & share your pain. We have had a very tragig passing in my family again this week. My brother Rick 55, never sick a day in his life went to our local er with a stomach ache. They did a scopre the next morning , something terribly wrong happened , he aspirated ,then they call it tovic, chemical pnenomia, he spent 9 days too long in our local hosp. We then had him transfered to a larger hosp, the drs there worked for hrs, said he had 59 50 chance , they induced coma for rest. Well he lasted 16 days total. A LL OVER A BELLY ACHE !!!!!!!!!!! We laid him to rest mon by my son. He Worked at a factory 38 years never , ever had a sick day, Was the most, kind compassionte man you would ever meet. He had not 1 enemy . My God its still so unreal. My other brother is figting the cancer battle soi bad, it has put him in bed unable to get out,I feel my parents pain so bad, my mother cried so bad too me last night, I walked in her shoes what do i say.My parents both are fighting their own battles. dad starts a new round of radiation today. On that line also sorry but my husband sounds so much like your mother. What a journey we have been on. Thank 0you so much for your post, love all your music, feel like the most broken woman in the world right now. But really just wish i had the words for my parents !!!!!!! Love you girlfriend, so glad your on your way to a new journey . thsank -you so much for listening, where does the journey go now ?????????? LOVE YOU

  2. Sparkle, the following I found as the most significant, I wish I could have believed or known earlier:
    There is no way to ever prepare for it, because even when we have done our best, we cannot comprehend the loudness of their absence.

    You need to have this published on little signs and distribute to all forth coming grievers so they can ponder on it.

    I tried, oh did I try but it doesn’t matter. Your particular use of words is actually how I feel about all this when you talk of their absence in relationship to loudness.
    Thanks Sparkle, Frank


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