Grief Changes Us
Grief and loss change us. When you lose one of your own, it seems to allow you to empathize and feel other losses much closer than you otherwise might. Maybe because we understand better what those parents are facing.
Recently my cousin I grew up with, as our families were very close and we were more like siblings than cousins, was in a tragic accident and died. She was 8 months pregnant with her first child, a son she planned to call Mattias. When I got the call I was floored, it couldn’t be, she was just 24 years old and newly married as of last year. How could something so young and new be over before it began? Our families were shocked and devastated. It didn’t feel real,
I think on some level we all were in shock until the funeral. Some seem to still be in shock. Although I went to the funeral I couldn’t go to the wake. It’s only been a year since I lost my little Irene and I couldn’t look at the baby, who they laid to rest in his mother’s arms. To be forever at peace together. It never occurred to me that this would affect me in more ways than the normal grieving process.
But I had nightmares for weeks of losing my own, or of something happening to my kids. I cry at random never really sure what will bring it on. It has brought back fresh the feelings and pain that came with my own loss as well as having the emotions and grief of the loss of one of our family. This side of loss is so hard. That it can be triggered back by other events even at a later time is something that I hadn’t considered.
I am coping with it all, one day at a time. When it is overwhelming I cope with it one hour, one minute at a time. Now that it is spring I am planting flowers, and I get out and walk or work in the yard or if it’s a hard day even sitting in the swing in the warm weather seems to help. The flowers started blooming last week and I was reminded that just like the seasons, time will help us all too.