Updated: May 19, 2020
No matter how long - whether a week, a month, a year or a decade - grief wears many masks. There's sad, lonely, hopeless, fearful, anger, numb, and joyful.
At this annual milestone it always feels very surreal. I feel happy and joyful rather than sad for some reason this year. I can only conjure up the good memories that make me laugh. I can’t remember the last time I cried or ached over “the hole.” I don't quite feel the urge to make my Sunday ritual calls now and again, as if he’s still here. When my Mother visited recently for a split second I expected Dad to be by her side.
Grief has a way of toying with your memory. The phantom thoughts and feelings from the basement of your heart hurt the most.
But grief is different for everyone, it has no timeline or outline or definition. It begins somewhere, it hurts like hell, and will be your lifelong companion. Some people are very private about it. Some are open and vocal. Some deny the pain for fear of dancing in unfamiliar emotional space, so they push the feeling down. But much like a cork bobbing around in water, you can only hold it down for so long and eventually it will rise to the surface and there it will be - undeniably right beside you.
I’ve found that a life well- lived with fewer regrets seems to transition to a more connected grief process after loss. It’s not that any one is better than another - but living a life where all the words of love are spoken rather than kept inside; all the unsettled discontentments of relationships are resolved rather than buried; all the hurts and pains of the past are forgiven rather than harbored; contributes to a full heart and segue to beautiful memories.
💜 “Live with no excuses, love with no regrets.”