For awhile now my goal has been to deal with life in simpler terms. Too bad, so sad, move on. There is something very clean about not making a fuss and finding something else to do. But rarely does hurt get compartmentalized so easily. Our hearts do not contain an attic where you tuck away your issues and junk, never to be seen again. It always resurfaces and often at the most inconvenient times when you really want to just be over it. Why do you think there are particular steps to grieving? It’s because we as humans are not wired for clean breaks.
The most common and difficult type of loss comes in the form of death. This is when there are no take-backs and we are forced to come to terms with that hole left in our lives. When I reached my late teens I started mentally preparing for losing my grandparents. You must think that it’s very strange for someone in that life phase, which is usually when most are preoccupied with relationships, sex and cigarettes, why I would be so morbid. I don’t think I was macabre, I just knew that I would need a long lead up to not fall apart when it actually happened. Because you see, my grandparents were the two best people in the world. They helped to raise me and were the ones I looked up to the most. I’ve spoken a lot of my grandmother and her radiance, but my grandfather was also very special. He was one of the good men, a gentleman. His values made him kind and he treated every single person with respect. He also loved his family dearly and was the centre of so many lives. When I started to recognize their mortality I started to detach and with every succeeding visit I engaged with them less. It’s like I was afraid to make more memories, which would make what comes later more painful. Basically I was a big jerk and I would not recommend this to anyone. Enjoy people fully while they are still here and love the one you’re with. It’s one regret I have to carry with me always.
The worst thing you can do is not mourn properly and to let go when you’re not ready. In our society being sad is made to be a pathology, but you know what, when you lose someone it’s okay to cry loudly and hard. Now, dwelling is very different from grieving. I would just say to feel as much as you need to and then try your best to move on. They’re no longer here but I guarantee that they do want you to be happy. And real sadness behaves much like a wave. Occasionally you’ll be on the bus or about to mail a letter and there will be a trigger. Perhaps you see a flower they liked or smell their cologne. Often tears will reach your eyes but it’s ok. It’s ok to remember how much you loved them. It’s probably at these moments that they are thinking of you too.