Monday, December 01, 2008

Grief


Today as we were driving to the post office, I spied an old man walking to his car. He still had a fine head of white hair and was wearing a white-striped navy polo shirt, khaki shorts, a leather belt, white athletic socks and sneakers--exactly what my dad liked to wear...and in the flash of the first instant of seeing him, I thought it would be exactly how my dad would look in another 20 years. Then the next flash was the memory that my father died of colon cancer two and a half years ago. It's been two and a half years, but seeing that old man today filled my chest with suffocating grief that just won't go away. I kept driving, although I wanted to pull over and break down. I smile for the girls, but right now they are napping and I'm beside myself. It's awful how the loss of a loved one just blindsides you sometimes. His birthday was last week, and he would have been 57. I tried to ignore it, but there it was. And then there he was today, as an old man that I will never see. I know it's awful to post this and spread the grief around, but I don't know what else to do. Everyone I know is either at work or asleep (middle of the night in the US now) or too little to be burdened with my grief, and I had to try to relieve it somehow.
I am just so sorry.

4 comments:

Karly said...

Oh sweetie, I wish I were there to just put my arms around you and give you a big hug. And sweetie, don't be sorry for sharing your grief with us. All of us who love you want to know about EVERYTHING going on with you...including the sad things. That way, we can send extra love, extra hugs, extra good thoughts...do whatever we can for you...even if it's just feeling sad with you. I love you lots Jen.

Anonymous said...

I feel your pain, and I share your sadness. It was too soon, too soon to say goodbye.

Now, as you know, I am not a huge fan of Oprah. She does amazing things and has led an incredible life, but somehow I am not over the moon about her, the way almost everyone else is. However, recently she has been asking people what they KNOW is true. I think that is SUCH an excellent question!

This is what I KNOW is true. Love is the strongest force in the universe. Stronger than hate, stronger than disease. STRONGER than death. The love your Dad had for you and Markus and Ellie (and now Baby Stephanie) is still alive, in him and in YOU. And your love for him is STILL WITH HIM. It is not lost, it goes on. He carries it with him where he is, and I believe with all my heart he IS in a better place. And he loves you very much, and he misses you and all his children and friends too, but particularly you, Beth and Robert, Mary and his Mom.

And please never apologize for sharing your love of another person. We grieve with you.

They say time heals all wounds, but for me, I say not really. But it does ease the pain to a bearable level for almost always, and I thank God for that, and I pray your level of grieving and pain and feelings of loss will soon be bearable once again.

All my love,

Mom

azure said...

Oh Jennifer, I feel sorry for your grief and just know that you can try my number anytime, given the way my life has been going as of late, I just may answer. I too still think of your dad every now and again especially when the sunset is beyond gorgeous and wondering what the view from the bayou must be like.

Don't you ever apologize to anyone for your grief. This is not something that you just gloss over and "get through". I honestly wish I could say something poetic here, but there is really nothing more for me to say. No apologies for the grief, and try not to hide from it either. Holding it in does no one any good, as it will manifest itself in other ways. I can tell you from personal experience (as in I'm currently not practicing what I'm preaching and it's not a good scene.)

So if you're ever beside yourself again my number is always open to you, time difference be darned.

Hang in there mi amiga. Just because you're one tough cookie (and you are) doesn't mean that you just have to suck it up and move on. You've done that already by necessity. I hope I'm making some sense here. If not, just know that my number is here for you and the computer is not far away! Even if it's just a cyber-shoulder to cry on, it's still a shoulder!

Take care and call if you need to (I'm serious)!

the dipe squad said...

Thank you so much to those of you who have left such thoughtful comments here and to those of you who have emailed me privately. Yesterday was the hardest day I've had yet with my grief, but I woke up this morning concerned that I should have restricted my writing here to shiny, happy stuff like usual and I thought about deleting the post. Your caring support made me appreciate this mode of communication all the more. Thank you.