It is a beautiful day and I have just gotten back from working with youth on an upcoming event they are planning. It is always amazing how much life, energy and enthusiasm young teens can have. They are so full of life, with so much ahead of them. They serve as a reminder of what lies ahead, the dreams, hopes and even the fears. I quietly watch them working, remembering my daughter and how so full of life she was, her enthusiasm and her welcoming presence.
So where I am going with this, I am simply reminded of how precious life truly is, and how much of it we take for granted. Hopefully for many of you it has not taken the death of a loved one to realize this gift, and how it is entrusted to each of us. We are all given special people in our lives, some come in the form of relatives, others are friends, some co-workers and still others are simply people who have touched our lives in some way. They all have an impact on us and how we see the world around us.
When we have to say good-bye to someone dear, it is always difficult, sometimes we cannot seem to understand the whys or how-comes. Whether they died after a long illness or were suddenly snatch from our lives, something is now missing from our day-to-day existence. At first we exist in a state of shock, we function, we get things done, as if some other life force has taken control. We do what is required of us, we go through the motions and respond as needed to what is being asked of us. The world seems to be spinning and we seemed to have stop spinning with it. This is what gets us through the first few days and weeks, as we desperately wait to wake up from the nightmare that seems to be part of our waking and sleeping hours.
In all the information I have seen and read, this is but one of the many phases or stages we all experience while grieving. For some this can wear off in a matter of days, yet for others it can go on for quite some time. Now when I look back in retrospect, I understand that this "state of shock" it what got me through the required actions of calling family, planning a funeral, saying words of remembrance at the Church service, and standing by the casket for our final good-bye. It allowed me to be there at that moment, to be strong for my husband and children and to comfort Rachel's friends. It moved me to action, but it is not to say that it kept me from crying or feeling, I just went into "action" and did what was needed of me.
It is amazing how our minds and bodies take care of us, allowing us to respond to any crisis. Some of us become quiet and pensive, others react and want results, some of us just survive. Whatever and however you respond to what is happening to you, is what is right for you, don't let anyone tell you otherwise. You and you alone knows what it is you are going through, what pain you are in, grief is personal and the hardest grief is the grief you are experiencing. Nothing that I can think of makes it any easier, even if they had been ill for a long time, the bottom line here is that we have had to say good-bye to someone we love.
If you are looking for something to read, here are just a few that were a great help to me: A Season of Grief by Ann Dawson; After Goodbye by Lynette Friesen and from hurting to happy by Barbara Bartocci. There is a lot of helpful books, information and support, just reach out and you will find something to help you along this journey.
Blessing! and until we meet again.