The path of my grief

I have sat down so many times over the past month trying to write…trying to get some of what is inside out…trying to vent. Needing to. Wanting to. Unable to.

Going through the process of opening a new document to write in brings me through folders with dates…2012,2013,2014,2015. With each click I’m brought more aware that the hours that I never thought would pass have become days then weeks then months and now years. Years since that day that Willie left. Years since his struggle with being ok ended and he chose to not continue that struggle anymore.

Grieving sucks. Everyone grieves differently. Some need immersion in life and to be enveloped with it. Some need exclusion from it. I’m the latter and this is what that looks like when it can’t happen.

There have been ups and downs over the last three years. It wasn’t really until just after the two year mark of his death that I was able to realize that I needed to actually move into the grief rather that skirt it and try to get by with it. Along with that realization came the awareness that this grief needs to be reclusively attended to and felt. I am a solitary introvert – the introspection in solitude feeds my energy and healing – I know this from past experiences. After my divorce many years ago, it was a week away where I spoke to no one and spent time hiking, meditating, feeling…restoring… that was what allowed me to settle and regroup and come back to “me”. But it’s not an option right now for a number of reasons. So started the fight to keep going. Work days spent holding it together. Social events that have become harder and harder to force myself out to. Craving and knowing the need for an extended, solitary time to give attention to the grief, the pain, the hurt and the loss. Feeling the need to attend to what I have spent over three years either in shock from or in denial of trying desperately to live with.

But there’s no way to do that. Life demands attention. The day to day presses forward and focus is given to all that needs it – except for that which needs it the most. The coping mechanisms are faltering and the day to day is becoming harder and harder. Days at work spent functioning and performing flit by to blend into evenings spent alone and isolated, by choice. Weekends loom now with the knowledge that with two days off will come a rollercoaster of emotions that I don’t have time to let out entirely because I don’t have the luxury of time to feel before Monday morning is here and they need to be shelved so that I can attend to those things that are less than needing it but that must have the attention. A cycle has been in motion and deepening for months now. Looking to scheduling and finances and the realization that the attention to grief will have to wait wears on me.

You can only ignore and shelve what needs to be dealt with for so long. I can’t let the feelings out when I know that I need to pull them back at the end of the evening. Or the weekend. It’s like telling an addict that they can detox and rehab in an evening or a weekend. Processing and facing grief and moving into it to be able to start to heal demands more. And I just don’t have it. Time or resources.

So I keep going, because that’s what I do…and sometimes, many times now, that means every moment not necessary to function is spent trying to be safe. It’s all I can do for now.

That’s my grieving.