Archives for posts with tag: death

Yesterday was… hard. Tears came unexpectedly, and fairly often. Like punctuation for sentences I didn’t expect to have emotional content. My context had become emotional. It was difficult. It was strange. It is ongoing, although reduced in frequency and amplitude. It still comes in waves.

I went to work because I often find routine very comfortable and sustaining in times of turmoil and crisis. I went home early because punctuating sentences in professional conversations with floods of tears feels like a loss of dignity, feels inappropriate, and, frankly, is hard on other people; we don’t all live equally authentic lives. That’s just real. (It’s not a criticism.) My Traveling Partner was kind, supportive, and very much “there for me”.

I made a dinner of crab cakes – seasoned as my Mom would have enjoyed – with a healthy salad, and a luxurious, but quite tiny dessert. I celebrated her life, in my thoughts. I would not call it an easy evening, but I went to bed contented and generally okay with “things”, and slept through the night, untroubled by my dreams. I woke, and got through the first 15 minutes of the day before I remembered… she’s gone.

I sat down to write, with my coffee, and tried to reset my thinking a bit, to shift explicitly away from sorrow, firmly. My thinking, my recollections, and the feel of my day kept twisting out of my grip. The result was not what I expected, but I’m okay with it.

The morning ticks by, not unpleasantly. I’m just in this weird limbo; fighting the grieving without meaning to put up such resistance, struggling to “let her go” in my own heart, and unsure what I even mean by that. Was I clinging, in the first place? Who is this sorrowful hearted creature fluttering within me? I breathe. Exhale. Relax. I do a classic “body inventory” and get more comfortable with my physical experience, shifting my awareness back into “now”, over and over again. I find myself literally “twisted by grief”, shoulder aching, head aching, neck aching, less in that familiar way, and more like a reminder to be present… or else.

A favorite groove turns up on the playlist this morning, and in that peculiarly meta way I have of listening to music, seeking a useful message in the lyrics, it reminds me; it’s not all about me. I link it, and giggle out loud; it’s really not the sort of thing one would usually associate with grief, grieving, or… um… adulthood. lol I smile, and feel the ache in my face, self-conscious and strange, that results from just a simple smile. I breathe. Exhale. Relax. This, too, shall pass. This morning the words hold some comfort, and I embrace them. I feel the suggestion of a possible return to normalcy at some future point – there’s comfort in that, too.

…It’s been a while since I spent a morning listening to music. There’s a certain heavy bass experience that somehow lifts me. I chase it, track by track, feeling it in my body. I roll back years of lifetime, track by track, looking for a certain something to lift my mood, to crack open my heart and let the love pour out.

Somehow, time passes. I find my way to one more beginning. I’ll start there… well… here. A summer morning. A cup of coffee. A bit of work to do. Surrounded by love. It’s a good place to begin again. ­čÖé

I lost someone yesterday. Actually, that’s ludicrously selfish of me, and quite inaccurate. We all ‘lost someone’ – it happens every day. In this case, a man once went to war, came home, lived some portion of his life after we lost touch, and yesterday he chose to end it. I found out fairly promptly, from another friend. What’s odd is that I never heard about birthdays, weddings, divorces, vacations…he only recently joined the Facebook masses. We’d only recently reconnected. ┬áLife can be very like a soap bubble, sometimes, fragile and impermanent.

I wept at the loss of a piece of myself, however small. I wept that we hadn’t shared more, longer, and that I really just don’t know what burden had become to heavy to carry further. I contemplated other lives that ended, one way or another, and gave a moment of heartfelt loving recollection of times shared, and moments worthy of remembrance. My thoughts were of family, and love, and struggle, and warfare; good memories and difficult memories, exciting ones, and commonplace ones, all had their turn. I wept because however much I ever know about those dear to me, and however much they know about me, there always seems to remain unsaid what lacked words; I find myself wondering if I could have said more, or listened more skillfully.

A moment of reflection: life, love, honor...

A moment of reflection: life, love, honor…

Always. Never. These are words I work hard to avoid; they nearly guarantee a logical fallacy as soon as they are dropped into a sentence. How is it they come up so often in a moment of grieving?

“Man down”. At 51 I guess I will start to hear it more often. Those were the words on the phone, when I answered. “Man down. We’ve lost another one.” Enough detail to move on with grieving. Suicide is uncomfortable to contemplate, at least for me. It puts the pain of despair too near to my own pain. ┬áSo far, I continue to choose life over death, myself, but I understand considering it.

Every journey ends

Every journey ends

Someday the phone call will be for me… a friend will call another friend, then the pause… “Man down.” I hope I too will be described as having ‘served with honor’; from my friends that is a very big deal indeed.

Today is a good day to embrace life and love, and to live wholly invested in the experience, and present in the moment. There isn’t any other, and this one is very much worth it.