Artists Inspired ~ Black
When grief is the only word you can come up with for a title, how do you start to compose a post about all the feelings encapsulated within that one word.
Crippling. Sorrow. Ache. Darkness. Heaviness. Trapped. Lost..
To me it is Black.
Life goes hand in hand with death. A subject that stings for us all in many different ways. Grief itself has a million and one different meanings or definitions depending on each individual. For me its everything and nothing, all rolled into one. A nothingness amidst a minefield of crippling triggers, memories battling and scrambling to the forefront to constantly remind you of who you've lost.. even when the memories are all good, they still push an ache deep inside that brings with it a physical pain.
How do you grieve for a lost loved one? How do you go about every day with triggers picking away at everything you do, see or hear. Voices, words, songs, colours. Those material objects. How do you go about grieving when you have others relying on you for care, for comfort, for everything. There are days when this feels impossible. When your heart aches so bad you cant see it ever getting any better.
To be alone perhaps? The safety of familiar walls, of not having to talk about your feelings, or explain them to others when you can't make sense of them yourself. A security blanket of not having to be reminded that inside you hurt. Not having to plaster on that fake smile and pretend everything is okay.
Or, to surround yourself with people, keep the mind so busy it doesn't have time to over think? To analyze every memory or moment, wondering if perhaps you could have said something else, something more, something different in that moment.
You worry everyone will think you should be 'over it' by now or moving on. When people tell you its all about remembering the fun, the positive, the good. When they say your lost loved one wouldn't want to see you upset. The guilt that invites is like a leech sucking away at the mind, you grasp at but it's always those few inches too far from your reach to remove. The frustration at wishing it was all just that easy.
You know they mean well.
People can tell you how to grieve, they can tell you its this way or its that way. The best things to do are this or that.. but we are all unique in our own rights. No two people are the same. We have our own ideals, our own lives, experiences, dreams and realities. Our own version of events, we see things with eyes of our own, minds of our own. Feeling in a way no other does.
I read somewhere that grief is not a sign of weakness, it is the sign of a strong relationship that deserves the honour of strong emotion. I do not believe there was a truer word spoken.
Having not really had to deal with such emotion in my 33 years, this past month has been one of possibly the most hardest times I have faced yet. I have looked for answers, why's. I have blamed others in my head, laying anger and frustration at the feet of others. Those who perhaps deserved it and those who perhaps did not. I am not the person to decide who fits which shoes best, my feelings are my own to deal with and I will allow them to determine the route they need to go by themselves. I won't succumb to trapping things away anymore.
Over the last few weeks I did kept my emotions bottled. I hid them away to avoid causing others any more sorrow than they already had to burden, whilst we slowly said our goodbyes to a much loved and much adored gentleman. Every day I spent hours upon hours reminiscing on the past. Sitting, remembering.
Smiling, aching, watching.
Watching a man we all loved slowly slip away from us. Watching my loved ones ride the same ride I was going through and wondering how on earth they were going to be okay too. What do you say to someone when you know things are not okay?
Watching families of others come and go from bedsides, from private rooms, curtains being pulled around individuals surrounded by their own family members and feeling sorrow for each and every one of them because you knew it was nearing the end of their loved ones walk to the beginning of their last chapter.. guiltily wondering how long before that was you and wishing it was all so very, very different.
Hoping and wishing that your loved one could hear you every time you told them you loved them.
For now, my way is to take each day as it comes, allow myself to heal at a pace that allows my mind to go where it needs too. Even if that's opening up a door that lets the hurt out. Locking it away just feeds it until there's nothing left strong enough to keep it shut away.
Its listening to those songs that trigger those memories, listening to them over and over again until I wake with them singing in my head every morning. Its smiling when fiddling with the last bracelet he gave me for my birthday. Its smiling because I know its my new comfort blanket and to some that may seem childish.. but to me it helps. Its going through old photos and laughing recalling the accent, recalling the laugh.. trying not to dwell on the thought that you will never hear those again. Smiling every time, (EVERY.SINGLE.TIME) you hear the word "Aye" because you can just picture the expression that never waned when he said the same word. Even funnier when said a little tipsy.
Grief is knowing I will allow myself to take the time I need. Weather that's a week, a month or however long. Its holding dear to me that although there were not nearly as memories as we'd like saved away, the ones we do have are the most precious things we will ever have.
March 19th 2017 he lost his fight with his brain tumour.
March 19th 2017 is the day the world lost another hero...
but the sky gained another star.
My Uncle Eddie.
We love you Eddie. xx
When its time to say goodbye..
(Tattoo reads.. "Without the dark, we'd never see the stars" iPhone photos from days I will remember forever.)
Thank you for taking the time to read through this post, certainly the most difficult thing I have ever written but a subject we will all have to deal with one day.
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