There’s a moment in time where everything just stands still. When you lose a person and you know that you can never get them back. I’m not talking about a fight that you think will never get resolved, I’m talking about when that person is gone from this world and there is no way to ever see them again.
That is the time where you can experience grief that is so overwhelming it can be scary. If you are in this chair right now, please let me tell you that you are not alone. I am going through it again with you. In fact, I relieve it almost every day, because it doesn’t leave you. It never gets easier, you just realize that time changes how you see things.
You will go through all five stages of grief, even if you don’t realize it. For me, my first stage didn’t set in until a week later at the funeral. I remember crying for a week straight before I could go say my goodbyes. I walked up to the casket and I bawled my eyes out, and still I didn’t want to believe it was him inside. I swore that it wasn’t because it didn’t look like him. He was too tan, too still, too anything I could come up with to make it not true.
You’ll experience this too. It’s the feeling of not wanting to believe it, because it’s as if believing it will make it more real. It’s already real and trust me it scared the hell out of me just as much as it does you.
I was so angry for a long time, asking God why he could let something like this happen. As if he could stop his hand from pulling the trigger. Then I was angry with him, because he left without giving it any thought. He left me here in pain and decided enough was enough for him. I was so mad because I would have shouldered his hurt if he would have let me.
Instead I wasn’t allowed to get close enough to help, and I had to bear it all after he was gone.
You will go through the anger stage too. Believe me when I say it’s the one that you will feel the most in. You’ll be upset with many people and you’ll be sad, and you’ll want to scream. I am telling you to scream, because you have to let it out.
It the midst of all my yelling I started bargaining with God saying things like “if you bring them back I promise to go to church every week” or that you’ll be good or change your behavior. I yelled at God for a really long time begging for just a week or an hour more. Just to hear his voice again.
Eventually, I fell into a state of utter silence. Where I couldn’t eat, sleep, talk, walk, or think anymore. I was to the point of not moving from my bed for a while. This is the fourth stage and the most dangerous stage of all. It’s easy to get caught in this stage, to be in a state of depression constantly. I almost got caught. If I didn’t have my family and friends around I probably would have.
I know what has happened and I accept that it has. That said it doesn’t make it any easier. Each day goes by and he is one of the first things on my mind. Each day you will wake up and the person that you lost will be in the forefront of your mind. It’s hard because you want so badly for them to come back, and yet you also just want to be okay.
I spend a very long time each day preparing mentally for it. Making sure that I won’t break down whenever I see cookie dough ice cream or walk into a Walmart. I spend a long time in the shower under hot water trying to feel something other than the pain I get in the morning.
I want you to know that it’s okay to feel those kinds of things and to try and prepare for it.
It’s also okay if no matter how much you prepare that you still break down and cry, because believe me, I do too.
Time doesn’t heal the wounds, it allows you to protect yourself for more. It turns your hole into a sanctuary for the memory of your lost one.
Whether you are grieving a recent loss, or one from the past. We are all walking the path to healing. We are all trying to find the silver lining together. You are not alone.
Originally Published on The Odyssey.