Monday, April 30, 2012

Grief's circle

Grief creates a circle around you... makes you stand out from the non-griving crowd.  There are a few of us who are in my new circle...Nate, Declan's grandparents, our siblings, cousins, aunts and uncles.  We are isolated together in our grief, but our grief is different.  Like every things else, we don't see eye to eye on everything, not every feelings we have is the same.... on days when my hurt is strong, others maybe are fine.  In a book called Lament for a Son, there is a statement the author makes that is so very true and until you go through a loss of such magnitude with your family, you would not know how true it is, "As each death has its own character, so too each grief over a death has its own character - its own inscape."  Each death is different... each death holds its own story... just as each of us grieves in a manner that suits us, that matches our needs.  It is pointless to try and make others mourn like me... I mourn in my own way, unique to me.  There are times when it is a blessing to be around our circle of grievers, but there are moments when it magnifies my pain, amplifies my heartache.  I heard an analogy the other day that compares grief to making your way through an unknown landscape.... finding yourself in the middle of a forest, surrounded by fog... you need to cross a river, but your unable to see clearly.  There are stepping stones, a path, to get across the ragging river, but you have to be careful to stay on the right path because one wrong step could lead to trouble...slowly you make your way, hands out in front, feeling for resistance, your toes tapping each rock to check for sturdiness... then you finally make it and when you turn around, you can clearly see the side in which you came and there on the banks of the river is another mother, trying to cross the river of death and she is struggling just like you did.... it is then that you go back to try and help her across the stepping stones of healing.   I believe as I continue to heal I will be able to help other mothers who are grieving the loss of their child... I do believe I can make that trip back across the river and hold someone else's hand as they fumble their way through, but I don't know if I have the ability to help other people heal from my sons death...I don't think I am able to do that for my circle or anyone for that matter.  I believe as my family goes through this journey, all we can do for each other, for the people we love the most, is support them... is be there for them when they need a shoulder to cry on.  Our circle, although we grieve so very differently, is here, they are present in our lives.  They are there when we need them.  Nate and I could never fully express our gratitude to our parents.... they have been so wonderful... they can't take our pain away, but I know they would if they could.   We are isolated in our grief, but slowly I create new circles.  I find myself breaking free from that isolation and as I continue to fumble through the dark, trying to get a step on solid ground, I slowly reach out to those who are there to listen... to those who hold their hands out from the other side of the bank, even though they themselves are still grieving a loss of their own... I stand now with my arms around other woman, other mothers whose hearts will always be broken.... although my grief is my own, I find I am not alone after all.

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