This is a topic never delved into lightly. The death of a close loved one, for the family concerned, brings an experience of life bereft of seeming reality.
For a while—presently i.e. ‘in’ this space—life just isn’t! Numbness contains us. Life becomes nothing. Not forever... just for a while... a long while.
This day I’m caused to reflect over a life cut short—any life, but a life all the same. And heaven help the poor ignorant one walking through grief’s door with some ‘helpful’ anecdote or platitude—there are just no words that cut it. Would we be so callous as to cut a person down so gripped with chilling sorrow?
No words... none. Quiet contemplation and a hug; these are all that is worthy.
The experience of grief is familiar. And although there are many forms of it, its remarkability is somehow like déjà vu. She may be a dark friend, but she kicks that a rabid mule every time!
No matter how familiar we come to experience grief, she finds her way into our hearts, crushing indiscriminately like a herd of elephants as she attends.
What is this about other than a null answer?
God is there, certainly. God’s there and, in it, he’s saying, “Don’t solve it... it can’t be ‘solved,’ but know that time and truth and help and healing all play their parts... come, rest in me... though I can’t remove all your pain just now, I will attend to your tears and sooth your aching heart.”
What do we do practically? Reject, run, fight, sooth?
No. We just be; that’s the best thing. Though it takes much courage, it’s the best way. It’s the best way to just be with others who are hurting and to resolve the irresolvable together.
This is our purpose. To be, to try, to wail, to receive calm from God... all this together.
Just don’t give up, never ever. That works most of the time... when grief swims over us one day and into the next, however, we let it. She must have right of way. We allow her to carry us out, into the farther reaches of the swell, and though our fear’s to drown in sorrow, we somehow know we’re safe.
We don’t fight.
One day at a time. Keep it simple. I type these words but I can’t quite stand hearing me say them just now. Yet, they’re the truth. Hard but true, we nod despondently; we leave as is.
People are our key. Being with the likeminded, the compassionate; the grieving.
Some day life will be better. Keep hope in sight when you can.
© 2010 S. J. Wickham.