Grieving is hard work.
Let me say that again. Grieving is hard work.
It demands all of your attention, and takes a heavy toll on your physical and emotional resources. As I said, I go where it takes me…which leaves very little for anything else. I just don’t have the emotional energy to invest in anything besides this work I’m doing. Doing the dishes, doing the laundry – I have to marshal my resources over a few days to tackle those simple chores. I don’t bake, I barely cook. It’s hard to see the point of any of it. Intellectually, I know that I am the point…I need to do these things for myself. Stephen was my sun, moon and stars, you see? My world revolved around him, and without that focus I twist in the wind.
The work of grief is constant, I don’t ever get a break from it. Even sitting watching telly, the work goes on. No matter what else I’m doing, the work continues. Everyone tells me to be kind to myself, to not put pressure on myself to be any certain way…and I am trying. Grief couldn’t care less about my Type-A personality…it will go its own way, in its own time.
The work being done is HUGE. My body, my mind have to encompass a completely new reality. I know I need to let him go, and mourn the life we had…but a large part of me is still wanting it back. I want him back. There, I said it. When the despair takes over, and I’m curled into a ball around the pain inside, I really believe that people can die from a broken heart. In those moments, I think I might – how can a body bear this much pain, and keep going?
The tears run their course, and I do go on. But it is exhausting, this work I’m doing. Exhausting and enervating.
It isn’t like a race, where you know where the finish line is. I’m in it until… I’m not. The professional tells me the only way out is through it. The work of grieving will go on, and on..until it’s finished. And it will finish, some day.
It has to, right?