The weather and I have a lot in common these days. Right now, it is pouring down rain, the sun is shining, the wind is blowing at about 12 mph, and it’s been in the high 50’s and low 60’s since 4 a.m. when I got up. The calendar says October, but snow is in the forecast tonight. I sit at my writing desk with the best of intentions. My pen or my fingers are poised to write but nothing happens. I stare blankly out the window, watching the deer bed down under the pines to avoid this rain. I want to write or read, but I am suspended. The weather and I are both confused.
I have told you many times on this blog to write no matter what. That has always been easy for me until John passed away. Now, nothing is easy, especially writing. I have experienced grief before, but never like this. The death of a spouse is a strange roller coaster. I am not okay.
In It’s Ok That You’re Not Ok – Meeting Grief and Loss in a Culture That Doesn’t Understand by Megan Devine (Sounds True, Boulder, CO, 2017), I have found confirmation that what I am experiencing is “normal.” If you or someone you know is going through intense grief, I highly recommend this book. It is not necessarily a cover-to-cover read; you can bounce around to what meets your need, whether you are grieving or trying to help someone who is. The book can help you help others going through intense grief. Key points include:
- I am not sick and I won’t get well from this. I am grieving and it can be a long process.
- The life I knew has “vaporized” and I need caring and understanding.
- I will never be “normal” again – never go back to the way things were, because my life will never be like that again.
- My memories are precious and they do help, but they are not enough to cover this kind of deep pain.
- Please don’t tell me I am lucky, I will be a better person in the end, that this is all part of a plan, that this happened for a reason. I know you mean well, but those words are not comforting, only painful. (For help with what to say, read this book.)
The best I can promise you, dear reader, going forward is that I will share with you what I can when I can. I will still encourage you to write, to create, to express your self fully on the page. I just cannot commit to a schedule right now. I hope you can understand and stick with me.