Sunday, April 20, 2014


Grief is so different in this fast-paced world of Facebook and high-speed connections to everything and everyone all the time.  I'm looking at some of my FB posts in the past two weeks and I just have to laugh.  If you only know me from FB, you would think, "Oh...her dad died.....but oh look, she's taking her kid to baseball practice--she must be over it!"  If you only know me from the parenting group I help lead, you think, "Oh, her dad died...but look!  She's totally able to help me breastfeed and listen to all my problems, so she must be over it!"  If you only know me from the dozens of activities I bring my kids to each week, you would think, "Oh, there she is...wait, didn't her dad just die?  Well she is here, so she must be over it!"  Obviously none of these are right.  I'm not "over it" by any stretch, but life with kids hasn't stopped!  It isn't fair to make them stop and it seems so awful to me to keep going.  The world SHOULD have stopped spinning because such an important part of my life is gone, but it hasn't, so I have no choice but to keep going.

My dad passed away three weeks ago, today.  Three weeks ago.  I look at things I agreed to a month, two months, six months ago, and I realize I was a completely different person then.  I feel like a whole lifetime has passed in the last three weeks.  Three weeks is nothing--but here we are more than halfway through April, heading to May, and I'm not sure where that time has gone.  Do you have it?  Can you bring it back?

I feel like I'm riding a bicycle on a trail and I just hit a rock.  I haven't fallen off, yet, but I'm in that brief moment where you are madly adjusting the handle bars, trying to balance and still maintain forward momentum.  I can't look ahead on the trail so I just have to hope another rock isn't in front of me.  All I can do is cling desperately to belief that my center of gravity is okay--that I'm not going to fall off--not this time.  With a few more adjustments, I'll be riding on down the trail.  But right now, in the moment of swinging handle bars and held breath, right now, I'm struggling.  FB doesn't show it, can't possibly show it, because one lives life in two sentence bursts.  Yesterday I bought a kayak so our summer adventures could fit our expanding family.  On FB, this seems so nice and normal.  It seems uncomplicated, like a fun thing to do with my gang on a random Friday morning.  But do you know where my love of sea kayaking and everything ocean came from?  Dad.  Do you know where Erin is excited to use the boat?  Smutty.  So that little adventure to go buy a boat, that simple, uncomplicated action that we did with no tears or regrets and I then summed up in 2 sentences on my FB status...well, it turns out it isn't as simple as it seems.

I know three weeks is a short amount of time to regain your balance after hitting this kind of rock.  I know I have to be gentle with myself.  I also know that it is painful to have the world continue to spin the way it is.  I WANTED to go to Fenway with Evan last week, I WANT Erin to do her fencing tournament this weekend, I WANT Megan to perform in the state meet.  I want all this stuff...AND, I want to crawl under a rock.  I'm pretty sure I can't have it both ways.

1 comment:

  1. To anyone who has experienced the sudden death of a loved one, the way you are coping makes perfect sense. Helping others gives us purpose, particularly in a tumultuous time.

    Grief is not a democratic process. No one else gets a vote as to how you handle this. And please don't feel guilty because you can still function. Your ability to carry on is a testament to your strength. Take what you want to have. Enjoy your children; enjoy your life. This may sound cold, but Aimee, you are not the one who died. You have a rich life, and your father would want you live it. Your family wants you to live to the fullest.

    There will be times of sadness, but there isn't a rule or law saying that grief needs to govern your life right now.

    I love you!