I slipped into a numbness pattern this week – a lack of motivation, wish the days were over, kind of dragging. I’ve admittedly done a lot of napping. I know this is a phase of grief. I’m coming down, or up, from something. I can’t put my finger on it or name it just yet. This post is a little less clean ... more a compilation of thoughts, revelations, loose experiences from my notes over the many weeks since my twins died.
Grief is messy, unclean, non-linear. Grief is different every day, hour, minute. Grief doesn’t just look sad, angry, shocked, bargaining, or accepting. Grief encompasses every emotion. Grief buries itself into all parts of your life. Grief strokes each moment that you live without them.
Grief is dreaming in too many colors or no color at all - dreaming with fear and reliving death, or dreaming with visits and hopefulness.
Grief is opening your eyes, staring at the ceiling or the wall and remembering what your life really is. Grief is rolling over and trying to sleep for another few minutes, another hour.
Grief is everyday negotiating whether or not to nurse your own broken heart or to honor their memory by living.
Grief is mascara stains on your pillow. Grief is letting more tears fall then you knew you could produce. Grief is puffy eye sockets, red-rimmed and bulging.
Grief is running out of tears. Grief is dry numbness when you explain what happened.
Grief is having a different kind of day every day, all while doing the same things over and over. Grief makes the minutes feel long but the days seem short.
Grief is recognizing the exact shape of your physical existence.
Grief is feeling fuzzy brained, struggling to converse, forgetfulness absence from the moment. Grief is painful awareness of silence.
Grief is forcing a smile. It’s listening to yourself talk to people from some inner echo-ey hole, detached. Grief is struggling to listen well to others.
Grief is experiencing moments of truly being alive and then turning around to see a mirror that reflects someone other than you. Grief is realizing your reflection is forever changed.
Grief is realizing that your heart held more love than you imagined. Grief is feeling the borders of your heart as it expands and breaks.
Grief is needing someone, anyone, to agree that things will never be okay. It’s needing people to just tell you that you are not alone, that they are with you, that it’s okay that you will never really be okay.
Grief is knowing that, no not everything happens for a reason, no something better will not come of this, and no I don’t have an option to not “be strong.”
Grief is knowing that even if life is beautiful, even if you use your pain for some greater good, that it would have been just as beautiful (or more so) if they had lived. Grief is accepting that fact and still choosing to live kindly and bravely and with honor for them.
Grief is rehearsing a new way of living until it becomes familiar enough to cover your scars.
Grief is knowing that time is divided, your identity is divided, your self is divided into before and after they died. And not just because time moves forward, grief doesn't care about time, but because you can clearly outline the eras of your life based on their existence and their absence.
Grief is loving with every ounce of your being, despite separation. Loving is living - loving is the whole point of living. Grief is still living. It’s just messy living.
Feel free to comment – to add what grief is like for you or what 'grief revelation' you have had. Every experience is unique and the only way we can get closer to understanding the expansiveness of life after loss is to talk to each other about it.
Hi, I'm Tiffany. I believe in the power of stories to connect us to each other. I write about life after loss and all the love, longing, and learning that comes from it. Grief is big, love is bigger. My newest stories are about motherhood (after both infertility and loss). In my experience, love doesn't get bigger than motherhood.
© Tiffany Kann and Loss & Life, 2013-2018. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Tiffany Kann and www.lossandlife.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.