If It Seems
If it seems that I am ungrateful for the kindnesses that you do,
Please, overlook my lack of enthusiasm or my plain expression of gratitude.
If it seems that I have lost my patience and “irritable” is my only mood
Please, know that I am angry and I feel so cheated.
If it seems that I am sad and nothing can bring a smile to my face,
Please, know that my heart has lost its joy and nothing can bring back my happiness.
If it seems that I am not listening as you tell me your heart,
Please know that my pain is crying so loudly that I cannot hear yours….
If it seems that I should be past all of the grief and the tears,
Please know that it will take more time to overcome the idea of being alone.
If it seems that I have changed,
You are right.
My heart was torn in two when
The love of my life died.
If it seems that enough time has passed and I should be over this,
You are wrong.
My brokenness is not on a time schedule.
If it seems that I will never be the same,
You are right; I won’t
If you think that I should be on medication to make me feel better,
Please, keep your opinion to yourself..
All I ask of you is to let me grieve and be sad without judging me.
Continue to care even if I don’t know how to show that I still care.
If you cannot, wait for me to find myself,
I don’t want to waste your time,
But, if you can wait patiently for me to become myself again,
Know that, even if I don’t show it,
I am still here and I will survive.
Please, let me grieve
I sent my friend this writing.
She is younger than I am and her husband died four months ago. She is trying to work and resume her life as it was before her husband’s death. She is struggling and she is so sad. They had been married for 25 years.
She has endured some of the most thoughtless and tactless comments. Things like, “Your young, you will find someone to marry.” to “Your numb now. You are going through the motions. Wait, until the real pain starts….”
Finally in desperate emotional pain, she turned to her pastor and elders for help with this “black hole” that keeps following her around. The pastor told her that she didn’t need prayer, she needed to get out of her self pity.
What total denial on his part!!! How wounding that was for her !!!
When she told me about these circumstances, I referred her to Merry Widows website. There she found others who truly understand what she is experiencing. It was for her that I wrote “If It Seems…..”
After I emailed it to her, she replied that I captured how she truly feels. I know that her pain is real and she is not numb. I know that my pain is real and I am not numb…for anyone to assume that you can wish this pain away, they are deluding themselves and others. It is their own pain that they are trying to avoid and you are making them face that grief and berevement do not vanish with the flowers that are sent as a condolence.
This pain must be felt. It may take a long time for me to ever feel like who I was once. At his moment in time, that is alright. I must grieve because I need to live and not just survive.
I know that I do not need for anyone to tell me that it has been 2 weeks and I should be getting over all of the sadness. “Life goes on” is the phrase of the day.
Maybe it goes on for everyone around me, but my life stopped when cancer entered in…I am not living right now. I know that I am “treading water” and it won’t take much to push me under.
I feel so cheated and disappointed that I can hardly bear it. And I know there is an unpleasant conversation with God about all of this. I am just still to angry to talk to anyone about it.
As Sally Fields said in the movie, Steel Magnolias, she wanted to hit something and to hit it hard. She wanted to make someone else feel as badly as she felt as she stood next to her daughter’s coffin. I am relating to wanting to hit something. I don’t know if I could ever make anyone feel as bad as I do now…I can’t hit hard enough.
I am so thankful that I am aware that anger is part of this process. I know that this is part of the journey out of the Valley of the Shadow. Anything that I do to cut this process short will result in a longer stay.
That is why I am trying as hard as I can to stay as honest with myself and others as much as I can. I know that I don’t really want to be so irritable. But, it is how I am feeling and I will not deny the place that anger plays in recovery.
I feel like I should wear a sign to warn people about my disposition of the moment, but, as usual, people don’t read signs, do they?
To care for my husband, I had to live in my head most of the time. I knew that my heart was breaking, but I had to keep it together so as to not fail him in his care.
Now, I am not living in my head. I am living in my present and I am living in my heart. My heart is a very painfully raw place and it is bleeding.
It is so raw that it doesn’t take me long to ask if anyone understands this process and most people that I know do not have this set of circumstances in their lives.
I don’t know how my friend kept from loosing her composure when her pastor was so “high handed’ with her. I don’t know if I could have walked away without belting him one. I find it sad that so many in the ministry do not know how to cope with death and dying. If they are unable to understand those processes, then how can they ever understand grief?
So, it is my hope that no one tells me that I am numb. I am not in the land of “No Feel”. I feel this mounting pain everyday and every moment of everyday.
All I can say is that I will reject her pastor’s words and accept what Jesus said, “God blesses those who mourn because they shall be comforted”. End of story.
My friend, Roads on “The Price of Love” has a wonderful post that addresses grief and berevement. I would recommend for everyone who has someone in their life that is going through this kind of pain to visit his site and drink in the understanding that is missing in our society today in regards to grief and berevement….