My world seems to be on one of those dimmer switches. Every time I lose someone I love, my surroundings appear a little darker, my thoughts a little more sinister and my reality a little more, well, real. This isn’t me being negative or glass half empty though I can understand where one may come to that conclusion. I’m simply just trying to explain via analogy what so many of us have experienced – the pain and price of loving someone.
Through years of weekly therapy sessions and constant self-analysis, it finally registered: Grieving is not easy and we don’t just do it like Nike. In fact, many of us, including myself, find ways to avoid doing it whether we’re conscious of our evasion or not. I think I must have had this idealization that grieving was like sitting down at our dining table with a cup of coffee at a scheduled time and saying, “On your mark, get set, go! Grieve away. Cry. Let it out.” And then it’s over. Instead of a dimmer, I’m talking about a light switch now. Grief on. Grief off. This is the self-control freak in me speaking.
If only it were that easy, which leads me to my next recognition and that is that grief doesn’t really end. The anguish that correlates with the process may lessen and become more bearable but grief doesn’t actually have an ending point. We don’t wake up one day and suddenly never ever feel the grief again. We may not feel it as often but with the loss of deep and meaningful relationships based in love comes deep, meaningful and lifelong grief. It is, after all, the price we pay for love.