As some of you know my brother passed away from lung cancer Easter Sunday morning. And I've been grieving ever since. Hit harder than ever before. Now I know what the phrase grief stricken means. It's like being struck by lightening and then you don't know where you are, who you are, or why you are for a time. And nothing means much of anything.
I did everything I could think of to pull myself out of it. Listening to positive videos, reading inspiring books, talking to friends, but even so I no longer had any interest in food, much less preparation, or cleanup. So I kept all that to a minimum: cans of soup, bread and butter, pop corn, and red bull. I didn't shower for weeks, could care less. Slept in my clothes on top of my comforter with a fleece throw over me. Never ever did any of this before. What else. No energy whatsoever. No desire to see people. Still I kept up the positive input thru books and videos. Lately a little better but not much and now it's 8 months and I was still basically in the same place. No discernible recovery.
Until - late this last Sunday night when I went into the kitchen for an ice cream sandwich - something else I relied on - and wearing my non skid slippers slipped and fell - hard.
I reached out on the way down but all I could grab was my freezer door and all it did was swing wide open and while it didn't stop my fall it probably made it less severe by slowing me down on the way down. It's hard to know what really happened it happens so fast, but from the dent in the cardboard box holding a full case of Snapple that must be what my head hit so hard, my forearm under me but jabbing my ribs.
I got up slowly. Checking. Ok. Nothing seemed broken but my face hurt and my ribs. I got up in about a minute and by then I already noticed my peripheral vision was blocked on one side by an egg shaped swelling on the side of my cheek bone right under my eye. Some under the skin bleeding created a blister that jutted out like a ledge in a pretty shade of red violet. My cheek now blue. My head hurt and my ribs even more.
It's 3 days later and it's amazing how fast the body can take on the job and get busy healing itself. I'm much better physically but the reason I brought this all up is because the physical pain, fear of greater injury etc blew my grief out of the water!
Not only that, and not temporarily. For now, I feel at peace about Chuck's moving on. I keep expecting grief to turn around and come back for me like a rip tide and yank me out to that dark painful sea. But so far it hasn't.
Some of you know I have seen ghosts, and I do write so called supernatural fiction, so it was natural for me to wonder, while grinning, if my brother Chuck hadn't tripped me just to wake me up out of my slough of despond (did I spell that right?). Because one of the things he told me very emphatically and leaning toward me only inches from my face about two weeks before he died was, "Be happy!"
That fall out of no where reminds me of Paul being knocked off his horse. Sometimes God, our Higher Power, the Universe, or our loved ones who have passed on and know what's good for us come to our rescue and say -
"Enough. Love me. Miss me. But you don't have to suffer like this. I'm fine."
Sure I'm going to miss him until I see him again. But for now, I have a life to live and my mission is to get on with it and use this gift of life the best I can for myself and for others. Happy New Year Everyone. xo
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