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Unboxing grief

Happy Sunday, how are you today? 

Last Thursday I learnt of the unexpected death of my uncle.

It was a normal Thursday morning, I was getting ready for work upstairs, my son and husband were having breakfast downstairs in the kitchen.

As I was receiving the news my mind immediately went blank. I sat down on the bed, trying to make sense of things. At that exact moment, I was in a state of confusion and fear.

Fear of how my aunty might cope and confused as to how this could happen to my uncle.

Grief is a formidable force, it hits you directly and has the power to bring you to your knees.

I’ve dealt with grief before but that was as a young child. I lost both my parents at a really young age. I grieved but I never understood the meaning of grief. I looked at it as ‘I won’t see mum or dad again’. You could say I accepted it, put it in a box along with the emotions I was feeling and locked it somewhere in my mind, never to be dealt with again. Until that morning.

I ended up not going to work but visiting my aunty to see how she was coping.

I spent the day there, comforting her and preparing the house for expected visitors.

Throughout the day, I sympathised with her. I comforted her as she cried but no tears came from my eyes.

It’s not because I’m cold, because I cry at the most stupid things. You could say I was being strong for her?

As I sat on the train on my way back home, a host of emotions bombarded me. I was overwhelmed and I could feel tears wanting to come out. I was fighting the tears, there was no way I would allow myself to cry on public transport. When I say I held that shit in, I held that shit in!

As soon as I reached my front door - I broke down on the floor! My mother in law helped me up and comforted me. She held me and calmed me down.

I could feel a variety of emotions rushing through as I cried on her shoulders, emotions that I never got the chance to feel when my parents past away. Right there and then, I knew I had opened the box.

Words can’t explain how grateful I was to have my mother in law there that night, it was a blessing.

We spoke for a bit, she gave me some great advice and tried her best to make me smile again, which she succeeded.

As an adult, I am still learning how to cope with grief. I now understand that as a young child, I accepted the fact that I would never have my parents with me. However, I never truly grieved and I am hoping I will now. Not only for my parents but an amazing man, who was like a dad to me.

I found this great post on Tiny Buddha that I thought was really helpful.

Check it out.

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