A colleague gave me the book, A Grief Observed by C.S. Lewis, and he describes grief as so like fear, but also as the feeling like “being mildly drunk, or concussed. There is a sort of invisible blanket between the world and me” (p.5). It does feel like a soft haze surrounds me, and in the first few months the world revolved without my input. People came in and out around me, mowing my lawn, bringing coffee, feeding the others nearby. Flowers conquered space after space, my table, my piano, my mantle, and I could enjoy none of it. As ungrateful as it sounds (although I am not), I don’t recommend sending flowers to someone who has experienced this type of loss, unless you are very far away. It is so trivial in these moments, and becomes almost burdensome to deal with the shedding petals that litter the tables, and the overwhelming graveyard of vases that then jam the cupboards.
I would cry intermittently, and then laugh spontaneously. People were often shocked themselves by my ability to hold a conversation, joke and tell stories, and not be in a perpetual state of sadness and sorrow. But the blanket remained always, and still remains.
I understand the want to connect, the need to connect with Kelly through me. I often wish I could see more people, do more to be a good person, a good wife, a good friend, but I fumble. I can’t always keep up with the demands that this predicament has put me in. I cry nearly every time I see one of Kelly’s friends, and I don’t mean shedding a couple tears, I mean the ugly sobbing cry. I aim to see his family more, but feel I fall short all the time. I am certain I am allergic completely to thank you cards. So, please know that inspite of this anaphalaxis of mail-out thank you’s my gratitude pours over, and each person has helped me in some small or great way that I can never express.
Lewis goes on to say, “there are moments, most unexpectedly, when something inside me tries to assure me that I don’t really mind so much, not so very much, after all. Love is not the whole of a man’s life”. Though I agree, though there are moments, mere moments where I feel as though I might be okay with this, I am of course not, and to me, love IS the whole of my life.
Is there light today? Yes, because LOVE is the WHOLE of my life. Kelly was the man who made me understand so much of my worth, but I also have incredible people who hold me up daily. And his love, and the love of the people around me have helped me survive, and have helped me to see the good that tomorrow my bring. This love will carry me.