My Grief is different than your Grief

I get it, I do.

Your grief is loud, physical, a call to action. That ghost of a bathroom we’ve been waiting almost 7 years to see appear, is now securely on it’s way to fruition. While I appreciate your hard work, I could do without the hammering right now.

Because while your grief is loud, my grief is quiet, contemplative and sluggish. If I don’t accomplish anything more than a shower today, I’m okay with that. I don’t have any commitments to keep. I manged to feed and clothe the minions and myself, which in my book, is quite the accomplishment.

I had to leave this afternoon, I’m sorry. I couldn’t take the hammering and the boys running up and down the stairs and the stereo blaring and I just needed a few minutes to myself, a few quiet minutes.

While Wal-mart is not my favorite place, we needed something for supper and I thought maybe I could handle that small task.

I stopped at the cemetery on the way. Such an ugly place in the middle of winter. Muddy and barren. I must have been quite the figure, dressed all in black, hair whipping around my face, sobbing at that mound of earth that now holds our son.

I left as quickly as I decided to stop.

Wal-mart was so crowded, I’d forgotten it was Saturday. On the best of days, the store overwhelms me. I must go in, get what I need and get out, otherwise I become disoriented and a headache quickly rules my head. I looked at all the people streaming in and out. My gut felt like I’d been punched, I could already feel the headache creeping up my neck, but I got out of the car and went in anyway. I’m a glutton for punishment like that.

Today I wandered a bit. I looked at clothes and shoes and was proud of myself for acting the part of the average shopper. That is until I saw the little red-headed boy in the shopping cart. He looked about 10 months old and it was all I could do to push my cart forward without collapsing in a puddle on the floor.

Maybe it’s too soon for Wal-mart.

I gathered our supper and checked out. Arriving back home without incident, to a mailbox full of mail. A box full of cards and letters, all sharing our grief.


Maybe it’s too soon to read the mail.

I don’t really mean that. I appreciate every card and letter sent to us. I am awe-struck that so many people feel compelled to share their love and support with us. Thank you just doesn’t seem adequate.

While I soldier on during the day, it’s the night that truly cripples me. While my sleepless nights didn’t go undetected during the past 5 months, at least I could occupy myself with the comings and goings of the Chaperones. I could help tend to David until my eyes got the better of me and I knew with certainty that if I tried to sleep, it would come quickly.

Here, there is no guarantee of sleep. I know it drives you crazy that I prefer the recliner to the our bed, but the pursuit of sleep is a solitary endeavor and by the time I’ve actually conquered it – you’re stirring to face the day.


If nothing else – I haven’t lost my sense of humor. I said the minions were dressed, I didn’t say they were coordinated.

Okay, I let the little one dress himself.....

Categories: Life | Tags: , , , , , | 15 Comments

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15 thoughts on “My Grief is different than your Grief

  1. Completely normal and love that you have maintained a sense of humor during this difficult time. Love the outfit!

  2. I have a friend who lost her young husband in June. She still can’t answer the phone. I’ve tried calling. Her VM box is full. She’ll answer emails and texts but she can’t answer the phone. I don’t pretend to understand. I just accept. And every day that you wake up and live is a step in the right direction.

  3. I don’t understand what you are going through but do know that my heart is with you. I think of you daily and keep you close to my heart.

  4. The photo made me laugh.

    My mother lost her three year old son back in 1968. You remind me of what she went through. She will tell you that she misses Doug even now, but that the grief no longer exists. She remembers only the cute happy things. I hope this helps you!

  5. Jasmine

    Amy, I love you. Please let me know if I can bring you dinner, wine or just company by later this week. I will have my two crazies with me.

    With all of my heart, I wish you a moment of peace today… if only a moment.

  6. Grief is such a personal, private thing. You need to go through this process at your own pace, in your own way. And you know that no matter what form your grief takes, there are people who care about you who are grieving with you, and are loving and supporting you.
    I wish there was some way to take some of the pain from you.
    And yes, that picture is adorable – looks like you have a fashion diva on your hands!

  7. I am so sorry for your loss and grief. I cant imagine even being able to function after such a tragedy.
    Sent you a message on FB – the offer always stands.

  8. carrie

    Continued prayers and thoughts….I’m so glad you’re still writing. I’m beyond impressed that you attempted Walmart….it’s so stressful even on the best of days. I can’t begin to comprehend your grief, but please know that so many have you in their thoughts and prayers.

  9. Pingback: Tweets that mention My Grief is different than your Grief | transplanted thoughts --

  10. Oh my dear…I can’t even imagine how difficult it is for you to go through this, let alone write through it..but I’m glad that you’ve found an outlet of sorts..

    Please know that I’m thinking about you, and wishing that there was something that I could do.

    Glad you could find some light in your dark day with the little ones dressing habits 🙂

  11. love. love. love.

    I’m sending you love. love. love.

  12. I love the outfit! And while I’m no expert, it sounds like both of your types of grief are totally normal and healthy (and when you’re feeling better, maybe you’ll be glad to have that bathroom). And if you still have a sense of humor, I think you’re doing okay. Best of luck to your whole family.

  13. sharon

    It’s a good thing that you are able to accept how grief is different for each of us. Maybe when the new bathroom is finished you will be able to shut yourself in there for a few minutes of peace, which will be a welcome bonus for enduring the noise now. Bravo for venturing into Walmart, I’m not sure that I would have got any further than the cemetery stop.

    Thank you for the photo, that’s a boy with oodles of style – although maybe putting his shoes on the right feet would be more comfortable 😉


  14. I’m a quiet griever too. Attempting a shower and feeding the family is a HUGE thing.

  15. Grief is a mystery. It affects everyone differently, it can show up at unexpected times, and it can change from one moment to the next. Mostly I believe it is an act of worship…our body and mind’s way of saying to God, “Things are not as they ought to be. ” It is a subconscious longing for heaven, where sickness and evil and wrong will not exist…where we can be reunited with our loved ones.

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