Since I have had to deal with three major deaths in the last few weeks, here is what I have concluded about death, thus far, and in no particular order:
- It doesn’t matter whom has passed away, it’s my job as a mother to tell my children “in person”…someone’s death is not text-able news and I owe them that courtesy. I can, however, cry about it first and process it a little bit. I honestly think they must have a course in medical school for doctors, to learn how to do this…at least, I would hope so.
- When you look like the loved one who has passed, looking in the mirror first thing in the morning can be very startling, initially. Wow, spooky!
- You are never prepared for it, no matter if the person dies suddenly or if it is from a prolonged illness. Both have pros and cons. It’s hard to process and grieve a person when they are dying, because they’re still alive. When they do pass, it’s a combination of relief because they are no longer suffering, but grief because they cease to be. Sudden death is swift and leaves you wondering why, because it feels as though someone ripped off a really secure bandaid from a wound, making it fresh and super painful.
- Death always seems to come for the “good people” first, as they are a shining example of God’s goodness and faith, so the “not-so-good people” end up living longer. God loves everyone, so He has to take them too, He just opts to LATER. Ugh. I guess I cannot say I blame Him. Although, if they are really bad, they may go somewhere warmer — or so I’ve been told.
- Hospice people are “Angels on Earth” and are not paid NEARLY enough. So are Stat-flight professionals, BTW.
- Grief can and will hit you at the most inopportune times, so you will be ugly crying A LOT. Buy tissues IN BULK, especially the aloe kind because they’re kind to your nose and the tender tissue around the eyes. I usually only reserve those for cold and flu season, but do yourself that solid.
- You forget, temporarily, that your loved one has passed and you see something that they would like or think of something you want to share with them — THEN, you remember they are gone and the disappointment feels like it just physically stabbed you in the heart with a claw hammer and someone is now trying to harshly removed it. I had no idea I could experience physical pain like that!
- People in your life, no matter how well you know them, will tell you how sorry they are for your loss. You feel like it’s sweet for them to say, but it’s a sentiment that’s like a penny thrown in a deep, deep wishing well that never seems to hit the bottom. However, it’s still nice to hear that that person cares about you, because they could’ve just said nothing and avoided you altogether.
- There is SO MUCH to tying up legal and paperwork issues to someone’s life. They have SO MANY possessions too that have to be dealt with, that will continuously make you have to grieve their loss again and again and again.
- Death is like a second birth for the people who pass, which is a relief, but those of us left behind are reeling and suffering. There is now this big hole that they left behind, because they were so important when they were alive and we, the living, are now scrambling because we DO NOT know how to fill the void.
- Tattoo pain is comforting to me, in general; however it REALLY rivals the grief pain you feel, so I understand getting memorial tattoos right away! I know that sounds masochistic, but what makes you feel better, truly, is the endorphin rush.
I woke up Sunday morning, filled with the fact that I needed to get these thoughts down. I feel like my Mother whispered in my ear, while I was sleeping, so I had to get up and record them before I forgot. I hope, if you’ve suffered a loss, these resinate with you too. I’ve had loved ones die before, so I’m not entirely new to grief and loss, but never this many people at one time! Instead of the waves grief washing over me, I feel like I’ve been hit by a tsunami, at this point.