Grieving Isn't a Choice

There's that mantra that you can't choose the cards you get dealt in life, but you can choose how you play them, and yes, I mostly agree, but grieving isn't a choice.

When someone you love dies, part of you dies with them. That's something I felt very strongly after the death of my husband.

His absence left a massive hole in my life and my heart, and it was only with time that I was able to start putting things into my life that brought me joy and helped that hole to be filled.

The thing that struck me most is that from the moment I woke to the moment I closed my eyes in bed that night, he was gone.

Everything from our morning coffee, his funny text messages through the day (usually rude jokes to make me laugh), our lunchtime chat where we'd compare lunches, mine was always a ham and pickle sandwich, his was his peg feed into his tummy.

He'd often put little notes in with lunch, and sometimes steal bits and put an apology and an IOU. What hurt the most was the minute my head touched my pillow at night, he was no longer there for a kiss and a cuddle, and I would fall asleep through exhaustion from crying because his absence was just felt so utterly and completely and it pulled my world apart.

Every small memory has the potential to bring joy and happiness, but in those early stages, those memories cut so painfully deep. They hurt and are a heartbreaking reminder of what has been lost.

Grieving was never a choice, it was a reaction to waking up and being alone, day after day.

It makes me so sad that many of you will read this and say "yeah I felt that way", but I feel so glad that you're reading this, and I do hope it helps. You are not alone.

Helping Others Understand

It can be very hard to understand that grief affects every part of a person, and that they really don't have the choice to get up and get back to "normal. Well they do, but it's important for them to feel the grief, and not try to "skip it". There is no way around grief, you can't sidestep it, so what they're experiencing is normal in Planet Grief.

Please, just be there, be present, be kind, and listen.

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