If you could have witnessed what it was like to be around my Grammy and me, you’d intuitively understand the special bond the two of us shared. Everyone in my life — and hers — knew and adored our relationship, maybe even better than they ever knew or adored us. Our own individual identities were somehow intrinsically tied to our connection; it truly was that unspeakably deep. From my first dirty diaper to my first real heartbreak, this woman and I were connected in ways that transcended human comprehension. We were each other.
You can imagine the awkward twinge of a somehow envious-yet-awestruck pain this must have caused my mother. Still; even my very own mother — even from the very beginning — understood the beautiful magnitude of such an enormous and divine love. To this day, the gratitude she feels to have been such a crucial part of that bond holds precedence over the strange and unexpected jealousy any mother might feel. My mother has more of my Grammy in her than she knows.
Because of all that, however, I received quite an overwhelming response from almost every person at my Grammy’s memorial service. For some reason, each person in attendance felt it was their own personal duty somehow to give me permission to cry.
I couldn’t cry. The entire service, I just sat there… Numb. Frozen in space and time; suspended from reality like a puppet on a string, not refusing the grief, but somehow unable to quantify it through the customary tears that every single person seemed to expect me to shed. Tears felt like a disservice to my pain. Like an insult. Tears would have suggested that the loss was measurable somehow, and it simply wasn’t. I couldn’t cry; not because I was refusing to face the sorrow, but because the sorrow was simply too gigantic to portray by crying tears of a loss that becomes accepted and embraced when we mourn. There was no way to mourn this loss… Because it was so huge, so indescribable, that it was a PART of me. The only way I can explain it is to suggest imagining how you would feel attending your own funeral in person. It was awkward and surreal and it felt like nobody truly understood the depth of the pain. If they had, they would have known without question why my heart was too broken to weep.
And after all these years, all these pivotal moments in my life where I’ve had to re-live the reality of her no longer being here with me, I have cried only once or twice about the fact that she is gone. Fifteen years later, I am still too raw and too lost for words to minimize the pain with tears that can’t reach the infinity of sorrow by her absence in my world.
Maybe the things that matter the most to us have their own journeys to take through the un-navigatable corners of our hearts and souls. For me, it seems, that much I know is true.
This an excerpt from a previous post, “All That We See or Seem…”
The vibration resounded for me today, so I shared that vibe. Maybe some part of my own grieving and cherishing process will encourage others who feel the same strain of hiking such painful, mountainous terrain. Be blessed.